Heredis 2018 is designed for both the researcher and the family tree builder. The customizable interface is among the easiest to learn and most efficient to use, but the charting tools and options make this one of the best available ancestry management programs. Not only do you have more options for showing your family tree, but this is the only program I reviewed that provides high-quality, stylish options for both printing and sharing the fruits of your research. If you want to product a family tree that you can frame and hang, this is the best option. That said, Heredis struggled with the GEDCOM accuracy test.
Ease of Use
GEDCOM accuracy is critical for sharing genealogical research with others. For each genealogy program tested, I imported four GEDCOM files and evaluated the accuracy. Heredis earned a C+ on this test, the lowest score the software received. The program failed to import one of the four records entirely and provided no reason for the failure. None of the other programs I tested completely failed to import a GEDCOM record. Even Branches, which received a lower overall accuracy score, managed to import all four files. Heredis was perfectly accurate with the two large GEDCOM records and was more than 95 percent accurate on the third record. If it hadn’t failed to import the fourth GEDCOM record, it would have received a higher grade.
The Heredis interface received an A for ease of use and in many ways proved to be my favorite interface to use. The interface has a modern, aesthetically pleasing design. It puts your pedigree in the center and features a search module to the left and a tool panel to the right. The toolbar makes effective use of both symbols and text – there’s no guesswork – and is completely customizable. You can add or remove tools to fit your preferences, making this program ideal for novices and experts alike. It’s very difficult to get lost in this interface.
The data entry also received an A grade. Because the interface is largely modeless, using modules with floating tabs, most of the information doesn’t require opening separate windows. This modeless design makes for a highly efficient data entry process. It took me just under seven minutes in total to enter the details for 10 individuals. Only Family Historian and Family Tree Maker were more efficient when entering the same data, and the average program took twice as long as Heredis. If you spend a lot of time working on genealogy, an efficient program is a high priority.
The charting capabilities are what set Heredis 2018 apart from other genealogy software. The program received an A+ for chart quality because it provides the most options and lets you render charts with flair and style. You can plot your family tree on a chart that looks like an actual tree: Pick from elm, Joshua, oak, olive, maple and other templates. Other charts look like antique scrolls and illuminated documents, such as the Book of Kells. Other programs’ charts don’t come close to the frame-and-hang quality of Heredis. Some programs let you add plug-ins to increase the chart options and styles, but those plug-ins are usually developed by third parties and cost extra.
Heredis’ options for genealogical reports are as good as its charts, in both style and variety. Genealogical reports are like charts but include more detailed information about each individual. You can control the material that goes into the reports and format them into books that tell your family’s story.
The scrapbooking tools received an A– because the media tools aren’t as prioritized as they are in programs that received higher grades. Telling your family stories through photos, videos, audio and written reminiscences is a big part of managing genealogical records. I couldn’t find these tools in Heredis as quickly as I did in other programs, but I liked how the program stores and displays the information. And, certainly, the reports you can create with the scrapbooking data are impressive.
The data management tools let you map locations and see where your ancestors traveled and settled. You can import information from global online databases, manage family groups and use a consistency tool to make sure you sniff out any potential problems.
The only desired data management tools missing from the software are automatic backup and a task list. Automatic backup is a standard feature in most ancestry software. A task list is more of a convenience feature – a place to list all the research you need to complete on each person so you can stay on track. Both tools are minor exclusions.
If you’re looking for a family tree to print and frame or you want to make a book of family stories and memories, Heredis 2018 is your best bet. The charting and reporting options beat out other programs in both variety and style. The interface and data entry are among the best designed, but the GEDCOM accuracy was disappointing, considering the tool failed to import one of the records.