MemoryMiner 2.0 is out!

MemoryMiner 2.0. Cool. Been looking forward to this, and readers of this site’s comment threads have had a slight heads up this was coming. The announcement arrived as I was out of town for the holiday. MemoryMiner’s developer, John Fox, is the digital family photo Santa. I came up with a wishlist of items while working with the till-now current version, will have to download it and check out the new version.

UPDATE: I’ve been taking a look at the demo movie, and I like the things I see in there so much that I’m putting the movie here, too.

Thought this movie is for the Mac version, MemoryMiner is cross-platform. Looks as though, at this point, MemoryMiner 2.0 is Mac-only at this point. I’ll get you more news about any plans for MemoryMiner 2.0 for Windows.

Posted by Susan A. Kitchens on December 31, 2009 in • Digital StorytellingPersonal HistoryPhotographs
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Essential Tips for Interviewing family: Thou shalt not interrupt

The Interviewing Commandment: Thou Shalt Not Interrupt Do you want to interview parents or grandparents over the holidays? Here are some tips from Jens Lund – whom I met at the Oral History Association conference in Louisville this fall. As I see it, the problem for the family member interviewer is lack of experience conducting interviews. What one piece of advice would Lund, an experienced folklorist, give to the first time interviewer?

Jens (pronounced yens) Lund, from Washington state, pioneered aspects of creating the driving audio tour. Put in a cassette (this was a while ago, people) at a certain location on a road, drive and play. The tape tells you about what you’re seeing, with significant history and interviews with people from the area. There may be music from local people as well.

Here’s what he had to say:

Don’t interrupt. Give the person enough time. Don’t cut them off. Don’t hurry through your set of questions. Give a moment—a few breaths—at the end of what they say. They may be breathing or pausing before continuing with their story.

I asked him for one piece of advice. I got three good answers. ...Read More

Posted by Susan A. Kitchens on December 19, 2009 in • Interviewing
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SignOn SanDiego’s Family Holiday Survival Advice

Love this lead-in: “Instead of fixating on how aggravating [family] can be, focus instead on how interesting they actually are.” Thus begins Jennifer Davis’s overview of ways to preserve family stories. [via Randy Seaver’s Genea-Musings]

There are lists of resources, and an overview of the formats.

Alas, this one bit of caution isn’t warranted, really:

Audio recordings are fine but be aware that changing technologies could pose a problem in the future. Just ask any family that recorded their oral history on a cassette tape.

As long as your audio recording is an accepted, well-known format, such as AIFF or WAV, you’ll be okay. Just make multiple copies, burn multiple disks. The biggest risk is data loss.

Davis lists people who provide services and locations for equipment rental and the like. This site has an equipment section that discusses most major audio equipment types. And check out my equipment store, too, ...Read More

Posted by Susan A. Kitchens on December 12, 2009 in • Do it: Yourself
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Genealogy Jamboree in Burbank (June 2009)

image Memories of Jamboree, Burbank, California, from June of this year. Image: Footnotes at Jamboree. What fun it was to meet fellow Geneabloggers and hang out. I think I spent more time hanging and talking than I did going to the conference sessions at Jamboree.

I began composing this post the day after Jamboree. But then I got sick. All of July I was sick. Then other stuff happened. But hey, I know that today’s the day when plans for next year’s Jamboree kicks off, so what better time to belatedly recall Jamboree last June than today?

I didn’t make it to the Son of Blogger session (exhaustion set in, alas—June had been a jam-packed month), so that event was a micro-cosm of my posting of late (not much, you?)

I did make it to the Geneabloggers dinner on Saturday night, though. And, as you can tell by this image (click to view high rez version), a lot of other Geneabloggers made it, too! (not pictured: Thomas Macentee, nor I)

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Here’s a ...Read More

Posted by Susan A. Kitchens on in • GenealogyPhotographs
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MIT class of 1920: A gift in my email

image This image is a gift, one I received in an email. My cousin sent it to me a couple of weeks back. Subject line: “Grandma Joe* Graduation Photo.” She went to MIT – Massachusetts Institute of Technology – and graduated in 1920.

I have Grandma’s letters that she received when she was at MIT, and one or two photos from that time, but this unexpected one is a beaut.


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click to enlarge

[Welcome, BoingBoingers & followers of @Xeni!
Stats about early MIT below; or maybe you’d be interested in a foto essay of my other, non-techy Grandma and her 1924 climb of Mt Rainier when she was 23 years old.]

Of the 40 people in this photo, Florence, also known as Flossie (upper right)—is the only woman. The photo arrived in email all by itself. The only clues were the file name and the subject line. Other than knowing that Flossie graduated from MIT in 1920, I don’t know much else about this photo. But one good gift leads ...Read More

Posted by Susan A. Kitchens on December 10, 2009 in • Letters in the AtticPersonal HistoryPhotographs
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