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Michael Hannah

Why I will continue to use a discontinued TMG

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While I am saddened that TMG "development" will cease, I intend to continue to use TMG for many years for three reasons.

1. There is currently no alternative program available on the market with sufficient comparable features to the many existing TMG features which I regularly use.

2. TMG will continue to run on Windows for many years.

3. Not switching until TMG-like features are available is the best way to encourage genealogy software publishers to implement such features.


Expanded explanation of my belief in these three points follows.

1. As Bob Velke notes in his announcement:
"For 25 years, TMG has repeatedly pushed the boundaries of genealogical software and promoted the highest principles of scholarship in record-keeping and reporting."
I have used and come to rely upon those features in TMG which promote more and better documentation of all the aspects of my genealogical data and allow better narratives. While Bob is correct that some "programs have begun to emulate some of TMG’s innovative features" I find no program yet compares with TMG's customizable features so I can record my data "my way". None fully take advantage of a relational database's ability to enter and later update a single piece of data, and link to it as many times and ways as needed like TMG has always done.

I am sad that development of TMG is discontinued. There are several additions and changes to the product I would "wish" for. But those are extremely minor compared to the vast number of features I rely on and would need to "wish" for in any other existing product. Converting to any current program would, for me, involve considerable loss of data and features, and make my genealogical documentation considerably more difficult and less scholarly. It simply would not be worth my effort.

2. In the last couple of years Bob Velke expended a considerable investment to upgrade TMG to be fully functioning on 32-bit Windows. As a result, as long as operating systems provide a way to run Windows 32-bit programs, TMG will continue to operate. I fully expect that Microsoft will provide such support for many years to come. Many users already successfully run TMG on other operating systems, like Mac and Linux, using Windows emulators. Such emulators are also likely to continue to be available for both new Windows systems and other operating systems for even more years. I expect many senior users like myself will continue to be active on TMG forums providing what has been some of the best user-to-user support of any product. In my mind use of TMG can continue as it currently is with the sole loss of being able to anticipate possible new developments.

3. I believe that a sizable number of existing TMG users who have not switched would be a market incentive for software publishers to extend their products to include the TMG features that these users have relied upon and want. Bob Velke is making GenBridge available so that publishers of other products can import TMG files directly. But if their receiving product has no comparable feature, critical data and data connections will be lost. Implementing new features takes time and expense. I believe a publisher will only decide it is worth the effort if there is a sizable potential market which might be captured. If users have already endured the painful switching to a product with less features, publishers are likely to determine that such an investment will not recapture a significant market. I believe it is worth waiting in order to provide that incentive to implement their new features.


Your opinion may differ, but I intend to continue with a product which has served me extremely well for many years, and expect will continue to do so for many more years. Genealogy owes a big debt of gratitude to Bob Velke and TMG.

Michael Hannah
A satisfied TMG user for nearly 20 years.


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Well put, and I agree with everything you've outlined in this post.

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