Category Archives: Polls

Poll On The Right Sidebar Has Been Closed For “If You Have Had Your DNA Tested For Genealogy, Which Service Provider Did You Use?”; Results Indicated

Hi Everyone!

It is amazing that about  3 months has passed on the life of the poll I had on the right sidebar of the blog since September 8, 2016.  It is time to move on!  I think a new poll question is in order!

The poll had asked the question “If You Have Had Your DNA Tested For Genealogy, Which Service Provider Did You Use?”  A) Family Tree DNA, B) 23 and Me, C) Ancestry DNA, D) National Geographic Genographic Project, E) I used more than one provider, F) Other provider not on the list.

The results of the poll showed the following from the 39 total respondents that took the brief time to provide their response to the question.  The numbers show that:

  • 16 (41.03%) noted they had used more than 1 provider
  • 10 (25.64%) noted they used exclusively Family Tree DNA
  • 7 (17.95%) noted they used exclusively Ancestry DNA
  • 5 (12.82%) noted they used exclusively 23 and Me
  • 1 (2.56%) noted they used exclusively the National Geographic Genographic Project
  • 0 (0%) noted they used a provider not on the list.

I was actually thinking that most responses would indicate just choosing one provider and that provider would have been Ancestry DNA.  But as you can see, almost half of the respondents noted they have used multiple DNA providers from the major providers and the one major provider used exclusively was Family Tree DNA (personal note, that is the company that did my DNA analysis).

Using multiple companies may make sense as a check to see if results are similar for the same DNA test being done by each company.  Would one company show me as 98% Eastern European and another show me as 40%?  Maybe I would not want to see such a result because then I wouldn’t know if something was incorrectly processed by the company.  Most results for the same DNA test are going to be similar but not exact.  Each company has its own algorithms and logic to determine its results.  So maybe you might expect one company for an autosomal test to be a couple of percentage points difference in scoring your results.

We test with multiple companies because we want validity between the two and possibly also to see some things one company provides for this kind of test that the other company does not.

Using multiple companies also provides you with more exposure to possible matches.  Say you test with Family Tree DNA.  Maybe an unknown cousin tested using Ancestry DNA.  You would never know that cousin existed by looking at your matched results in Family Tree DNA and vice versa.  Yes, it will cost you more money, but you stand the chance of discovering more matches from unknown cousins that tested with other providers.

When you do test with multiple companies you also can take advantage of future sales for other various DNA products they offer because they do come back to you as a previous customer with special deals.  So the more companies, the more of a chance you will receive better offers for future testing at discounted prices.

It did not surprise me to see only a count of 1 for the National Geographic Genographic Project.  No one has ever really mentioned that project to me as one they submitted for analysis.  Also because the list of choices I provided literally covered all of the major DNA testers, it did not surprise me that no one noted they had been tested outside of the list of major players.

I am always looking for a larger response than even that which I just saw!  So come on down ——  affix your opinion as a “Yes” or “No” when so asked to the varied polls on different topics in the world of genealogy and family history research or select from a list of choices to answer the question.  Your answers count.

I plan on putting up a new poll rapidly.  Come back for that one to see the new question being asked.

A big thank you to all of those that took the time to respond to this just recently closed poll.  Take a look at the results of that poll to satisfy your own curiosity.

Don’t forget to visit my Poll Archives as part of this blog.  Look for the link at the top of the homepage of the blog where it simply says “Poll Archives”.  In here you will find the statistical results of the 25 previously active polls in addition to the poll that is generally “active”.  If you were not aware of this Archive, you may want to visit to see what all the previous polls were about.

Here is a direct link to the Poll Archives at my blog:

Poll Archives At Tony’s Genealogy Blog At The Schaumburg Township District Library (STDL)

Get ready for another poll ……………………..SOON!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

New Poll On Right Sidebar Of The Blog; Simple Question Being Posed; “If You Have Had Your DNA Tested For Genealogy, Which Service Provider Did You Use?”; Select Answer From List Provided

Hi Everyone!

Well, here goes another Poll that is now on the right sidebar of the blog right at the top of the blog homepage.

I am just asking for a simple response to a very basic question.

“If You Have Had Your DNA Tested For Genealogy, Which Service Provider Did You Use?”

A) Family Tree DNA
B) 23andMe
C) Ancestry DNA
D) National Geographic Genographic Project
E) I Used More Than One Provider From The Above List
F) Other Provider Not In The Above List

All of my recent poll questions were based on looking for a simple “Yes” or “No’ response to choose.  This poll is a lot different because I am asking you to pick one of the answers from the list offered.  Sometimes these can be too complicated and the responder may not know how to respond or there may not be a response from the provided list that applies.  I still wanted to take a chance with this poll format this time to see what happens.  So read through the question and all the provided choices before selecting your answer.

From my recent blog postings you are aware that I myself finally took the Genealogy DNA plunge in July.  I have been making blog postings sharing my experience of the process and my results as they were occurring.  It was intended to give you some feedback on what to expect and also to encourage you to get off the “fence” if you had been thinking about it but were just not prepared to make it happen.  I chose Family Tree DNA as the provider to test my DNA.

I thought since the topic of DNA is so much the rage everywhere as well as the fact that I finally did it, I thought now is a good time to put a DNA poll question out there trying to discover who has been using what service provider for DNA testing.

The poll question above identifies who I think are the top Genealogy DNA service providers.  If you have only had one or many DNA tests done exclusively through one provider on the list, then select it from the list.  Many of you may have had your DNA tested from multiple providers identified in the list.  Choose that response if it applies to you.  If you have had your DNA tested from a company not identified in the list above, then choose the response for “other”.

Lets see how the responses go to the question at hand with the list of answers to pick from.

So ……………………. “If You Have Had Your DNA Tested For Genealogy, Which Service Provider Did You Use?”

A) Family Tree DNA
B) 23andMe
C) Ancestry DNA
D) National Geographic Genographic Project
E) I Used More Than One Provider From The Above List
F) Other Provider Not In The Above List

Simple, direct and to the point!

Take a look at the new Poll.  Consider providing a reply.

Let’s see how active this poll can be.

The more the merrier!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Poll On The Right Sidebar Has Been Closed For “Have You Accessed And Used The New And Improved Wiki At FamilySearch?”; Results Indicated

Hi Everyone!

It is amazing that about  3 months has passed on the life of the poll I had on the right sidebar of the blog since June 8, 2016.  It is time to move on!  I think a new poll question is in order!

The poll had asked the question “Have You Accessed and Used the New and Improved Wiki at FamilySearch?”

The results of the poll showed the following from the 29 total respondents that took the brief time to provide their “Yes” or “No” response to the question.  The numbers show that 12 responses (42.86%) noted they have used the new and improved FamilySearch Wiki  while 17 responses (57.14%) indicated they have not used the new and improved FamilySearch Wiki .

I really wasn’t sure which way this was going to go.  My point here was that if you had not visited and viewed the new Wiki at FamilySearch that you would do so and become familiar with what is all there.  I just feel that this resource is a fantastic one that far two few of us tap into immediately when we are faced to overcome some genealogical research issue.  Maybe we are going to be researching Irish records for the first time and don’t know much at all about the process.  Wiki items on Ireland and Irish researching can be the very helpful things to get you going down the right path.  Maybe you want to write a letter to a Polish church in Poland.  You can look for letter writing guides in the language of the country you are going to write to.  You can copy and paste what these  translation guides offer and send your letter to Poland in Polish.  I personally did that very thing and I got great results back in a few weeks.  Answers came back to me in Polish so I used someone knowing Polish to help translate or I could have used Google Translate to enter in the words in Polish and then see what it told me!  It was amazing that the FamilySearch Wiki had such wonderful letter writing guides across many languages other than in just Polish.

The FamilySearch Wiki is a great resource full of encyclopedic information on too many genealogical topics to even consider.  Search it and see what it delivers to you on something you have been curious about.

You can access the FamilySearch Wiki here:

FamilySearch Wiki

I am always looking for a larger response than even that which I just saw!  So come on down ——  affix your opinion as a “Yes” or “No” when so asked to the varied polls on different topics in the world of genealogy and family history research.  Your answers count.

I plan on putting up a new poll rapidly.  Come back for that one to see the new question being asked.

A big thank you to all of those that took the time to respond to this just recently closed poll.  Take a look at the results of that poll to satisfy your own curiosity.

Don’t forget to visit my Poll Archives as part of this blog.  Look for the link at the top of the homepage of the blog where it simply says “Poll Archives”.  In here you will find the statistical results of the 24 previously active polls in addition to the poll that is generally “active”.  If you were not aware of this Archive, you may want to visit to see what all the previous polls were about.

Here is a direct link to the Poll Archives at my blog:

Poll Archives At Tony’s Genealogy Blog At The Schaumburg Township District Library (STDL)

Get ready for another poll ……………………..SOON!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

New Poll On Right Sidebar Of The Blog; Simple Question Being Posed; “Have You Accessed And Used The New And Improved Wiki At FamilySearch?”; “Yes” Or “No”?

Hi Everyone!

Well, here goes another Poll that is now on the right sidebar of the blog right at the top of the blog homepage.

I am just asking for a simple response to a very basic question.

“Have You Accessed And Used The New And Improved Wiki At FamilySearch?”  Yes or No

One of the best resources to use to help you with your genealogy questions is the Wiki at FamilySearch that you can find at FamilySearch.org Wiki.  This online encyclopedia is searchable with keywords to help you find a topic of interest or to give you some insights into a new research process you will shortly embark on.  Are you going to be researching Indiana records for the first time because an ancestor you discovered was born in Indiana?  See what exists in the Wiki on Indiana resources so you will know what you can tap into to add information to that Hoosier ancestor.

Are you going to embark on Polish research?.  Do the same as above in the FamilySearch Wiki to learn more about the geographic area of ancestors and what resources exist to add for that Polish ancestor.

Just like with the FamilySearch “Search” area for data, just look at the world map the Wiki presents first rather than entering in a search topic or keyword in the search box.  Use the maps for continents, countries, states, counties etc. to drill down to see what exists for Indiana or Poland or whatever geographic area of interest there is for you.  You do not even have to use the search box to get you to your area of interest.

The topic of interest for you will also be full of links to get you to other areas for your new topic.  Topics as “How to Find Birth Records”, or “How To Find Marriage Records” may be present whether you are looking for them within Indiana or Poland.  Just click and learn your way to make your research efforts productive and fulfilling.

The FamilySearch Wiki is a resource I share with new researchers if they are just beginning their research.  It is as valuable a tool for seasoned researchers also if you have not visited it lately in its new and improved format and process.  It is always a good idea to use the resources for a particular state or country and compare it to your own research you may have already done.  It would not surprise me that you would find information that you maybe never previously pursued.

So ……………………. “Have You Accessed And Used The New And Improved Wiki At FamilySearch?”  Yes or No?

Simple, direct and to the point!

Take a look at the new Poll.  Consider providing a reply.

Let’s see how active this poll can be.

The more the merrier!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Poll On The Right Sidebar Has Been Closed For “Have You Ever Viewed Any Of The Program Videos From The Annual RootsTech Conference Available At www.RootsTech.Org?”; Results Indicated

Hi Everyone!

It is amazing that about  3 months has passed on the life of the poll I had on the right sidebar of the blog since March 9, 2016.  It is time to move on!  I think a new poll question is in order!

The poll had asked the question “Have You Ever Viewed Any Of The Program Videos From The Annual RootsTech Conference Available At www.rootstech.org?”

The results of the poll showed the following from the 52 total respondents that took the brief time to provide their “Yes” or “No” response to the question.  The numbers show that 13 responses (25%) noted they have viewed videos from RootsTech  while 39 responses (75%) indicated they have not viewed any of the RootsTech videos .

I actually thought that there would be a higher percentage of readers that had actually tried looking at the RootsTech videos.  I personally have found these videos to be motivational for me while I learn a lot more about a genealogical topic.  Plus, I am simply a big believer in learning more about genealogy via these resources at your fingertips.  These RootsTech videos are professionally put together so they just look stunning to me.  The speakers are top-notch world-renowned genealogy speakers.  The videos generally run for about 1 hour.

I always come away with a good feeling after having viewed one of these videos.

Sometimes, in genealogy, I don’t want to learn something very specific about a resource or how to do something.  Many times I just want to be motivated or know what the future of genealogy will be just around the next corner.  The keynote speeches at RootsTech provide me with that kind of dose of motivation and curiosity to view one of these videos and get even more excited about what new things the world of genealogy will have to offer not that far down the road.

For the 25% of you that responded with a positive that you have viewed some of the videos from RootsTech, I salute you.  I hope your experience with these videos has been as positive as my own.  For those of you that have not viewed any, I would encourage you to give one or a few a try.  I do not think you will be disappointed.  I would especially encourage you to view a Keynote speech that will be motivational and may very well jump-start your genealogy engine if it had not been running well lately.

I am always looking for a larger response than even that which I just saw!  So come on down ——  affix your opinion as a “Yes” or “No” when so asked to the varied polls on different topics in the world of genealogy and family history research.  Your answers count.

I plan on putting up a new poll rapidly.  Come back for that one to see the new question being asked.

A big thank you to all of those that took the time to respond to this just recently closed poll.  Take a look at the results of that poll to satisfy your own curiosity.

Don’t forget to visit my Poll Archives as part of this blog.  Look for the link at the top of the homepage of the blog where it simply says “Poll Archives”.  In here you will find the statistical results of the 24 previously active polls in addition to the poll that is generally “active”.  If you were not aware of this Archive, you may want to visit to see what all the previous polls were about.

Here is a direct link to the Poll Archives at my blog:

Poll Archives At Tony’s Genealogy Blog At The Schaumburg Township District Library (STDL)

Get ready for another poll ……………………..SOON!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

New Poll On Right Sidebar Of The Blog; Simple Question Being Posed; “Have You Ever Viewed Any Of The Program Videos From The Annual RootsTech Conference Available At www.rootstech.org?”; “Yes” Or “No”?

Hi Everyone!

Well, here goes another Poll that is now on the right sidebar of the blog right at the top of the blog homepage.

I am just asking for a simple response to a very basic question.

“Have You Ever Viewed Any Of The Program Videos From The Annual RootsTech Conference Available At www.rootstech.org?”  Yes or No

The most recent annual RootsTech Conference just concluded in February 2016.  Statistics related to this annual conference are not yet currently available.  Statistics for 2015 were impressive:

  • 23,000 registered attendees
  • 150,000+ live-streaming viewers
  • Over 200 exhibitors in the Expo Hall
  • 93% of attendees would recommend attending this conference to a friend

Some incredible statistics related to this conference.  Can’t wait to see the 2016 statistics when they become available.

RootsTech shortly after the conference concludes makes available online videos of some of the programs that were recorded.  Some of them are Keynote presentations.  Many of them are of a variety of topical genealogical programs that can help beginning, intermediate and expert researchers advance their skills and keep them current with a topical issue related to research.

The videos generally run about 30 minutes for a keynote speech to about 1 hour for a tutorial on a genealogical topic.  Speakers are the best of the best.  Quality of the video is also the best of the best.

I like to look at the Keynote speeches and get an insight into where genealogy might be going into the future.  These keynote speeches give you the “big picture” view of genealogy and all things related to it.

I thought this would be a good poll question to find out if you are familiar with these great videos.  If not, you now have an opportunity to check them out from the recently concluded conference at www.rootstech.org.

So ……………………. “Have You Ever Viewed Any Of The Program Videos From The Annual RootsTech Conference Available At www.rootstech.org?”

Simple, direct and to the point!

Take a look at the new Poll.  Consider providing a reply.

Let’s see how active this poll can be.

The more the merrier!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

 

Poll On The Right Sidebar Has Been Closed For “Are You Currently Using Family Tree Maker Lineage Software For Which Ancestry.com Indicated It Is Retiring The Software?”; Results Indicated

Hi Everyone!

It is amazing that about  2 months has passed on the life of the poll I had on the right sidebar of the blog since December 31, 2015.  It is time to move on!  I think a new poll question is in order!

The poll had asked the question “Are You Currently Using Family Tree Maker Lineage Software For Which Ancestry.com Indicated It Is Retiring The Software?”

The results of the poll showed the following from the 56 total respondents that took the brief time to provide their “Yes” or “No” response to the question.  The numbers show that 31 responses (55.36%) noted they are users of Family Tree Maker lineage software  while 25 responses (44.64%) indicated they are not users of Family Tree Maker lineage software .

I actually thought that the numbers would show about a 50% user base for Family Tree Maker.  At one time I thought Family Tree Maker was even more dominant as to market share but the poll and anecdotal conversations with researchers does seem to show it has a good market share but not an overwhelming market share.  RootsMagic, Legacy Family Tree, Mac Family Tree, Reunion and online family trees are competing interests.

The purpose of my poll question was timed during the announcement that Ancestry.com was exiting the software development part of its business with Family Tree Maker.  This announcement occurred in early December 2015.  The poll has only been up 2 months, but during this time the whole topic of Family Tree Maker being discontinued was turned upside down since.

In fact, Ancestry.com has since announced that it sold the business side of Family Tree Maker to the developers that Ancestry.com used to develop the product.  MacKiev is the company that will now own the product.  They will continue to develop new versions, upgrade the product and provide service to users.  So just think, within 2 months the product has gone from being discontinued, to sold and now somewhat to business as usual under a new company!

Talk about fast turnaround!

Additionally, other software developers were involved in wooing Family Tree Maker users to their own version of the software with steep discounts and special ways to accommodate Family Tree Maker data into these other products.  In fact, another development surrounding this escapade has been that Ancestry.com has made arrangements with the producers of RootsMagic to now have RootsMagic develop all of the capabilities that were included in Family Tree Maker to allow RootsMagic users the ability to upload and interact with family trees on Ancestry.com!  So now both Family Tree Maker and RootsMagic users will be able to upload material to family trees on Ancestry.com.

So while my poll was trying to gear how many Family Tree Maker users might be affected by the discontinuance of the product, it appears that is now a moot point!  MacKiev will now be the go to company for a product that will continue on as if nothing really happened!

There were a lot of responses to this poll question during this up for grabs time period, especially for the 31 respondents that noted they were users of Family Tree Maker.

I am always looking for a larger response than even that which I just saw!  So come on down ——  affix your opinion as a “Yes” or “No” when so asked to the varied polls on different topics in the world of genealogy and family history research.  Your answers count.

I plan on putting up a new poll rapidly.  Come back for that one to see the new question being asked.

A big thank you to all of those that took the time to respond to this just recently closed poll.  Take a look at the results of that poll to satisfy your own curiosity.

Don’t forget to visit my Poll Archives as part of this blog.  Look for the link at the top of the homepage of the blog where it simply says “Poll Archives”.  In here you will find the statistical results of the 21 previously active polls in addition to the poll that is generally “active”.  If you were not aware of this Archive, you may want to visit to see what all the previous polls were about.

Here is a direct link to the Poll Archives at my blog:

Poll Archives At Tony’s Genealogy Blog At The Schaumburg Township District Library (STDL)

Get ready for another poll ……………………..SOON!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library