Introducing Firefox Lockbox

For some time the Firefox web browser has made it easy to save passwords for easy access later. This is a very nice feature except that it is only good on that browser. If you also have the Firefox browser on your mobile devices, they each maintain their own password collection. While this is a nice feature, it can be a challenge to keep your collection updated on each device. That is where the Firefox Lockbox app fits in. It makes it possible to keep all your passwords synched between your desktop and mobile devices. The iOS version of the app has just been released in Apple’s App Store with an Android version launching soon.

You will need a Firefox Account to access those passwords. That account is also necessary to keep your browsing information (bookmarks, history, add-ons, etc.) synchronized across devices. Once you have created your account and logged into your desktop Firefox browser and your mobile browsers, your data is automatically synched to each one. Install Firefox Lockbox on your iOS devices and the passwords included on your browsers will also be synched to the app.

So why is this useful? While the Firefox browser will save a site’s password and automatically enter that information when you visit that site again, you don’t have the ability to view the login information. The Lockbox app makes that information visible so it can be used when and where you need it.

One last note . . . In order to use these apps/features, you need to make sure you are using the latest version of Firefox for your computer and devices.

Evernote Tip – Grabbing Records

When you find a useful record in one of the online databases that includes an image of the original record, what is your process for grabbing that record and adding it to your Evernote research notebook? Do you download the image then upload it to Evernote?

If you are using a Mac or iOS device you have options that can save you time and effort.

First . . . on a Mac when you click the Save button and select the option to save it to your computer, your Mac will present an option panel like the one shown here. Instead of using the Save File option, select the Open with Preview choice then click OK.


Once the image is opened in Preview, tap the Share icon and choose the Evernote option.


Using Preview has other advantages too. If the image needs some editing, you can use Preview’s image editing tools to crop, adjust color and resize the image before sending it on to Evernote.

Things get even more interesting on an iPad. Here you see a record detail sheet. The green box to the right of the record’s title lets you know there is a record image available. Tap the green box and you will see the actual record.

Now tap the share icon in the bottom left corner of your screen and choose the Evernote option to save it.

Evernote’s detail panel appears so you can choose the notebook, add tags and adjust the title for this record. When ready, tap Save in the upper right corner and off it goes to your Facebook notebook.

Just another way Evernote makes your research easier . . .

Take A Look At RootsFinder

To say that RootsFinder is an online family tree doesn’t begin to describe this impressive platform. It’s part family tree, part search engine, and part scrapbook. But that’s just the beginning. Not only is it a serious research tool, it also is a beautifully designed platform where you can add photos and stories and share your family discoveries on social networks.

As you can see in the video, the RootsFinder screen is an elegantly simple design, but don’t let that fool you. RootsFinder offers a broad range of features including FamilySearch integration, leads from partner sites and an impressive web clipper (currently only a Chrome extension – Firefox extension on the way). RootsFinder02.png

In addition to standard tree and profile views, there is a dashboard screen that shows any recent additions to your tree. This includes record data, photos and scanned records or documents. The People screen is a sort of table of contents for the people in your tree. You can search for a particular person and even add a new one. The Media screen catalogs the photos and scanned images you add to your tree.

The Hints, ToDos, Research Logs and Reports features demonstrate how seriously the developers are about research. RootsFinder has both a serious side and a social side. You control your tree and you determine what you are willing to share and with whom.

It will take a while to learn how to take advantage of the many features RootsFinder offers. Fortunately, there are a number of informative presentations in the RootsFinder page on YouTube.

RootsFinder offers both free and pro plans. The pro plan costs $34.95/year and includes no advertising, a private tree option and 10GB of media storage.

Evernote Formatting Updates

Evernote just released a new update that includes easier formatting options for iOS devices. Open the Evernote app, then go to Account > Settings > Notes and you will find an Advanced Editing option. On that screen, you will find five advanced editing options you can turn on or off – Lists, Checkbox, Divider, Code Block and Table. Each option includes instructions on how to create that formatting feature. For example, with the Divider option turned on all you need to do to create a divider is type three asterisks *** or equal signs === on a new line. The newest addition to these formatting options is the table. To create a table use square braces [] to identify a cell. If you want a table with four cells in each row, type four sets of braces [][][][]. To define how many rows, add an x and the number of rows to create. Setting up a table with four cells and five rows will look like this [][][][]x5. It’s that easy.

Evernote account settings

Improve Your News-reading Productivity with Feedly

For those of you who are unfamiliar with newsreaders, they are an efficient way to keep up with the latest genealogical news, tips and events – all in one place. Not only do they collect and deliver the latest articles from the sources you follow, but they do it without burying you under tons of unwanted advertisements. (See Research Delivered: An Introduction to Newsreaders)

Today, one of the most popular newsreader platforms is Feedly. It can be accessed through your browser or on your favorite mobile device using a free app. The free version of Feedly serves most researcher quite well and there is also a premium edition for those who need it.

Recently Feedly added several new source management features that existing users will find quite useful. These features include:

  • Organize Sources makes keeping your collection of sources organized and up-to-date. Access this screen by clicking the gear icon in the pop-out sidebar. Click the Activity box for options to help you find and remove sources that are no longer active or aren’t being updated regularly.

  • Reorganize Batches feature allows you to quickly regroup your sources by topic. Use the All Your Feeds box to select a topic and view the sources included in it. Select the ones you want to move then click the Reorganize button at the top of the list then select which topic you want place them.
  • Import or Export OPML files has also been improved to make it easier to share some or all of your sources with others.

Note that these tools do not appear in either the iPad or iPhone apps but do appear when viewing Feedly in a web browser. To learn more, check out The New Organize Experience at the Feedly Blog.