Friday, March 14, 2014

I Did IT! I Chewed That Elephant Up In Pieces

One of the big tasks we have in FamilySearch Family Tree is merging duplicate files. All of the different versions people had put into need to be merged together to make the tree clean.

A careful merge brings together  into one file all of the information the various contributors have added.

The older the ancestor is, the more likely the amount of duplicates are to be many. Add to that if they were nobility, it is likely a bigger issue. Such is the case of Lord John Lisle.  A lot more research needs to be performed to verify if the family is as several have input.

So I decided to get all of the information scattered in family tree about Lord Lisle into one file. I gave up the first time at over 100 merges. Later I thought, if not me who? So on several different occassions I again merged about 100 files. They almost all  have the same info, but on a few merges there was a new child to add.

I wish the tree told us how many duplicate files there were, but it usually set the number at 98 or 99. So after completing many setting of merges I wondered will this ever end.

It did, finally. Last night I kept merging away and then suddenly noticed the number was 94 left to merge. Could it be so? I got it down into the 80 's and danag the count jumped up. Oh please no I thought. Then it dropped into the 70's. At 48 I became a believe - there was an end to this task. The count jumped from 41 to 46 but I kept going. It went 46 to 45 and sequencially down to 31 and I said to myself; please don't jump back up to  99. Whoopee, it skipped from 25 to 21. Oh dang it went from 21 to 25. Please no more jumping up.

All went well until 10 were left to merge. I then got the message These records cannot be merged because the corresponding combined record in would be too large. To merge these records, please wait until shuts down.  You see, Family Tree still uses some of the processes from Over in there was a maximum number of records that could be attached to one ancestor. The older they were the more likely a file too large to merge. Family Tree won't have this problem. We all have just the one entry for an ancestor.

This is a tedtious task, but I believe we are doing something very important. Now onto more exciting tasks, such as determining did he really have these  11 children. Is one of them really my ancestor. You see, there is missing proof in 3 generations that he and Lady Lisle are really the great great grandparents of Joshus Whitaker, our Joshua Whitaker.

We shall see.

Onward and forward.

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