Darrin Lythgoes has just released a significant new update of his popular web-based, multi-user genealogy program. The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding (usually referred to as "TNG") is very different from most other genealogy programs. Instead of running in your own Windows, Macintosh or Linux personal computer, TNG installs on a web site. You and others may then access the information via Windows, Macintosh, Linux, iPhone, iPad, Android cell phone or tablet, or most any other computer that has a web browser and an Internet connection. The tile of "The Next Generation" strikes me as appropriate as I suspect most of us will be using web-based genealogy programs within a few years or we will be using mobile devices that communicate with web-based genealogy databases.
TNG might be installed on a web site you own although I suspect the more popular option is to pay someone to install it for you on a shared web hosting site. The fee for such hosting services is usually about $5 a month and that includes installation. Once installed, TNG provides many, many options. For instance, you can keep it as a private web site, only visible to you. Another option is to issue user names and passwords limiting access to a few individuals of the owner's choice. That allows two or a few people to see the information and to (optionally) update it. Still another option is allow everyone to view the data but for only one or a few people to have the ability to add or delete the information. And there are many, many more options as well. In short, TNG can be configured in almost any way you wish.
TNG is very popular amongst genealogy societies and amongst other groups involved in collaborative research. Possible users include families, surname societies, anyone involved in documenting all the historical residents of a town, and similar projects. Multiple individuals may input new data into the database, even if two or more people are adding new data simultaneously. TNG is especially good for projects where some individuals are using Windows, others are using Macintosh, and perhaps still others use a tablet computer. TNG is operating system neutral. (It actually is written in PHP and runs on Linux web servers but that information is typically invisible to users.) Of course, TNG also makes for a good genealogy program for one person's private use. It is particularly useful if that person uses more than one computer or wishes to have the database available when traveling to libraries and archives.
The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding is the product of one talented programmer: Darrin Lythgoes. He has now released version 10 and his announcement mentions the following new and improved features:
- Mobile-Friendly: No special app is required, but your site will look great and be much easier to use on your mobile device.
- New Designs: Three new templates have been added, and the others have been updated to have more flexible layouts.
- Responsive Design: Many of the standard pages have been restructured to fit better on smaller screens (like phones and tablets).
- New Chart: A vertically-oriented chart of ancestors can now be displayed for each person in your tree.
- Better Navigation: Wherever page numbers are listed, you're now able to enter a specific page number and jump directly to that page.
- Media Uploads: It's now even easier to add photos with captions and link them to individuals.
- Ahnentafel & Register: These reports of ancestors and descendants now give you the option to show more or less detail.
- Creating a GEDCOM: You'll see more options when exporting your data for use in another program.
- Add-ons: Several popular user-created modifications have been included (age calculation, show/hide events and media).
- Branches: These tree subdivisions are now easier to define and maintain.
- Plus more than 50 other improvements! See a complete list of all changes at http://lythgoes.net/genealogy/recentchanges.php.
You can learn a lot more about the Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding at http://lythgoes.net/genealogy/software.php.