Welcome to Hack Genealogy

hack genealogy
Hack Genealogy is about “re-purposing today’s technology for tomorrow’s genealogy” and a little bit more. The genealogy community has historically lagged behind other communities and industries in the way in which it embraces technology to advance their work. Hack Genealogy is more than just a list of resources. Hack Genealogy provides information on emerging technology inside and outside the genealogy industry. Hack Genealogy wants readers to understand how others are using technology to succeed.

The hacking of genealogy doesn’t always have to involve high tech . . . it could involve something as “old school” as creating a better filing system for genealogy-related documents or what to pack for a genealogy research trip. Each and every day, genealogists are finding new and innovative ways to pursue their family history passion whether it involves a Smartphone or just smart thinking.

Hack Genealogy is about sharing technology resources, discussing our personal interactions with technology, and moving the entire genealogy community forward in terms of how it embraces technology.

Hack Genealogy is not merely about surviving . . . Hack Genealogy is about success and genealogical success in its many facets.

How Hack Genealogy Got Started

Hack Genealogy takes its inspiration from the Technology and Genealogy group on Facebook (click here to learn more and to join the group) started by Susan Petersen in late 2012. As an administrator of the group, Thomas MacEntee – creator of GeneaBloggers, High-Definition Genealogy and Hack Genealogy – realized that the questions asked by group members and the great content shared was reaching only the Facebook audience. Hack Genealogy is a way to get more genealogists and family historians to discuss the use of technology in a non-threatening, easy-to-understand environment.

Hack Genealogy is not a substitute for the Technology and Genealogy group nor does it seek to “compete” with the group. Hack Genealogy seeks to expand the experience many have had at the group beyond the limits in place at Facebook.

What Does It Mean to “Hack” Your Genealogy?

Have you hacked your genealogy and family history research? Ask yourself this question since it gets to the heart of what Hack Genealogy is all about: taking existing and emerging technologies and repurposing them to improve genealogical research and the overall family history experience.

Our use of the word “hack” is not the classic definition which might conjure up visions of stealth computer geeks trying to steal your information. Instead, we follow the more modern use: think of someone who takes an item and uses it outside of its normal usage boundaries or constructs a new tool based on old tools. Think MacGyver!

The correct term for what we at Hack Genealogy do: bricolage: the fine art of creating an object or service based on a variety of items that happen to be available at the moment of need.

What Will You Find at Hack Genealogy?

Here are the features to be offered at Hack Genealogy over the coming months:

  • Cool Gen Stuff: Each day in our Cool Gen Stuff post we’ll provide a curated list of the latest information about genealogy that deserve your attention. If you have trouble keeping up with the latest genealogy news, Hack Genealogy’s got you covered.
  • Discussions and Issues: Each week we’ll discuss some of the issues important to the genealogy community including education, copyright, self-publishing, sharing research and more.
  • Education: Through the use of webinars, Google+ hangouts and other innovative educational technologies, Hack Genealogy seeks to raise your genealogy and tech knowledge. Look for our upcoming Hack Genealogy Bootcamp series . . . a day filled with technology webinars at one unbelievably low price!
  • E-Guides: An offering of e-books and e-guides related to hacking genealogy and making technology work for you in your pursuit of family history.
  • GenBiz Buzz: Are you starting your own genealogy and family history-related business? Under the heading GenBiz Buzz learn how others have succeeded in this exciting field and the tools they used to succeed.
  • How Do You Hack Genealogy?: Interviews with leaders in the genealogy and family history community discussing technology and innovative procedures they use to advance their own research or to succeed in the genealogy industry. Look for personal interviews in the How Do You Hack Genealogy? series as well as interviews with industry leaders on how they use technology to provide services to the genealogy community.
  • Product Reviews: Reviews of the latest products and services including software, mobile apps and more.
  • Resources: A listing of the best tools for every aspect of genealogy from research to sharing photos to writing and publishing your family history.

We hope you’ll travel along with us on this journey of discovery in the genealogy and technology fields.

©2013, copyright Thomas MacEntee

About the Author

Thomas MacEntee
Genealogy educator and author Thomas MacEntee has been researching his family history for more than 40 years and is the creator of Abundant Genealogy, Genealogy Bargains, DNA Bargains, The Genealogy Do-Over and numerous other web-based genealogy and family history properties.

1 Comment on "Welcome to Hack Genealogy"

  1. Brenda Lybbert | 21 July 2013 at 9:10 pm |

    Finally!! I didn’t know about the Facebook page and this website/blog sounds right down my alley! I’m a grandmother of 6 (with 2 more on the way), who loves technology & genealogy. My youngest jokingly suggested to his siblings that they perform an intervention to help me with my tech addiction. LOL and who do they call with tech questions…me!
    My tech gear: iPhone 5, iPad 3rd gen, iPhone 4 used as an iPod Touch (podcasts), 15″ MacBook Pro with Retina (love it), iMac 27″, & Canoscan 8800F flatbed scanner. My hubby has a Canon 7D, which he kindly uses to help me get great pics of many genealogy goodies out in the field.
    I’m sharing your website with my gene friends!
    Brenda Lybbert

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