Update: Family Tree Analyzer is now available for Mac.
A few years ago I began dabbling in Visual Basic programming because I had an idea for a genealogy program. I created a simple program called Census Taker to analyze your tree and produce a list of every person likely to be found in the 1940 census.
It was very helpful to me, but it worked only on computers running one or two versions of Windows. After trying to enhance the program, I became discouraged with the limitations and abandoned the project.
Last year I studied the Java programming language because its programs can run on anything. I began rewriting my program and had some success.
But time after time I would run into problems I could not resolve. We all have differences in the way we store our family tree information, so I had to account for all sorts of variations in a GEDCOM file.
Once again I became frustrated and abandoned the project.
While thinking about this project recently I found something new (to me) in a Google search. It is a free program called Family Tree Analyzer that does everything I intended my program to do and a million times more at lightning speed. Goodbye, my fledgling programming career. Note: This program runs on Windows only for now.
|Hats off to the creator of Family Tree Analyzer, Alexander Bisset.|
Family Tree Analyzer analyzed my 19,285-person tree without blinking. It provides a detailed table of each individual's facts in a flawless format that looks eerily like what I was struggling to do with my program.
|The "Individuals" table helps you see what you're missing and plan your research accordingly.|
It found every possible data error in my file. It found potential duplicate people which I was able to export to a spreadsheet so I can look into fixing them.
One small piece of what it does is like my Census Taker, but of course far better.
The "Treetops" button shows you the eldest person (or people) in your tree with a given surname. I entered Iamarino and found that the people at the very top of two branches with that name were born in 1640 and 1710.
The Locations, Occupations and Sources tabs show how many people are associated with a particular source, place or job. I'll use it to find any typos or instances where I may want to change to more consistent wording.
I've barely scratched the surface, but I strongly recommend you try this program. Family Tree Analyzer can provide you with all kinds of analysis to help you really fortify your family tree and make it bulletproof.