Friday, June 28, 2013 - "Old" Search update

I received this email from and wanted to share it with you:



Good evening,
In an effort to continually improve your experience on, we are asking for feedback on our search function. Our plan is first to gather feedback from our core users. We will take all of that feedback into account when we are merging the functionality of Old Search and current search into a consolidated search experience.
Many of the recent concerns and comments have cited functionality that actually exists in current search, as well as in old search – specifically:
  1. Our current search experience allows users to view search results as a list of ranked records or as a consolidated list of categories.
  2. Our current search experience allows users to do “Exact Match” searches.
  3. Our current search experience allows users to specify a “Collection Priority” to filter results by country.

Crista Cowan has a great educational video which demonstrates this functionality in the current search experience:

We also have a helpful article which does a side-by-side explanation of how to achieve the same types of results with the current search as in Old Search:

Thank you,
The Product Team

Thursday, June 27, 2013 - Upcoming Search Changes

I received this posting from What I haven't done yet, is to see if there is any impact on Family Tree Maker 2012 with this new search. IF there are any impacts, I'll post a follow up message here. is continuing our efforts to improve the search experience across and will be making changes to our search functionality in the upcoming months. Some features will be added and some will be discontinued. As part of the 2% of our subscribers that use the old search function on the site, we know that you are passionate about the search experience on and we are reaching out to you to get input on potential improvements. We hope you will take the opportunity to share your insights and feedback on our plans.

To identify which areas of the experience we should focus on this year, we have drawn on customer input, usage data, usage patterns and our old search function for inspiration. From all of that, we are looking at making your time on more productive by improving these areas of the search experience in 2013:
  • More relevant search results with the best results at the top
  • Easier refining and control of your search results
  • Keeping a better history of the work you have done
  • Publishing more new content and more corrections to existing content
  • Performance improvements to return results faster
As we begin to make these improvements, we will no longer maintain two separate search systems for the site. Maintaining two systems limits the resources we can use to make improvements and increases the complexity of every improvement we try to make. Additionally, continuing to maintain the two systems limits our ability to direct more investment into other areas like adding more record collections and correcting existing collections.

Based on that, as a part of the work this year we will be bringing together the two search experiences into a single search experience on We hope to bring forward the best features of both the old and new search systems into the consolidated experience to facilitate the transition for our users and to improve the overall search experience. We expect to discontinue the old search function as a separate experience within the next 6 months.

As a user of the old search feature, we wanted to give you advance notice and let you influence the changes we are making in search. Please take this survey to share your feedback and ideas on key features to improve.

Best regards,
The Product Team

Print Friendly