Category Archives: RootsTech

After the conference…

It had a great week at the FGS/RootsTech conference.  So much wonderful insight, knowledge, and ideas were shared.  Now what to do with all of that?  I worry that I will forget what I have been taught.  While attending a genealogy conference I am able to focus on just genealogy, and how I want to apply what I am learning.  But when I return home, there are wonderful distractions such as my living family members that need my attention.  When life returns to its’ normal routine, will I remember the ideas I had?

Something that I started doing at SLIG (Salt Lake Institute for Genealogy) this year, was in my notes of what the speakers were saying, I also included the ideas that came to me about how to apply what they were teaching.  “This might work for researching _____ family” or “This topic would make a good article or presentation.”  I also created another document just for ideas to bring back to the Germanic Genealogy Society where I am currently president.  FGS is great about teaching society leaders and members how to strengthen their local societies.

Will I forget?  While I still need to remember to read over my notes and handouts, it is surprising to me how much I do remember.  The facts come back to me often unexpectedly.  Attending a conference with other genealogists is fun because you can brainstorm with those you meet about your specific research and share knowledge and experience.  I try to attend several each year so I can sometimes be reminded of what I have learned in the past, and also so I can gain additional skills.  It is also fun to be around large groups of people that don’t think you are strange for being passionate about family history.

Another Month, Another Conference

The month has flown by, it feels as though I just got back from Salt Lake City and now I am off again to attend the FGS/RootsTech combined conference.

I love attending conferences.  RootsTech is HUGE and adding the FGS classes only adds to my stress of which class I want to attend each hour. #SoManyGoodChoices

I try to do as much preparation as I can prior to the conferences I attend.  Here are a few of my tips:

  • Print business cards

    Even if you do not have a business, conferences are a great place to meet new contacts and having your name, email address, contact info, etc on a card is very convenient.  I like to use my name tag to place cards I collect and a few cards to hand out.  Some people like to print double-sided cards and put their surnames on the back.

  • Write on the back of collected cards

    If you collect cards write on the back – why that card is important.  Is it is a distant cousin, fellow researcher, etc.

  • Print address labels

    At conferences, especially large conferences, there are always lots of drawings. Having an address label you can put on the slips rather than writing out the same information is so much easier and saves a lot of time.  Often these slips also ask for your email address as a method of contact, or a phone number at the conference.  Making your own labels allows you to add additional information if you choose than just your name and address.

  • Dress in layers

    Conference rooms temperatures can vary.  Some are too cold, others are very warm.

  • Extra charger

    One of my newest purchases was for an extra battery charger for my cell phone.  While I have tried in the past to bring my charger with me, it can be difficult to find a spot by a plug or the time to recharge my phone.

  • Review the syllabus in advance

    I try to download the syllabus as soon as I can when that is an option.  My home internet is more reliable and less bogged down than those available at hotels or at the conferences themselves.  I also try to download the handouts if they are available because by looking at them it helps me decide what classes I really want to attend.

  • Prepare a Research Plan

    If you are going to an area that has nearby research facilities, check out their online catalog.  Are there items that interest you?  Do as much preparation as you can from home so you can maximize your time researching.

I am going to have a very busy week and I’m looking forward to another opportunity to increase my genealogy knowledge. I am excited to reconnect with friends and acquaintances this week and hope to make some additional ones.