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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Yes, It IS a New Feature on AncestryDNA ... Shared Matches

When I wrote my previous post, New Feature on AncestryDNA ???, there was nothing out there announcing a new feature on AncestryDNA. I checked multiple times in multiple places.

But apparently while I was writing and likely minutes before I hit my publish button Ancestry.com hit the publish button on its own blog. I discovered this less than ten minutes after publishing my post.

Now the answer is clear. The "Shared Matches" are those shared in common between your test that you are viewing and that selected DNA match.

Apparently there is supposed to be a Father and Mother filter if you have tested your father or mother. I have my mother tested but I don't have a Mother filter yet. I suspect this is because it will take a few days or more for Ancestry to catalog/index the matches in common for each test that you manage.

Here's a link to Ancestry's video about the new feature to learn more about the new feature.

©2015, goneresearching. All text and photos in this post are copyrighted & owned by me (goneresearching) unless indicated otherwise. No republication (commercial or non-commercial) without prior permission. You may share (tell others) of this blog as long as you give credit and link to this site (not by downloading or copying any post). Thank you.

New Feature on AncestryDNA ????

Has anyone else noticed something new with their AncestryDNA?

I did not notice this before today but two things are different.

The first change is just plain annoying -- shame on you Ancestry.com! An advertisement now appears below your first DNA match encouraging you to buy an ... AncestryDNA test. Hey Ancestry, if I have an AncestryDNA test I already know how/where to buy one. I'm a customer already -- I don't need another ad. (What I need is a chromosome browser.)

Luckily, it seems that once you close the ad it will no longer appear even if you sign out and sign back into your account. I don't know if it will reappear tomorrow or at a later date as that is yet to be seen. 

The second change is that there is now a "Shared Matches" tab between the "Pedigree and Surnames" tab and the "Map and Locations" tab which are located just under the Individual Match Overview.
New Feature on AncestryDNA  Shared Matches ^^^

I haven't found any explanation of the feature yet.

Is it a feature that will show you:

  • what DNA matches you and that DNA match have in common?
  • or which of your DNA tests that you manage also have a match to that DNA match?


If it is the first then that is great. If it is the second then this seems to be Ancestry's answer to the AncestryDNA Helper extension's "Compare two tests for common matches" AncestryDNA Helper feature. AncestryDNA Helper extension is an extension for Google's Chrome browser that was developed by an AncestryDNA user. It adds features that sadly Ancestry.com failed to provide its customers.

AncestryDNA Helper's features added to an AncestryDNA page.
Looking at my first test that I manage and skipping it's DNA matches that I manage, I tested the feature on a 2nd cousin match. Clicking the tab, it showed shared matches -- all the tests I manage. I'm not sure if any of my other matches also match that 2nd cousin.

Going a little further down the test's match list I tested another match that I know shares a match to another of the test's DNA matches -- meaning we have a match in common. (I know because I have communicated with that cousin and we've compared results when searching certain surnames.) But nothing appears -- not even the other tests I manage where I know the match also appears in those tests' match lists.

I also tested this feature for the last/newest AncestryDNA test of a sister that I manage. Selecting the DNA match of another sister (not the first test in my list) and clicking the Shared Matches tab resulted in ... nothing -- no matches in common. And yet I know that all the other tests I manage should appear on that list. A little while ago I finally got a few matches in common to appear.

I suspect that the feature rolls itself out slowly similar to how when you first get your AncestryDNA test results and it takes Ancestry a few days or more to "index" the trees of your matches so that when you search by surname or birth location you get a complete results list.

It will be interesting to see what this new feature will actually entail. Perhaps it will be a usable tool. But we still need a chromosome browser. Relying on online family trees where data is more often wrong than right is just not sound science.

©2015, goneresearching. All text and photos in this post are copyrighted & owned by me (goneresearching) unless indicated otherwise. No republication (commercial or non-commercial) without prior permission. You may share (tell others) of this blog as long as you give credit and link to this site (not by downloading or copying any post). Thank you.

August 26, 2015: the 2nd Anniversary of this Blog and Back to Blogging ... I Hope?

Today is the Second Anniversary of this blog.

Those various forces pulling me this way and that way with my time won out in the end by the time March rolled onto the calendar. (Is it really August already?)

What little time between things that I have had for my own genealogy I tried to focus on one rather large family. But some free database time at the beginning of July (not to be wasted when the opportunity arises) opened a rather large bunny hole and temporarily moved my focus to the generation just before this family.

The online bunny hole has just about ended because some pieces of this new puzzle are missing -- records are not online. Is the search over? No, I have gone offline searching. I ordered/rented the needed records which were microfilmed by the LDS/FamilySearch and the reels arrived this past weekend. Now I have to find a day to go view them.

I'm not too upset that I haven't followed my plans because thanks to the start I got from that free database access I have more knowledge and insight into a few earlier branches of my tree now than I had prior. If I had not altered my plan I would have lost the opportunity for gaining that knowledge.

Though my first year of blogging was not too bad, this second year did not go so well. After doing well the first three months of this year, those multiple things pulling me in different ways won out. It is not that I did not have ideas of what to blog about, it is that I did not have enough time to sit down and write. Here's the run down of my blogging efforts this past year.

August 2014 - 4 posts
September 2014 - 2 posts
October 2014 - 1 posts
November 2014 - 0 posts
December 2014 - 0
January 2015 - 3 posts
February 2015 - 3 posts
March 2015 - 3 posts
April 2015 - 0 posts
May 2015 - 0 posts
June 2015 - 0 posts
July 2015 - 0 posts
August 2015 - 1 posts (so far)

I can't say this year that those zeros were the result of illness, it was a healthier but busier year for me. Hopefully, I can make a plan and have a better third year of blogging and get these various post ideas out of my head.

Overall from the very beginning, there has been 37 posts (38 if you count this one) and 5,027 views logged. As many are aware, not every method of viewing/visiting a blog is counted in that meter.

Thanks for reading.