Press Room - Press Release

 January 24, 2001 BUSINESSWIRE


Service will bring order, ease, and cooperation to discombobulated world of genealogy.

[Salt Lake City, Utah - January 24, 2001], an online genealogical service which allows everyone to combine their knowledge and data to build one huge, shared database, launched its website today.

"OneGreatFamily is not just another genealogy website," says Alan Eaton, Founder and CEO of "OneGreatFamily is a concept of collaboration and cooperation. We have created something special. OneGreatFamily is poised to contribute a new level of efficiency to the genealogy community. The fact that we are using a single, shared database will help eliminate the duplication of effort, data, and research and will enable people from all over the world to start working together, leveraging each other's efforts."

Unlike traditional genealogy programs that acquire and publish static databases, OneGreatFamily is a living, growing database that is built from users scattered all over the world. During OneGreatFamily's "Beta" period, people from 41 different countries submitted over 8 million names to provide the foundation of what will become the worlds largest lineage linked database. OneGreatFamily is not just a simple collection of family trees. "We are actually linking all of the individuals and family trees together into one great family," said Eaton.

Sophisticated technology is the backbone of Its "Handprint TechnologyTM" is a radical departure from conventional genealogy research because it makes a person's relationships - information of mother, father, spouse, children and siblings - the basis of the search, rather than just names, dates and places, thus eliminating many potential conflicts. Using relationships rather than just dates and places is what allows OneGreatFamily to link the different individuals and families together.

OneGreatFamily users are already experiencing results from this new, revolutionary service. Donny Osmond, an avid genealogist, and a beta tester for OneGreatFamily was able to extend his genealogy from 15 generations to 53 generations, all the way back to 324 AD. "I have been searching my genealogy for over 20 years, and this program is the most amazing tool I have ever seen! I've always known there were other people out there who had information I was missing. I just didn't know how to find them. OneGreatFamily is certainly connecting the world together," says Osmond.

Genealogy has become the number one hobby on the Internet and has experienced amazing growth because of the Internet. OneGreatFamily is taking the Genealogy/Internet relationship even further by releasing Genealogy BrowserTM. Genealogy BrowserTM is a genealogy software program that is used solely on the Internet enabling each user to store, share and explore his or her genealogy online without the need of any other software.

"They say some day all the software we will ever use will be on the Internet rather than in our PC's. This philosophy has just become a reality for the genealogical community., is the next step - possibly the ultimate step - in placing family trees on the Internet," said Gary Mokotoff (Publisher Avotaynu, a newsletter for Jewish Genealogy).

Some of the unique features of Genealogy BrowserTM are:
  • Interactive GenealogyTM -allows you to collaborate real-time with your family and others around the world that are searching or have found the same ancestors you are looking for.
  • Genealogy ZoomTM - the ability to zoom in and out of your genealogy to see the details of a few generations or to zoom out and see an unlimited number of generations at once.
  • Gen-BulbsTM - light bulb indicators that appear in your genealogy when OneGreatFamily has found new information submitted by another user that might link with yours.
  • Gen-BoltsTM - lightning bolt indicators that appear in your genealogy when information you have on an individual in your genealogy is different than another person's record of the same individual.'s service includes a free, limited version of Genealogy BrowserTM supported by advertising and a complete version available for an annual subscription. Getting started tutorials are available for beginners and enthusiasts through's online Genealogy UniversityTM.

Being an avid genealogist is not a requirement to enjoy Users can begin using Genealogy BrowserTM by starting with themselves and then entering as many generations as they can. New names are being submitted to OneGreatFamily's database all of the time. Each time new information is added it is processed through the database to see if it links to any other data already in the system. For example, one user recently entered four generations and received an additional seventy generations when his data linked with genealogy that was previously submitted by other users.

About is an online genealogical service that allows everyone to combine their knowledge and data to build one huge, shared database. is more than a simple collection of different family trees; using breakthrough technology the service is actually linking all of the family trees together into one great family.

Founder Alan Eaton, who brings an extensive technology background, leads In addition to other leadership positions, Eaton spent five years at Novell where he was a technical lead, a project lead on several projects and a recognized innovator within the software industry. He was also the technical lead at LavaStorm for the initial development of the popular genealogy site, LavaStorm, with their expertise in engineering highly complex systems, was also engaged to assist in the creation of