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  • Originally posted by WCoaster View Post
    Meanwhile, we're offered a dazzling new feature - a list of our matches' top three surnames (gee whiz! Smith, Jones, and Williams!).
    I think it's a cool feature and I hope they come up with more tidbits like that. My top three are: Johnson, Williams, and Davis.

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    • The 3 most common surname feature for the matches list is very strange. Mine are Davis, Webb, and White. My tree has no Davis, Webb, or White in it. LOL

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      • I though the top three were our matches' surnames.

        Mine are Jones, Brown & M.

        I love the "M."

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        • They are our matches' names, I was just trying to say, "What's the point to the surnames" without actually saying it's a dumb feature. If the surnames are simply the current last names of my matches and I have none of those names on my tree, what value is there to me to know that so many, Smiths, or Jones, or Whites, or Davis or what evers are the last name of my matches.


          They could all be from one family, a mother and her 5 kids, all of them sharing same last name, Webb. And all those tests match me. They could run up the total of Webbs on my list of surnames but if it's the mother who is the key to the matching, her maiden name is probably something totally different.

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          • A side-note...

            Originally posted by keigh View Post
            [----] if it's the mother who is the key to the matching, her maiden name is probably something totally different.
            She, and not only she, should be listed by her family name at birth. That applies to both sexes.

            Otherwise with marriages and divorces the name would keep changing. And since males do take wife's family name, the argument holds for them too.

            In their profile, she or he not only can but is more than welcomed to list her or his last names, but in the world of genealogy they should present themselves with the surname at birth.

            W. (Mr.)

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            • It's a dumb feature

              Originally posted by keigh View Post
              They are our matches' names, I was just trying to say, "What's the point to the surnames" without actually saying it's a dumb feature.
              Why not just say it? The top 3 surnames of my matches is completely USELESS information that takes up valuable screen space. All it tells me are which very common surnames the largest number of my matches happen to share by chance. (Actually, only my top 2 are showing at the moment — Miller and Brown.) Anyone who thinks this is a good feature clearly doesn't understand how it works (sadly, that apparently includes the developers at FTDNA).

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              • Navigating Family Trees

                Originally posted by grahcom View Post
                I don't find getting around the family tree's on FTDNA any more difficult that on Ancestry or My Heritage.
                I guess it depends on what you are trying to use the trees for. For following up on matches for genealogical purposes, searching or just clicking around are useless. What we need to be able to do is start with the most recent generation and systematically follow back in time each line of descent that looks relevant (based on surname or location). This is virtually IMPOSSIBLE to do with the current tree format, especially with large trees. In contrast, Ancestry's pedigree view makes it very easy to do. If the FTDNA developers could watch me attempting to use the Family Tree feature on a tree in Ancestry view with 15 generations and hundreds of people, they would weep and swear off programming forever.

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                • Originally posted by susan_dakin View Post
                  Why not just say it? The top 3 surnames of my matches is completely USELESS information that takes up valuable screen space. All it tells me are which very common surnames the largest number of my matches happen to share by chance. (Actually, only my top 2 are showing at the moment — Miller and Brown.) Anyone who thinks this is a good feature clearly doesn't understand how it works (sadly, that apparently includes the developers at FTDNA).
                  The top 3 surnames could have been useful, if by clicking on them matches would be selected with only that family name

                  W. (Mr.)

                  P.S.
                  I tried to click on the surnames being dead sure that it was their intended purpose

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                  • I too was one who thought the three most common surnames was useless. At least I was until I recieved my Y-111 results and discovered my surname wasn't what I thought it was. With literally dozens of matches to a certain surname at the various levels of testing, imagine my surprise when I noticed that same name was one of the three most common. Guess you could say I am now a believer in what FTDNA was doing with this.

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                    • Common surname useless in the part of the world that use patronymics

                      People you need to understand that a surname is not the same in all parts of the world and my feeling is that people at FTDNA hasn't done their homework regarding writing Requirements and User cases bvefore trying to build the tools....

                      I.e. we have something called Patronymicon that makes a surname function useless as the surname change with every child. The surname tells that this child was a daughter or son to a father with the first name as xxxx ==> the son will be called xxxson and a daughter xxxdaughter....

                      http://www.genealogi.se/swedish-patr...-swedish-names

                      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patronymic

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