I spoke today at the Salt Lake Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists. The meeting was held in the Family History Center. I started by asking how many wanted me to talk about the history of Ancestry.com, (after all, these people spend all their time researching the past) and how many wanted me to talk about our vision for the future of genealogy at World Vital Records.
I saw history in the making today. For some reason, I was lucky enough to be in San Francisco for the Facebook f8 Platform launch event. This announcement was at least an 8.0 on the Richter scale. It was a whopper.
I have been in NY and Chicago this week, and haven't found the time to blog about this yet, but our wonderful sleepless team at World Vital Records has quietly opened up FamilyLink.com to the public. We are hoping for a few thousand early users, experienced genealogists primarily, to set up personal profiles, tell us what cities they do research in (and where they live), create some ancestor pages, and most of all, give us lots of feedback about the site features and design.
http://www.thelocal.se/6219/. This article says Second Life is approaching 3 million users, a third of them having joined in the last 60 days. A lot of companies are jumping on the Second Life bandwagon, but this is even more interesting.
Our World Vital Records team has launched international genealogy search engines for 11 countries, with 18 more in the pipeline already. Our intial list includes a search engine for genealogy in China and a search engine for genealogy in India. Other countries include Australia, Austria, France, Germany, Kenya, the Philippines, Tonga, Turkey, and Ukraine.
For nearly 20 years I've dreamed of an easy to use search engine that would index all US Patents and make it easy for any inventor or entrepreneur to do sophisticated patent research. As an employee of Folio Corporation in the late 1980s, my job was to index huge data collections, such as AICPA content, all the IRS publications, and the US Code for our reference publishers who licensed our search engine technology. We looked at patent data several times, but it was never a project that actually got a sponsor.