Two days ago, I reviewed one of the new features in RootsMagic 5. Today, in response to one of the members of the online study group I am a part of, I did a synopsis of many of the new / changed features in RM5. Perhaps you are interested in what’s new in RM5. I did a blog earlier in the week on the Resource Manager. This post will simply give a brief synopsis of some of the other new or revised features. For a fuller treatment, I’d recommend a) watch Bruce Busby’s webinar “What’s New in RootsMagic 5?” or c) check out Randy Seaver’s exceptionally thorough reviews of RootsMagic 5.
Let me begin by saying that RootsMagic is getting better and better. The To-Do list has been modified with the addition of a button allowing a To-Do list can be transferred to a Research Log by a simple click. The information in the To-Do list is automatically entered into the appropriate fields in the Research Log. This can then be edited to indicate the results of the search.
I was most impressed with the County Check function. When entering a date and place for an event, RM5 checks to make sure that the county/state/country were correct for that date. If not, suggestion(s) are given for appropriate identity at the originat time of the event. There is also a County Check report form which can print out (or save) a list of all errors in the Place List along with suggestions of the appropriate identity. My County Check error list with suggested corrections was 50+ pages long. (Got some heavy work to do here!) As an example: enter “Plymouth, Massachusetts, United States” in 1621 and RM5 returns “error: Massachusetts wasn’t created until 4 March 1629″ and “United States wasn’t created until 15 November 1777″ followed by “suggestion: Plymouth, British America.” Pretty Neat, eh?!?!
RM4 had a Timeline list function. RM5 adds a graphical image to the text listing. (Only the text list is printable.) There is also a list called “On This Day.” Select a particular date (month and day) and the list will identify every event in the database related to that month and day. You can also include Famous Births, Famous Deaths, and Historical Events.
One of the more significant changes in RM5 is the way multimedia files are handled. In RM4 multimedia files were attached to people, families, events, places, and/or sources, often resulting in multiple copies of multimedia files (e.g., a census file being added to each individual in the household). When RM5 imports a database from RM4, it consolidates the files in the multimedia gallery, eliminating all duplicates by tagging each multimedia files with the name of the people, families, events, places, and/or sources to which it had been attached. The RM5 user now has the capacity to tag new multimedia files as appropriate and/or edit tags to existing files. The end result is: only one copy of any multimedia file is kept in the database.
Descendant lists (Ahnentafels) were numbered with generation numbering in RM4. In RM5 you have the choice of four numbering systems – generation, Henry, D’Aboville, or outline. You can also filter the list to direct line descendancy between two individuals. The Place List report now includes the option to print out events that happened “near” a selected place. You can choose the number of miles of radius to be included.
So, color me impressed! The folks at RootsMagic have certainly been listening closely to their user base, as well as the experts like Elizabeth Shown Mills.