Release Notes

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Suggestions > Geni Roadmap > Release Notes > Known Issues



May 08, 2008

GEDCOM import Only for building new trees and with a size limit.

April 16th, 2008

Family Timeline

Calendar Events

Discussion Topics

Family Group In-Laws

Post a Link

Send a Gift...

'Identify People' in Photos

Invite Enhancements

Custom Invites Invite Page

Merging Nodes


Custom Invites Timezones Additional Language Fields


Additional Enhancements

  • Type Ahead Search Box
  • Additional Language Fields

March 4, 2008

Family Newsletter

New Family Newsletter released. This newsletter will, once a week, send each user a summary of their Family News stories.

The appearance of the Photo Activity, New To Tree, and Birthday Reminder notifications is also enhanced to match the new Family Newsletter.

January 3, 2008

Family News

Family News is your new way to keep up with your family and all of their activity on Geni. Family News displays all the recent activity in your Family group – new birthdays, photos, events, comments, discussions, changes to your tree, and more. You can also share your Latest News with your family by quickly posting an update. Your settings control which of your Recent Activity appears in Family News.

Timeline and Events

The Timeline, located within the profile, is a new feature that shows a visual history of the events in a person’s life. Each event lives on its own page containing additional information, photos, attendees, and comments about that event. It is easy to create new events and add them to your Timeline as well as the Timelines of family and friends who were there. As a result, you, your family, and your friends can collaborate to build a digital scrapbook of your life and the lives of anyone in your family.

Share Your Tree

In addition to printing your tree and inviting your relatives to join your tree, there are now three new ways you can share your tree:

GEDCOM Export: You can export your tree as a GEDCOM file. GEDCOM is a standard file format used to save, transfer, and transport genealogical information. Exporting a GEDCOM file will allow you to save your Geni family tree to your own computer.

Email your tree: You can now email a link to view a limited read-only version of your tree. This is a limited view of your tree to protect the privacy of others in your tree.

Embed your tree: Similar to emailing your tree, you can now embed a limited read-only view of your tree on your blog, social networking profile (e.g. Facebook, MySpace), or your own website. There are a number of ways you can customize your shared tree, although restrictions apply to protect the privacy of others in your tree.

Additional Enhancements

Profile Enhancements

  • Recent Activity – The new Recent Activity profile module displays the most recent activity by that person. For unclaimed profiles the Revision History module will display the most recent updates for that person. Use the view all link for a full list of activity.
  • Family Module – The Family module on the profile now displays the person’s Immediate Family, Ancestors, and Descendants in addition to their Family group.
  • Additional Fields – Baptism (Date and Place), Unknown option for Birth Order, Circa option for additional dates (Marriage, Divorce, etc.).
  • About Me – The About Me box is now expandable for easier entry of more text.

Tree Enhancements

  • Profile Linking – You now have the option to indicate that two existing nodes on your tree are the same person. When two nodes are linked one profile is the primary profile and the other is the linked profile. We move as much information as possible from the linked profile to the primary profile. After verifying this information, you can undo the merge or complete the merge.
  • Remove Relationships – The new Edit Card Relationships tab gives you the ability to remove relationships for nodes that are part of cycles in your tree. This means that if a relationship is incorrectly created between two nodes you can correct this by removing the relationship.
  • Full Screen Mode – Use the new full screen icon to fill the screen with your tree. This is great for users with smaller monitors.

November 10, 2007

Directory of Family Names on Geni

We recently announced that our users have created 10 Million profiles on Geni. With our growing index of names we continue to work hard at providing you the tools you need to find and connect with your family.

Many of you already use our public search feature to find family members in other trees and genealogists researching a shared surname. To increase the value of this feature, we will be indexing these same public search results in Google and other search engines. We have also created a Directory of Family Names on Geni that links to these search results. This index is available to non-Geni users when they visit the Geni homepage. As a Geni user, you already see these search results in the ‘Search Outside Your Tree’ tab of your search results. Note that these public search results may take some time to index.

You can continue to control what information appears in your own search result (and the search results for people you add) in your account settings.

Define Your Family Group

Your Family is the subset of your tree that you want to stay in touch with. This is the group you will share photo albums, birthdays, and news with. By default, your Family consists of all your blood relatives and their current partners (plus your spouse’s if you are married). You can now narrow your Family group by selecting the ‘circle of relations’ you wish to include. You can also add or remove individuals on their profile.

The Immediate Family profile module has been replaced by the new Family profile module which displays your twelve closest Family members (by relation). You can control who can see your Family group using your profile privacy settings.

Control Your Profile Privacy

By default, only the people in your Tree and your Friends can see your profile. Our new profile privacy controls let you get even more private. You can now choose whether to show (or hide) each part of your profile to your Family, Friends, and Tree. For example, you can show your photo albums to your Family while hiding them from your Friends and Tree. You can also choose who can perform actions on your profile (such as leave a guestbook comment).

You can also use these settings to show more information about yourself on a public profile. In the future we will create new ways to share your public profile, such as profile badges to share on your blog or on other social networking sites.

Manage Profiles You’ve Added

You can now manage the profiles of people that you have added to your tree. Our new settings let you determine who can edit or search for these profiles. Once a person joins Geni, they control their own privacy settings.

Photo Organizer

Organizing your family photos is easier than ever with our new photo organizer. Featuring drag and drop simplicity, the photo organizer lets you easily:

  • Create a new photo album (without uploading photos!)
  • Move multiple photos between albums
  • Tag people in multiple photos at once
  • Add additional album details including date and location

And don’t forget you can upload full resolution photos using the Simple Photo Uploader. This is a great way to upload documents and records – just upload the full resolution, include the document name as the caption, and tag it with the name of the person referenced in the document.

Create a Cycle

A cycle occurs when the same person appears more than once in your tree (for example, when two sisters marry two brothers). Cycles can now be created for nodes that are deceased and do not have email addresses. Use the ‘create a cycle’ link (found in the “more” link of the standard view or on the flipped node) to add the node to the Tree tray. Then drag the node onto the second person to whom he or she is related and select the appropriate relationship.

Center Single Parents

With the new ‘Center single parents’ tree preference, you can choose how to display single parents on your tree. This applies to a node on your tree with only one known parent. The default is to display the known parent and a node for the unknown parent that prompts you to add that person (‘Add This Person’). Selecting the new ‘Center single parents’ option will ‘hide’ that node under the known node.

Flip Node enhancements

We have made some enhancement to the “flip” nodes tree preference:

  • Click to “flip” nodes option – With this selected, the nodes only flip when you click on them.
  • Relationship description – The flipped node now includes your relationship to that person.
  • Delay – There is now a delay before a node is flipped, to reduce unwanted flips as you navigate your tree.

September 19, 2007

With our new 'Build your tree from your address book' feature, you can quickly build your family tree and invite your relatives to join Geni in three easy steps:

1. Import your address book and we will help you find the family members you want to add to your tree.

2. Once you have selected your family members, you or anyone in your tree can then drag these nodes to add them to your family tree.

3. These family members will then be invited to join you in building your family tree.

Try it now - click on the 'Add People' tab of your tree tray and watch your tree grow!

Watch the Video FAQ

Now you can send a message to groups of your family and friends on Geni. You can add your own custom groups to these predefined groups we have created for you:

  • My Immediate Family – Your current spouse or partner and your parents, siblings, and children
  • My Family – Your third cousins and closer and their current partners and your current partner's second cousins and closer and their current partners
  • My Friends – All of your Family Friends
  • Immediate Family of… - The person you select and their parents, siblings, and children
  • Descendants of… - The person you select and their direct descendants

Messaging users outside your tree

We’ve added the ability to send messages to users outside of your tree. This feature is a great way to collaborate with other Geni users who share your research interests and to connect with potential family members. Look for ‘Send Message’ links on search results outside your tree.

If you would like users outside of your tree to have the ability to send you a message, make sure you have checked the ‘"Send Message to Me" button’ checkboxes in the Search Privacy section on your settings page.

Photo Enhancements

  • The Simple Photo Uploader now uploads full resolution photos, complete with JPEG EXIF data intact
  • Click on a photo to view it in full resolution
  • You can still use the Advanced Photo Uploader to quickly upload multiple photos

Profile Updates

  • Family Friends is now a tab behind your Immediate Family
  • Your email address and weblinks have been moved to the left column 'Contact' section

Date of Burial - There is now a Date of Burial field on the edit card and profile of the deceased.

Increased password security - When you forget your password, we will send you an email with a link to reset your password.

Lastly, the relationship pathway will now display direct relationships to you out to 5th cousin thrice removed.


Now when you click the GEDCOM export link, an email will be sent to your primary email address with your GEDCOM file contained in a .zip file. This will prevent a time-out from error occurring when attempting to download your GEDCOM file directly from the site.

September 7, 2007

We are always looking for ways to help our users communicate with us and with each other. As part of this effort we have joined together with Netvibes to create a Geni Universe.

Netvibes is free service which allows you to create a 'personal start page' on the internet. By adding the Geni Universe to your Netvibes page, you can track our Forum, Wiki, Blog, Press,, and YouTube community pages all from one page.

Visit the Geni Universe.

Read more about Netvibes.

Discuss this story

August 23, 2007

People Tagger:

The People Tagger used for tagging photos and for addressing messages has been enhanced:

  • The auto-suggest list now contains the 50 family members closest to you sorted by their relationship to you. The relationship is listed next to their name so you can easily identify each person, even with duplicate names.
  • To select a person from the list, click anywhere on their name (no more small checkbox).
  • Choosing names from the default list when on the album edit page is dramatically faster.

Advanced Photo Uploader

  • The photo upload limit on the Advanced Photo Uploader has been increased to 40 photos per upload.

August 3, 2007

Tree Preferences:

We've added a new Preferences tab to the family tree. In it, you'll find several new options for customizing the display of your tree, including the ability to display maiden names -- a popular user request. The new preferences are divided into three sections:


  • Four tree layouts - Standard, Vertical, Photos Only, and Names Only
  • Choose the number of generations to display, including an option for direct ancestors only (pedigree view)
  • 'Flip' nodes over for more detail, right on your tree
  • Display deceased relatives with a small black band
  • Hide/show yellow arrows, photos, and more


  • Four options for how to display maiden names in your tree
  • Show/hide display names, middle names, and suffixes


  • Set minimum and maximum font sizes (designed for better display of very long names)
  • Choose from three display quality settings (for better performance on some computers)
  • Choose to have the tray pop up only when clicked, rather than when moused over

In addition, we have temporarily removed the ability to message people in other trees. We'll be bringing this feature back soon, with additional security enhancements.

Discuss this story

July 19, 2007

Speed Improvements:

We have made a number of changes focused on increasing the speed and performance of your Geni experience. Many of our users, especially those with large trees, should notice improved performance right away. Here are some of the changes we’ve made to make Geni faster.

Tree View Display Change - When you view your tree you will now see ten generations of ancestors displayed—if you’d like to see more click the “View All” link.

One reason for this change is that larger trees take longer to load—prior to this change we had to first calculate the number displayed on each ‘little green tree’. With this change we load your tree first, and then fill in those numbers—this change significantly speeds up the Tree display.

Profile View Change - Profiles of some distant relatives took time to load because of the ‘Relationship Pathway’. Now the profile loads first and then we load the relationship pathway. This means you do not need to wait for the longer relationship pathway to load before viewing or acting on the profile.

You may notice a few other minor changes we have made to accommodate these changes. For example, the ‘Blood Relatives’ count has been replaced by ‘Ancestors’ and ‘Descendants’ in ‘User Statistics’. Also the list view no longer has a ‘Blood Relatives’ option, but we have added an ‘Include Deceased’ checkbox.

Search Privacy Improvements:

Now you have control over the search privacy for every node you add or have added to your Geni tree. You can set the privacy for all nodes you have added in your Search Privacy settings. There are settings for your profile, for deceased profiles you have added, and for living profiles you have added. For additional control, you can enable or disable search privacy for each individual profile you have added. On the ‘Edit Profile’ page of any person you have added you will see a new ‘Searchable by the public’ checkbox you can use to change their public search setting.

Photo Album Changes:

‘My Family’s Albums’ and ‘My Family Friends’ Albums’ have been combined into the new ‘Recent Albums’ sub-tab. Here’s where you’ll find all recent albums created by you, your family, and your friends.

We have also added some additional information when you are viewing a photo album - at the top of every album you will now see a list of each person tagged in that album as well as the album description.

Messaging Improvements:

We’ve given you more options on how you can respond to Inbox messages. You can select Reply All, Reply, or Forward messages you receive in your Inbox.

“My Family” Group

There is a new List View called “My Family”. This is the subset of people in your tree whose birthdays and anniversaries appear in your Calendar, whose locations appear on your Map, and whose Recent Albums you see under the Photos tab. Initially, we have defined this group as your third cousins and closer, plus their current partners, and your own partner’s first cousins and closer, plus their current partners. Coming soon, we will let you define your My Family group.

New Fiancé Partner Option:

‘Fiancé’ has been added to our list of partner types. When you indicate a partner relationship as ‘fiancé’ you can also enter a Wedding Date.

Discuss this story

June 23, 2007

Search Outside Your Tree

We have added a new feature to Geni to help you find and connect with your family. You can now search for other Geni users and profiles outside your family tree. Simply search for a name using the same search box you already use you will now see two tabs - Search results 'In Your Tree' and 'Outside Your Tree'.

'Outside Your Tree' search results will return a list of all deceased profiles and all claimed users who have not disabled public search. Depending on the profile's privacy settings you may be able to see who added that profile, send them a message, and add them to your family friends. This is a great way to find other people who may be related to you and grow your family tree.

You can control who may or may not search for you in your Settings - Your choices are 'Anyone (Public)' or 'People in My Tree and Family Friends'. In addition you can specify 'What they can see:'. By default your search results will include your profile photo, current location (city and country), and a button users can use to send you a message or send you a Family Friend invite. You can also display the 'Person who added me' and 'First names of my immediate family (except minor children)' on your Search Result.

Discuss this story

June 21, 2007

Geni Inbox

Staying in touch with your family just got easier with Geni’s new Inbox: there's a new Inbox tab at the top of each page for quick access to your messages. (This tab will also display an icon when you have new messages.) There's also a 'Requests' view, for invitations from family friends.

Send a private, person-to-person message to anyone in your tree (and to family friends), by using the Send Message button on the profile page. You can also address a new message to multiple recipients, using the same auto-suggest feature you already use to tag your photos.

Discuss this story

Tree Map, Photos and More

Map of My Tree

You can view all of your family's current locations and birthplaces on a global map. Use the familiar Google Maps interface to zoom and navigate around the world. Choose who you want to see on the map including anyone in your family or family friends.

Navigation Tray

Get around your tree with the new tray at the bottom of the My Tree tab. The ‘Navigate’ tab makes it easy to move around in large family trees. Use the ‘Go to...’ tab to jump directly to an individual, just by clicking his or her name.

Photo Enhancements

Move photos between albums To move one of your photos from one album to another, select the ‘Move to...’ link when viewing an individual photo Then, select the destination from a list of your photo albums.

Reordering photos Besides moving photos between albums you can also reorder the photos within an album. Use the ‘Reorder Photos’ link on the ‘Edit Album’ page to easily drag and drop your photos to arrange them.

Batch Messages

You'll now receive a maximum of two daily email digests: one each for birthday reminders and photo activity (new photo uploads, and tags by others).

Send Birthday Reminders checkbox

You can now disable birthday reminders for any profile you can edit. Next to the Date of Birth when editing a profile or viewing more info in the family tree, you will see a checkbox you can use to disable birthday reminders for that person’s birthday.

Discuss this story

May 16, 2007

Family Friends

Geni is a tool for understanding and staying in touch with your family. Now Geni can also help you stay in touch with your family friends. When you invite family friends to join your network on Geni they can view your profile and your photos. When your friends join you on Geni you will be able to see their profile and photos as well. You can then leave a comment in your friends’ Guest Books and tag them in your photos. And if they don't already have a family tree on Geni, we'll help them create one!

Because Geni continues to take your family's privacy very seriously, your family friends will not be able to view your family tree or the profile of anyone else in your family. In order to help your friends connect with your immediate family, they can view the profile photo, name, and location of your immediate family. Your family can even invite them to be their family friend too.

Discuss this story

Four New Tree Views

In addition to the original 'Tree' and 'List' views we have now added four new ways to view the information in family tree:

Calendar – The Family Calendar lists all of your family's upcoming birthdays and anniversaries. We also tell you how old the person will be on their next birthday and for anniversaries we tell you which anniversary it is (bronze, silver, gold, etc.).

Map - We are excited to announce the release of one of our most requested features, the Family Map! You can view all of your family's Current Residences and Birth Places on a global map. We use the Google Maps interface so zooming and navigating around your Family Map is easy. You can also choose who you want to see on the map - You, Living Relatives, Deceased Relatives, In-laws, Friends.

Index - Another widely requested feature request has been an index of family names in your tree. Simply click on the ‘Index’ link to view a Index of Last Names. The Index lists every last name that exists in your tree as well as the number of people with that last name and a link to view them.

Discussion – Now there is a Tree Discussion Board that will allow you to communicate with anyone on your tree. Messages you leave here can be read and replied to by anyone on your tree. Communication with your family has never been easier!

Discuss this story

April 25, 2007


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