Monday, 10 January 2011

News from the BIFHSGO January meeting

Saturday, with snow falling, would not typically be considered propitious for getting people out in large numbers for a genealogy meeting. It wasn't enough to deter 85 people arriving at the auditorium at Library and Archives Canada for a BIFHSGO monthly meeting education session starting at 9am. Susan Davis, Director of Communications, spoke on podcasts, what they are and how to find them, especially genealogy podcasts like those of The (UK) National Archives, the Genealogy Guys, and Lisa Louise Cooke. Susan included demonstration snippets from her iPhone which she said contained 1,000 podacsts, and no music.

Susan announced that BIFHSGO is investigating augmenting its communications with its own podcast. There are some website issues to address first, but stay tuned. If you're a BIFHSGO member with an interest in either the content or production side of podcasting please contact Brian Glenn, Director Research and Projects at < research at bifhsgo.ca >.

An initiative piloted at the meeting was augmenting one of the Discovery Tables with live Internet. Researchers interested in Ireland seemed pleased to be able to get first hand website demonstrations from Irish expert Jim Lynn.

The main event started at 10am, by which time the attendance had swelled to about 190. Following announcements on local upcoming events, including Gene-o-Rama being held 1-2 April at LAC, Jane Down introduced BIFHSGO member John Heney speaking on "Adding the Wonder of Historic Context: Labour for Those Who Follow, Not Only on Whom you Seek." Using illustrations from his own experience he emphasized the benefits of searching the context of your ancestors -- people they may have known such as neighbours, employers and business partners and even competitors -- what was happening in the broader community on a day special in your ancestor's life.

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