You might be happy to learn about some changes in store for Ancestry.com‘s New Search, particularly if youre using the Old Search in hopes something better than New Search will come along.
During last weeks Ancestry.com press junket, Tony Macklin, manager of the search experience, gave members of the genealogy media (listed at the end of this post) a sneak peek of the updates:
The global basic search form will keep the first and middle name field and last name field. The place field will ask Where did your ancestor live? A pop-up calculator helps you estimate the birth year. Options let you add family members names and life events.
The global advanced search form is where youll see most changes. For the above-mentioned name fields, you’ll be able check boxes for filters that let you customize the types of matches you get: records with just initials for the name, just Soundex matches (a feature the professional researchers in our group sorely miss in the New Search), and names with similar meanings or spellings to what you entered.
For the location, filters will let you restrict matches to records associated with just the county or place you entered, or also from adjacent counties/places.
Youll be able to click boxes that let you restrict matches to just the historical records databases, just family trees or just photos and mapseffectively doing the same thing as the tabs in the Old search. Youll be able to limit your results to US sources, too.
The updates will be introduced gradually in the New Search over the next weeks and months. The Old Search will stick around for now, but it wont get these changes.
Individual collection pages also will get updated searches, but this’ll take longer because of the customization required. Redesigned collection home pages will feature links to collection categories, easier ways to browse by location or date, and an Explore by Location click-through map that lets you see record groups associated with your ancestors places of residence.
For more news and analysis from this Ancestry.com-sponsored media event, watch the Genealogy Insider and these genealogy blogs:
- About.com: Genealogy, Kimberly Powell
- Eastmans Online Genealogy Newsletter, Dick Eastman
- GeneaBloggers, Thomas MacEntee
- GeneaBlogie, Craig Manson
- GenealogyBlog, Leland Meitzler