1. Parenting
Send to a Friend via Email

Discuss in my forum

Kimberly Powell

Do You Want to Play with a Preview Copy of RootsMagic 4?

By November 25, 2008

Follow me on:

It seems as if the genealogy community has been holding its breath waiting to see if RootsMagic 4 will be out in time for the holidays. Well, there is good news and bad news. The good news is that Bruce Buzbee, the man behind RootsMagic, is thorough - and won't rush to release a product that is still having the kinks and bugs worked out. The bad news is that this means that RootsMagic 4 will not be out in time for the holidays. Don't despair, however. If you're dying to start playing with the program, a community preview of RootsMagic 4 will be open in mid-December to current RootsMagic users who wish to try out a pre-release copy (just be sure to make a separate copy of your data to import, and don't use the pre-release for your working family tree!). If you're not quite that adventurous, or don't have the time on your hands right now, then many of the programs new features can be seen on the RootsMagic blog.

In addition, copies of RootsMagic 3 purchased through a special holiday offer, will include a free update to Version 4 when it is released next year.

November 26, 2008 at 2:01 pm
(1) Ken says:

Great, so now RM is due out ‘next year’. This product was due out in what? The spring of 2008? By the time it gets out it will be somewhere around 3.5 years since the last release. After years of conditioning customers to a yearly release schedule, I would not be surprised to see this cheese off a lot of current customers.

I have been waiting for a really long time for this program to get a useable user interface, and contrary to what some of the hardcore suckups have to say, the RM user interface is not friendly to the new user. RM4 promises to correct this. If it doesn’t I have already chosen its replacement.

November 28, 2008 at 2:01 pm
(2) dan says:

Is there any indication on whether RM will have an undo or save “as you go” features/buttons?

November 29, 2008 at 11:34 pm
(3) Alton O'Neal, Jr. says:

All good things come to those who wait; but sometimes the waiting is…….. I have been with this program since is was called Family Origins and I haven’t found any other program near as good as this one. RM4 will come in time and it will be worth the wait. I JUST WISH IT WOULD HURRY!!!!

December 1, 2008 at 11:39 pm
(4) Ken says:

I have been with it since FO also. I worked for Broderbund and did tech support for the program back when Broderbund distributed the program.
Contrary to what the Buzbee Brownnose Brigade would have you believe, there are packages that do things just as well, and in some cases better than RM.
RM has the crappiest user interface of any program written in the last ten years. RM 4 promises to fix that. RM4 was supposed to have been released 9-10 months ago. Contrary to what Bruce Buzbee says, I suspect the hold up was in part due to waiting for LDS to pull their heads out of there family tree and get their family search stuff done.

December 2, 2008 at 4:24 pm
(5) Cindy Clark says:

I’ve used Family Origins since early 90′s and switched to Roots Magic from the very beginning and LOVE it. I’ve tried TMG, Legacy, FTM, and ohers I don’t even remember. Give me RM for ease of use and features any day. Only thing I use TMG for is fan charts and FTM for viewing thei cd’s. I’ll wait for RM 4 as long as it takes, thank you very much!

December 5, 2008 at 4:14 pm
(6) Mark says:

To be fair, a number or review sites (including this one) have indicated that one of RootsMagic’s greatest strengths has been its user interface and ease of use.

The RootsMagic 4.0 blog indicates that the program has received a full rewrite from the ground up and that a number of new features have been added. The interface has undergone some changes, as well. Hopefully the design changes have been put in place to allow intended long-term future development.

It looks as though the developer has been pretty ambitious as far as the upgrade has been concerned. Unfortunately, I’m afraid that he underestimated all the time and effort it would take to bring the vision to completion.

Some posters on the blog there seem to be impatient for the new release, but I get the impression that it’s due to expectations about all the changes that have been disclosed. Others seem willing to wait if it will result in a better, more reliable finished product. The RootsMagic community does seem to be a very loyal group, so I suspect that very few will will leave the fold if the resulting program is strong. I certainly don’t anticipate the backlash that recent releases of Family Tree Maker have received.

The true test of whether the wait has been worth it will be in the reviews of the product by users and software review sites. We’ll just have to wait and see.

August 15, 2009 at 12:43 am
(7) Travel South Africa says:

Nice Blog

Leave a Comment

Line and paragraph breaks are automatic. Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title="">, <b>, <i>, <strike>

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.