DenominoViso

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DenominoViso Web Report

The DenominoViso plugin for GRAMPS creates an interactive graphical representation of a family tree on a webpage.

Why

If your tree of ancestors/descendents grows a bit bigger, traditional graphical representations run out of space and you are left with viewing only part of your tree. The DenominoViso plugin mitigates this by dropping names and other textual details from the boxes that make up a tree so that many more boxes, thus a larger section of the tree, can be put in view.

How

The consequence of this is that the document needs to be interactive to determine which box belongs to which person, thus DenominoViso creates a graphical webpage in SVG/XHTML/javascript. Such a document can be displayed with standard compliant browsers such as Firefox or Opera (Internet Explorer will not do).

What is seen on the webpage is typically a tree structure consisting of many boxes. Hovering the mouse over a box shows the name of that person on the statusbar (browser settings must allow javascript to set text on the statusline, something which is at present typically switched off by browsers in their standard configuration). Clicking on a box displays the known details about that person.

Additional benefits

  1. Flat access to the data. GRAMPS is very hierarchical opening window after window. This is good for data entry, but not so for data display. A page created by DenominoViso shows all information about a person with a single click and some scrolling.
  2. Easy searching. The webpage contains a text entry and a selection field which make it easy to search on names or other properties.
  3. A single page website. GRAMPS can create a website, but it is too bulky for my taste. DenominoViso typically puts all textual information in one big file.
  4. Mixing family and person events. GRAMPS displays family events in another window then personal event. Birth of a child though, would be considered by most people as a major event during their live. DenominoViso can mix family events with personal events and represents them in chronological order.
  5. Finegrained control over what gets included. DenominoViso has many options that control what gets included in the webpage. Some can be included by setting a simple checkbox, others however are very advanced and should only be used by people with some experience. For example the confidence level of the source of an event can be indicated by a color; to the best of my knowledge their is no other report that can display this information.

What is missing

  1. Most notable missing feature is the ability to limit data on living persons. You have to make the right privacy setting in GRAMPS to exclude them from a page created by DenominoViso.
  2. Repository information is at present not included in the page created by DenominoViso.

How do I use it

Some examples of how I use a page created by DenominoViso.

  1. I am primarily looking for information on ancestors. The large overview shown by a page created by DenominoViso, helps me to easyly find which ancestors are lagging behind: the branch is tiny compared with neighboring branches.
  2. Finding death records is harder then birth/baptism and marriage records in Dutch archives. So temporarily I typically set death to something like "after xxxx". I can now enter "after" in the search box and search for "death events", all people that still miss their real death event show up.
  3. Some sources are expected to contain a considerable (geographic) group of my ancestors, for example tax records. Because in GRAMPS I have entered the details of that tax record in the description field of the event, I can search on this in de page created by DenominoViso. Those persons not showing up while it is expected, can easily be identified for further research.

What's in a name

The name DenominoViso is derived from a use-case I had not realized before I wrote this plugin. It means something like "let's have a look at namegiving". It turns out that in my family not only family names can be traced back over centuries, but also firstnames where children are typically named after their grandparents or great grandparents if there are many of them. Pages created with the DenominoViso plugin are ideal for this, just enter the specific part of the name in the search field and search for "Name".

Version History

This version is just an update of that for GRAMPS 2, to work with the new plugin-architecture of GRAMPS 3, no new functionality has been added.