Tag Archives: netbook

Weekly genealogy preview (for week 36)

30 Aug

Hmmm, looking back at last week’s goals it seems that I didn’t really manage to achieve most of them, but tomorrow is a bank holiday so I have an extra day off this week to try again.

  • This week I want to get my paperwork down to just three folders, one of original documents, one of general research material (although I am having second thoughts about keeping that one as well) and one where I need to scan or transcribe the information (some of that is gong to take some time). I still have another folder with filing materials (dividers and punched pockets) that I have salvaged from the other folders, and can’t bare to part with just yet, but that doesn’t count.
  • I still want to tidy up this blog. I haven’t got around to doing much work on it recently, other than posting. I have quite a few ideas for things I want to do, but it is just a question of finding time to do it.
  • I still haven’t been for a walk around Nuthurst, Sussex. I want to visit the church and New House Farm, but again it is just a question of finding the time to do it.
  • I really need to sort out the bookmarks on my PC. There are two reasons for this, firstly they are getting a bit out of hand and unmanageable (the need sorting into sub-folders or sub-sub-folders). The second reason is that I want to copy them over to my netbook, but I would rather they were better organised before I did it.
  • Next Saturday I am hoping to visit the Picture Postcard Show in London. I need to produce a list of places and subjects that I want postcards of, aside from my main collecting interests. Also I need to get a research plan in place should I have time after the show to pop into the City of Westminster Archives just up the road.

Weekly genealogy preview (for week 35)

23 Aug

Most of last weeks goals fell by the wayside as I got a bee in my bonnet about getting organised and purging my paper files. I still have much sorting and filing to do so this week is going to be pretty much all about organising.

  • Continue the work I have already done sorting out my folders and capturing the data on my PC. I would like to get the bulk of the folders emptied this week, leaving only some of the more time consuming tasks to be completed in the following week.
  • I didn’t get the opportunity to walk home from work last week, so I didn’t get to see New House Farm, Nuthurst, Sussex where my 4x great grandparents Henry and Catherine GASSON were living in 1841. So I will try again this week, although the weather doesn’t look to promising.
  • I would still like to do some housekeeping on my blog. I need to review the categories and such like, update my blogroll and just make it look better, maybe a new header image and few other pictures in the sidebar and my profile needs a once over again.
  • NO NEW RESEARCH UNTIL I HAVE GOT ALL MY FOLDERS ORGANISED. So please Ancestry.co.uk and any other data providers, no new databases this week!
  • Find the quickest and simplest method for keeping my PC and netbook synchronised.

I am sure I won’t be able to avoid doing some research, that is just not possible, but I already have so much material to sort through that I don’t need any more just yet.

If anyone has any suggestions for synchronising my PC and netbook I would love to hear them.

Why I love my netbook

20 Aug

My new netbook is proving it’s worth already. It’s an Asus Eee PC 1005HA and I love it. It has taken a while to get everything set up the way I want it, and remove the stuff I don’t want, but I think I am there now.

Apart from being able to blog (almost) anywhere and any when, it has enabled me to work on my family history in all sorts of places, but most notably before work in the morning when I have nothing better to do. The best thing however has been the ability to carry my research with me and take it to my parents and show them my latest discoveries.

Take tonight for example. I was able to show my mother the photo I took on Wednesday of the house where her mother was born in High Hurstwood (I don’t think she has ever seen the house before), along with all the other photos I took. Now I know there are many ways I could have done this, but this was just so convenient and cheap. I was then able to tell her the story of her great uncle Ambrose DRIVER and the events surrounding his death in the First World War, and show her the photo of his gravestone in France.

At last my family history research is starting to emerge from my database. I can show people charts, documents and photos which bring the story of our ancestors to life, at the touch of a few buttons. I still need to be there to explain how it all fits together, but it is a great way to make the stories more real.

I can already see a shift in my way of thinking, partly to do with trying to cut down on the amount of paper I use (which reminds me, I need to see if my local library will let me use my digital camera instead of the photocopier), but mostly because I am thinking about how I am going to share this information with other people, having it on the netbook in digital format makes it so much easier.

So my netbook is already proving it’s worth, and that is before I actually take it to an archive and have all the information I need at my fingertips. Gone will be the panic of the night before when I try and work out which reports I need to print out and which documents I should be taking with me.

Do you have a netbook? If so, what do you use it for?

28 Jul

I have been considering getting a netbook for quite a while now, and finally at the end of this month I will have the money to do so. Now is the moment I have been dreading, decision time.

I think it will be a great asset, it will be a useful tool for my family history research (and blogging) but the problem is that it is not essential for what I do. Sure it will probably make my life easier, but do I really need it?

There are lots of things I could use it for, the main one is probably for note taking at archives or libraries, but several other uses have come to mind as I wrestle with whether to buy or not.

  • I would like to use it as a temporary digital photo album. In connection with my external hard drive I could use it to share my digital photos, and especially my family history photos, where I can also use it to capture memories and additional information.
  • I love the idea of being able to blog and check email while I am away from home, perhaps even when I am out walking.
  • I would love to have access to the internet when I am out and about, so I can check train times, ending eBay auctions etc.
  • I want to have something else to do on the bus going to and from work. Just think how much work I could get done in that half hour each way.
  • With a small scanner I can take it with me when visiting family members as a portable scanning unit for photos and documents.
  • Of course I would have my family history loaded on there so I can show everyone and anyone my family tree at the drop of a hat.

But still at the back of my mind is the nagging fact that I don’t actually need it, it is more of a convenience rather than a necessity.

So if you have a netbook please let me know in the comments what you use it for? What interesting ways have you found to use it in your research? I need all the help I can get to convince myself that I should have one.

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