Sunday, May 15, 2016

My First OGS Genealogical Conference!

Suffice to say that I have attended many, many conferences in my life. In my previous occupation, conference attendance was a standard, regular activity and I have also been responsible for planning various conferences over the past few decades.

I entered my retirement feeling a little "conferenced-out" actually but I am SO excited about attending the upcoming Ontario Genealogical Society Conference in Toronto because it will be my very first genealogical conference and I am spending this week to prepare.

OGS 2016 Home Page
I have been doing genealogy for over thirty years. When I started, you had pencil, paper and you physically visited the archives, libraries, record offices etc and sat down for the day researching.

In the early nineties, the internet opened up so many possibilities especially for folks like me who, at the time, was living in a fairly remote community north of Sudbury, Ontario. I used the mail a LOT. Mailing churches, relatives and various other institutions to gather research on my ancestors.

By the time I moved to Ottawa in 2002 (location of the Library and Archives of Canada) the internet was rapidly growing and to compare those early days to what is available online today is mind boggling!

Ironically, as I prepare for my first ever genealogy conference, one of my favourite genealogists, Amy Crow, recently posed the question, "Are In-person Genealogy Events Dead?"

Live-streaming of genealogical webinars, the expense of traveling, and the comfort of "researching from the couch" has apparently made attending in person less of a draw according to some genealogists. Some would prefer spending their money on travel to research places where their ancestors once lived.

Happily, I am NOT late to the genealogy conference party! Amy Crow's answer to the question is that "Genealogy conferences and seminars are not dead. "

The OGS 2016 App

I downloaded the app last night and thought I would start to think about what I hope to achieve between June 3-5, 2016. The app is GREAT and allows me to build an agenda for myself (My Schedule) and peruse the list of exhibitors and mark the ones that I am really interested in visiting.

The app also has maps of the expo hall and two conference floor meeting rooms and there is a comprehensive events listing that can be browsed by categories like social media, newspapers, keynote lectures and Irish genealogy, etc.
I have just downloaded the OGS 2016 app!
There are so many other features on this app that will only be fully functional during the conference. I am not sure who is responsible for the app but it is great. Here is the profile that I created on the app that other folks using the app can see. 
My OGS 2016 app profile
 The Conference Sessions

The first thing that you should do with your newly downloaded app (after creating your profile) is insert the sessions that you pre-selected at registration int your schedule. In doing this I noticed that there was nothing selected for Friday. ( I have contacted the OGS conference folks to figure out how to fix this)

I am REALLY excited about some of the sessions that I selected:
If you too are a "first-timer", please note that there is a 1-hour gathering scheduled at 4:30 Friday June 3 that is sponsored by the National Institute for Genealogical Studies

And I am hoping to get selected for "Ask An Expert".I am hoping to find where my ancestors who died in asylums are buried and how to learn more details about them.

 The Conference Exhibitors

I really always love the  folks who set up tables at conferences to connect with their community and share information.

The full list of exhibitors is here and some of the ones I have circled that I am most excited to visit include:
  • Armchair Genealogist Family history writing workbooks
  • Digital Treasures Analogue to Digital Media Transfer Services – Photos, Documents, Video, Film, Audio to Digital
  • FamilySearch International FamilySearch is a nonprofit, volunteer-driven organization sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The OGS Conference 2017 coincides with Canada’s 150th birthday and will be held in Ottawa, June 16-18, 2017. The theme will be Our Canada – Your Family: Building a Nation.

No comments:

Post a Comment