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The Master Genealogist Gold Edition

Platform : Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows Me, Windows 95, Windows NT

Currently unavailable.
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System Requirements

  • Platform:   Windows 98 / 2000 / Me / 95 / NT
  • Media: CD-ROM
  • Item Quantity: 1

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x92b70cd8) out of 5 stars 12 reviews
95 of 98 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x911fd878) out of 5 stars User-Friendly? What's User Friendly? 7 Feb. 2003
By Electric Squid - Published on Amazon.com
When I purchased TMG, I underestimated the complaints about this being a difficult program to use. After all, I teach computers. I have mastered many, many types of software. I was already using genealogical software, and found it too simple. The problem isn't, however, that TMG is difficult because it is so powerful or because the task is so complex. This program is difficult to use because it is poorly designed.
I bought this program because they offered so much information. They have a detailed website and downloadable demo. Family Tree Maker has done neither of these things to gain my business. TMG's download makes the program look straightforward, but TMG is nothing like that demo. The demo is based on an outdated and completely different version, and to be still handing this out seems like a dishonest business practice to me. Let me try to take you inside TMG 5.04.
Imagine that you are entering a new piece of information for your ancestor and would like to enter a new resource. You'd like to click on the "new resource" button, and then see a Resource Manager appear. One could imagine this Resource Manager having a scrolling pane along the left to choose the type of resource (census, photo, book, newspaper) while the main part would have the appropriate data entry boxes (title, author, date, repository, etc.). Perhaps at the top there could be a pane showing a preview of how this source would appear in a bibliography. If one wanted to add extras, each data entry box could have a "comments" or "annotation" button next to it, or the data entry boxes could even have up and down arrows that could change the order in which that item would appear in the bibliographical entry.
Nothing is this easy in TMG. There is no "new source" button. Clicking on the "add" citations doesn't take you to the sources. Instead, TMG takes you first to a separate popup for comments - really a peripheral item.
Then you click on the "search" button and the popup of existing sources appears.
Then you click on the "add" button and a separate popup for source types appears.
Then you scroll and click on "select" and a separate popup with the data windows appears.
Then you click on the tab labeled "attachments" and click on the "Add" button. Then a separate popup window appears labeled "repository link screen". This screen has no real function except to make you click on "search" to bring up the separate popup for repositories. How deep in separate popup windows are you now in? Lost count? This typifies the experience with TMG; for each fact and indeed every sentence of your genealogy, you will not have any sort of central manager, but will have to click pearl-necklace style through window after window for item after item, function after function.
However, even if awkward, the resource management fulfills its promise - it's meticulous. The reporting capabilities of TMG, on the other hand, are a downright cheat. The wizard seen in the demo is not actually on TMG. The varieties of descendancy charts seen on the demo are not available on TMG. A "Register" report - probably the most popular style of written genealogy - is not available on TMG. Essentially, there are only two genealogical reports: a ancestry (Anhentafel) report, and a descendancy report. And other reports? Just try printing the sources. You probably think that you could open that popup window containing the list of sources and there would be a button labeled "Print" or "Generate Report". No such luck. So you try the word "report" on the toolbar at the top, and indeed "bibliography" appears on the dropdown menu. You can select the file folder in which you want to generate this report on the popup window. Then you click "Save" and go look for your file. Nothing there. No report has been generated. Somehow, though, you have this hunch that in a program this big there must be a way to print out all your sources... but where? How? The options menu says that certain options are only available with word processing, but where do you set one up?
Some say that this "has a steep learning curve" - which insinuates that it's your fault you can't use this clumsy thing. But consider: There is an Internet bulletin board dedicated to people trying to figure this out... My experience leads me to suspect that this awkwardly designed product remains viable only because it has no genuine competition.
Some people buy a car because they like to tinker with it; I have a car because I have places to go. Some people like TMG, I guess because they like to fiddle with a program. I, however, have genealogy to do.
39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x911fdc80) out of 5 stars It's a Handfull to Learn But Well Worth It!! 12 Feb. 2002
By Richard N. Fox - Published on Amazon.com
After I decided to publish my genealogy information to my own website I found Family Tree Maker was great for use on its own site but terrible for general web creation. I had to cut and paste from FTM and it was a real hassle.
After reading up on The Master Genealogist I plopped my money down and gulped as I read the manual. The manual is very detailed and a great guide after a few false starts.
The Master Genealogist (TMG) is a super program. All the source information and repository data you'd ever need is on TMG. The web publishing system is totally HTML driven and easily customized once you get the system down. I can publish pages in a fifth of the time it used to take!
Trust me...once you learn this program you won't go back! I strongly recommend the Gold version over the Silver version. The few extra dollars are well worth the additional features you receive.
29 of 32 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x93c66960) out of 5 stars The most powerful program on the market by far 17 May 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
TMG is indisputably the most powerful program on the market. All of the industry reviews say so and those who use it know the difference. Giving up features so you can say that you have a 32-bit program vs a 16-bit one (if you even know or care what that means) is just non-sensical to me. No program on the market comes close to TMG's direct import features (you can read data directly from most of the other programs *without* messing with GEDCOM), charting tools, color-coding ("accents"), witnesses, roles, and ESPECIALLY source citations and control over narrative reports. Sure, there are programs with prettier screens and if you are just starting out and haven't learned yet how important it is to be thorough and record witnesses to events, etc., then you might be pursuaded by all of the marketing hype from the "mass market" programs. They include a bunch of data CDs that are mostly available on the Internet anyway. But don't be fooled. Ask any "name collector" which is the best program and they will point you to Family Tree Maker because they don't know what they are missing. Ask any professional reseacher which program will do the most to help you document your family history and learn to be a better researcher and there is only one answer: The Master Genealogist.
23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x911fdaa0) out of 5 stars There was a new download only version 5.0 released in May 31 Aug. 2002
By Bluedcelt - Published on Amazon.com
The version for sale here appears to be 4.0 which has been around for years and is somewhat outdated. I bought the new 5.0 version of this program recently and really like it although the learning curve is fairly steep and for the truly serious genealogy enthusiast. The new version is not complete yet but has most features working and is available only by downloading the program and there is no manual yet. The program CD will be available sometime in the future with a manual and that is included in the price for the download. It is actually cheaper than this 4.0 version so I would wait and purchase the full 5.0 version with manual sometime in the future unless you get a free upgrade to 5.0 when you purchase the older version. 5.0 works with Windows XP.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x911fdca4) out of 5 stars So Much Potential... 3 April 2004
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
I thought the latest release would have addressed the critical design faults in previous versions, but they remain; the design of the software is so complicated that it burdens even a configuration which can handle almost anything I throw at it.
I can certainly see the potential for TMG to be vastly superior to any other product in the genre, but at the end of the day, I will always favour a succinct and unencumbered design.
Configuration: version 5.11; Windows XP; P4 2.6GHz; 1GB RAM.
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