Web/Tech

Create a Custom Email Newsletter from Any Blog

Do you like to read a particular genealogy blog or perhaps any other sort of online blog? Do you sometimes forget to check that blog frequently to read new articles? Would you prefer to receive frequent email message when new articles are posted rather than having to take time to check the blog manually? Perhaps you write a blog but would like to send it to readers via email in addition to the online web site? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, there is a simple and easy solution for you.

Blogtrottr converts your favorite blog sites’ RSS newsfeeds into a scheduled email newsletter that you receive as often as you want, so you can stay on top of all the news.

Almost all blogs offer RSS newsfeeds, as do many news services, stock market reports, weather forecasting services, sports sites, and hundreds of other web sites. If an online site you wish to monitor offers an RSS newsfeed, you can use Blogtrottr to convert those RSS newsfeeds into email messages that are sent to you at the times you specify, ranging from every 2 hours to once a day. If there are no new articles posted in the timeframe you specify, Blogtrottr doesn’t send an email.

What Is the Cloud?

One word that has crept into computer terminology in the past few years is “cloud.” Just what is the cloud? I hear that question often. Luckily, a new video from LearnFree.org does a nice job of answering the question in 3 minutes and 28 seconds.

The video is explains the basic concepts although it ignores the many more sophisticated cloud-based technologies available. Then again, that’s perfect for an introductory explanation.

You can watch What Is the Cloud?  at http://youtu.be/gu4FYSFeWqg or in the video player below:

Dick Eastman Discusses How Tech Has Changed The Family History Industry

DE-Ancestry-InterviewI recently had the pleasure of talking with Jessica Murray of Ancestry.com. She and I discussed a number of genealogy-related topics, including the availability of apps on your mobile and tablet devices, saving many hours by verifying research, the quality of software, and how blogging technology has revolutionized genealogy.

You can view a video of our conversation in the Ancestry.com Blog at http://goo.gl/IphbV6.

Saving Your Family History Securely in the Cloud

Many of us have pictures or information that we want to keep on our home computers or devices, but in case of fire or other disasters, we want to be able to keep them safe. Pre-Cloud users kept copies of pictures and information on CDs or DVDs and hard drives in bank vaults or other safe storage. They also gave copies to others and sent discs or memory sticks to interested parties. When we put our data into cloud storage, though, we keep the original information at our home, and store the data in a format that can be used by others in facilities in different places in the world. Now, everyone can have access to this data, with permission, in a much easier way.

Jane Wilcox to Interview Robert Charles Anderson on Internet Radio

Here is a notice from “The Forget-Me-Not Hour:”

Robert Charles Anderson will join host Jane E. Wilcox on “The Forget-Me-Not Hour: Your Ancestors Want Their Stories to Be Told” radio show on Wednesday, 20 August at 10:00 a.m. Eastern time. Bob will talk about his latest book — hot off the press — entitled Elements of Genealogical Analysis. He will discuss this genealogical research methodology approach that he has used for more than 30 years in his work on the Great Migration Study Project. He’ll tell us what we can find in the book and how it can help us in our genealogy research.

Listen live or on-demand after the show airs at http://goo.gl/ZJLDWd.

Add Gigabytes of Storage Space to your iPhone, iPad, or Android Device with Amazon Cloud Drive

I love the mobile computing gadgets available today, but most of them are normally restricted to whatever storage space is available within the device. In most cell phone and tablet computers, that can be anything from 8 gigabytes to 64 gigabytes of storage space. A very few mobile devices, such as the iPad, may offer more. I often find that I need more storage space than that to store all the pictures, videos, songs, and documents I create. A second issue is the ability to share pictures and videos amongst mobile devices as well as with desktop and laptop computers. After all, if you take a picture with your cell phone’s camera, you probably want to also save it on your other devices, including the desktop system at home.

You can find dozens of services that offer the capability to copy and to share anything from your cell phone or tablet computer. However, one of the easiest products to use is Amazon Cloud Drive. I have been using it for several months and am pleased with it. Amazon Cloud Drive offers up to five gigabytes of free storage space with more space available at reasonable charges. I also like the fact that my photos and videos are saved in multiple places, including a cloud-based storage service that is managed by data professionals. I doubt if any disaster will ever cause me to lose all copies of my precious pictures.

Google Chrome Gets One-Click Video Chats, No Download Required

I love video chats with my grandchildren and other family members. I also get invited to video chats for business meetings and occasionally also make video presentations to genealogy societies that may be hundreds or even thousands of miles away. A few years ago, I sat in the audience at a genealogy conference where the presenter was about 12,000 miles away but she appeared on a large screen in front of the audience. In fact, it was a two-way video conference: she could hear and see us as we watched and listened to her.

Video conferencing equipment used to cost thousands of dollars only a few years ago. The improvements in home computers since then has dropped the prices dramatically. Most of us can now participate in two-way video conferences at no additional charge by using the computers we already own.

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