Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Travelling Genealogist – and her Gadgets – Rootstech Day 1

Day 1 of Rootstech 2013 I attended “The Genealogist's Gadget Bag – International Panel”.

Since I like gadgets and know the moderator, Jill Ball, and met her in person this week (albeit on-line during Monday's With Myrt - see the video here), I was very interested in attending.

Panelists were A. C. Ivory, Marie Dougan, and Heather Wilkinson Rojo (bloggers all). While I wouldn't have called this an international panel (an Australian, a Scot, and 2 USians), it was fun to 'see' their bags, and hear how alike they are in their choices of personal portable 'stuff'.

An Ipad with appropriate apps seemed the top choice, although when it came down to 'one item' only, Jill voted for her Samsung Galaxy 3 phone because she fnds it so versatile. She also showed her anti-theft 'safe' bag, Marie Dougan wants her Sat Nav, and A. C. Ivory carries a car charger which can also be plugged in anywhere for power. Sometimes, especially when researching for clients, we need extra security for electronic files, so password protected and encrypted flash drives were on Marie's list. Many sensible, low cost and low tech items were considered important too from Marie's paper and pencil for archival trips to 'a friend' for Heather's cemetery trips.

In the future they wanted to see –

- an app to convert 16th, 17th century writing to text (FamilySearch is working on that!)

- gadgets that don't need chargers, sticks, etc.

- a device that combines the best qualities of both the Android and Ipod

- and a portable Internet connection, small enough for a backpack (There is such a thing already, but I don't think these work seamlessly in the Australian outback or the wilds of British Columbia either, as we would like.)

What's in my own gadget bag this trip?? 

My Android phone (which I don't think I ever want to be without, with a # of useful apps, including the Rootstech 2013 app, along with a hookup to Dropbox, one of my very faves), my digital camera, half a dozen flash drives, and Minnie, my netbook (named for a great Auntie) -and all their assorted gear, chargers, power cords, batteries, etc. (I'll be happy to do without those someday.) Oh, yes, and a few safety pins, some 'scotch' tape, a couple of plastic envelopes to hold conference papers, a nifty little red notebook that fits in my pocket or purse, and a tiny folding umbrella, the essential gadget in my opinion, along with my phone – good for rain, snow and sunshine, all of which we've seen in Salt Lake City this week!

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