Lists of some Rootstech 2021 sessions

I went looking for lists of Rootstech presentations yesterday and found some lists. There are plenty more in the Expo Hall. Here are pointers to two lists of presentations. For each, there is a pointer to the actual URL within Rootstech in case they make changes and there is a pointer to a static PDF stored here for simplicity sake.

Rootstech Connect 2021 Sessions: A list of most of the Sessions. Does not include the Expo Hall sessions nor the Keynote presentations.


DNA Basics Learning Center Presentations: This is a list of the live sessions. The conference is over, this list is primarily useful for the name of the presenter. You can use the name to search with in the current site.


“I wish you could record silence and then play it on loudspeakers on full blast to make the whole room quiet.”

Rootstech 2021 presentations will be available for a year!

Rootstech 2021 was loaded with great presentations that I really enjoyed. I have added a few to my Playlist so I can go back and review throughout the year!

But… the site had some difficulties. I follow the blogger Roberta Estes and she kept talking about places I couldn’t find! First, there is no overall search function. And some things were buried under tiers or levels that were not obvious. There is no site map.

For example, Roberta mentioned a place called “DNA Learning Center”. I simply couldn’t find it in Rootstech. So, I signed in to Rootstech in one tab of my browser. Then I opened a new tab and did a Google search for “where is dna learning center in rootstech”! Google located it for me, I opened the url in a third tab and finally, I was there.

Through inspection of the url, I learned that the DNA Learning Center is located in a folder called “Expo Hall”. Geeze… How was I to know this?

Roberta kept saying there were over 1,000 presentations that one could view. She did say that you sometimes had to search by presenter name to find them. Humm…. When I counted the presentations by Keynotes and Sessions I couldn’t find nearly that many. And the darn menu in the right side has now changed since the “live” party is over. Keynotes and Calendar is gone.

Sure, you can now search for topic under the Sessions menu item. And you can search by speaker name under the Speakers menu item. But, I defy you to find easily the presentation by Beth Taylor called “Using DNA To Find Unknown Relatives” or “What Is A Centimorgan” by Robert Kehrer if you hadn’t been attending during the conference using the now defunct Calendar option.

Don’t get me wrong, I love that FamilySearch hosted the Rootstech conference. But a site map was needed along with a global search function. And downloadable lists can be very useful! Someone should send this note to the planners of Rootstech 2022.

Here is a link to one of Roberta’s posts showing her similar comments.

Now I am going to look around in the Innovators Portal in

Go here to discover a bit about your surname.

“Rootstech 2021 was great and is improving with age. Thank you, FamilySearch, for hosting such a wonderful virtual conference.” – James Robeson

Webmaster at MoCoGenSo

Monthly Meeting – March 4, 2021 – “Connecting with Cousins: Reunions, Road Trips and Zoom” by Kathy Nielsen

Our cousins provide so much family history information. But traditional ways of connecting were suspended last year. Family Reunions were cancelled. Road trips were postponed. Thank goodness for Zoom. Join Kathy Nielsen in planning some real life connections with cousins. Kathy will help you start planning that reunion and that trip. And if these plans are not meant to be in 2021, what about a virtual connections? Let’s share ideas!

Kathy Nielsen, MA, MLS, is a reference librarian and an educator. She is currently a popular genealogy speaker on the Monterey Peninsula. She has been featured on Lisa Louise Cooke’s weekly YouTube program, Elevenses. She is a co-founder of the Monterey County Society’s special interest writing group, “Off the Charts”. Kathy incorporates her skills as a historian, storyteller, Librarian in her search for her family’s history.

The Zoom meeting will start at 7:00 pm sharp. Zoom meeting details will be sent by invitation only. If you are not a member and wish to attend, send an email with your email address to our Membership VP, Marilyn Ruccello .

If you are not familiar with Zoom, click here.

” The only thing that you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library.” – Albert Einstein

MyHeritage is in the news again!

Oh my gosh, you gotta see this to believe it. MyHeritage has figured out how to animate still photos. Seriously, this is spooky. Called Deep Nostalgia™, this is another free photo option. I tested this new “AI” function on a picture of myself, and it was really weird. One hint — full face pictures work best. The following quote is from the MyHeritage website.

The remarkable technology for animating photos was licensed by MyHeritage from D-ID, a company specializing in video reenactment using deep learning. MyHeritage integrated this technology to animate the faces in historical photos and create high-quality, realistic video footage. The Deep Nostalgia™ feature uses several drivers prepared by MyHeritage. Each driver is a video consisting of a fixed sequence of movements and gestures. Deep Nostalgia™ can very accurately apply the drivers to a face in your still photo, creating a short video that you can share with your friends and family. The driver guides the movements in the animation so you can see your ancestors smile, blink, and turn their heads. This really brings your photos to life!

Go here to see an example:

Meanwhile, MyHeritage has just been sold! A company called Francisco Partners has acquired MyHeritage for only $600M. Francisco Partners is an American private equity firm focused exclusively on investments in technology and technology-enabled services businesses. Founded in August 1999, it is based in San Francisco and London, while MyHeritage is an Israeli company.

I really hope this is good for MyHeritage. They are really a creative bunch!

Read more here:

” People will sit up and take notice of you if you will sit up and take notice of what makes them sit up and take notice.” – Frank Romer

rootstech . org

“one of our followers reached out to the Help Desk at rootstech and received this reply.”

I am so sorry you have not received the marketing emails about RootsTech. We will go live on at 5:00 am Greenwich Mean Time on February 25th and stay on 24 hours a day for the next three days. You can join at whatever times are convenient for you.

All class sessions and discovery content will be available on demand, so you can watch at whatever time works for you; you’re not confined to watching at a specific time. Main stage presentations will also be available on demand after the second day. The virtual expo hall will be open throughout the event as well. All of the classes and after the second day, all of our keynote speakers will be available on demand, and will stay up on our site until RootsTech 2022.

Below are the links to the classes available and the Main Stage schedule.
Main Stage Schedule:
Sessions List:

The following video will give you a sneak peek at the live RootsTech website:

“(PST = GMT -8, therefore go live for PST is Feb 24, 9pm)”

Rootstech . org

Thousands of people have signed up to attend Rootstech and are starting to wonder why they haven’t heard about what to do Thursday. I think they have heard, but just didn’t realize it. We were all told to go to and view the schedule. So do it!

I went there today and found an interesting little “app” on the front screen (scroll down a bit) as shown in the graphic. Find your surname meaning and origin….. Yes we’ve seen lots of these over the years, but this one is fun. Try it out! Check not only your own surname, but your 3 other grandparents surnames. Save the results and send to your kids.

Genealogy can be fun, too!

SNP Tracker

I’m a member of a Y-DNA messaging group at the GROUPS.IO system powered by Google called Y-DNA-HAPLOGROUP-I .  It is usually a quiet group, most folks are old timer types who have long ago figured out where they came from.  (grin)  Once in a while a newcomer asks questions and someone always helps out.  (most haplogroup I folks are helpful, after all)

Today someone answered  a question from a searcher by recommending a website I had never seen before.  It is really quite slick, a tool that shows how your SNP traveled across the world, similar to the paths that the old Genographic site first implemented.  But this site show not only the path travelled by our SNP ancestors, but it includes a timeline.  There is an animated slider that shows anthropological time periods too.

Click here to try this SNP Tracker

This site does both Y-DNA and Mitochondrial DNA SNPs. Use your “terminal” SNP. Be sure to work thru the tabs at the top to see what is available.  If you know your haplogroup, give it a go…  Remember, you still have time before Rootstech starts!

“The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.” – Vidal Sassoon

Open Positions

The Monterey County Genealogical Society still has some open positions that might interest you. Take it from me, these positions become what you make of them.  Flexibility is built in!  Each position is a one-year term requiring two short meetings each month and they are as follows:

Genealogist shall:

• Conduct workshop meetings of the Society.
• Serve the membership of the Society, counseling members about genealogical research.
• Organize study groups as needed, with attendance at such meetings being limited to members of The Society.
• Bring items of genealogical interest to the attention of the members.
• Serve in an advisory capacity as needed by officers and committees.
• Present an Annual Report for the Annual Business Meeting.

Publications Chairperson shall:

• Be responsible for all incoming and outgoing publications of the Society with the exception of the newsletter.
• Publish all materials except the newsletter.
• Be responsible for publication sales.
• Recommend the purchase of items identified by the local genealogy library and members, and act as liaison between libraries and the Society.
• Present an Annual Summary Report for the Annual Business Meeting.

Parliamentarian shall:

• Give procedural advice to the Presiding officer and to any member.

If you interested in genealogy and would like to volunteer please contact Gary Carlsen, President.

” Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” – Theodore Roosevelt

Joe’s ideas

Joseph Donahue is one of our Board members. He serves two roles, one as Recording Secretary, the other as Archivist. Joe recently sent Board members ideas that he hopes we can use. I figure many of us might use them!

I read that offers a 30% discount to AARP members. At my renewal time, I used the savings to upgrade from World Explorer to All Access membership, which includes Newspapers and found my older Sister’s wedding announcement which I shared with her and other family.

One suggestion for a meeting topic: “Share What You Learned by Attending” I look forward to attending on 25 -27 Feb 2021, virtual and free for the first time ever, and know that I’ll need help with using new skills.

Btw, if you are interested in leading the meeting Joe is interested in, please contact Shelley McFadden, our VP in charge of Programs. Perhaps a round table discussion meeting would work.

” This planet will survive any kind of climate change, it’s us who are in danger.” – Reinhard Huttl