Genealogy and Computers: Too Much Input

Thursday, March 9, 2006 12:00
Posted in category CS404 Archive

Computers, coupled with the Internet, have made it easier for people to do their genealogy. In the past, genealogy was done by professionals. Now anyone can research their ancestors and input data into huge genealogical databases. As a drawback, these systems now contain massive amounts of erroneous data and duplicate entries. Of course, these issues aren’t created intentionally. They arise when people begin entering ancestral data based on memory, rather than records obtained through government/church or other authenticate documents. In other cases, some people that have entered data may not even search the genealogical systems to see if the information already exists. However, I believe that these issues can be reversed. The gathered data will need to be reviewed. People that have already entered data should be encouraged to go back and check their work. Also, I’d recommend that these same people cite sources where they acquired their information. This will help determine how reliable the source is which is being used. Obviously it won’t be easy and it will not fix all of the mistakes. However, it will greatly improve the quality of the information already obtained.

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