Category Archives: tools

Automated note updates with Shared Clustering

Year-end is a great time to take a look at our DNA matches and our organization/analysis tools and maybe do a little cleanup. I’ve begun playing with a free Windows-based utility by Jonathan Brecher—the Shared Clustering tool.

Now, there are a lot of clustering tools out there for those who are ready to try that—and not everyone is ready to rumble, I mean cluster. What I really appreciate about Shared Clustering right now is the automated [Note Update] function, which you can do with or without clustering. I can make my Ancestry match notes more meaningful and consistent and then bulk upload those same notes to other kits I manage too. I’ll walk you through the steps I took, and maybe you’ll get some ideas of how to tweak the process to be helpful to you.

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DNA2Tree app for iOS: review

Time for another guest post! David Neal has introduced a new iOS app that has particular value for those trying to decode birth parent searches. I am not an Apple person, so I have asked my teammate at the Central Indiana DNA Interest Group, Steve Frank, to offer a review of this new product. Take it away, Steve!

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Clustering Tools for DNA matches

This month I am passing the baton! Last time I wrote about 10 Tips to Trial a Tool, and I decided that despite the temptation, I didn’t have time yet to explore the new clustering tools. Fortunately, Andrea Ackermann, one of my fellow team leaders at our Central Indiana DNA Interest Group, has taken the plunge. So I’ve invited her to share her thoughts on clustering tools here as a guest blogger. Welcome, Andrea!

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10 tips to trial a tool

Every January I spend a little time brainstorming my genealogy goals for the New Year. Genetic genealogy is such a fast-evolving field—exploring new tools will probably always be a worthwhile addition to my annual To-Do List. It’s certainly on my radar for 2019. But I haven’t decided which tool to try next. Why not?

There are so many factors to consider! Here are ten tips to consider when choosing a tool to try.

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What are the Odds? New help in finding birth parents

My family gets to welcome another adoptee to our extended family – yay! We have a new projected third cousin match (Mary) at 23andMe. Her dad Bill, now deceased, was born in Ohio in 1930 and later adopted. Mary would love to discover her dad’s birth parents. I spent a fair number of hours working up a hypothesis and even more hours trying to write my analysis up in a way Mary and her family might understand.

Now, there is a fantastic new tool at DNA Painter—called What Are the Odds?— that can cut down that analysis time, improve accuracy, and it’s so easy now to share the results in an easy-to-understand way! So thank you to creators Jonny Perl and Leah Larkin for making this available to genetic genealogists!

You can read more about this exciting option at TheDNAGeek Leah Larkin’s blog post Science the Heck Out of Your DNA Part 7. And you can read below to see how it worked on Mary’s case. (Because of course, I tried it out there to sanity-check my own analysis!)

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