FamilyTreeDNA Relaunch – New Feature Overview

The brand-new FamilyTreeDNA web site is reside!

I’m very happy with the funding that FamilyTreeDNA has made of their family tree platform and instruments. This isn’t only a redesign, it’s extra of a relaunch.

I spoke with Dr. Lior Rauchberger, CEO of myDNA, the guardian firm of FamilyTreeDNA briefly yesterday. He’s excited too and stated:

“The brand new options and enhancements we’re releasing in July are the primary spherical of updates in our thrilling product roadmap. FamilyTreeDNA will proceed to speculate closely within the development of genetic family tree.”

In different phrases, that is just the start.

In case you had been questioning, all these options everybody requested for – Lior listened.

Lior stated earlier in 2021 that he was going to do precisely this and he’s confirmed true to his phrase, with this launch coming simply half a yr after he took the helm. Clearly, he hit the bottom operating.

Just a few months in the past, Lior stated that his preliminary FamilyTreeDNA focus was going to be on infrastructure, stability, and specializing in the client expertise. In different phrases, making a basis to construct on.

The brand new options, enhancements, and adjustments are large and positively welcome.

I’ll be overlaying the brand new options in a sequence of articles, however on this introductory article, I’m offering an outline so you need to use it as a information to grasp and navigate this new launch.

Change is Difficult

I have to say one thing right here.

Change is tough. In actual fact, change is the most difficult challenge for people. We would like enhancements, but we hate it when the furnishings is rearranged in our “room.” Nevertheless, we will’t have one with out the opposite.

So, take a deep breath, and let’s view this as an important new journey. These adjustments and instruments will present us with a brand new basis and new clues. Consider this as discovering long-lost paperwork in an archive about your ancestors. If somebody informed me that there’s a potential for locating the surname of one among my elusive feminine ancestors in an undiscovered chest in a distant library, belief me, I’d be throughout it – no matter the place it was or how a lot effort I needed to expend to get there. On this case, I can sit proper right here in entrance of my pc and dig for treasure.

We simply have to study to navigate the brand new panorama in a digital room. What a present!

Let’s begin with the very first thing you’ll see – the primary web page once you sign up.

Redesigned Primary Web page

The FamilyTreeDNA foremost web page has modified. To start with, the textual content is darker and the font is bigger throughout your complete platform. OMG, thanks!!!

The primary web page has been flipped left to proper, with outcomes on the left now. Tasks, surveys, and different info, together with haplogroup badges are on the precise. Have you ever answered any surveys? I don’t suppose I even seen them earlier than. (My dangerous!)

Click on any picture to enlarge.

The highest tabs have modified too. The phrases myTree and myProjects are actually gone, and descriptive tabs have changed these. The one “my” factor remaining is myOrigins. This transformation surprises me with myDNA being the proprietor.

The Outcomes & Instruments tab on the prime exhibits the product dropdowns.

The preferred tabs are proven individually below every product, with further options being grouped below “See Extra.”

Each product now has a “See Extra” hyperlink the place much less often used widgets might be discovered, together with the uncooked information downloads. That is the Y DNA “See Extra” dropdown by means of instance.

You possibly can see the inexperienced Up to date badge on the Household Finder Matches tab. I don’t know if that badge will at all times seem when prospects have new matches, or if it’s signaling that each one prospects have up to date Household Finder Matches now.

We’ll discuss matches within the Household Finder part.

The Household Finder “See Extra” tab consists of the Matrix, ancientOrigins, and the uncooked information file obtain.

The mitochondrial DNA part, titled Maternal Line Ancestry, mtDNA Outcomes and Instruments consists of a number of widgets grouped below the “See Extra” tab.

Further Checks and Instruments

The Further Checks and Instruments space features a hyperlink to your Household Tree (please do add or create one,) Public Haplotrees, and Superior Matches.

Public haplotrees are free-to-the-public Y and mitochondrial DNA bushes that embody areas. They’re additionally simply out there to FamilyTreeDNA prospects right here.

Please notice that you simply entry each forms of bushes from one location after clicking the Public Haplotrees web page. The tree defaults to Y-DNA, however simply click on on mtDNA to view mitochondrial haplogroups and areas. Each bushes are nice assets as a result of they present the placement flags of the earliest identified ancestors of the testers inside every haplogroup.

Superior Matches was out there from the menu inside every check kind, however since superior matching consists of all three forms of checks, it’s now positioned below the Further Checks and Instruments banner. Don’t overlook about Superior Matches – it’s actually fairly helpful to find out if somebody matches you on a number of forms of checks and/or inside particular initiatives.

Hey, look – I discovered a tooltip. Simply mouse over the textual content and tabs on varied pages to see the place tooltips have been added.

Assist and Assist Heart

The brand new Assist Heart is debuting on this launch. The previous Studying Heart is transitioning to the Assist Heart with new, up to date content material.

Right here’s an instance of the brand new easy-to-navigate format. There’s a search perform too.

Every particular person web page, check kind, and part in your private residence web page has a “Useful Data” button.

On the primary web page, on the prime proper, you’ll see a brand new Assist button.

Did you see that Submit Suggestions hyperlink?

When you click on on the Assist Heart, you’ll be greeted with context-sensitive assist.

I clicked by from the dashboard, in order that’s what I’m seeing. Nevertheless, different out there matters are proven at left.

I clicked on each of the hyperlinks proven and the content material has been up to date with the brand new structure and options. No marvel they launched a brand new Assist Heart!

Account Settings

Account settings are nonetheless present in the identical place, and people pages don’t seem to have modified. Nevertheless, please needless to say some settings make take as much as 24 hours to take impact.

Household Finder Rematching

Earlier than we have a look at what has modified in your Household Finder pages, let’s discuss what occurred behind the scenes.

FamilyTreeDNA has been providing the Household Finder check for 11 years, one among two very early firms to enter that marketspace. We’ve realized a lot since then, not solely about DNA itself, however about genetic family tree, matching, triangulation, inhabitants genetics, the best way to use these instruments, and extra.

With the intention to make enhancements, FamilyTreeDNA altering the match standards which necessitated rematching everybody to everybody else.

You probably have a know-how background of any kind, you’ll instantly understand that it is a large, costly enterprise requiring huge computational assets. Not solely that, however the rematching must be executed in tandem with new kits coming in, coordinated for all prospects, and rolled out without delay. Primarily based on new matches and options, the consumer interface wanted to be modified too, on the identical time.

Seems like an enormous headache, proper?

Why would an organization ever determine to undertake that, particularly when there isn’t any income for doing so? The reply is to make performance and accuracy higher for his or her prospects. Consider this as a brand new bedrock basis for the long run.

FamilyTreeDNA has made computational adjustments and carried out a number of options that require rematching:

  • Improved matching accuracy, specifically for folks in extremely endogamous populations. Individuals on this class have 1000’s of matches that happen just because they share a number of distant ancestors from throughout the identical inhabitants. That mixture of a number of frequent ancestors makes their present match relationships look like nearer in time than they’re. With the intention to change matching algorithms, FamilyTreeDNA needed to rewrite their matching software program after which run matching throughout to allow everybody to obtain new, up to date match outcomes.
  • FamilyTreeDNA has eliminated segments beneath 6 cM following sustained suggestions from the genealogical neighborhood.
  • X matching has modified as properly and not consists of anybody as an X match beneath 6 cM.
  • Household Matching, which means paternal, maternal and each “bucketing” makes use of triangulation behind the scenes. That code additionally needed to be up to date.
  • Older switch kits used to obtain solely nearer matches as a result of imputation was not in place when the unique switch/add came about. All older kits have been imputed now and matched with your complete database, which is a part of why you will have extra matches.
  • Relationship vary calculations have modified, based mostly on the elimination of microsegments, new matching methodology and rematching outcomes.
  • FamilyTreeDNA moved to hg37, referred to as Construct 37 of the human genome. In layman’s phrases, as scientists find out about our DNA, the human map of DNA adjustments and shifts barely. The boundary traces change considerably. Variations are standardized so all researchers can use the identical base map or yardstick. In some circumstances, early genetic family tree implementers are penalized as a result of they’ll ultimately need to rematch their complete database after they improve to a brand new construct model, whereas distributors who got here to the celebration later received’t need to bear that inner expense.

As you may see, virtually each side of matching has modified, so everybody was rematched in opposition to your complete database. You’ll see new outcomes. Some matches could also be gone, particularly distant matches or if you happen to’re a member of an endogamous inhabitants.

You’ll doubtless have new matches because of older switch kits being imputed to full compatibility. Your matches ought to be extra correct too, which makes everybody blissful.

I perceive a white paper is being written that can present extra details about the brand new matching algorithms.

Okay, now let’s take a look at the brand new Household Finder Matches web page.

Household Finder Matches

FamilyTreeDNA didn’t simply rearrange the furnishings – there’s a LOT of recent content material.

First, a notice. You’ll see “Household Finder” in some locations, and “Autosomal DNA” somewhere else. That’s one and the identical at FamilyTreeDNA. The Household Finder check is their autosomal check, named individually as a result of additionally they have Y DNA and mitochondrial DNA checks.

Once you click on on Household Finder matches for the primary time, you’ll assuredly discover one factor and can in all probability discover a second.

First, you’ll see a bit tour that explains the best way to use the varied new instruments.

Secondly, you’ll in all probability see the “Producing Matches” discover for just a few seconds to a couple minutes whereas your match listing is generated, particularly if the positioning is busy as a result of plenty of persons are signing on. I noticed this message for perhaps a minute or two earlier than my match listing stuffed.

This ought to be a slight delay, however with so many individuals signing in proper now, my second package took longer. When you obtain a message that claims you haven’t any matches, simply refresh your web page. When you had matches earlier than, you DO have matches now.

Whereas working with the brand new interface this morning, I’ve discovered that refreshing the display is the important thing to fixing points.

My kits which have just a few thousand matches loaded Household Matching (bucketing) instantly, however this (Jewish) package that has round 30,000 matches acquired this informational message as an alternative. FamilyTreeDNA has eliminated the little spinning icon. When you mouse over the data, you’ll see the next message:

This isn’t a time estimate. Everybody receives the identical message. The message didn’t even final lengthy sufficient for me to get a screenshot on the primary package that acquired this message. The outcomes accomplished inside a minute or so. The Household Matching buckets will load as quickly because the parental matching is prepared.

These delays ought to solely occur the primary time, or if somebody has quite a lot of matches that they haven’t but seen. When you’ve signed in, your matches are cached, a method that improves efficiency, so the loading ought to be speedy, or no less than speedier, through the second and subsequent visits.

In fact, proper now, all prospects have an up to date match listing, so there’s one thing new for everybody.

Getting Assist

Need to see that tutorial once more?

Click on on that little Assist field within the higher right-hand nook. You possibly can view the Tutorial, have a look at Fast References that designate what’s on this web page, go to the Assist Heart or Submit Suggestions.

Two Household Finder Matches Views – Element and Desk

The very first thing you’ll discover is that there are two views – Element View and Desk View. The default is Element View.

Take a minute to get used to the brand new web page.

Element View – Filter Matches by Match Sort

I used to be happy to see new filter buttons, positioned in a number of locations on the web page.

The Matches filter at left lets you show solely particular relationship ranges, together with X-Matches which will be essential in narrowing matches to a selected subset of ancestors.

You possibly can show solely matches that fall inside sure relationship ranges. Notice the brand new “Distant Relative” that was beforehand referred to as speculative.

Parental Matching and Filtering by Check Sort or Timber

All your matches are displayed by default, after all, however you may click on on Paternal, Maternal or Each, like earlier than to view solely matches in these buckets. To ensure that the Household Matching bucketing function to be enabled, you will need to connect identified relations’ DNA matches to their correct place in your tree.

Please notice that I wanted to refresh the web page a few instances to get my parental matches to load the primary time. I refreshed a few instances to make certain that all of my bucketed matches loaded. This ought to be a first-time loading blip.

There’s a brand new filter button to the precise of the bucketing tabs.

Now you can filter by who has bushes and who has taken which sorts of checks.

You possibly can apply a number of filters on the identical time to additional slim your matches.

Necessary – Clearing Filters

It’s simple to overlook you could have a filter enabled. This part is essential, partly as a result of Clear Filter is troublesome to seek out.

The clear filter button does NOT seem till you’ve chosen a filter. Nevertheless, after making use of that filter, to clear it and RESET THE MATCHES to unfiltered, you must click on on the “Clear Filter” button which is positioned on the prime of the filter choices, after which click on “Apply” on the backside of the menu. I appeared for “clear filter” endlessly earlier than discovering it right here.

You’re welcome😊

Enhanced Search

Thank goodness, the search performance has been enhanced and simplified too. Full title search works, each right here and on the Y DNA search web page.

When you kind in a surname with out choosing any search filters, you’ll obtain an inventory of anybody with that phrase of their title, or of their listing of ancestral surnames. This does NOT embody surnames of their tree in the event that they haven’t added these surnames to their listing of ancestral surnames.

Discover that your variety of complete matches and bucketed folks will change based mostly on the outcomes of this search and any filters you could have utilized.

I entered Estes within the search field, with no filters. You possibly can see that I’ve a complete of 46 matches that comprise Estes in a technique or one other, and the way they’re bucketed.

Estes is my beginning surname. I seen that three folks with Estes of their info are bucketed maternally. That is the right instance of why you may’t assume a genetic relationship based mostly on solely a surname. These three folks’s DNA matches me on my mom’s aspect. And sure, I confirmed that they matched my mom too on that very same section or segments.

Search Filters

You too can filter by haplogroup. That is very particular. If you choose mitochondrial haplogroup J, you’ll solely obtain Household Finder matches which have haplogroup J, NOT J1 or J1c or J plus something.

When you’re on the lookout for your personal haplogroup, you’ll have to kind your full haplogroup within the search field and choose mtDNA Haplogroup within the search filter dropdown.

Resetting Search Outcomes

To dismiss search outcomes, click on on the little X. It’s simple to overlook that you’ve initiated a search, so I want to recollect to dismiss searches after I’m completed with every one.

Export Matches

The “Export CSV” button both downloads your complete match listing, or the listing of filtered matches at the moment chosen. This isn’t your section info, however an inventory of matches and associated info reminiscent of which aspect they’re bucketed on, if any, notes you’ve made, and extra.

Your section info is accessible for obtain on the chromosome browser.

Kind By

The Kind By button facilitates sorting your matches versus filtering your matches. Filters ONLY show the objects requested, whereas types show all the objects requested, sorting them in a selected method.

You possibly can type in any variety of methods. The default is Relationship Vary adopted by Shared DNA.

Your Matches – Element View

Loads has modified, however after you get used to the brand new interface, it makes extra sense and there are much more choices out there which suggests elevated flexibility. Bear in mind, you may click on to enlarge any of those pictures.

To start with, you may see the haplogroups of your matches if they’ve taken a Y or mitochondrial DNA check. When you match somebody, you’ll see a bit test within the haplogroup field. I’m not clear whether or not this implies you’re a haplogroup match or that particular person is in your match listing.

To pick folks to match within the chromosome browser, you merely test the little sq. field to the left of their photograph and the chromosome browser field pops up on the backside of the web page. We’ll overview the chromosome browser in a minute.

The brand new Relationship Vary prediction is displayed, based mostly on new calculations with segments beneath 6 cM eliminated. The linked relationship is displayed beneath the vary.

A linked relationship happens once you hyperlink that particular person to their correct place in your tree. You probably have no linked relationship, you’ll see a hyperlink to “assign relationship” which takes you to your tree to hyperlink this particular person if you understand how you might be associated.

The segments beneath 6 cM are gone from the Shared DNA complete and X matches are solely proven if they’re 6 cM or above.

In Frequent With and Not In Frequent With

In Frequent With and Not In Frequent With is the little two-person icon on the proper.

Simply click on on the little particular person icon, then choose “In Frequent With” to view your shared matches between you, that match, and different folks. The particular person you might be viewing matches in frequent with is highlighted on the prime of the web page, together with your frequent matches beneath.

You possibly can stack filters now. On this instance, I chosen my cousin, Don, to see our frequent matches. I added the search filter of the surname Ferverda, my mom’s maiden title. She is deceased and I handle her package. You possibly can see that my cousin Don and I’ve 5 complete frequent matches – 4 maternal and one each, which means one particular person matches me on each my maternal and paternal traces.

It’s nice information that now Cousin Don pops up within the chromosome browser field on the backside, enabling simple confusion-free chromosome section comparisons instantly from the In Frequent With match web page. I really like this!!!.

All I’ve to do now could be click on on different folks after which on Evaluate Relationship which pushes these matches by to the chromosome browser. That is SOOOO handy.

You’ll see a brand new tree icon at proper on every match. A darkish tree means there’s content material and a lightweight tree means this particular person doesn’t have a tree. Bear in mind, you may filter by bushes with content material utilizing the filter button beside “Each”.

Your notes are proven at far proper. Any particular person with a notice is darkish gray and no notice is white.

When you’re on the lookout for the e-mail contact info, click on in your match’s title to view their placard which additionally consists of extra detailed ancestral surname info.

Household Finder – Desk View

The desk view is similar to the Element View. The structure is a bit totally different with extra matches seen in the identical area.

This view has plenty of tooltips on the column heading bar! Tooltips are nice for everybody, however particularly for folks simply starting to seek out their means within the genetic family tree world.

I’ll need to experiment a bit to determine which view I desire. I’d like to have the ability to set my very own default for whichever view I would like as my default. In actual fact, I believe I’ll submit that within the “Submit Suggestions” hyperlink. For each suggestion, I’m going to seek out one thing actually constructive to say. This was an immense overhaul.

Chromosome Browser

Let’s have a look at the chromosome Browser.

You possibly can arrive on the Chromosome Browser by choosing folks in your match web page, or by choosing the Chromosome Browser below the Outcomes and Instruments hyperlink.

All the things is just about the identical on the chromosome browser, besides the default view is now 6 cM and the smaller segments are gone. You too can select to view solely segments above 10 cM.

You probably have folks chosen within the chromosome browser and click on on Obtain Segments within the higher right-hand nook, it downloads the segments of solely the folks at the moment chosen.

You possibly can “Clear All” after which click on on Obtain All Segments which downloads your complete section file. To obtain all segments, you must don’t have any folks chosen for comparability.

The contents of this file are vastly diminished because it now incorporates solely the segments 6 cM and above.

Household Tree

No, the household tree has not modified, and sure, it must, desperately. Belief me, the administration workforce is conscious and I think one of many enhancements, hopefully before later, might be an improved tree expertise.


The Y DNA web page has acquired an replace too, including each a Element View and a Desk View with the identical primary performance because the Household Finder matching above. If you’re studying this text for Y DNA solely, please learn the Household Finder part to grasp the brand new structure and options.

Like beforehand, the match comparability begins on the 111 marker stage.

Nevertheless, there’s a BIG distinction. If there are not any matches at this stage, YOU NEED TO CLICK THE NEXT TAB. You possibly can simply see that this particular person has matches on the 67 stage and beneath, however the system not “counts down” by the varied ranges till it both finds a stage with a match or reaches 12 markers.

When you’re used to the previous interface, it’s simple to suppose you’re on the remaining vacation spot of 12 markers with no matches once you’re nonetheless at 111.

Y DNA Element View

The Y-DNA Element and Desk views options are the identical as Household Finder and are described in that part.

The brand new format is kind of totally different. One enchancment is that the Paternal Nation of Origin is now displayed, together with a flag. How cool is that!

The Paternal Earliest Identified Ancestor and Match Date are at far proper. Notice that match dates have been reset to the rerun date. At this level, FamilyTreeDNA is evaluating the opportunity of restoring the unique match date. Regardless, you’ll be capable of filter for match dates when new matches arrive.

Please test to make certain you could have your Nation of Origin, Earliest Identified Ancestor, and mapped location accomplished and updated.

Earliest Identified Ancestor

When you haven’t accomplished your Earliest Identified Ancestor (EKA) info, now’s the right time. It’s simple, so let’s do it earlier than you overlook.

Click on on the Account Settings gear beneath your title within the right-hand higher nook. Click on on Family tree, then on Earliest Identified Ancestors and full the data within the pink containers.

  • Direct paternal line means your father’s father’s father’s line – as far up by all fathers as you may attain. That is your Y DNA lineage, however females ought to full this info on common ideas.
  • Direct maternal line means your mom’s mom’s mom’s line – as far up by all moms you could attain. That is your mitochondrial DNA lineage, so related for each women and men.

Finishing all the info, together with the placement, will provide help to and your matches as properly when utilizing the Matches Map.

Make sure to click on Save once you’re completed.

Y DNA Filters

Y DNA has extra filter choices than autosomal.

The Y DNA filter, positioned to the precise of the 12 Markers tab permits testers to filter by:

  • Genetic distance, which means what number of mutations distinction between you and your matches
  • Teams which means group initiatives that the tester has joined
  • Tree standing
  • Match date
  • Stage of check taken

If none of your matches have taken the 111 marker check otherwise you don’t match anybody at that stage, that check received’t present up in your listing.

Y DNA Desk View

As with Household Finder, the Desk View is extra condensed and extra options can be found on the precise aspect of every match. For particulars, please overview the Household Finder part.

When you’re on the lookout for the previous Y DNA TiP report, it’s now on the far proper of every match.

The precise calculator hasn’t modified but. I do know folks had been hoping for the brand new Y DNA ageing on this launch, however that’s but to comply with.

Different Pages

Different pages just like the Huge Y and Mitochondrial DNA didn’t obtain new options or performance on this launch, however do sport new user-friendly tooltips.

I misplaced observe, however I counted over 100 tooltips added throughout the platform, and that is just the start.

There are in all probability extra new options and performance that I haven’t stumbled throughout simply but.

And sure, we’re going to discover just a few bugs. That’s inevitable with one thing this huge. Please report something you discover to FamilyTreeDNA.

Oh wait – I virtually forgot…

New Movies

I perceive that there are within the ballpark of fifty new movies which can be being added to the brand new Assist Heart, both at the moment or very shortly.

After I discover out extra, I’ll write an article about what movies can be found and the place to seek out them. Individuals study in varied methods. Movies are sometimes requested and might be a preferred addition. I thought of making movies, however that’s virtually inconceivable for anybody moreover the seller as a result of the names on screens both should be “faux” or the display must be blurred.

So hurray – very glad to listen to these are imminent!

Keep Tuned

Keep tuned for brand spanking new developments. As Lior stated, FamilyTreeDNA is investing closely in genetic family tree and there’s extra to return.

My Mother used to say that the “proof is within the pudding.” I’d say the myDNA/FamilyTreeDNA management workforce has handed this preliminary check with flying colours.

In fact, there’s extra to do, however I’m positively grateful for this pretty pudding. Thanks – thanks!

I can’t wait to get began and see what new gems await.

Take a Look!

Sign in and have a look for your self.

Do you could have extra matches?

Are your matches extra correct?

How about predicted relationships?

How has this new launch affected you?

What do you want one of the best?



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Thanks a lot.

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