I thought I would take a few days and go over the recent updates each company announced at the latest Rootstech hosted by Family Search in Utah.

Each company is making huge strides in offering their customers more bang for their buck in the world of home DNA kits and family genealogy.  I am so excited for some of the things that are coming out and hopefully in the not too distant future we will see some collaboration between the companies to make even more information available to everyone.  I would love to see 23 and Me and Ancestry offer DNA uploads from other companies even if there is a small fee to do it.  

Let’s talk about My Heritage though.  Holy cow!  First of all, My Heritage is setting goals other companies should take notice of.  While they seem more advanced with a little practice and there are some great videos on Youtube to help guide you, they soon become invaluable.

Before I talk about those DNA tools though, I want to talk about the tree color coding introduced this year.  It really helps you visualize and recognize the different sides at a glance. 

On top of that you will see green or burgundy buttons on each match (see my home person) which suggest smart matches or record matches that maybe you have missed in your research.  Ancestry has a similar feature and I am glad My Heritage has also done this. 

Another cool feature is if you click on  the little pencil below a person in your family tree it will bring up an editable box to do quick edits and they have even added another box to choose a cause of death for a particular person which I find to be amazing. 

Having all this information close rather than in different areas within your tree is so helpful especially if this is something you need to keep track of in your life.

And the CM Explainer is WOW!  I love this tool and it is an amazing little gem to have in your arsenal while trying to figure out how you might be related to those matches in your lists. 

It is amazingly accurate and below I will show you how you might possibly be related to a particular match.  My Heritage worked with Larry Jones,  the developer of CM Solver, to introduce the CM Explainer which just knocked the doors off of isolating those matches and giving you a clear road map of how you might be related.  Larry has given us so many amazing tools when it comes to sorting these matches and understanding how the relationships are expressed in our DNA and the CM Solver tool was magnificent. I say “was” because with this collaboration with My Heritage,  a tool so powerful was created that I just have to sit back and smile.   

It is fairly straight-forward in terms of the information you need to make it the most effective. You need a centimorgan number and your age.  That’s it.  If you can find the age of the other person it only enhances your results.  

As an example, I am going to use my cousin Willy.  Willy is my Mom’s 1st cousin and to me he would be a 1st cousin once removed.  Our MRCA are my great grandparents, James Scott and Cynthia Woodford.  I know he was born in 1965 so I have the added benefit of knowing how old he is.  

When I enter that known information into the CM Explainer, this is what it looks like.

Next the results will show the most probable relationship based on the algorithm findings.  Now even though this result is not reflecting our true match, what it shows below will be what is most helpful. 

The next group of information shows the possible relationship probability and even goes a step farther by suggesting the MRCA (most recent common ancestor).  This is very helpful in pointing you in a direction to look for that connection with your matches.  On the second line it shows that Willy could be my Mom’s first cousin and our most recent common ancestor is my great grandparents which I know is true.

And if you need even more visualization on this, you can scroll a little farther and the actual ball tree is there.  You can choose a full relationship tree, a half relationship tree, or an all which is both combined into one graphic.  It even incorporates the percentages so you can see exactly where this person might fit it.

Now with all of the tools, everything is really a probability. You have to do the footwork to find out how these matches truly fit in but these are so helpful when you need guidance.  I love this new CM Explainer and I am so glad that My Heritage has a relationship with Larry Jones because he is breaking ground with deciphering things that are truly above my head at times.  

And finally, My Heritage has been adding new tools to play with your family photos for a few years now.  AI is becoming more prevalent in bringing old photos to life and now we will have a new tool in our arsenal to help date photos.  My Heritage announced at Rootstech that later this year they will be rolling out a Photo Dating Tool which will evaluate your photos and give you an approximate date of when it could have been taken based on the clothes and surroundings.  I haven’t seen the Beta for this yet but I am already unpacking those unknown photos to upload as soon as it is released.  

I am so excited to see all the new things coming out this year and tomorrow I will share what is going on over at 23 and Me.

If you are interested in trying My Heritage, tests are on sale right now.  I imagine it will last through the weekend of March 17, 2023.  I like the My Heritage tests for several reasons.  One is they usually take about two weeks from the time they receive the test to the time you get your results.  And they offer the capability to upload DNA from other sites giving you another set of matches to compare to when sorting out your DNA family.  I do not have an affiliate link for My Heritage so this is a free promotion for the site.  


So this is it for me today.  I saw a beautiful sunrise this morning that was awe inspiring. I hope you all have an amazing day and I will see you again tomorrow bright and early. 

My Heritage Rootstech 2023 Updates

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