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    I thought I'd share some information about the "My Schedule" feature on the RootsTech website today.

    Here's a screenshot of the RootsTech website's home page. To access the "My Schedule" feature, click on "Schedule" at the top of the page.

    Next, if you have already registered for RootsTech, sign in with your login ID and password. If you haven't registered yet, you can do so by clicking on "click here" in the Welcome box to the left of the Login box.

    Once you've logged in, you'll be taken to this screen. This is the Dashboard page. Click on "My Schedule."

    This is my tentative RootsTech 2016 schedule. The green boxes show the classes and events, etc. that I've scheduled.

    Awesome, right? But what if a class I want to attend is already full when I get there? Well, in addition to scheduling classes, I've also added classes to my "Interests list." That way, if a class is already full, I can look at my "Interests list" and go to a different class for that time slot.

    I'll show you how to add classes to your "Interests list."

    First of all, here's how to see the list of classes offered at RootsTech this year. From the RootsTech home page, click on "2016 Classes."

    You will be taken to the class list. As you can see, you can click on the session type, days, track, etc. to filter your class list. To add a class to your "Interests list" simply click on the star next to "Add to My Interests."

    This is what my current "Interests list" looks like. To see your "Interest list" click on "Interests" on the left side of the "My Schedule" page. It's in that red box on the left.

    By the way, here's how to add classes to your schedule. Simply click on the + sign next to the date and time of the class.

    Okay, now back to the "My Schedule" feature. At the top of the "My Schedule" page you'll see that there are several tabs to choose from. 

    When I click on "Show Interests" my schedule looks like this.

    Now my scheduled classes AND the classes I'm interested in are showing up on my schedule. The classes I've scheduled are in green and the classes I'm interested in are in gray.

    I like the fact that I can see my scheduled classes as well as the classes I'm interested in. This way I can quickly click on and see the information for my 2nd and/or third class choices if my 1st class choice is already full. Unfortunately, I didn't see this feature in the RootsTech app. I've tried a work-around by adding a note to a class I'm interested in.

    Did you know that you can edit your schedule from the "My Schedule" page? Just click on "Edit Schedule" at the top of the page.

    You will be taken to a screen that looks similar to this. You can choose a day by clicking on the arrows next to the date at the top of the page.

    To edit your schedule, click on a class on the list and follow the prompts in the box that appears. If you are trying to add a class during a time you've already scheduled a class, you will be given the option to remove your currently scheduled class and replace it with the new one.

    Another neat feature of the "My Schedule" page is the ability to add personal time to your schedule. To add personal time, click on "Add Personal Time" at the top of the page.

    A box like this will appear. Select the day, time, length of time, and description for your personal time event.

    For this post, I added lunch to my schedule on Thursday.

    I clicked on the "My Schedule" button and now lunch shows up in blue on my schedule. Pretty cool, right?

    I hope this post has been helpful. See you at RootsTech!

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    Cropped White Poppy 600dpi Cropped
    My Fab Finds for this week are (in no particular order)

    1. 5 Things You Can Do in Genealogy When You’re Short on Time by Amy Johnson Crow, author of Amy Johnson Crow Blog
    2. Family Memories: Genealogists Share Favorite Family History Documents by Greg McMurdie for FamilySearch Blog
    3. The Death of Lizzie Clapp by Diane Boumenot, author of One Rhode Island Family
    4. Tips for Researching in Small Increments of Time by Nicole Dyer for Family Locket
    5. Break It Down: School Census Records for Genealogy by Caroline Pointer, author of
    6. Family History from my great grandmother’s pen by Cindy Freed, author of Genealogy Circle
    7. GeneaBloggers Celebrates Seven Years! by Thomas MacEntee, author of GeneaBloggers
    8. Preparing For Your First Genealogy Conference by Caitlin Gow for NextGen Genealogy Network
    9. GENEALOGY RESEARCH CHECKLIST by Larisa Thomas, author of Roots of Kinship
    10. How Changing My Editorial Calendar Changed My Life by Laura Aanenson, author of where2look4ancestors
    11. Two Families, One Ship. by Caitlin Gow, author of Genealogically Speaking
    12. My DAR Adventure...Patriot Verified! by Cheri Daniels, author of Journeys Past
    13. Family Folding Hearts by Emily Kowalski Schroeder, author of Growing Little Leaves: Genealogy for Children
    14. The “Lost Friends” Slavery Database by Robyn N. Smith, author of Reclaiming Kin
    15. My Journey of the Certification Process: Entry 5 by Amie Bowser Tennant, author of My Kith N Kin
    16. A Wonderful Surprise! by Cheryl Palmer, author of Heritage Happens
    17. Fold3 and the 1812 pensions by Judy G. Russell, author of The Legal Genealogist
    18. Studying the Word of God with my Husband's Cousin by Becky Jamison, author of Grace and Glory
    19. Behind the Scenes at the Genealogy Roadshow by Elizabeth O'Neal, author of Little Bytes of Life
    20. Five Things I Learned From Working With Archivists by Yvette Hoitink, author of Dutch Genealogy
    21. Contribution to the Slave Name Roll Project: Oglethorpe County, Georgia by Schalene Dagutis, author of Tangled Roots and Trees

    RootsTech 2016 Related Posts
    1. RootsTech Survival Guide – The Innovator Showdown Semi-Finalists by WikiChicks Conference Keeper
    2. ROOTSTECH 2016 – TWO WEEKS TO GO by Linda Stufflebean, author of Empty Branches on the Family Tree
    3. Rootstech - Commonwealth Cousins get together by Jill Ball, author of GeniAus
    4. 288 Classes Scheduled at RootsTech 2016 by James Tanner, author of Genealogy’s Star
    5. My RootsTech 2016 Survival Strategy by James Tanner, author of Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad…
    6. #RootsTech 2016: Plan to Go and Plan Your Time by Ancestry Insider, author of The Ancestry Insider
    7. RootsTech Conference and the Family History Library - a Win-Win-Win-Win For Me by Randy Seaver, author of Genea-Musings
    8. RootsTech for First-timers; A Caution About Those Streets by Peggy Lauritzen, author of Anxiously Engaged

    This week's "May I Introduce To You" Interview on

    New Blog Discoveries

    In Case You Missed Them….My Contributions to the Blogosphere Last Week

    Jana's Genealogy and Family History Blog

    Jana's Place 

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    Today I learned about some amazing numbers regarding registration for RootsTech 2016 and RootsTech's free Family Discovery Day.

    So far, 20,000 people have registered to attend RootsTech's Family Discovery Day! And close to 10,000 people have registered to attend RootsTech 2016. Wow! That's fantastic!

    There's still time to register if you haven't already. Just head on over to to register.

    If you are unable to attend RootsTech 2016, live streamed sessions will be broadcast at The live streaming schedule should be available sometime this week.

    The Family Discovery Day live streaming schedule has already been released. To see that schedule, click HERE.

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    I received the following press release:

    ConferenceKeeper & Geneabloggers proclaim February 1 as #GenealogySelfie Day

    The genealogy community is a friendly and rather social bunch.  They share knowledge, information, documents, research triumphs and struggles, joys, sorrows – even pictures of cats. So why not selfies? Chances are good that if you’re on Facebook or Twitter, you have a hefty number of “genealogy” friends – many that you probably have never met in person, but regularly interact with through Likes, Shares, and Comments on one another’s posts.  Peruse your list of “genealogy’ friends and you’ll most likely find that many use a photo of an ancestor, or a baby picture, as their profile pic.  It adds quite the variety to your friends list, but you wouldn’t know them if you ran into them in the vendor hall at a conference, or sat next to them at a workshop. And with RootsTech just around the corner, there’s an opportunity to possibly run into thousands of them in person!

    ConferenceKeeper and Geneabloggers are delighted to offer a solution. They are officially proclaiming February 1st as #GenealogySelfie Day – a day for social folks who love genealogy to snap a picture of themselves and share it on Facebook and/or Twitter with the hashtag #GenealogySelfie.  It will be fun to put faces to names, and increase the chances of recognizing one another at RootsTech and other upcoming events and conferences.

    Join in the fun for the first ever #GenealogySelfie Day on February 1. 

    About Conference Keeper: Growing since 2012, is a website dedicated to curating and calendaring genealogy and family history conference details. Events are posted on the Calendar tab, as well as under the specific page of their location. Along with a listing of events, those pages also include links to useful research websites specific to each location, including genealogical and historical societies, archives, and other helpful information.  See:

    GeneaBloggersis an online community resource listing over 3,000 genealogy and family history blogs all over the world. Blogs are listed when they are submitted by the owner of the blog or by one of their readers. The only qualification is that the blog have current articles and that it be focused on genealogy and family history. See:

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    The following is from RootsTech ~

    Family History Enthusiasts Worldwide Gathering in Utah for RootsTech 2016

    For Immediate Release

    SALT LAKE CITY, 27 January 2016—RootsTech, the largest family history conference in the world, is looking forward to over 20,000 visitors over four days with an exciting array of speakers and entertainers, over 250 interesting and informative classes, a huge expo hall with more than 160 exhibitors. There is something for every level of family history—from the beginner to experienced. The three-day conference begins on Thursday, February 4, and goes through Saturday, February 6. For more information go to

    The keynote speakers and offerings reflect the growing influence of family history. Today multiple generations of all ages are engaging through family storytelling and sharing memories within families using social media and an expanding array of new technologies and mobile apps. The opening session on February 4 will begin with Stephen T. Rockwood, who is the managing director for the Family History Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and President/CEO of FamilySearch International.

    Also featured is Paula Williams Madison who is chairman and CEO of Madison Media Management LLC, a Los Angeles based media consultancy company with global reach. After her retirement in 2011, Madison started doing research on her family lineage. She wrote the book and produced a movie Finding Samuel Lowe: China, Jamaica, Harlem in April 2015 about her experiences. A free screening of the movie will be provided on Wednesday, February 3.

    Bruce Feiler is one of America’s most popular commentators about contemporary life. He hosts the PBS series Walking the Bible and Sacred Journeys with Bruce Feiler. He wrote The Secrets of Happy Families containing best practices for busy parents from some of the country’s most creative minds. He has appeared on many television shows on NRP, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and others.

    On Friday, February 5, David Isay, is a scheduled keynote. He’s the founder of StoryCorps, an award-winning organization that provides people of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve their life stories. 50,000 interviews have been archived and preserved at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. He has also written several New York Times bestsellers, including Listening is an Act of Love. He is a broadcaster and documentarian, and his research reveals ways to tell great stories for the family historian.

    Also on Friday, Josh and Naomi Davis, popular family bloggers known as Love Taza, will speak. On their blog, they relate their life with their three children in bustling New York City. The blog has become a digital destination viewed by millions around the world. People love the inspiration about raising a family and the appreciation Naomi has for life’s simple joys.

    On Saturday, February 6, Doris Kearns Goodwin is a world-renowned presidential historian and Pulitzer Prize-winning author. She worked with Spielberg on the movie Lincoln, based in part on her award winning Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln. She has written books about Frank and Eleanor Roosevelt, Lyndon Johnson, and the Kennedys and shares her expertise and commentary on many television shows. She has a PhD in government from Harvard and was an assistant to Lyndon Johnson and has been a consultant in several PBS and History Channel documentaries.

    Also on Saturday, Michael Leavitt, a three-term former governor of Utah, will speak. He also served in George W. Bush’s cabinet as an Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency and Secretary of Health and Human Services.

    The second annual Innovator Summit is a one-day event on Wednesday, February 3, for developers, entrepreneurs, and innovators from around the globe to explore, examine, and discover business and technological opportunities within the family history industry—a rapidly growing multibillion dollar industry. Innovators from around the globe and from all industries will be competing for a piece of the $100,000 in total cash and in-kind prizes. The keynote speaker for this event will be Ken Krogue, an entrepreneur who has taken his business from a small beginning to a billion dollar industry. He will share his expertise about social media and how to use the different forms effectively.

    Along with the keynotes, RootsTech attendees will be able to hear from the Crescent Super Band, featuring Ryan Inness, and Lower Lights, a popular gospel and folk band.

    More information about speakers, entertainers, classes, and how to register at RootsTech can be found at

    About RootsTech

    RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.

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  • 01/27/16--13:27: Obituaries on FamilySearch
  • I recently received a fun email from FamilySearch. Here's a screenshot showing part of it.

    The email said that they had found an obituary for one of my ancestors named John T. Waterman. I clicked on the "See the Obituary" link and was brought to the page in the screenshot below.

    I clicked on the "Sign In" tab and a list of ancestors showed up that included John T. Waterman. This is a screenshot showing part of the list. How fun is this?! Thank you FamilySearch!

    These obituaries may not be for the ancestors in the list, but these ancestors may be mentioned in the obituaries.

    Obituaries are wonderful resources that can contain helpful information and clues for finding additional ancestors.

    Have you received a similar email from FamilySearch?

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    The following is from RootsTech ~

    Full lineup of Speakers Announced for Family Discovery Day

    SALT LAKE CITY, 28 January 2016—RootsTech, the largest family history conference in the world, announced today the complete lineup of speakers for its free Family Discovery Day event, which will take place Saturday, February 6, 2016, at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. This incredible opportunity is specially designed for families and members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ages 8 and older.

    The free one-day event will feature inspirational messages, instructional classes, interactive activities, and exciting entertainment designed to teach LDS families how to find their ancestors, prepare names for temple ordinances, and teach others to do the same. Attendees will also receive access to the Expo Hall, where hundreds of exhibitors will showcase the latest technology and tools.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and FamilySearch will host the event. Families are encouraged to register online at

    This year’s event will kick off with an exciting opening family general session featuring newly called apostle Elder Dale G. Renlund and his wife, Sister Ruth Renlund. Their daughter, Ashley Renlund, will join them for what will be an inspiring and candid moment with the entire Renlund family. This 45-minute opening session starts at 1 p.m.

    Sheri Dew and Sister Wendy Watson Nelson will speak during the family history discussion, which will be an exclusive conversation between best friends. Sheri Dew is the executive vice president of Deseret Management Corporation and the CEO of Deseret Book Company. Sister Wendy Watson Nelson is the wife of President Russell M. Nelson and was a professor of Marriage and Family Therapy. They will share their life experiences with family history during this 45-minute session, which starts at 2 p.m.

    Primary General President Sister Rosemary M. Wixom and Young Men General President Brother Stephen W. Owen will speak during the family session. Sister Wixom will share how the plan of salvation and family history provide a taproot that anchors our children. Brother Owen will speak about the role of families in the plan of salvation. This uplifting 30-minute session starts at 3:15 p.m.

    Family Discovery Day continues its amazing lineup with a session featuring Britain Covey and Taysom Hill. Britain Covey is a University of Utah Wide Receiver from Provo, Utah. Taysom Hill is a Brigham Young University Quarterback from Pocatello, Idaho. They will both share inspiring stories, humorous memories, and faith-promoting experiences. This 30-minute session will start at 4:15 p.m.

    Family Discovery Day will close with a stunning performance by The Lower Lights, a gospel and folk band that recently performed at Kingsbury Hall. The band will bring its part-revival, part-vigil sound steeped in tradition to Family Discovery Day for an exclusive performance that attendees will not want to miss. The performance starts at 5:30 p.m.

    Family Discovery Day is free, but registration is required. Visit to learn more and to register.


    About RootsTech

    RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.

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    Dear Wonderful Readers,

    I noticed a surprising decrease in the number of my blog followers recently. The number went from 256 to 249 in just one week. I wondered why. Well, I think I found the answer.

    Apparently Blogger has changed the way readers can follow Blogger blogs. In a Blogger Buzz article titled An update on Google Friend Connect, it was explained that readers who would like to follow Blogger blogs via "Google Friend Connect" must have a Google account. They also said the following,
    "As part of this plan, starting the week of January 11, we'll remove the ability for people with Twitter, Yahoo, Orkut or other OpenId providers to sign in to Google Friend Connect and follow blogs. At the same time, we'll remove non-Google Account profiles so you may see a decrease in your blog follower count."
    I shared this news on Facebook and several bloggers who also use Blogger had similar experiences with a drop in their blog follower numbers.

    If you originally followed my blog via "Google Friend Connect" and don't have a Google Account, you may be one of my blog followers who have been removed by Google.

    To follow my blog again via "Google Friend Connect" you'll need to create a Google Account. It's pretty simple. Just go to, click Sign in, click on Create account, and fill in the form.

    If you don't want to create a Google Account, no worries! You can also follow my blog on Feedly, or through another blog subscription service. Just click on "Subscribe in a reader" or on the green "Follow on feedly" button on the right side of my blog. You can also subscribe by email.

    By the way, you don't have to have a Google Account to leave comments on my blog. In my blog's settings, I've allowed anyone to leave a comment. I do, however, moderate all of the comments so I can approve them before publishing them on my blog.

    Thank you for following my blog! I really do appreciate it!

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    The RootsTech 2016 class syllabi and streaming schedule are now available at

    I noticed that they have changed the tabs across the top of the website too. Here's how to access the class syllabi. Go to Click on the RootsTech tab, then click on Class Syllabus. 

    That's all there is to it. You will then see the syllabi listing as shown in the screenshot below.

    I've also provided you with a link to the syllabi below.

    RootsTech 2016 Class Syllabi

    To access the streaming schedule, click on the Watch tab at the top of the website. Then click on Live Stream Help.

    You will then be taken to the streaming schedule.

    Here's the direct link for the streaming schedule.

    RootsTech 2016 Live Streaming Schedule

    It's not too late to register and attend RootsTech 2016 in person. But, if you can't attend, it's wonderful to have the general keynote sessions and classes available to watch at home.

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    A note to my wonderful readers: Fab Finds will be on hiatus for the next two weeks due to RootsTech 2016. Fab Finds will return on February 19, 2016. Thank you!

    My Fab Finds for this week are (in no particular order)
    1. How can blogging help your family history? by Jake Fletcher for Legacy News
    2. Using Timelines to Plot Out Your Ancestor’s Life by Sabrina Huyett for FamilySearch Blog
    3. Studying the Genealogical Proof Standard by Angela McGhie, author of Adventures in Genealogy Education
    4. Motivational Monday~Evidence:What's Your Type? by Cheri Hudson Passey, author of Carolina Girl Genealogy
    5. Valentine's Day: Send in your ancestors' wedding photos to win! by Esther for MyHeritage Blog
    6. Know Your Archives Websites by Amy Johnson Crow, author of Amy Johnson Crow Blog
    7. 3 Reasons to Stop Researching and Start Writing by Devon Noel Lee, author of A Patient Genealogist
    8. Autograph Books: Facebook for Our Ancestors by Melissa Barker, author of A Genealogist In The Archives
    9. FAMILY HEIRLOOMS ✿ MOMS HANKIES by True Lewis, author of Notes to Myself
    10. Since It's National Chocolate Cake Day . . . by Nancy Messier, author of My Ancestors and Me
    11. A First-Timer’s Take On Salt Lake City by Patricia Desmond Biallas, author of GeneaJourneys
    12. Make a Pie Chart of your Ancestors’ Home Countries with Grandma’s Pie by Nicole Dyer for Family Locket
    13. Are You Having Problems Finding Your Favorite Blogs? by Dawn Kogutkiewicz, author of Dawning Genealogy
    14. Sew ‘n Sew: Three Generations of Sewing by VeraMarie Badertscher, author of Ancestors in Aprons
    15. 4 Steps for Using Google Earth for Genealogy by Lacey Cooke for Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems
    16. To all Nutfield Genealogy Blog Followers by Heather Wilkinson Rojo, author of Nutfield Genealogy
    17. What Was It Worth?: Calculating the Historic Value of Money by Kate for LegacyTree Blog
    18. Are You Missing Out on Olive Tree Genealogy's Blog Posts? by Lorine McGinnis Schulze, author of Olive Tree Genealogy
    19. Slave Name Roll Project: RELEASING Charlotte and Jim by Cathy Meder-Dempsey, author of Opening Doors in Brick Walls
    20. Taking notes at genealogy conferences by Janine Adams, author of Organize Your Family History

    RootsTech 2016 Related Posts
    1. RootsTech Survival Guide: Famous Faces by WikiChicks Conference Keeper
    2. RootsTech Survival Guide – Networking by WikiChicks Conference Keeper
    3. You’re Invited! Genealogy Gems Book Club Open House at RootsTech 2016 by Sunny for Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems
    4. RootsBid is Going to RootsTech by Amie Bowser Tennant for RootsBid Blog
    5. Packing for Rootstech by Terri O’Connell for The In-Depth Genealogist
    6. Visit ArkivDigital at RootsTech 2016 by ArkivDigital Blog
    7. My RootsTech 2016 Class Selections by Randy Seaver, author of Genea-Musings
    8. A Preview of RootsTech 2016 by Gena Philibert-Ortega for GenealogyBank Blog
    9. RootsTech~ Be There When You Can't Be There! by Cheri Hudson Passey, author of Carolina Girl Genealogy
    10. Legacy Family Tree at RootsTech 2016 by Geoff Rasmussen for Legacy News
    11. Findmypast at RootsTech 2016: Where to find our experts by Frederick Wertz for Findmypast Blog
    12. 12 Tips For Getting the Most Online From RootsTech 2016 by Amy Archibald, author of Revealing Roots and Branches
    13. Ruby Baird—RootsTech 2016 Youth Ambassador by Ruby Baird for FamilySearch Blog

    This week's "May I Introduce To You" Interview on

    New Blog Discoveries

    In Case You Missed Them….My Contributions to the Blogosphere Last Week

    Jana's Genealogy and Family History Blog

    Jana's Place 

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    The following is from RootsTech ~

    Global RootsTech Conference Announces Free Online Broadcast Schedule

    SALT LAKE CITY, 29 January 2016—RootsTech, the world’s largest family history and technology conference held in Salt Lake City, Utah, February 4-6, 2016, announced today that 15 of its popular sessions will be broadcast live and complimentary over the Internet. The live broadcasts will give those unable to attend in-person worldwide a sample of this year’s conference content. Interested viewers can watch the live presentations at Saturday's Family Discovery Day sessions will be broadcast live on

    The streamed RootsTech sessions include the general sessions and a sampling of technology and family history presentations.  Following are the broadcasted sessions and speakers. All times are in Mountain Standard Time (MST):

    RootsTech Streaming Schedule ( Thursday, February 4; Friday, February 5; Saturday February 6, 2016)







    8:30 a.m.

    90 Minutes

    RootsTech General Session: Stephen T. Rockwood, Paula Madison and

    Bruce Feiler

    RootsTech General Session: Josh and Naomi Davis and

    David Isay

    RootsTech General Session: Michael Leavitt

    11:00 a.m.

    60 Minutes


    7 Unique Technologies for Genealogy Discoveries

    Mike Mansfield


    Innovator Showdown

    (Starts at 10:30)


    Photos-Emerging Technologies in Photography

    Jens Nielsen

    1:30 p.m.

    60 Minutes


    Best Websites and Apps for Local

    Amy Crow


    Proven Methodology for Using Google for Genealogy

    Lisa Louise Cook


    Become a Master Searcher on Ancestry Anne Mitchell

    3:00 p.m.

    60 Minutes


    What's New in Family Tree for 2016

    Ron Tanner


    Finding Elusive Records on Robert Kehrer


    Homespun and Calico: Researching our Foremothers

    Peggy Lauritzen

    4:30 p.m.

    60 Minutes


    Virtual Family Reunions Joseph Richardson


    My Ancestors are from Britain-- What do I do next?

    Myko Clelland


    5 Steps to Identify a Family Photo

    Maureen Taylor

    Family Discovery Day Streaming Schedule ( Saturday, February 6, 2016)



    Session Information- English

    Session Information- Languages

    1:00 p.m.

    45 Minutes

    RootsTech Family Discovery Day Opening Session:

    Elder Dale G. Renlund, Sister Ruth L. Renlund, Sister Ashley Renlund

    RootsTech Family Discovery Day Opening Session:

    Elder Dale G. Renlund, Sister Ruth L. Renlund, Sister Ashley Renlund

    2:00 p.m.

    45 Minutes

    Family History Discussion:

    Sheri L. Dew and Sister Wendy W. Nelson

    No Stream

    3:15 p.m.

    30 Minutes

    RootsTech Family Discovery Day Family Session:

    Sister Rosemary M. Wixom and Brother Stephen W. Owen

    RootsTech Family Discovery Day Family Session:

    Sister Rosemary M. Wixom and Brother Stephen W. Owen

    4:15 p.m.

    30 Minutes

    RootsTech Family Discovery Day Youth and Family Session:

    Taysom Hill and Britain Covey

    No Stream

    About RootsTech

    RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.

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    Just a quick blog post to tell you all that I'm here in Salt Lake City, Utah! I arrived yesterday. And RootsTech 2016 begins tomorrow! Hurray!

    Here are a few photos from my flights yesterday. I flew to San Diego, California first. Then from there I flew to Salt Lake City.

    I took this picture as we were approaching San Diego.

    I arrived in San Diego around 8:00 in the morning. My flight to Salt Lake City was scheduled to leave at 10:40 AM. But, the flight was delayed until 11:55 AM.

    This picture was taken as we were leaving San Diego.

    What a difference in the weather conditions in Utah! It snowed there yesterday morning.

    And here we are approaching Salt Lake City! Yay!

    It was a long day yesterday. I woke up at 3:45 in the morning so I could get to the airport for my 6:50 AM flight. And then I spent about four hours in the San Diego airport waiting for my next flight.

    It was great to finally arrive in Salt Lake City and get to my hotel room.

    Today's itinerary includes a tour of the Church History Library and lunch with fellow genealogy bloggers.

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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  • 02/03/16--22:03: RootsTech 2016 ~ Day 1
  • The first day of RootsTech 2016 has come to a close. It was a busy but fun day. It's pretty late right now and I have an early start to my day tomorrow. I'm going on a tour of the Expo Hall before it opens. So, this post will be somewhat brief.

    Here are some photos from Day 1.

    Bright and early in the morning for registration. 

    Registration area.

    Ready for the day's activities to begin.

    On my way to class in the afternoon. Such a cool view of the Salt Palace Convention Center.

    Some RootsTech swag so far.

    Thank you to Thomas MacEntee, founder of GeneaBloggers, for the awesome blogger beads.

    I'll be sharing more photos and information about RootsTech 2016 tomorrow.

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    This morning I had the opportunity to go on a group tour of the Expo Hall before RootsTech 2016 began. Let me just say that it is huge! In fact, I understand that it's 20% this year than last year. Wow!

    Here are some photos from this morning's tour. I'll take more photos of the Expo Hall while its humming with RootsTech 2016 attendees and post them in a future blog post.

    Fellow Ambassadors waiting for the tour to begin.

    Here we are in the Expo Hall.

    Fun and games. Literally!

     Computers at the Cyber Cafe.

    The Media Hub for the Media and Ambassadors. If you want to find me during RootsTech, there's a good chance you'll find me in the Media Hub.

    More posts from RootsTech 2016 to come.

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    The six finalists for the RootsTech 2016 Innovator Showdown have been announced. Here they are:



    Studio by Legacy Republic

    The History Project



    The Innovator Showdown takes place Friday morning (February 5) at 10:30. The finalists will compete for $100,000 in total cash and prizes. There will be demos and judges. And guess what? The winner will be selected by a live audience vote. I will be tweeting the voting information tomorrow morning. You can follow me on Twitter at @genealogyisfun. If you choose to vote, you'll be entered for a chance to win an iPad.

    So, please take a look at these six finalists by clicking on the links above and decide which one will get your vote.

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    TapGenes Wins First Place of 2016 Innovator Showdown

     SALT LAKE CITY, UT—Today at RootsTech, the world’s largest Family History technology conference, TapGenes, won the Innovator Showdown and walked away with $45,000 in cash and prizes.  The Chicago, Illinois-based, firm helps families identify and benefit from key health traits that exist between generations.

    In front of a crowd of close to 10,000 live and online viewers, the six RootsTech Innovator Showdown finalists battled for $100,000 in cash and prizes and bragging rights in the rapidly-growing, multi-billion dollar family history industry.  TapGenes was awarded $20,000 in cash and $25,000 in-kind prizes.

    TapGenes provides the tools to identify the genetic thread that ties a family together.  Founder, Heather Holmes, got the idea for TapGenes after her father became very ill and the family struggled with multiple roadblocks to share his family medical history that impacted his treatment, care, and recovery.  Heather made it her mission, if her father got well, to make sure this kind of frightening and desperate episode would not be faced by other families.

    Holmes has a background in healthcare marketing. In fact, her entire team comes from various fields of the healthcare profession, including computational genetics.

    TapGenes uses the idea of “crowdsourcing” to help families create a more complete and accurate family medical history, online, together. The TapGenesplatform identifies medical conditions that may run in their family and helps family members understand what steps they can take to live healthier together.

    The six finalists were whittled down from 46 applicants from around the world. They had two minutes to win over the panel of five judges and the audience that their product was the most worthy of support from sponsors.

    After each moving presentation, there was a four-minute question and answer period between each contestant and the judges.  After all six presentations, the judges selected the top three winners, and the viewing audience selected the People’s Choice Award winner.

    With $50,000 in cash and another $50K+ of in-kind prizes and services from sponsors at stake, the pressure, tension, and energy of this event was tremendous.

    2016 RootsTech Showdown Winners
    • First Place Judges Choice ($20,000 cash, $25,000 in-kind), Heather Holmes of TapGenes.
    • Second Place Judges Choice ($14,000 cash, $15,000 in-kind), Studio (by Legacy Republic), Technology hardware and software for digitizing hard copy photo albums.
    • Third Place Judges Choice Award ($6,000 cash, $10,000 in-kind), Twile, a web app that populates a visual family timeline with data and media.
    • People’s Choice ($10,000 cash), Twile
    This is TapGenes’ second year as an Innovator Showdown contestant.  Holmes credits the great exposure from its RootsTech 2015 booth which focused on FamilySearch data sharing integration, and listening to user feedback as key differentiates in advancing from semi-finalist in 2015 to first place in 2016. Holmes said they plan to use the prize winnings to expand TapGenes worldwide to save lives by making family medical history more available internationally.

     “It’s surreal,” said Holmes.  “When you have a vision of something and you don’t know if it’s going to really happen and it does, it’s like a dream. You hope people are going to love it as much as you do. It’s great to get that confirmation that it resonates with them.”

    Holmes says they will use the award money and support to help create TapGenes’ mobile app and to expand locally through additional languages.


    The other finalists included Ancestor Cloud, an online marketplace where those with family history needs connect with those who can fill those needs;JRNL, a journaling app for recording memories as they happen; and The History Project , a fun app forcreating mixed media digital time capsules of a life.

    The judges for the final round includedAmy Rees Anderson, Managing Partner, REES Capital; David Bradford, Chairman of the Board of FluentWorlds; Dennis Brimhall, former CEO, FamilySearch International; Judy G. Russell, JD, certified genealogist, The Legal Genealogist, and D. Joshua Taylor, accredited genealogist and host of the Genealogy Roadshow (PBS)

    The major sponsors of the Innovator Showdown this year include Sorenson Legacy Foundation, Lenovo,, Grow Utah, Utah Technology Council, David Bradford, Woodbury Corporation, Hero Club, and others.

    The Innovator Showdown, only in its second year, was designed to foster innovation in the family history industry.


    About RootsTech

    RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.

    About TapGenes

    TapGenes is a platform for families to crowd source their family health information and receive personalized health risk assessments and recommendations to get the right care and services.

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    As promised, here are some photos from the Expo Hall at RootsTech 2016. Things were really humming around there. Attendees were walking around checking out the vendor booths, listening to demonstrations, scanning books, and more.

    The RootsTech Diner had lots of delicious options for attendees to choose from.


    The ICAPGen booth. ICAPGen stands for International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists.

    The FamilySearch Family Discovery Zone

    Free book scanning by FamilySearch.

    I'll share more photos from the RootsTech 2016 Expo Hall in a future post.

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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  • 02/11/16--13:04: I'm Home From RootsTech 2016

  • My husband and I returned home last night from our trip to Utah. I flew to Utah on Monday, February 1st to attend RootsTech 2016 as a RootsTech Ambassador. My husband joined me on Friday, February 5th in the evening. He drove the whole way to Salt Lake City. It was a 13 hour drive. Even though he'd had a long day already, he went with me to the MyHeritage RootsTech After-Party that night. What a guy! I love him! He attended Family Discovery Day on Saturday, February 6th, while I attended to my duties as a RootsTech Ambassador.

    We combined and extended our trip to RootsTech with visiting family in Utah. That's why we didn't arrive home until yesterday evening. Combining RootsTech with spending time with family was awesome! It was a win-win situation. We spent time together with our family going out to dinner, playing games, meeting new friends, watching movies, and more. We also had the wonderful opportunity to attend the Provo City Center Temple Open House on Tuesday, February 9th in the evening.

    Yesterday, my husband and I drove home. It was a very long day of driving. It took us about 13 hours to get home. As you can imagine, now that I'm home from my 10-day trip, I'm trying to catch up with things here today. Washing clothes, going through lots of emails, and transferring photos I took at RootsTech from my laptop to my desktop computer are among the things I need to do today. 

    I will be sharing more posts about my experiences at RootsTech in the very near future. I just wanted to let you all know why I haven't done so already. I will say this about my time at RootsTech. It was an amazing experience! I loved it! If you ever have the opportunity to attend, I highly recommend it.

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    Church History Library
    Photo Courtesy of the Church History Library

    On Tuesday, February 2, 2016, I had the amazing opportunity to tour the Church History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. It was a "behind-the-scenes" group tour and was one of the opportunities I was given as a RootsTech 2016 Ambassador.

    First, we gathered in the beautiful lobby.

    Church History Library Lobby
    Photo Courtesy of the Church History Library

    We were given special badges and were taken to the Reference Area. There are lockers in this area for patrons to store their coats, etc.

    Church History Library Reference Area
    Photo Courtesy of the Church History Library

    We returned to the lobby and were taken downstairs. Our tour guide was Keith A. Erekson, Director of the Church History Library.

    Church History Library Vault
    Photo Courtesy of the Church History Library

    Our group was able to see the vault area and the book preservation room. We were also taken to a conference room and were shown how different types of media are preserved.

    We were taken back upstairs to the Reference Area and were shown the Foundations of Faith Exhibit, which contains rare and special documents from the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, including an Egyptian papyrus fragment dated from the second century B.C.

    Foundations of Faith Exhibit
    Photo Courtesy of the Church History Library

    Foundations of Faith Exhibit
    Photo Courtesy of the Church History Library

    The Foundations of Faith Exhibit is also available online at the following link:

    Foundations of Faith online exhibit

    The Church History Library is also a wonderful resource for family historians.

    Church History Library Computers in the Reference Area
    Photo Courtesy of the Church History Library

    The Church History Library has a website that includes a searchable catalog. Search their databases and see what you find by clicking HERE. I did a search and found my husband's grandfather's name in the Early Mormon Missionaries Database.

    The information for Charles lists his birth date and place and his parents' names. How cool is that? We already have this information, but if we hadn't, this would be a priceless genealogical find.

    The Church History Library has a YouTube Channel which has many videos including a video about the purpose of the library, a video about the Foundations of Faith Exhibit, and even videos about how to properly handle and preserve items such as books, electronic media, textiles, etc.

    To learn more about the Church History Library, click on the link below.

    Church History Library

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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    I arrived in Salt Lake City for my RootsTech 2016 trip on Monday, February 1st in the afternoon. The next morning I went on a group tour of the LDS Church History Library. Later that day, I had lunch with fellow genealogy bloggers at the Blue Lemon, which is a restaurant in the City Creek Shopping Center. Thank you Pat Richley-Erickson, author of the DearMyrtle blog, for organizing this lunch!

    This was my first of many genealogy blogger meetups throughout RootsTech. It was wonderful to meet fellow genealogy bloggers that I've only known online. It was also great to see genealogy blogger friends that I've met before.

    Here are some photos from our genealogy blogger lunch meetup.

    Left to Right:
    Randy Seaver, Michelle Goodrum, and Michelle Taggart

    Left to Right:
    Jana Last (Me), True Lewis and Michelle Taggart

    Left to Right:
    Gordon Erickson, Lana PorterPat Richley-Erickson, Barry Kline, and Audrey Collins

    Getting together with fellow genealogy bloggers at RootsTech really was awesome!

    Thanks for reading!

    © 2016 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

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