November 24, 2017

Free Videos: Genealogy Tech Tips with Lisa Louise Cooke

We are delighted to share genealogy tech tips with you each week in these new videos. It’s Lisa’s way to share tips and tricks for your genealogy and your overall internet research success. You don’t have to be a lover of all things genealogy to love a good tech tip and we think you’ll agree!

Our Google guru, Lisa Louise Cooke, has been busy creating short, informative tech tip videos for you. You will find these videos first posted to our Facebook page. Be sure to always see what’s new by “liking” The Genealogy Gems Podcast page.

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Additionally, you can comment, like, and share directly from Facebook. This is a great way to share these tips with your genealogy friends and society members.

You can also find our tech tip videos at Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems YouTube channel. Subscribe by clicking Subscribe in the bottom left corner of any of our videos or at the top right corner of our YouTube channel homepage.

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Each week, Lisa will share with you what’s new in the world of technology and especially those tips that will make you a better and more effective genealogist.

Lisa’s first video, Free Google E-Books for Genealogy and Family History, walks you through the steps of accessing free digital books from the comfort of your home. From county histories to family histories, Google e-books are a treasure trove of genealogical information. Using Google e-books helped me find several pictures of ancestors that I had never seen—and that was just the start.

We think you’ll also enjoy our most recent tech tip video entitled How to Use Google Chrome to Identify Old Photos and Images for Genealogy and Family History. Using Google Chrome for your internet browser can be an effective tool for identifying images that are more universally known. While this likely won’t be able to identify an unknown person in your ancestry, you may be able to figure out the location a postcard image was taken.

Join us each week as Lisa shares these great tips for genealogy and more! If you find the information helpful, why not share with your genie friends too!

More Genealogy Tech Tips from Lisa Louise Cooke

online file converter featured image genealogy tech tips tuesdayConvert Files for Free with this Online Tool I Use

Amazon Echo: Why Lisa is So Crazy about It

Chromecast: For Big-Screen Family History

 

 

 

 

 

Turn a Kindle Ebook into an Audiobook on iPhone

turn a Kindle ebook into an audiobookWish someone could read your Kindle e-book to you? Your iPhone can. Here’s how to turn a Kindle ebook into an audiobook. For free.

I love to read. But when I’m on the road, doing chores or working out, it’s easier to listen to books. Sometimes I purchase an audio format or find one at my local library. But audiobooks are pretty expensive, and they’re not always available for the books I want.

So what if I have an e-book already on my Kindle and I want my iPhone to read it to me? It can.

Here’s how to turn a Kindle ebook into an audiobook on an iPhone 5s:

1. Voiceover turn a Kindle ebook into an audiobookCustomize VoiceOver settings. On your iPhone, go to Settings > General > Accessibility.
2. Set the reading speed. On the VoiceOver screen, go down to the Speaking Rate bar and adjust it to a speed you like: toward the turtle image for slower, and toward the running rabbit for faster.
3. Choose the reading voice. On the same screen, you can select the voice you want to hear. Choose Speech. Under Default Dialect, you can choose among several English-speaking reading voices, categorized under U.S., Australian, U.K., Irish and South African English. Or tap “Add New Language” to enable one of many other languages.
4. Open your Kindle app (or download it here).
5. Choose a book from your Library. Or go to Amazon.com, select Kindle Store under the All Departments dropdown menu on the search bar, and search for titles (or search “Kindle free books” for free Kindle books to read). You should also check with your local library about borrowing Kindle ebooks.)
6. Open the book. Tap the book and swipe left to page forward through the front matter until you want to start reading.
7. Ask Siri to “turn on VoiceOver.” You can also do this manually by going back to Settings > General > Accessibility. Once you turn on VoiceOver, it reads everything to you. I find it annoying and more difficult to navigate in the iPhone with VoiceOver on, so I don’t enable it until I am ready to use it. After Siri confirms that VoiceOver is enabled, press the Home button once to return to your Kindle book.
8. Start the audio reading. A black border will appear around your Kindle book page. A voice will start to give you instructions. Swipe down with two fingers to begin reading continuously (beginning with the current page and continuing through the book until you stop.
9. Double tap the screen to stop reading and bring up the menu options.

If you’re used to audiobooks read by actors and professional readers, you’ll miss their polished performances. But the voice works for me in a pinch, when I just want to listen to an e-book I already have on my Kindle.

The Summer Before the War Helen Simonson coverWhy not try this with the current Genealogy Gems Book Club featured title, The Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson? Click on the book title to order the Kindle e-book. It’s a perfect summer read: a light-hearted romance with colorful characters and a compelling historical backdrop at the outset of World War I.

genealogy book club family history readingThis post was brought to you by the free, no-commitment online Genealogy Gems Book Club. We choose titles for their appeal to family history lovers, AND we interview their (often best-selling) authors. Click here to learn more about the Genealogy Gems Book Club.

7 eBook Readers for the Mac and 1 Awesome Source of Free eBooks

7 eBook Readers for the Mac

Digital Genealogy books at Google BookseBook Readers for the Mac may look the same, but there are a few things to consider to ensure you’ve picked the right one for your needs. With so many genealogical materials and great books becoming available digitally you’ll want to be armed with a quick checklist you can use to determine the right eReader for you.

MakeUseOf.com recently published such a checklist. The author reminds us that  “Sure, tablets and e-ink devices are better ways to read than your computer – and even your phone is nicer than a laptop if you’re on the couch. But sometimes you need to open a book on your Mac.”

1 Awesome Source of free eBooks

Here’s one reason why you would want an eReader on your Mac:  Project Gutenberg. This intriguing site offers over 45,000 free ebooks. You can choose from offerings like free epub and Kindle books as well as download them or read them online. And if that’s not enough, over 100,000 free ebooks are available through their Partners, Affiliates and Resources.

And these are high quality ebooks. According to the website “All our ebooks were previously published by bona fide publishers. We digitized and diligently proofread them with the help of thousands of volunteers.”

No fee or registration is required but you can help by donating, digitizing more books, recording audio books, or reporting errors.

Project Gutenberg Free Digital ebooks and eBook Readers for the Mac

Click here to read the article. And remember, an eReader might just help you reclaim some very precious shelf space!

 

 

 

7 Great Ways to Use Your iPad for Genealogy and Family History

how to use your ipad for genealogyDid you know your iPad or tablet computer can be one of your best genealogy buddies? It makes it easy to access and share family trees, documents, and photos on-the-go. It can even help you gather NEW family history treasures: images, interviews and more.

However, iPads aren’t just miniature laptops.  They work differently and in very specific ways, depending on what apps you have. If your tablet time has been limited to playing Angry Birds and checking your email, then it’s time to check out these 7 great ways to use a mobile device like an iPad for genealogy:

1. Access family trees

Access your online family tree (and even make changes) with apps like those from Ancestry, FamilySearchMyHeritage and RootsMagic. Last we checked, Findmypast doesn’t have a mobile app, but its website is optimized for mobile devices (meaning it’s friendly to iPad users).

2. Take pictures

Snap digital images of old family documents, photos, memorabilia and artifacts when you visit relatives. From the iPad, you can upload and share them via Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, email, or access them from your other computing devices via cloud-based storage such as Dropbox or iCloud. (Genealogy Gems Premium members may access the video tutorial, “A Genealogist’s Guide to Dropbox”).

3. Share your family history

Access old family pictures from your iPad to share with your relatives. You can put them right on your device’s hard drive, which makes them accessible even if you don’t have a wireless signal, but space on iPads is often limited. So make the most of your iPad’s ability to access cloud-based storage by putting your pictures in iCloud or on Dropbox.

4. Image new research finds

When you research your genealogy in libraries, use your iPad to take digital images instead of wasting time and money on photocopies. Image pages from a county or local history or take a snapshot (and a closeup) of a historical map. You can even take digital shots of microfilmed materials! Learn more here, and always get permission at each library before you start taking pictures.

5. Organize on your iPad

Keep track of all your genealogy sources with Evernote–and keep all your sources at your fingertips by using the Evernote app. My new Evernote for Genealogists Quick Research Guides, available both for Windows and Mac users, are cheat sheets that will help you start using Evernote immediately across multiple platforms.

6. Access podcasts, books and magazines on your iPad

Genealogy podcasts are the online equivalent of radio shows–all about family history! You’ll find tons of free, entertaining and informative content in:

Save genealogy and history e-books, magazines and pdfs to your iPad so you can read them anytime, anywhere. Click here for more on how to do this. What kinds of titles might you read? What about:

7. More tasks you can accomplish with your iPad

The best apps for genealogy are the ones that help you accomplish what you need to, not just the ones intended for family history use (like the free family history game Family House). For example, sometimes you need a quick magnifier and flashlight to better see old documents or photos–here’s a great app suggestion for that. Also, many of us find ourselves turning more frequently to YouTube. Well, there’s a YouTube app–click here for ideas on using it for genealogy.

Turn Your iPad into a Genealogy PowerhosueResources

Genealogy Gems FREE e-newsletter. Subscribe to keep up to date with iPad/tablet developments other tech topics for genealogists!

Turn Your iPad into a Genealogy Powerhouse by Lisa Louise Cooke, with an in-depth look at over 65 apps, 32 fabulous tricks and tips to make you a power iPad user (and not just for genealogy!) and “see it for yourself” demos in recommended online videos. It’s available in print and e-book.

Genealogy on the Go with the iPad instructional video, recently updated and re-released for Genealogy Gems Premium members

Find Genealogy Apps with the FamilySearch App Gallery

Mobile Friendly Search Results Come to Google

 

The iPad, PC and Android Phone Can All Play Nicely Together for Genealogy

www.geneaogygems.comThank you for sharing this page with others who may want to use a tablet or iPad for genealogy.

Genealogy Gift Ideas: Black Friday to Cyber Monday Specials

Christmas is right around the corner, and if you’re like me, you’re looking for just the right genealogy gift ideas at just the right prices. Well, I may be able to help you out with my Book Bundles and Premium Membership Special, available only between Black Friday (11/29/2013) and Cyber Monday (12/2/2013).

Check out these extra-special Specials! They may be just the thing to line your own bookshelves, stack into the Ultimate Gift for a genealogy lover you love or (budget alert!) take apart the bundles and give each item separately!

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The eBook Bundle. Get a copy of each of my books in e-book format:

  1. How to Find Your Family History in Newspapers
  2. Turn Your iPad into a Genealogy Powerhouse
  3. The Genealogist’s Google Toolbox
  4. Genealogy Gems: Ultimate Research Strategies

The bundle carries a super-low sale price of $29.95 during this sale only.
That’s over 40% off the retail price of $50.80!

 

 

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Get 40% + OFF the Print Book Bundle

Prefer print? Get all 4 of my books in paperback:

  1. How to Find Your Family History in Newspapers
  2. Turn Your iPad into a Genealogy Powerhouse
  3. The Genealogist’s Google Toolbox
  4. Genealogy Gems: Ultimate Research Strategies

This bundle is yours for only $49.95 during this sale only, also more than 40% off the retail price of $84.80.

 

GG PremiumBonus EBookPremium for All! Whether you are subscribing for the first time or want to add an extra year to your existing Genealogy Gems Membership, this is the sale for you!

  • Premium members get so much more than most people realize! The 1 year subscription provides access to:
  • Over 100 exclusive Genealogy Gems Premium podcast episodes!
  • Over a dozen of my most popular classes on video!
  • The brand new video mini series: Get Started with Evernote!
  • All the great tips found in the entire Genealogy Gems Newsletter Archive!

A bargain at $29.95. But this special also gives you a special FREE BONUS Gift:
The brand new ebook Lisa Louise Cooke’s 67 Best Tips, Tricks and Tools from Family Tree Magazine

This EXCLUSIVE  ebook is a compilation of Lisa’s most popular articles from the pages of Family Tree Magazine. It’s 23 pages filled with innovative, usable ideas to help your research:

  • Family History Freebies – 41 Genealogy Goodies including apps, forms, software, and images
  • On Assignment – Lisa guides you through how to conduct an effective family interview
  • Undercover Genealogy– Employ these 10 investigative strategies to locate living relatives and discover key family history clues
  • Using the David Rumsey Map Collection – This tutorial shows you how to access over 45,000 free digitized maps!
  • Finding Newspapers Through Journalism’s Voyage West – A step-by-step guide, complete with screen pictures.
  • Organizing Your Hard Drive – Never lose another file by following these seven steps to organizing your computer files.

Are you currently a Member? You can still take advantage of this offer – the extra year will be added to the end of your current membership, extending your expiration date by one year. You won’t miss a day’s worth!

Happy shopping! And don’t delay – this sale ends on Cyber Monday December 2, 2013 at midnight PST.
Shop Family Tree

How to Save and Open Genealogy eBooks and PDFs to Your Mobile Devices

Genealogy and iPadCliona in Ireland’s recent email question illustrates the point that not everything on the iPad is straightforward. But I’ve got an easy answer to her question that will make reading pdfs and ebooks on your iPad and other mobile devices a breeze:

“I bought your new book Turn your iPad into a Genealogy Powerhouse and I downloaded it to my PC straight away without problem. Ironically my problem came when I tried to download it to my iPad!

When I click to download the book to my iPad it downloads to the Safari Browser but I cannot find how to save it to iBooks or Kindle or anywhere else…I know I must be doing something wrong but I’ve looked on the Lulu site and they show that there should be an option to ‘Open In’ (at which point I should be able to specify, say, iBooks) but this option doesn’t appear in my browser. The only icons that appear at the top of my browser are the ‘book’ icon (bookmarks, history and reading list), the ‘cloud’ icon for icloud and the ‘forwarding’ icon which allows me to send to mail, Facebook etc., but not to iBooks…In short HELP please, before this drives me nuts.”

Here’s an easy way to add any ebook or PDF to your iPad:
  1. Get a free Dropbox account at www.Dropbox.com
  2. Install the Dropbox app on your tablet
  3. Create an “eBooks” folder in your free Dropbox account
  4. Save all pdf ebooks to the folder
  5. Open the Dropbox app on your iPad
  6. Navigate to the ebooks folder
  7. Tap the ebook you want
  8. Tap the “Open In” button at the top of the screen (folder icon with down arrow) and select Good Reader, iBooks, Kindle, etc.

Saving your ebooks in Dropbox also means they are easily accessible from all of your computing devices, regardless of whether they are PC or Mac. Sweet!