28 June 2008

Jamboree: Day 1 - Friday

After a decidedly bumpy flight from New York, I was picked up at LAX by Stephanie Weiner of San Diego and we headed to Burbank. One of the first people we met - as we went down for a late dinner - was Steve Morse working away on his computer in the lobby.

This morning, I made the rounds of the vendor room, checking in with Max Blankfeld of FamilyTreeDNA.com, standing in for Bennett Greenspan; David Liffert, WorldVitalRecords.com, Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak, Ancestry and Roots Television, Marcy Brown, Roots Television, and Suzanne Russo Adams, Ancestry/TGN.

Some snippets of talks I attended included George G. Morgan's session on getting the most out of attending a genealogy conference and Leland Meitzler's "The X Files: Dealing With Black Sheep in the Family Tree."

While I was initially confused as to why Steve Morse was doing a talk on DNA and genetics, I was much less confused after hearing it. Steve set out to learn a new topic as he wasn't sure about the technical bits himself. The result was a well-planned explanation (with his usual good humor) on genes, chromosomes, DNA and how everything is connected and how we can use this to discover relationships. As always, well done.

My Gen Blogging session was at 4.30pm and there was a nice crowd. It was also attended by gen-blogging colleagues Randy Seaver and Craig Manson. Lots of questions by participants and I hope the information was useful. And thanks to Adele from Ancestry/TGN who helped with the loan of one of their computers for my presentation. My computer is so old that it isn't reliable for powerpoint presentations. Definitely time for a new one!

The banquet speaker was Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak on "Right Annie, Wrong Annie" -  her search for the first Ellis Island immigrant Annie Moore and the most recent update on a memorial. As Craig Manson on Geneablogie has already reported - he is fast! - Megan had a microphone incident that Craig has already immortalized. A great presentation, and a nice dinner with old and new friends.

Stay tuned for tomorrow!

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