Genealogy Super Search Engine Workshop By Daniel Horowitz - Daniel@MyHeritage.

com MyHeritage Research is an advanced search engine built specifically for genealogy, capable of searching across more than 10 billion records from over 1,500 genealogy databases and Websites that cannot be searched by regular search engines like Google, in a single query to provide the most extensive genealogy searches available on the Internet. It's the most comprehensive genealogy research tool existent today and the first of its kind. This search engine runs each query simultaneously, aggregates the results and displays them in one consolidated report. This gives you more genealogy search power than has ever been available before, in a simple, friendly and convenient interface. This search engine is particularly useful for Jewish Genealogy. Thanks to collaboration with JewishGen, you will be able to search in to almost all JewishGen databases at once, a feature not available anywhere else. With MyHeritage Research, your genealogy research becomes easier, because for the first time, you can: 1 Research several variants of a last name with one search to maximize hits and explore new avenues for research based on alternative spellings of a name with our Megadex™ technology. 2 Search multiple databases for multiple spelling variations, at once. How does it work? Go to the Research page at, type in the name of an ancestor (even just a last name), and click "Search". MyHeritage Research queries Websites, databases, archives and message boards; covering all genealogy records including census records, family trees, immigration records, military records, medical records, cemetery records, court, land and probate documents, and other informational sources, such as newspapers, telephone directories, and more. Our high-quality collection of resources is periodically maintained to provide you with the best chances of finding your ancestors. We are constantly scouring the Internet for new genealogy databases and updating MyHeritage Research to benefit from new sources of information as they emerge. Spelling variations The spelling setting in the Spelling pull-down menu determines how the last name is searched. It does not affect the first name. There are 3 spelling options available: 1. Exact: This option look for the last name as you entered it, without any spelling variations. Use this if you are certain about the spelling of the last name and prefer to focus your search on that exact name. This is the

narrowest search option available. Spelling variations present one of the top challenges in genealogy searches because most last names evolve over time; they were written differently in different countries and cultures, over different periods. Also, who knows what kind of errors crept in when the information was handwritten, transcribed, transliterated and typed in? 2. Soundex: Soundex was developed to allow "sounds like" queries, is the most widely used approach in genealogy research today, and many genealogy databases support it. However, it suffers from many serious drawbacks:  Many genealogy databases do not support it.  It returns a high number of false positives; because two very different names may have the same Soundex code (Catherine and Cotreneo both have the same Soundex code - C365).  Some truly similar spelling variants receive different Soundex codes (Horowitz, Horovich and Gurevich each have a different Soundex code).  Soundex does not rank the results from most likely to least likely (no prioritization). When running a Soundex search on MyHeritage Research, it will query using Soundex for sources that support it and an exact search otherwise. 3. Megadex™: This is a technology developed by MyHeritage to overcome the deficiencies of Soundex. When you select the Megadex spelling option, it covers all genealogy databases in MyHeritage Research, even those that do not support Soundex or any spelling variation option. Megadex does not return false positives like Soundex, and it has fewer false negatives than Soundex. Megadex results are also ranked from most likely to least likely, making research easier. This type of search is available only to registered members of, but the registration is free. Megadex first points out the most commonly used spelling variations of the last name you are researching. Then it allows you to search for a subset of these variations in a single, powerful MyHeritage Research query. Your Megadex search will cover all major genealogy databases on the Web (even those that don't support any “sounds like” features). It will not return the typical Soundex false positives, and it will not miss out so many good matches like Soundex. You can browse the world's top genealogy resources at once for the top spelling variations of the name you are researching, in a single search. As a preliminary step, Megadex will present you with a list of the best possible spelling variants of the last name you entered. At the top of this list will be the last name as you typed it, already checked to be included in the search. Together with this name, many spelling variants will be suggested. A score will be listed for each variant, indicating its proximity to the last name you entered. Names that scored less than 95% will not be listed as they are deemed irrelevant to your search. If for any reason there is one or more variations not included on the list that you want to research, Megadex allow you to add

important spelling variations from your own. At this point it’s recommend to print out the spelling suggestions as they could be very useful for any future genealogy research on that name. From the list of spelling variants, you need to select up to 5 names that best fit your research. You can select any name individually, or automatically select the most relevant ones by clicking "Select the 5 best matching variants". Then click "Start this search". MyHeritage Research will then query all applicable genealogy databases for each of the spelling variants you selected. Since this query is very powerful, it may take a few minutes for it to conclude, but note that you can start accessing results the moment they appear without waiting for the entire search to complete. If you also entered a first name, or other search criteria, MyHeritage Research will include them in your Megadex query. Advance search MyHeritage Research allows you also to customize your search and add more relevant search criteria. By clicking on the “Advanced search” the window will display fields to complete the: Birth Information (date and place), Death Information (date and place), Gender of the person, Classification of the database where you want to search and make a selection of one or a particular group of sources were to perform the search. This will give you total control of the results you will get. Getting results After starting a search, a results page will start filling up with matches almost immediately. The first information you will get is a list of people who performed a search for the same last name in the past. This will give you the advantage of contacting possible relative or people with more information about the family you are researching. A progress bar will display letting you know the amount of databases were processed, how many still missing and the amount of matches found. MyHeritage Research displays the results of your search in a clear and easy to understand page with one long table where each row shows one database in which matches were found, the Megadex spelling variant for which the matches were found if selected, and the number of matches. You can then decide which matches you want to view by clicking the “View” action. This will open the desired database with the result page of your search in a new window wile MyHeritage Research keeps looking in the rest of the databases. Genealogy databases that did not return any matches will not be displayed. When the search finish you will see a small report with the total amount of matches found in how many databases, the amount of databases that didn’t had matches and the ones that didn’t respond on time to the research. It’s recommend clicking “Save Search” to save your search results, if you intend to review the results in detail. This will allow you to revisit these results at any time by clicking “My searches” in the menu without having to run the

search again, saving you time. You will also be able to annotate your search results with research notes, and schedule your search to recur automatically, and get notified about new results. This is extremely useful because new genealogy databases are added to MyHeritage Research frequently.

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