My family is big on genealogy. Years ago, my mom researched the genealogy of the British Royal family. She was able to trace the royal line all the way back to Adam. Sounds impossible? Well, not according to a book published years ago back in England tracing the royals all the way to King Solomon of Israel. From there, you can use the Bible to trace the royal line all the way back to the first man, Adam. Hmm… interesting.
My dad’s interest in genealogy was tracing his own family tree. This was particularly difficult because our family came from the Philippines where there were no written records before the Spaniards. But, despite the lack of any written records, my dad was able to collect a comprehensive list of names to his family tree up to four generations. Most of the data came from relatives by word of mouth.
Three years ago, my brother started recording my mom’s side of the family, the Montinolas. Through the help of my mom and other relatives, my brother came up with an impressive collection of names totaling to about 4000 and up to seven generations. My brother created website called http://www.montinola.org. He did most of the data entry using an antiquated HTML editor. The downside to the design was that it was difficult to search for names in this huge family tree.
My contribution to the family’s genealogy is still in progress. Several months ago I stumbled into PHP, a general purpose scripting language for dynamic webpage development. The PHP language is capable of integrating with a backend database such as MySQL which gives programmers the facility to create web pages on the fly. There are literally hundreds of PHP script programs available on the net for free or for a nominal fee. I came accross a genealogy program by Darrin Lythgoe called the Next Generation of Genealogy. I loved what this program can do, so I now use it on my website. It’s a work in progress since it will takes time to input 4500 names into the database.