Robins's Visual Chart Form Tips

Purpose of a Chart?

This page created 1 Sep 2014

Hosted by Terry's TMG Tips

Charts are used for a number of reasons. That influences how they should be prepared as:

  1. Research Tools – this is a chart that is likely to be written on. It is used to identify missing critical data or to better visualize where may be a place to start further research. It is seldom produced as a work of art with annotations, etc. These are often produced on cheap paper in black and white, even as small pages taped together. In black and white, use of accents (grey), or line thicknesses or the use of hatched regions can help see a pattern. Often the chart is produced with the Chart Options; Other tab; “Blanks for missing values” set. This option outputs a line for every tag that might have been available from the Data Types setting for every person. Where there is no tag it outputs the tag with underlines to show that the value is missing. Very useful.
  2. Family Reunion Displays – This is the most common use of VCF. However, as many have soon realized their family tree exceeds their wall space. Often a Reunion Chart becomes a collection of charts; as a master chart of a small number of generations at the top acting as an umbrella, then another chart for each significant lower branch of the tree link-coded the bottom of the umbrella master chart. To achieve this may need an understanding of Editing Lines and Connectors.
  3. Presentation Charts– Special chart as presentation for a birthday or wedding anniversary. This needs to show the persons of interest. It needs to be well annotated with extra images and notes. It may use larger type and fancy fonts and have a border. It is likely to be produced in color on thicker higher quality paper. It can be considered a work of art. To achieve this it may be necessary to understand Editing Lines and Connectors, combining charts and re-shaping charts.
  4. Book Vignette Charts – Small chart used to illustrate part of a family in a publication. This needs to be compact and only show the persons of interest. The digital result needs to be of higher quality for inclusion in a book. It may be necessary to understand Editing Lines and Connectors.
  5. Web site Charts – Usually as small charts with limited content used to navigate to other pages. It can usually be produced by deleting some persons and their links from a standard chart.
  6. Special Feature Charts – These styles of charts are used to give a special view of the relationships between persons, like a bow tie chart for paternal and maternal ancestors, a first cousins chart, or a genetic/health related diagram. These are illustrated in the Gallery. To achieve these charts it is necessary to understand Editing Lines and Connectors, combining charts and re-shaping charts.

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