AncestryDNA’s May 2016 NAD Update

In the past couple of days Ancestry has updated the list of NADs (New Ancestor Discoveries). AncestryDNA subscribers can now login to see an updated list of NADs. There has been quite a bit of conversation about the accuracy of this update. My advice– ignore any new NADs for now. (more…)

Dear GenealogyBank: It’s Not Me, It’s You

Dear GenealogyBank,

It’s not me– It’s you. Really. You have a great product. Sure, there is overlap with other free sites like Chronicling America and other paid sites like But I get it; you’ve got content they don’t. Like newspapers from Eastport, Maine just across the bay from where one of my ancestors settled. And I know in that paper there are articles pertaining to my ancestors including details not available elsewhere. But saying anything else would likely violate your restrictive terms of use:

“you are granted an individual, non-exclusive, non-transferable, limited license to browse, search, retrieve, view, print and/or download, the Content on the Site for your personal non-commercial purposes”


‘The Checkout’ takes on Ancestry and WDYTYA

Last week an Australian TV series called ‘The Checkout‘ released an episode which parodies Who Do You Think You Are. The video, entitled ‘Who Do They Think They Are?‘, takes many jabs at the TV show for making genealogy look easy, but takes many big swipes at for their subscription tactics. Go ahead, watch the video now. (more…)

Decoy Death Dates

Have you ever come across decoy death dates in your genealogy research… dates intentionally incorrect (for any event, not just deaths)? It occurred to me there is a parallel between genealogy and one of my other interests, maps. In both cartography and genealogy multiple people or groups are working towards one truth. Sometimes people work together but often it is independent. (more…)

Dick Eastman’s Complaint About Genealogists

Dick Eastman has a complaint about many genealogists.

I am appalled that some people apparently expect a company to spend money gathering free records, spend money scanning it, spend money building data centers, spend money buying servers and disk farms, spend money on high-speed Internet connectivity, spend money for programmers, spend money on customer support personnel, and spend money on advertising to let you know that the information is available, and then expect that same company to make the information available free of charge! [..] Where did they learn economics? At the Tooth Fairy University?


Ancestry Clarifies “Ancestor Discoveries”

Last week announced a new feature, ‘Ancestor Discoveries’ and claimed a “Breakthrough in DNA“.

Imagine that you know nothing about your 3rd great-grandmother on your father’s side. You haven’t been able to find her name, you’ve never seen a picture of her, and you don’t know where she was born. Now by taking the AncestryDNA test you may finally discover that piece of your story. This is the power unlocked by New Ancestor Discoveries as we push technology and DNA science to the next level.


Tim Flight

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I'm a web application developer, generally working with PHP and MySQL. I'm also a genealogist with primary research expertise in New England, the Maritimes of Canada, and Sweden. And I'm a former National Champion snowboarder. Formerly I was a full-time professional blogger.