It’s that time of year where we look both backward and forward.
Thank you for your continued readership! Another year under our belts!
I always find it interesting to review the articles you found most interesting this past year.
In total, I published 97 articles in 2022, of which 56 were directly instructional about genetic genealogy. I say “directly instructional,” because, as you know, the 52 Ancestors series of articles are instructional too, but told through the lives of my ancestors. That leaves 41 articles that were either 52 Ancestors articles, or general in nature.
It has been quite a year.
In a way, writing these articles serves as a journal for the genetic genealogy community. I never realized that until I began scanning titles a year at a time.
Highlights of 2022 include:
- Multiple ancient DNA burial sites with Y and mitochondrial DNA results
- Being a guest on Shamele Jordon’s Genealogy Quick Start television program and the Research Like a Pro Podcast with Nicole Dyer and Diana Elder. I participated in several other special events with organizations in 2022 as well. (No wonder I’m tired.)
- Several RootsTech articles – RootsTech offered so much in 2022 – and 2023 is going to be amazing too, both in person and virtually. You can still view the 2022 articles here.
- Genetic Affairs released their amazing AutoKinship
- The East Coast Genetic Genealogy Conference (ECGGC) launched for the first time in 2022 and will also be having a 2023 fall conference, October 6-8. Yes, I’m planning to present there too, hopefully in person.
- The 1950 census release on April Fool’s Day – I still can’t find my mother.
- The Million Mito team update and also the publication of the amazing haplogroup L7 discovery paper, plus an accompanying video. At year-end, the team was honored that our paper was included in the Nature’s Editor’s Choice Collection.
- Mitochondrial DNA webinar at Legacy Family Tree Webinars. That’s still available along with hundreds of other titles, here.
- Ancestry’s SideView and that Ancestry only shows shared matches of 20 cM and greater which is very confusing for genealogists. Also, how to share DNA results and tree access with others, which is crucial for research.
- FamilyTreeDNA’s amazing DISCOVER Haplogroup Reports tool for Y-DNA launched. Not long after that, their Y-DNA tree passed 60,000 branches.
- Tips and tricks for working with Theories of Family Relativity at MyHeritage. What a great tool!
- I launched the new In Search Of series to celebrate the 10th anniversary of this blog. I then created a resource page that includes all six of the In Search Of articles to date, and there will be more in 2023. 2022 topics include:
- Downloading Match and Segment files at the various vendors
- Endogamy – how to tell if you have it and what to do
- Vendor Features, Strengths and Testing Strategies – these details change often
- Why connecting your DNA test (correctly) is important at each vendor and how to do it
- Tools to determine if your female ancestor was Native American, or not.
- Full or half siblings and how to tell the difference
- Big Y-DNA case study with a jaw-dropping outcome
- MyHeritage’s new artificial intelligence (AI) time machine lets you see yourself and your ancestors in period and historical settings. I’m still super geeked by this and you’re likely to see more from me about this in 2023. This is just pure fun!!
- Basic education critical for everyone about your chromosomes and genealogy. You can’t understand genetic genealogy without understanding this basic information, and why people who match you on the same segment may not match each other. Don’t be lulled into incorrect conclusions.
Which articles were your favorites that were published in 2022, and why?
Often, the topics I select for articles are directly related to your comments, questions and suggestions, especially if I haven’t covered the topic previously, or it needs to be featured again. Things change in this industry, often. That’s a good thing!
However, some articles become forever favorites. Current articles don’t have enough time to amass the number of views accumulated over years for articles published earlier, so recently published articles are often NOT found in the all-time favorites list.
Based on views, what are my readers’ favorites and what do they find most useful?
In the chart below, the 2022 ranking is not just the ranking of articles published in 2022, but the ranking of all articles based on 2022 views alone. Not surprisingly, six of the 15 favorite 2022 articles were published in 2022.
The All-Time Ranking is the ranking for those 2022 favorites IF they fell within the top 15 in the forever ranking, over the entire decade+ that this blog has existed.
Drum roll please!!!
I have a few articles already in the works for 2023, including some surprises. I’ll unveil one very soon.
We will be starting out with:
- Information about RootsTech where I’ll be giving at least 7 presentations, in person, and probably doing a book signing too. Yes, I know, 7 sessions – what was I thinking? I’ve just missed everyone so very much.
- An article about how accurately Ancestry’s ThruLines predicts Potential Ancestors and a few ways to prove, or disprove, accuracy.
- The continuation of the “In Search Of” series.
As always, I’m open for 2023 suggestions.
In the comments, let me know what topics you’d like to see.
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Thank you so much for all your wonderful labors. Although the technical aspects are over my head, I genuinely enjoyed your recent post that had links to your articles about our ancestors back to 1495. Our common ancestor is John of Claiborne County, Tennessee. From there my line goes to William, William Newton, William Edgar, William Edgar Jr than me. William Newton’s life story is extraordinary. I have his military records and there has been a book published about his unit’s journey through the civil war. There are several Indiana connections and names in his service records that are common to some names in your articles which intrigue me. I hope you will consider compiling a book with each chapter devoted to what you have learned about each specific ancestor. I would buy such a book and give them as gifts to family. I was fortunate to visit the churches in Kent this past fall and marvel at your extensive research. Thank you!!!!
Roberta – Thank you for all that I have learned from you. Looking forward to more of that in 2023. I’ll be interested iin your “article about how accurately Ancestry’s ThruLines predicts Potential Ancestors and a few ways to prove, or disprove, accuracy.” I wish that there was a way to say “not a match” to their suggestions. I have a few ThruLines that I know the genealogy is wrong and wiish there was a way to find the correct matches.
You and me both.
Hello Roberta, I have sort of an off-topic question about the Million Mito Project. I have tested myself and was assigned U4a, I learned that I have the defining mutation for U4a2c (T8567C), but a deletion at the defining mutation for U4a2 (T310d instead of T310C), preventing me from getting a deeper haplogroup assignment. Also, my dad’s FMS was batched and went into the analyzing stage two days ago. From 23andme, his mtDNA is U4c1a (I think it is kind of cool we are both U4).
Anyways, my question is if it is beneficial for the Mito Million Project to test members of the same matrilineal line? I know me and my dad are different clades of U4, but I was thinking about perhaps eventually testing my mother. I am a first generation immigrant from Kosovo, so most of my relatives live overseas. Does testing different members of the same matrilineal line provide a benefit for the Mito Million Project?
In your case, yes because of the unusual deletion.
I’m so glad you keep up with your presentations and articles.
I’ve always especially enjoyed your
daily reports from RootsTech. Hope you’ll be able to attend in person this year – your reportage is the best!! 🙂
Thank you so much. I sure hope so too.
Hi Roberta, thank you for all the wonderful educational material that you produce. I frequently steer my students to it, to help them understand a topic in detail. One topic I am very confused about, myself, is Epigenetics. I know it is a relatively new field, and somehow related to discoveries in the “Dark Matter” or so-called Junk DNA, which to me as a scientist means, we just don’t know what it does, yet. Anyway, a good article on what Epigenetics is, and the current state of that field, would be most appreciated.
There’s an ISOGG Facebook group that focuses on Epigenetics that is quite interesting. I would try that. https://www.facebook.com/groups/1475336535940825
Roberta, I did visit the ISOGG Epigenetics FB group and was totally unimpressed by the lack of any substantive discussion or news on the stated topic. Perhaps I am just spoiled, reading your articles! This group’s lack of focus is similar to the comments, responses and postings that I have seen in general Genetic Genealogy groups RE the field of Epigenetics. The group also has no files posted, which is usually an indication that a group has a low to non-existent level of activity or content on the topic. Perhaps in 5 years there will be some substantive info to share, until then I’m passing on this group and spending my time on more useful topics. Thanks.
Unfortunately, epigenetics is not my specialty and I’m no expert. We are still learning so much. It has only been understood to be an actual phenomenon for a relatively short time. I am fascinated by this on a personal level, but I don’t think the nucleotide level changes will affect genetic genealogy. Our experiences will, of course, affect us and perhaps our offspring. I guess I’m in a bit of a holding pattern too.