About Thomas MacEntee

What happens when a “tech guy” with a love for history gets laid off during The Great Recession of 2008? You get Thomas MacEntee, a genealogy professional who’s also a blogger, educator, author, social media connector, online community builder and more. Thomas was laid off after a 25-year career in the information technology field, so he started his own genealogy-related business called High Definition Genealogy. He also created an online community of over 3,000 family history bloggers known as GeneaBloggers. His most recent endeavor, Hack Genealogy, is an attempt to “re-purpose today’s technology for tomorrow’s genealogy.” Thomas describes himself as a lifelong learner with a background in a multitude of topics who has finally figured out what he does best: teach, inspire, instigate, and serve as a curator and go-to-guy for concept nurturing and inspiration. Thomas is a big believer in success, and that we all succeed when we help each other find success.

Instant Discoveries™ Now Available for ALL MyHeritage Users!

MyHeritage has announced that Instant Discoveries™ are now available for all MyHeritage users.

[Editor’s Note: Imagine in the photo above, is is my inner genealogist doing the Genealogy Happy Dance. Why? Here is some HUGE news from our sponsor, MyHeritage – Instant Discoveries™ is a great way to connect with other users and to make progress on building your family tree at MyHeritage!]

We’re delighted to announce that Instant Discoveries™ are now available for all MyHeritage users. Launched in December 2014, Instant Discoveries™ is a unique experience for discovering family history information and applying it to one’s tree on MyHeritage with ease. Initially we released this experience only for new users – newcomers to family history – to make it easier for them to embark on their family history journey. By signing up at MyHeritage and entering some basic information about immediate family members, new users discovered ancestors, relatives and never-seen-before photos in just a few seconds. Following the successful launch we took Instant Discoveries™ to the streets of New York and demonstrated it to passers-by. It was incredible to see their emotional reactions.

As of this week, we’ve taken this breakthrough technology to the next level, by providing the Instant Discoveries™ experience to all users of MyHeritage, enabling multiple individuals and photos to be added to existing family trees in just a few clicks.

How does it work?

An Instant Discovery™ is a “package” of family history information that you can apply in one click. If an individual in your family tree connects to a branch in another family tree, you’ll be alerted about this and can then choose to add everyone in that branch (up to 40-50 people) to your tree, who is not already there, in one go, rather than manually add people one by one, and amend the data piece by piece.

Every Instant Discovery™ is based on a match, which is found by our Smart Matching™ technology, and we filter out incorrect matches automatically. Instant Discoveries™ complement Smart Matches™ in how the information is applied to the user’s tree. With Smart Matches™, information is added to the tree one fact at a time, one person at a time, manually. With Instant Discoveries™ an entire branch can be copied in a single click, along with all facts, events and photos, and source citations are automatically created in the target tree to document exactly where the data came from. To protect the privacy of other users, Instant Discoveries™ never bring information on living people.

We’ve already processed millions of family trees on MyHeritage for Discoveries out of the 28 million existing trees added by our users, and found that more than 50% of the trees will enjoy one or more Discoveries! The success rate increases as your tree grows (for example, a tree with 100 individuals will enjoy at least one Discovery almost always, and often many more). Even if your tree isn’t growing, the success rate will still increase each day as MyHeritage adds millions of records and profiles every day, collecting more data to compare against your tree.

World map of Discoveries

MyHeritage users around the world have already begun enjoying Discoveries and adding them to their trees. To get a feel for the great things people are discovering, we’ve created a fun interactive map, showing the users making Discoveries on MyHeritage around the world, almost in real-time. Click the image below to view the interactive map.

For more information on Instant Discoveries and other great features at MyHeritage, click here to continue reading . . .

©2015, copyright Thomas MacEntee. All rights reserved.

Save 34% on How to Archive Family Photos

A special discount of 34% percent off the new book How to Archive Family Photos by Denise Levenick - here's how to get the special coupon code!

I am right in the middle of reading and reviewing a pre-release copy of How to Archive Family Photos – A Step-by-Step Guide to Organize and Share Your Photos Digitally by Denise May Levenick. And I can tell you this: it is a keeper! 

Denise has always been my “go to person” for questions on archiving family heirlooms including documents and photos. She is always on top of the best ways to digitize these items and the best equipment to use. Now with How to Archive Family Photos – A Step-by-Step Guide to Organize and Share Your Photos Digitally you can practically have Denise right at your side as you tackle organizing all those family photos.

Pre-Order and Save – A Secret Discount Code!

Right now, Shop Family Tree is offering a pre-order special of 27% off the list price of $25.99 – this means you can get your copy of How to Archive Family Photos for just $18.99.  But I figured out how to save even more!

At checkout, use promo code SFT2015 and you’ll see another $1.90 come off the price – 10% off the sale price which means a total savings of 34%.

Take advantage of this deal by pre-ordering How to Archive Family Photos now before this offering expires!

©2015, copyright Thomas MacEntee. All rights reserved.

Genealogy Bargains for Monday 20 April 2015


43% OFF Fire HD 7, 7" HD Display, Wi-Fi, 8 GB - Includes Special Offers, Black – TODAY ONLY! Regularly $139.00, today just $79.00! Via Amazon

UPDATED GENEALOGY BARGAINS for Monday, April 20, 2015

New Deals



Ongoing Deals

FREE ACCESS – Civil War Collection at Fold3 – get free access to over 43 million records related to the US Civil War now through April 30th via fold3

90% Off – The ABCs of Gravestone Symbols

  • Save 50% on Internet and Website Hosting – Simply Hosting is offering a half-price sale on website hosting – you pay just $2.99 per month. I’ve used Simply Hosting for years and I run Geneabloggers.com, High-Definition Genealogy and Hack Genealogy all on one account!  Customer service is excellent and they have experience working with genealogists.

NEW BOOK! How to Archive Family Photos – A Step-by-Step Guide to Organize and Share Your Photos Digitally

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The latest bargains and freebies related to genealogy and family history from MyHeritage, Family Tree Magazine and more - new listings for Thurs 12 March 2015!

  • SPECIAL DISCOUNT on Evidentia Software – for fans and followers of Genealogy Bargains – use promo code HIDEFGEN at checkout and get 15% off the list price – you pay $25.49 instead of $29.99 – via Evidentia

“Evidentia not only solves the problems facing the genealogy community, but also simplifies the process of analyzing evidence and creating proof arguments while still following the Genealogical Proof Standard (GPS).” There is also a FREE 14-day trial available! If you haven’t checked out this amazing software, you really it owe to yourself and your genealogy research to do so!

10% Off Photo and Slide Scanning – use promo code Thomas2015 and save – via Larsen Digital

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©2015, copyright Thomas MacEntee. All rights reserved.