In response to my recent Top Ten list, I got a challenge that the programs I listed weren't really "genealogy" programs and the title to my post was misleading. Hmm. It seems when I do "genealogy" I must be doing something different than the commentator. I guess I should have confined myself to listing only those "programs" that have the word "genealogy" in their title. Wait a minute, I don't know of any program that has the word "genealogy" in its title. Wait again, what about the term "family history?" That isn't much help either.
Maybe I should have confined my list only to those programs that help me find my ancestors? No, that doesn't work because doing a Google search for your ancestors is a fundamental step in starting any genealogical research project. So I must list Google as a "genealogy" program even if the word "genealogy" is not usually associated with Google per se.
What about the other "programs" I listed? Apparently, there is also an issue with calling them programs at all. The new word, "app" is rapidly replacing the word "program" but the word "app" is merely a shortened form of the word "application." Whatever you want to call a list of instructions to a computer is alright with me. Here is the definition of a "program."
A computer program is a collection of instructions that performs a specific task when executed by a computer. A computer requires programs to function, and typically executes the program's instructions in a central processing unit.That definition seems to me to be pretty inclusive. If I use Google Search to search for genealogy information, when does it become a "genealogy program?" Eventually? Never? I think the answer verges on the metaphysical. When a program becomes included in my or your own list of "genealogy" seems to me to be arbitrary.
Computer program - Wikipedia, the free encyclopediahttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_program
Let's talk about programs that create a family tree and store information about your family. I could use a dedicated program, such as some of the ones I have mentioned, or I could use a general purpose program such as Google Docs or Google Drive. Isn't it either interesting or perhaps important to know which of these types of programs we use for genealogy? But, you argue, that doesn't make them genealogy programs. Well, there we are. I happen to consider what I use to be useful for genealogy and ergo, for me, they are genealogy programs.
OK, so I admit it. The title of the blog should have qualified my list to say something like, "The Top Ten Programs (or whatever you want to call them) that I use when I am doing what I like to call, genealogy (your opinion may differ)." I didn't realize I was being genealogically, politically incorrect.