26 september 2006 – before it started I was looking for a sort of Google Genalogy (read it!) which would show you with every person the relation you have to that person (so the blood relation not the “friends relation”), since in the end… everyone is family of everyone else (true wether you believe in the bible or in dna). It seemed like an awesome idea.
14 january 2007 – then… 5 months later… Geni launced (read it!), where … everyone can add anyone and slowly you can see with everyone on the planet how you are connected to that person (in bloodlines). I have added my family to it. I posted some more blogs about new features in Geni…
19 februari 2011 – then… the problem became that a lot of people were joining another large service “myheritage” … so on februari 2011 (!!) I wrote “Social Family: Geni or MyHeritage?” (read it!) which I ended with “Companies: PLEASE MERGE!” (because I can’t maintain 2 large trees in 2 systems which are the same and different).
28 november 2012 – and now… 28 november 2012 it seems … I am an Internet visionary because I got the following e-mail:
I’m writing to you to let you know that we appreciate you as a valuable member of the Geni community and wanted you to be among the first to know some exciting news.
We created Geni in 2007 with one big idea – discovering your family history is better when you are collaborating with your relatives. Over the last five years we’ve seen the power of this approach, with millions of users working together to build a single family tree that connects over 65 million people.
In this spirit of collaboration, I’m pleased to announce that Geni is joining the MyHeritage family!
MyHeritage was founded in 2003 by Gilad Japhet and a team of passionate genealogy enthusiasts in Israel. In the last 9 years it has expanded to Europe and the USA, creating a massive family history network with 65 million registered users and more than 1.35 billion family tree profiles.
Sharing much of Geni’s vision, MyHeritage offers free tools for building family trees, access to historical records, and DNA tests. MyHeritage is well known for its technologies to match family trees to other family trees (Smart Matches) and to historical records (Record Matches). In addition, MyHeritage offers free genealogy desktop software (Family Tree Builder); free mobile apps for iPhone, iPad and Android, which work in sync with their Website on MyHeritage.com; and a search engine for historical records (SuperSearch).
You can see why we’re excited to join the MyHeritage family. MyHeritage is fully committed to Geni’s vision and you’ll see a number of benefits as a Geni user over the coming weeks and months.
Here are some of the benefits that you’ll see immediately:
- Unlimited profile adding is now free – All users can add as many profiles as they’d like to their tree without upgrading to a paid account. No more limits to the size of your tree.
- Merging is now free – All users can now merge duplicate profiles in their tree (privacy and permission rules still apply). This is great if your tree has been merged with another tree, or if you’d like to connect to the World Family Tree.
- Relationship paths are now free – Discover your relationship to historical figures and celebrities, even very distant relatives.
- Free family tree chart downloads – All users can now download a high quality chart of their family tree to their computer at no charge. These are great for sending to relatives or for printing at home as beautiful tree posters.
- No ads – We’ve removed ads for all users for a cleaner interface with less distraction.
- More privacy – living people who have not joined Geni will become private and will not be searchable on Google.
Together we are working on many more great features that we’ll roll out over the coming months. For example, we’re working together to integrate MyHeritage’s Record Matching technology directly into Geni. This will significantly improve the accuracy of our tree matches by using advanced algorithms including name synonyms, cross-language matching, and additional criteria. In addition, we will be able to intelligently match Geni profiles against MyHeritage’s billions of tree profiles and records, including newspaper and census records.
We’re excited to roll out these changes and more, and to continue to work toward providing the best collaborative genealogy service available. Most important, we hope that these tools will help you to discover more about your family history and meet new relatives.
The entire Geni Team has joined the MyHeritage family, and we will continue to operate out of our Los Angeles offices, focused as before on building Geni.com but now with all of the global resources of MyHeritage behind us. I hope that you are excited about this as myself and the rest of the Geni Team.
Thanks again for being a valuable part of the Geni community and we look forward to many more years of collaboration!
So… the only thing that now needs to happen is that Google will buy this combo and rename it to “Google Genealogy” …. to make me the ultimate #1 Internet Visionary
p.s. I REALLY hope merging my trees between the two systems will go well. There will probably go lots of manual labor into it but it’s definitely worth it seeing the features we now get of these two brilliant social genealogy sites combined in the long run. wow. cool.