SeeGEDCOMX - Zero Clutter Family History Software

SeeGEDCOMX is a minimalist genealogy program for the Macintosh, started before MacOS X made minimalism fashionable. Originally a browser application for GEDCOM files, it has become a much more general application. You can now use it to create a family history from scratch, to maintain an existing family history stored as a GEDCOM document, or simply to browse your GEDCOM documents and downloads. And I believe it's the only genealogy application with AppleScript support.

Jeff Raskin, original designer of the Macintosh, wrote an article called "There is no such thing as Information Design". He was impressed by a book by Edward Tufte, The Visual Display of Quantitative Information. (publ. Cheshire, CT: Graphics Press, 1983). In his article Raskin said -

"Designing the presentation of information, by the same token, partakes of the nature of both art and science. Edward Tufte's books reflect such a blend of knowledge. In one of them, he outlines his five principles for designing graphics:

The first four are (mostly) science-based. However, the last, "revise and edit" tells us not only to check repeatedly that the first four conditions are met, but also to apply our aesthetic judgment to the final work."

And this is what I'm trying to do with SeeGEDCOMX. It shows you your information with the minimum of distracting clutter: see screenshots on MacOS 9 and on MacOS X. I wish I could design icons.

SeeGEDCOMX lets you look at your information from new perspectives with a minimum of either clicks or typing - for example, you can export parts of your document as GEDCOM or Rich Text by dragging icons to the desktop, no need to work through navigation dialogs if you don't want to.

I'm still revising and editing, so SeeGEDCOMX should be considered a work-in-progress - it is not guaranteed in any way. It is shareware, not freeware. If you would like to see it finished, read Simon Tathan's tips, then send me bug reports.

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