I see my post has gained some interest, but still not a lot of consensus on using the PLA and the purpose and advantages of doing so, and having it UP TO DATE and ACCURATE.
My argument is not about a FIX for the PLA, it’s about its accuracy and the CONTINUAL IMPROVEMENT of the system.
I don’t know about others but I use FTM because it in the main stores my family tree data in an easily accessible form. It readily allows correction and updating of the data, a big improvement over a paper based system. Any system within it that makes it easier to create consistently accurate data should work to its full potential and be able to be continually improved.
When I enter data I am mindful that someone accessing the data in the future (10 to 1000 years) may be curious and want to seek further information on person, place or time. Source referencing and consistent accurate data is the key to them being able to do so. Ancestry created the PLA with the intention of it being consistent data. Ancestry agree to keep the PLA accurate (see http://ancestryau.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/5224/...
THEY ARE NOT.
Some thoughts on the posts.
Kj_norway, “I don't use PNA in any form or fashion, and I would not expect Ancestry to "fix" it because in reality it can never be fixed, because it will always be wrong, since it can't support historical locations, border changes, place name spelling (or the actual name) differences based on religious and/or cultural differences among the current (or historic) population.”
This is not I agree this is not something Ancestry can fix, BUT they should have a PLAN and RESOURCES in place to keep the PLA up to data by adding ALL legitimate, current day place names to it.
My view is you need to review your thinking on this as using the PLA for all modern place names will provide data consistency. Unfortunately at present you will have to work around historical locations etc. Historical records are an area that we as users could provide Ancestry with ideas to improve the system, but the basics need to be supported before this can happen.
Kj_norway, “If you want something to be fixed, the real problem needs to be identified, a better solution needs to be developed and then presented to the software engineers. Users should not suggest fixes that are not the answer to the real problem.”
It has been presented to the software engineers – their response is in my earlier post. Without users like yourself supporting the use and regular update of the PLA, nothing will improve as Ancestry will claim it’s not an issue with users. Ancestry’s current cash value is $1.38 B, they have the money, your support in this issue is needed to have them commit resources to the issue.
David Abernathy, “the PNA is just a tool to help with spelling: This has been stated so many times and a lot are not listening. Maybe it would help, if we put at the bottom of every post we make here at the FTM forum?”
David Abernathy,“”The FTM PNA is a "tool", it is not a real "authority"”
Yes it is a tool but it is not very well, if at all maintained by Ancestry, see my previous posts. If it’s not in working order it is of little or no use. Should a wood work chisel be poorly sharpened if you don’t use it regularly? My view is NO, to do a good job the tool needs to be well maintained. The PLA is a tool and it need to be as sharp as possible.
David Abernathy, “The is just like all of the "Armchair coaches" that know how to always win a game!(sic)”
This is not about knowing how to “win the game” it’s about Ancestry providing what they say they will,which is an up to date accurate PLA, i.e. the provision of resources. Please get on board you (we) paid the money they need to deliver the good to you and all of us.
KATHYMARIEANN, “After all the KEY “guts” to genealogy is Time and Places and if you can’t fix/improve what the system presently does in these areas then, in a lot of cases, user’s genealogy could easily end up GIGO”
Right on the money; the system needs to be continually updated & improved if the user is going to get maximum benefit from it. I worked in a place that had a legislative requirement to store and maintain records. It was achieved through a database, but the information on location was so inconsistent that the records may have well been piled in random order in a room wall to wall, floor to ceiling, as the data base helped very little when trying to locate a record. GIGO!!!!
KATHYMARIEANN, “Illegitimi non carborundum”
Yes precisely. Please consider the benefits that an accurate, up to date PLA can provide you when recording a place. CONTINUALLY email(until they action your request)Ancestry Support here http://ftm.custhelp.com/app/ask
send them the place names you have that are not in the PLA and request it is regularly maintained. Illegitimi non carborundum.
Also think about how it could be improved through a method of adding historical places etc. I would like to hear your thoughts on how these could be included in the PLA as I have the same issue with them.