Thursday, February 2, 2012
RootsTech 2012 Recap 1
Today was the first day of RootsTech 2012. I started the day with the keynote address. It was lived streamed, so I won't rehash the details. FamilySearch did what they do: looking into the future and genealogy's role in it. I live-tweeted the event and also followed along with the commentary from home. Thanks to all who tweeted that they saw me on tv. I was hoping the camera guy was tuned in to Dan Lynch behind me, but apparently that wasn't the case. So glad I didn't scratch my nose or anything during my close up.
After the keynote, the floodgates opened to the exhibit hall. That sucker was packed! I made my way to the media hub where the bloggers often congregate. It was great to see old friends and meet new ones. So far I've touched base with 49 bloggers! Yes, I'm keeping track. It's not easy.
Once the first session started, the hall cleared out. I made my way to Family ChartMasters. I had some questions from a client and questions of my own. I've known Janet for a while, but I had the pleasure of being a customer for the first time last year. She treated my client *very* well and made me look good in front of him. Now said client wants more charts and I'm in the market, too.
I also stopped by the RootsMagic booth to say hi and thank you for allowing me to be a part of their treasure hunt during RootsTech. RootsMagic is my genealogy software. Do you visit the vendor of your genealogy software at conferences? You should. Say hi and get your questions answered. Sometimes you even get the scoop on new developments.
At lunch, I sat with a lady I met the day before at the APG conference. She's pretty important in DAR, so we talked about that and why I'm not in the group. She confirmed what others have told me: my path to membership is pretty easy because my ancestors and living cousins did all the work for me. It was a nice visit. One of those moments that doesn't happen if you plan your conference schedules too much.
Immediately after lunch, I sat down for an interview with Kenyatta Berry. She's the new president of the Association of Professional Genealogists. She shared with me her vision for APG and the work that the board is doing. It was a great conversation and I'm encouraged by what I heard. When I return home, I will post a recap of the interview. Thanks to Kenyatta for giving me 30 minutes of her very busy time here at RootsTech.
In the afternoon, I attended a session on Evernote. I got in the room late. The seats were full and people were standing and sitting all over the place. I found a standing spot behind a post, so I mostly listened to the presentation. It was billed as a beginner-level session. I probably would have benefited more if it had been an intermediate session.
I also attended an unconference session in the late afternoon. The subject was "umbrella societies." These are genealogy societies that serve a group of societies. Many state genealogical societies do this, but not all of them. There were 10 people in this session from Texas, Missouri, Pennsylvania and California societies, as well as a FamilySearch representative. We talked about issues facing smaller societies and how the umbrella societies can serve them. Since not all umbrella societies do things the same way, ways of collecting information from these groups was examined. I felt that this unconference session was very productive. It brought forth several good issues for the group to ponder. Randy Whited of FGS was the unconference facilitator, so I'm sure the feedback collected in this session will reach the FGS board.
That's it for my recap of the first day or RootsTech 2012. Now I need to get ready for day 2!