Links to club resources

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Family History Conference, 10/29/2016

ANNOUNCING THE 2016 Family History Conference sponsored by the Mesa AZ FamilySearch Library on Saturday, October 29, 2016, at the Tempe Institute of Religion on the ASU Campus, 1000 South McAllister Avenue in Tempe, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:10 p.m.
This year’s conference will feature a keynote address by James Tanner, a friend to our conference and respected family history guru.
Our theme is “Putting It All Together” and provides a wide variety of over 50 class choices for all types of learners, from beginners to the most advanced genealogists. Come and learn how to be more effective and efficient when doing your research. Learn to trace your roots with DNA. Learn to document your sources. Get specific information on various ways to research in specific countries. If you are new to family history, come learn the basics. Some of the most popular classes are repeated in an effort to accommodate everyone. Spend all day or come for a single class or two; you may attend a maximum of five classes.
Registration will begin online at on Wednesday, September 14, 2016. At the time of registration, registrants will be given the opportunity to purchase lunch from Jason’s Deli. Otherwise, the conference is FREE. See you in October!

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June 2016 Treasurer’s Report

In June we transferred about $2500 to our Asset Reserve Fund, intended for major future expenses such as computer purchases. It’s now at $5000 and our available balance is about $2500. For details and precise amounts please see: June 2016 Treasurer’s Report.

July 1 marked the start of our club’s new fiscal year with the new officers taking on their responsibilities. Mary Barr has been our Treasurer for the past two years, and this is her last report. Nice work, Mary! Thanks from all of us!!

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Windows 10 for club computers (not)

Microsoft’s offer of a free upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 10 expires the end of this month. I’ve had one friend say she’s happy with her new Windows 10, and one club member tell me he upgraded to Windows 10 and was happy with it because it worked just like Windows 7. So I’ve thought about it one last time, but decided not to, because:

  • There’s been no demand for it from club members in general.
  • To the extent that it’s different from Windows 7 it makes the PCs harder to use. To the extent it’s the same, the point of upgrading is not clear.
  • There is a new default browser, and our PC users mainly use the browser.
  • I may only discover problems some time after installing the upgrade, like the one noted in this May 30 article in The Economist:

… there does seem to be a fundamental flaw in the way the latest build of Windows 10 manages its WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity. For instance, when the machine being tested goes to sleep, it loses its wireless connection. No amount of fiddling with Windows 10’s settings, drivers and trouble-shooting (next to useless) will then fix the problem. Even online forums have offered little in the way of help. The only solution is to reboot the machine, so it can re-discover the network gateway. Meanwhile, even though they are properly paired, numerous attempts have to be made to get Windows 10 to detect the machine’s Bluetooth keyboard. Such annoyances may be unique to the set-up concerned, but they are justification enough to ditch Windows 10 for the time being.

When we decide we want new PCs, they will come with Windows 10. That’s soon enough.

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July 4th Note: monitoring, freebies

j4Monitoring: I’ve “torn off” the month of June from our club calendar. Would you like to sign up to monitor in July? There are lots of vacant slots. Head over to the calendar if you’re a monitor already or contact Joan Allen if you’d like to become one. Don’t forget we have flex-time in the summer; if you don’t want 9-12 or 1-3 just put in a note saying when you’ll be there.

Fourth of July freebies: If you want to squeeze in some family history this weekend you might try:

  • Fold3: Fold3’s Revolutionary War Collection is available free from today through the 15th. (Their entire database is of course available in our club rooms.)
  • FindMyPast: FindMyPast’s Census and Military collection is available free now until the Fourth.

Happy Independence Day!

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Using your account at a club computer

There’s been an increase in the number of members who’d like to use their own account while in the club rooms. This is a Good Thing. (You might want to do this if you have a free Ancestry account or a subscription more limited than the club’s. If you want to sign up for a free account, click here.)

But this Good Thing creates a Problem. The Problem is that the club computers are set up to log on to automatically using the club account, when you use Internet Explorer. If you manage somehow to turn off this automatic login so you can get to your personal Ancestry account, then it doesn’t work for the next person.

One Solution to this Problem is: don’t use Internet Explorer to log into your own Ancestry account! Use Chrome or Firefox instead. Leave IE for the club account. (On the Mac, Safari takes the place of IE; you should use Chrome there too.) One Advantage of this Solution is that it lets you use both your Ancestry account and the club’s at the same time, in different browsers.

Another Solution some members choose is to bring your laptop or tablet with you, and use that for your own Ancestry account.

Thanks for your cooperation in this.

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