How can I build my family tree online?
July 12, 2005 12:28 PM   Subscribe

I'm looking for free, online, collaborative genealogy software.

I'd like to build out my family tree, which currently exists in various family members' heads. What I'd like is a site that I can plug in as much info as I can, and have it notify anyone I tag with an email address. They, in turn, can create an account and update accordingly.

There are decent stand-alone tools, but a self-perpetuating, collaborative effort appeals to me, and my family is fairly wired. I know there are online collaborative sites, but I (a) vehemently dislike any kind of "subscription" model, and (b) not interested in relying on/sharing with the public-at-large. An invitation-based system seems more likely to generate useful information.

Does such a tool exist?
posted by mkultra to Technology (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I have installed and used PhpGEDView 3.2

It is a PHP web based collaborative program that allows you to setup user accounts so that people can login and add to your genealogy. And it supports the standard GED files that can be imported/exported and used in stand alone programs.

Among many features it allows you to setup both public and private branches. (ie: anyone who is deceased can be viewed by the public, yet living individuals can only be seen by members). It supports many different languages and allows you to attach pictures and documents to an individuals record.
posted by monsta coty scott at 12:56 PM on July 12, 2005

The Mormons are way into this and have this online resource that is probably the most up to date family history database in the world. But, your ancestors may have missionaries pestering them in the afterlife.
posted by trbrts at 3:15 PM on July 12, 2005

It's not free ($27), but many prefer it to PhpGEDView: The Next Generation Website Builder.
posted by MightyNez at 1:42 AM on July 13, 2005

Response by poster: Thanks for the recommendations. I checked out PhpGEDView, which is the right idea, but falls into the trap of focusing on creating full-spec GEDCOM files at the expense of a simple interface to manage a family tree. I trained myself to blow through some stuff pretty quickly, but I can easily see my relatives giving up after a couple minutes.

The Next Generation Website Builder looks like a move in the right direction. I don't mind a small fee- I just don't want to be trapped by a subscription-based model that I can't give out logins to.
posted by mkultra at 6:37 AM on July 13, 2005

This should do the trick: GeneWeb.
posted by JPowers at 10:43 AM on July 13, 2005

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