About our results chart and family group sheets

Not counting the specific questions about the DNA Project and specific results, most of the questions, and complaints, I get related to the DNA Project are about the results charts and our linked family group sheets. To me, after getting lots of participants into the project, with a good number of samples for each separate line, the results table and the family group sheets are the most important resources for researchers. It is more than just who matches who, it is how and why the DNA matches or doesn't.

Before I get into the details on what we provide, some background information. There are two results tables linked from our Project website. The first is the official, automatically updated table at the FamilyTreeDNA website. As new results come in from the lab, they are automatically added to this table, usually into the “Ungrouped” until I log in as project administrator and put the kit number into one of the groups. I try to contact each new participant while their tests are at the lab so I have their ancestry information ready so I can move them to the right group as soon as the results are posted. Of course, if the participant doesn't respond or doesn't know where they think they fit, they end up in the Ungrouped section. We've had several whose results didn't come in as they expected, so their results still ended up in Ungrouped until they sorted things out.

If you are in the Ungrouped section and believe you belong elsewhere, or that I should start a new group for you and others, just email me. Unless your results don't support a new group, such as your results not matching others you suggest I put I that group, I'll update the grouping table. Once I do, the new grouping shows up in the table at the FamilyTreeDNA site immediately. It will be changed in our customized table the next time I update it.

The second table is a customized version of the FamilyTreeDNA table. I won't link directly to it from this article because I change the table name each time I update it. To see the current table, either follow the link in the left column of this article or the hadleydna.org website, or click here and then click on the link to the table with the family group sheet links.

Here's how this customized table comes into being:

  1. When a participant sends me their ancestry information, I enter it into a separate file with my genealogy program. I use Brothers Keeper, which I've been using since I started doing family history research. Kinda old but it works. When I enter the participant or any living ancestors or relatives, I use their kit number as their first name to protect their identity. So, for example, I'm in there as 8653 Hadley. My mother was entered as Mother 8653 until her death. My father was listed as Father 8653 Hadley until his death.
  2. When I am planning to do an update, I export a GEDCOM from my genealogy database. I feed this into a program called GedHTree that converts the GEDCOM into a set of 250 files that generate the web pages showing the family group sheets and family trees. Fortunately this is pretty much automatic once I do the initial setup, as long as we don't change the format.
  3. Now comes the “fun” part.
    1. First I make a copy of the latest official results table from FamilyTreeDNA. It is just under 11,000 lines of code, unless they have recently changed programmers in which case it could be more, or they could have condensed it down into a couple of hundred lines. When they condense it, I have to uncondense it in order to customize it. Lately they have been pretty good about not changing things too much, and they finally responded to my request to put some separators between individual results.
    2. Then I go through their code to identify other files at their site that are needed to make the table present correctly. This includes style files, javascript files, and a few other odds and ends that they like to hide in their code.
    3. Next, for each participant who has given me ancestry information, I find where in the 250 or so GedHTree files their ancestry information starts.
    4. Next I find where in the FamilyTreeDNA code they list the kit number. I then create the link code from there to the appropriate place in the GedHTree file.
    5. Once I've added links for everybody, I check the results, adjust things as necessary, and save the file for uploading to our site.
    6. Finally, I update the link on our Results page to point to the newly created custom table and upload that to our site.
    As you can imagine, this takes a while so I don't update the table very often. I try to do it when we've had several new sets of results. I also try to update it when there aren't test kits at the lab so we don't have new results immediately after a table update.

So, if you are looking for some results and don't find them on our customized table, take a look at the official table at FamilyTreeDNA. If you don't see them there, something else is wrong. Email me and we can sort it out.

If you don't see a link to your ancestry information on the latest table, either I don't have your information, I have it but haven't updated the table yet, I have it but lost it, or I haven't updated it yet. I'd like to see every participant's results linked to family group sheets, but the first step is for you to send me the information.