Some people eat, sleep and chew gum, I do genealogy and write...

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The future of FamilySearch

FamilySearch, the genealogical organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is well known for its Website, However, the Website for the actual organization is that of The Genealogical Society of Utah, the previous name of the organization. In answering the question, "What is FamilySearch?' the Website says:

FamilySearch, historically known as the Genealogical Society of Utah, is dedicated to the discovery and preservation of a record of the family of mankind, introducing individuals to their ancestors through the widespread access of records, and collaborating with others who share this vision...

At the recent Family History Expo in Mesa, Arizona on January 22, 2010, Jim Greene, of FamilySearch, talked about unifying the logins for all of the present FamilySearch Websites. Presently, you could have a separate login and password for each of the many different sites using the name FamilySearch. That process has already begun and shortly all of the Websites will have a unified LDS account login, that's one password to remember instead of many.

Eventually, as explained by other presenters on the part of FamilySearch, many of the different Websites not just the logins, including New FamilySearch, the FamilySearch Research Wiki, Record Search and others will be consolidated into one umbrella Website. The surviving name will be If you would like a preview of the new consolidated site, go to

Another development is that New FamilySearch will be released to the general public and not restricted only to LDS members, as it now is. The release to the public is supposed to occur by the end of the year, but that would be optimistic.

The combination of a dramatic increase in original records from around the world in Record Search, to the increased availability of research helps from the Research Wiki, will dramatically impact the genealogical community in near future. As the 2.4 or 2.5 million microfilm records become available online, the way research is conducted in many different countries will be radically affected. Records that have never been generally available will be on everyone's computer at the click of a mouse.

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