You can see my earlier articles describing Clooz if you start at http://goo.gl/Cfq3d. Now a new version is about to be released. Here is the announcement written by Joe Bissett, Clooz CEO and Richard Thomas, Clooz COO and lead software engineer:
Clooz 3 has excited its user base with many new and important features. This is the first new version of the genealogical research utility under the new Ancestral Systems, LLC ownership. Users have consistently stated that it is a marked improvement over the previous version (last updated in 2007).
Clooz is based on a concept of displaying templates for extracting information from documents into a database, where people are then linked to their associated details in the document. Reports can then be generated from the data. Document templates are provided for commonly available national censuses, directories, tax records, vital event records, naturalization and passenger records, to list a few.
Joe Bissett, CEO of Ancestral Systems, LLC, states that he and Richard Thomas, COO and head of software development, as dedicated Clooz users themselves, recognized that significant issues remained from the 2007 release of Clooz 2.1. The team embarked on a rigorous program to clear these issues from the previous version and to improve the Clooz user experience.
Joe enthusiastically states that Ancestral Systems achieved the key Clooz 3 goal of improving user interaction and usability and significantly improved the user experience. Joe also notes that the company strives to maintain a rapid response to user requests for support, and has received a very favorable response to their efforts. Using a web-based update capability, several improvements to the program have been released since Clooz 3’s initial debut in August, providing users with additional features and modifications in response to their requests.
Ancestral Systems has added a host of new enhancements, improvements and features, including:
Improved data entry sequence:
The sequence for entering documents containing references to people not already in the database has been streamlined. This supports Clooz’s use for collecting information about people who might possibly be related, without having to make that determination in advance. Once the user has later determined the persons mentioned in different documents are actually the same person, the records can then be merged. Richard says this is an important capability for elevating Clooz as a research tool, versus merely a digital filing cabinet.
Faster source information capture:
Many users tend to avoid the sometimes tedious activity of recording a citation to the source of their information. Clooz addresses this with a new Quick Capture text box that allows easy capture of bulk source information. Source information, such as in an online data repository web site, can be highlighted and dragged (or cut/paste) from a browser directly into Clooz. It can later be further dissected into its component parts for proper entry as a valid source if the document under study proves to be useful.
Improved data import and export capabilities:
A new data transfer manager gives users additional capabilities to control information transfer between Clooz and other lineage-based software packages. Clooz now supports direct import of people and source information from the latest versions of Legacy Family Tree, Roots Magic, and The Master Genealogist databases, as well as GEDCOM files from other programs. User control over individual data items is available to prevent duplication. A merge function provides the capability to combine two Clooz files. Clooz can also export the same information out to Legacy Family Tree databases.
Better digital file and URL handling:
Multiple text or image files, or URLs (Internet website addresses), can be attached to a single document or source record. Richard notes that attaching the files and URLs to a Clooz document couldn’t be easier. Clooz supports drag and drop mouse operations for files stored on one's computer, or web page URLs found in on-line research
Improved tools for identifying and locating people:
The main display list of people now contains a column that is populated with the various spelling variants or maiden names associated with a given person. The list is automatically maintained by Clooz based on the original spelling of the person’s name in the document details.
A new search toolbar was added to the main window of Clooz allowing entry of multiple search criteria to either find a desired person or to filter the list to show only a subset of the data.
Eight different online training videos available through the Clooz web site. These videos are available for anyone to view at http://clooz3videos.ancestralsystems.com. Users can see and understand the new capabilities being demonstrated in these 3 to 10 minute training segments.