The latest feature added to GenDetective 2 available in update 2.4 is the export of a Location History which was created at the request of Colleen Fitzpatrick of Identifinders. The Location History is a CSV file, readable by Excel and other programs, that displays a row or line per record.
What would you use this file for? GenDetective uses these same coordinates to display maps of your family (My Map View). However, in GenDetective maps the only way to manage time is to filter the people included in the map by relationship. In addition, the GenDetective maps are aggregated to the County level. More sophisticated mapping functionality exists on the internet (both free and fee based) that enables you to show your family to the actual latitude & longitude (by town/township) while moving forward and backward through time.
What is a CSV file? It is a file that is a text file that is separated into columns that can be read by many programs, including websites. Usually, a comma is used to separate the columns. However, the location history file includes place names such as: Doylestown, Bucks County, Pennsylvania, United States. To make the columns work correctly in the file, GenDetective uses a TAB character. To open this file in Excel:
- Launch Excel
- In the menus select File, then Open
- Browse to the .csv file (lochistory.csv by default)
- Excel will prompt for the separator and the TAB character should be selected by default.
- If you double-click on the CSV file in Windows Explorer to open it, the file will probably not load correctly.
What events are included in the location history? All of the events that are associated with each person in your family tree, except:
- Events recorded at generic locations (Germany, United States, California, Pennsylvania) ie. places that do not have latitude & longitude coordinates
- Events recorded without a location
- Events where GenDetective was unable to match the location
The columns in the location history file are:
- Latitude — in decimal format
- Longitude — in decimal format
- Name — name of the person the event is associated with
- Icon — image that some mapping websites will use as a pin or color marker
- TimeWhen — the date the event happened in yyyy/mm/dd format
- Description — the place name of the location
- GEDCOM ID — the ID of the person in your tree (some programs allow you to search for people by this ID)
- User Date — the date that entered in the GEDCOM file (estimates like abt 1850 will be normalized to Jan 1, 1850)
- Event — the event that was recorded at this location on this date
- Event Description — the title or description associated with this event