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Come See The Geni Team at Jamboree June 10-12

Posted May 24, 2011 by Geni | No Comment

June 10th through the 12, the Southern California Genealogical Society will be holding this year’s Jamboree in Burbank, CA. Geni will be there in full force. We’re based out of LA, so we’ll be making sure everyone has a good time. If you want to get some face time with the Geni staff, this is your best opportunity of the year. If you’re not already registered, please make sure you take care of that as… Read the full story

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NGS 2011 Recap

Posted May 16, 2011 by Geni | No Comment
Dick Eastman

We spent the last week in Charleston, South Carolina at NGS 2011. Hundreds of free Geni tees, onesies, thumb drives, and brochures later, we’re all back safely in good ol’ Los Angeles. Also, we were very pleased to be demoing AncestorSync with the SharingTime folks. You’ll be learning much more about that project in the coming weeks. Very exciting stuff coming out. If you’re interested in seeing Geni’s booth in person, come see us at… Read the full story

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NGS 2011 with Dear Myrtle and Gordon Clarke

Posted May 13, 2011 by Geni | No Comment

We’re in full force here at NGS. Take a look at some of the great people we’ve been working with this week. Here is Grant giving the thumbs-up with Gordon Clarke of FamilySearch: Here is Grant high-fiving Dear Myrtle:

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Geni At NGS 2011

Posted May 12, 2011 by Geni | 3 Comments

Hey, everyone! I just wanted to take a second to remind you that we’re out in full force at NGS 2011. If you’re here in Charleston, don’t hesitate to come by, say hi, and get some really nice swag. If you’re not in South Carolina this week, play the home game by checking out our Twitter and Facebook accounts.

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Come see the Geni Team at NGS 2011

Posted May 6, 2011 by Geni | No Comment

The National Genealogical Society 2011 Family History Conference (NGS 2011 for short) is right around the corner. From May 11th to 14th, thousands of genealogy businesses, bloggers, and enthusiasts will all be in Charleston, South Carolina for the conference. Pretty exciting, eh? Well, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. There will be panels, booths, and giveaways galore, and Geni will be there in full force. The Geni Booth We’re coming loaded for bear. We’re… Read the full story

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New Geni Feature: New Marriage and Birth Reordering Interface

Posted April 13, 2011 by Geni | 7 Comments

Keeping immediate family chronology in order can be difficult when you’re dealing with profiles that have many spouses or siblings. With a new interface released today on Geni, you can update the order simply by dragging and dropping. Here’s how: In the tree view, edit the profile you’d like to update. Go to the relationship tab, and you’ll see the current order of the spouses. To update the order, click the “Change Marriage Order” link…. Read the full story

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New Geni Feature: Disable Automatically Generated Last Names

Posted April 13, 2011 by Geni | 2 Comments

Naming conventions can be very different between cultures. Our last name pre-population is based on common American traditions, but we realize that it doesn’t work for every user. As of today, Geni now allows you to turn off the automatic generation of the last name field on new profiles. Here’s how: In the tree view, go to the Preferences tab, and then go to the Names section. Now check the box that says “Do not… Read the full story

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Progeny Genealogy’s Geni Charting Companion Now Available

Posted April 6, 2011 by Geni | 2 Comments

The folks at Progeny Genealogy have a product called Charting Companion. It takes the information from your family tree, and allows you to make a wide variety of charts. Available now is a version that will read your data directly from Geni. If you’ve been dying to print out different visual representations of your family tree, this application is for you. It has fan charts, pedigree charts, hourglass charts, and many more. You can buy… Read the full story

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Profile Options have Moved

Posted March 31, 2011 by Geni | 2 Comments

The Options drop-down menu on any given profile page has been moved. Now when you load up a profile page, the Options drop-down will be in the top right-hand corner right next to the Follow/Unfollow button. This is much more easy to find, and we think you’ll like it a lot.

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Introducing Single Field Dates

Posted March 17, 2011 by George | 3 Comments

Between different conventions and different languages, dates can be a tricky subject for genealogists (and everyone else for that matter).  This week we introduced “single field dates” to help Geni users input dates without as much guesswork. Setting your date format in Localization Settings To set your preferred date format, go to your Settings page and click on Localization Settings.  You’ll see the following options: For this example, I’ll use the YYYY MM DD format…. Read the full story

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Upcoming Events Featuring Geni

Posted March 11, 2011 by Geni | No Comment

Want to come meet the Geni staff, and get some neat swag? Well, that’s easy. We’re going to be at two big genealogy conferences coming up soon. The National Genealogical Society 2011 Family History Conference will be taking place May 11th-14th in Charleston, South Carolina. We have secured a booth at this conference, and we can’t wait to see you there. The 42nd Annual Southern California Genealogy Jamoboree will be held in Burbank, California between… Read the full story

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Geni is Hiring

Posted March 4, 2011 by George | 3 Comments

We have two positions available at our West Hollywood, CA (USA) office, and we’d love it if you helped spread the word to any local folks who may be interested. The positions are: Director of Monetization Customer Service Representative Info about all open positions at Geni can be found at Thanks!

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New Feature: Geni Uptime Monitoring

Posted March 2, 2011 by Geni | No Comment

Our engineers are always working to make Geni better. When a lot of updates are happening like yesterday, there is occasionally points where won’t be available for a short period of time. To better serve you, we’ve implemented an Uptime monitoring system that you can follow on Twitter (@GeniUptime). If you’re not a Twitter user, just keep your eyes right here on the Geni blog. As soon as we update the Twitter account, there… Read the full story

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Introducing Profile Revisions

Posted March 2, 2011 by George | One Comment

Last summer we introduced the ability to view revisions on Geni, and shortly before Christmas we added the ability to view and revert text revisions for profiles, surnames and projects. Today marks our next major “revisions” release:  profile revisions. When you click on the revisions tab for a profile you will see this interface, which allows you to view the revision history and revert to previous values for each of the profile fields displayed.  A… Read the full story

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More Documents and Sources Enhancements

Posted March 2, 2011 by George | No Comment

In addition to the new profile revision features, today we released some enhancements for sourcing profiles on Geni. All sourced fields on a profile show a document icon; hovering over the icon will display a hover card containing the document providing the evidence for the field: The ‘Edit Profile’ screen also contains the document icons with hover cards. The ability to add sources is a little easier now, too.  When you click on the Add… Read the full story

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Additional Updates to Geni

Posted March 2, 2011 by George | One Comment

Today we released profile revision features and additional document and source features, as well as some additional enhancements that make Geni better for our users. Set your time zone Now you can set your time zone, and over the course of the next few weeks we will update timestamps across the site to reflect your local time. To set your time zone, visit your profile and click on ‘Edit Profile’.  In the next screen, you have… Read the full story

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RootsTech Photos Keep Trickling

Posted February 15, 2011 by Geni | No Comment
Geni Booth

RootsTech was pretty great. If you didn’t get to go out and experience it in person, we hope you can get the gist of it from us. Here is the last bit of pictures from the conference floor. I hope you like ‘em.

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More Genealogy Adventures at Roots Tech

Posted February 14, 2011 by Geni | No Comment

Jason over at Truscape. The mobile development panel. My cool-guy Family Search Developer Network Badge. Roots Magic Gordon Clarke from Family Search. Ping Pong at the Microsoft booth. Generation Maps George and Amos at the Geni booth.

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Welcome to Roots Tech

Posted February 10, 2011 by Geni | No Comment

Geni is here in full force here at Roots Tech. We’re rocking our booth, shaking hands, giving out swag, and attending panels. If you’re here in Salt Lake City, please stop by to say hello, and get some swag. If you’re not in the area, stay tuned to our Facebook and Twitter pages to play the “Home game.” We have a lot of exciting things coming, so keep an eye out.

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Embed the World Family Tree on your Blog

Posted January 28, 2011 by Geni | No Comment

Have you ever wanted to show off to your friends how big your family tree is? If you’re a member of the World Family Tree here at Geni, you now can embed an ever-updating ticker that shows off how big the “Big Tree” really is. If you’d like this widget on your site…   Join the worlds largest free family tree     You just have to paste a snippet of code wherever you’d like… Read the full story

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The Geni Team is a Little Bit Bigger

Posted January 24, 2011 by Geni | 9 Comments

Hey, everyone, I’m Grant Brünner. As of today, I am officially part of the Geni Team. I’ll be working with all of you as the Community Evangelist. What, exactly, does that mean? Well, here is what I’ll be doing in the next couple of months: Going out, and meeting with fellow genealogists at Genealogy Conferences. Writing articles for the blog. Talking to current users of Geni. Interacting with the genealogy community on the whole. Creating… Read the full story

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Enhancements for Documents and Sources

Posted January 19, 2011 by George | 11 Comments

Can you tell it’s been a busy week at Geni?  Today we released several big changes on the site, including some additional revision features and a new interface to help you keep track of the various discussions you follow. Perhaps the biggest changes in this release are for documents and sources.  These updates will make it much easier for users to add/manage documents, including easier features to mark a document as a source for important… Read the full story

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More Revisions

Posted January 19, 2011 by George | 2 Comments

Revisions are important way to track changes to profiles, trees, and more on Geni. In addition to tree revisions and profile revisions, we’ve added three new lists of revisions to provide greater visibility and accountability. Home Page Revisions Tab You can now view revisions for everything you follow, from profiles to projects, by clicking on the revisions tab on your home page: Make sure you follow the profiles, projects, and surnames you’re interested in to… Read the full story

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Discussions Enhancements

Posted January 19, 2011 by George | No Comment

Keeping track of all of the discussions you follow can be difficult.  Today we released some features to make it significantly easier to stay updated on your discussions of interest. “Discussions I Follow” The new default view for discussions will contain a list of all discussions you follow, sorted by most recent activity.  All discussions you follow will be included in this list: public discussions, private discussions, project discussions, and any discussions where surnames that… Read the full story

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2011 Genealogy Conferences

Posted January 13, 2011 by George | 7 Comments

Updated 1/24/2011 to include conferences in the United Kingdom. Updated 3/16/2011 to include AAHGS. I was doing some preliminary conference planning yesterday and I wasn’t able to locate a reliable list of genealogy conferences for 2011.  Since I was making the list for myself, I decided to turn it into a blog post (and project) for the benefit of anyone else who is looking for a similar list.  Please use the comments below if there… Read the full story

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A New Merging Enhancement

Posted January 5, 2011 by George | 2 Comments

Today we released a new enhancement to the merge center: the ability to filter the profiles.  The feature is very simple to use.  Above the merge center on the right, you’ll now see a Viewing: drop-down menu. This drop-down provides the ability to filter the profiles in the merge center by various Projects, as well as a few options that are specific to the individual user. The My Relatives option displays only your relatives in… Read the full story

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Looking Forward to 2011

Posted December 31, 2010 by Geni | One Comment

Yesterday we took a look back at Geni in 2010.  Today we’d like to share our vision for the coming year. Geni’s mission is to create a shared family tree of the world. We continue to believe that getting as many people as possible to work together on a common tree is the best way to achieve this goal. We are committed to developing the best collaborative genealogy platform to enable this crowd-sourced world family… Read the full story

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Looking back at 2010

Posted December 30, 2010 by George | No Comment

As we prepare to usher in the New Year, we thought we’d stop and take a look at the last twelve months to see what has been accomplished on Geni…and the list is quite impressive. The Big Tree Steady growth of the Big Tree has been a constant in 2010.  We started the year with more than 30 million connected profiles, and that number has increased more than 60%.  In fact, there’s a chance that… Read the full story

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Update: Back! … Temporary Outage on 12/27/2010

Posted December 27, 2010 by George | No Comment

Update 4:00 PT: Service has been restored.  Our apologies for the brief inconvenience. 3:35 PT: We are experiencing a temporary outage.  Our engineers should have the site back up very shortly, please check back soon.

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Introducing Text Revisions

Posted December 23, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

Today we released a new feature that allows users to view revisions on the “About” text for people, project, and surname pages.  The feature also provides the ability to compare two different versions of the text and revert back to a previous version. On any text field that supports text revisions, there will be a history link: To view revisions, click on the history link and a lightbox that displays the revision history will appear…. Read the full story

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Updates: Removing Media and Private Profile Discussions

Posted December 20, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

We’ve added two small changes.  The first makes it easier to remove media from profiles, and the second enhances discussion privacy on private profiles. Easier Removal of Media In some cases you will now see a red “X” next to media thumbnails on the profiles you manage.  Clicking the “X” allows you to remove the media directly from the profile, without having to navigate through the various media interfaces. You can only remove media from… Read the full story

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Geni API Feedback

Posted December 17, 2010 by George | No Comment

Prior to Wednesday’s release of the Geni API, we had been working closely with several Geni users to test the API functionality.  Today two of our users, Daniel Walton and Grant Brunner, share some thoughts about the API. The straw that broke the camel’s back We had been planning to create the API for some time, but it hadn’t yet become a priority.  A little more than a month ago, Noah noticed an interesting discussion where… Read the full story

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Translating Websites

Posted December 17, 2010 by George | No Comment

Note: This short post is a cross-post from the Geni Engineering blog.  The topic is less relevant to genealogy and Geni users, but we wanted to share because we know a lot of you are tech enthusiasts. We released our translation features six months ago and quickly saw our community translate Geni into 20 different languages.   Since then, Geni has been translated into 70 different languages with over 150,000 translations.  It has been amazing… Read the full story

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Introducing the Geni API

Posted December 15, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

After more than a month of alpha testing, we are proud to announce today’s release of the first version of the Geni API.  The API allows Geni users to develop third-party tools and applications that can interact with the breadth of data that the community has contributed for the past three years. To use the API, visit and register your application.  (Note: If it is a desktop application, you can enter any callback URL you… Read the full story

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Introducing Surname Pages

Posted December 13, 2010 by George | 7 Comments

In less than three years the Geni community has created nearly 100 million profiles, including almost 50 million that are part of the Big Tree.  Among all of those profiles, there are more than 3 million unique surnames on Geni. Today we announce the addition of Surname pages to Geni.  Surname pages create a central point of discovery for profiles, projects, documents and discussions that are related to any given surname.  Geni users can follow… Read the full story

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Geni is available in the Chrome Web Store

Posted December 7, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

Today Google opened the Chrome Web Store in anticipation of next year’s debut of Chrome OS notebooks.  We have added Geni as the first family tree app in the Web Store. For Geni users that browse the web with Chrome, it’s simple to “install” Geni as an app in your browser.  Simply visit our app’s installation page, click install, and Geni will be added to your Chrome browser. Once the app is installed, it will appear… Read the full story

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The Big Tree: Approaching 50 Million Profiles

Posted December 2, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

At Geni, our goal is to provide the genealogy community with tools for collaboration, and to ultimately create a single family tree for the world.  As growth of the Big Tree (the largest connected tree on Geni) continues, we find ourselves getting closer and closer to a huge milestone:  50 million connected profiles. This week we launched a World Family Tree page that allows the community to see the current status of the Big Tree and… Read the full story

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Updates: More Wikitext and Project Notifications

Posted December 2, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

This week we released two updates to the site.  The first is the addition of Wikitext support to the “About Me” section of profiles.  The second is the addition of Projects to the Notifications box that you see on your home page after you log in. “About Me” Wikitext Wikitext markup is now supported in the “About Me” section for profiles.  When you edit any profile that you manage, you’ll find a Wikitext editor on… Read the full story

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Projects 2.0

Posted November 23, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

Since we introduced Projects we have been adding new features regularly and usage has continually increased.  This morning, we reached the milestone of 600 Projects on Geni. Today we released the next major version of Projects. This release includes features that make it easier for Geni users to use projects for research and collaboration.  The Projects interface is similar, but there are many more features that we’d like to highlight. Suggested Projects We can now… Read the full story

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Easier Project Creation and Related Projects

Posted November 19, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

Yesterday we released two enhancements to Projects:  an easier way to create Projects, as well as the ability to mark Projects as related.  The response to the release of Projects has been very encouraging, and we will continue to focus our efforts on making Projects as easy to use as possible. Start a New Project When you click on “Start a New Project”, you will now be shown a lightbox that allows you to quickly… Read the full story

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Geni at Spotlight: LA Tech

Posted November 16, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

This Thursday, November 18th, Geni will be presenting at the inaugural Spotlight: LA Tech event hosted by TechZulu at the UCLA Anderson School of Management (map link).  The event is a “screening room for new technology homegrown in our region. It’s a gallery of great entrepreneurship.” TechZulu is holding the event to provide an environment for young entrepreneurs and tech enthusiasts to network and meet with the creators of the most innovating local technologies.  In addition… Read the full story

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Introducing Project and Discussion Search

Posted November 12, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

Today we are updating Projects and Public Discussions to include search features that make it easy to find relevant information within these features. Project Search You can now search for specific information in Projects including the Project name, text within the wiki text area, and Profiles that are associated with a Project.  To search Projects, simply type your query into the box and press Enter, or click the magnifying glass icon. For example, let’s assume… Read the full story

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BetterGedcom – Improving Data Exchange Among Genealogists

Posted November 10, 2010 by George | No Comment

Last Wednesday’s interview subject, Dear Myrtle, sent us this press release yesterday regarding a project with the intent of making genealogy data a little bit more portable.  The BetterGedcom project “will be to develop an update/replacement for the de facto GEDCOM standard based on input from end users and developers world-wide. Long-term efforts will include standards for the sharing of genealogical information over the internet, for example,” according to Myrt. We can confirm that GEDCOM… Read the full story

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Welcome to the new version of the Geni Blog

Posted November 1, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

Geni announces the relaunch of the Geni Blog, including daily/weekly features and content for genealogists of all types, from hobbyists to advanced.

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Building the “Big Tree”

Posted October 29, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

Recently, when we introduced Curators, we noted that Geni’s mission is to create a shared family tree that connects all of our users. We wanted to share a little bit more about what this vision means and how we are going to get there. For centuries, people have studied their family history in order to document their ancestors and find new relatives. However, there has never been a great way to share the results of this… Read the full story

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Enhanced following privacy

Posted October 27, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

A few weeks ago we introduced following, a great way to control your notifications and keep track of the users, profiles, and now projects you’re interested in. Although following does not have any privacy implications (you don’t gain any additional access to profile information by following a profile), some users were not comfortable with people they don’t know following their close relatives. Even though this did not in any way violate the privacy of these… Read the full story

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Project Enhancements

Posted October 27, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

Projects were first introduced a couple of weeks ago as a way to organize groups of profiles, usually around a specific family, surname, place or event. Users have found some really interesting uses for projects, and almost 200 projects have already been created. Today we’re introducing the following enhancements to projects: Project Discussions Every project now has its own list of discussions. Use the Project Discussions link to view a list of threads related to… Read the full story

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Introducing Projects (now for everyone)

Posted October 20, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

A few weeks ago we introduced Projects, a way for Geni Curators to create collections of profiles. Some great projects have been created, from “Mayflower” Passengers and US Civil War Notables, to Extraordinary Women of the Middle Ages and Early Normans c.790-1066. Today we’re opening up projects to all users. Before you start a new project, please review the list of current projects to make sure that there isn’t already a similar project. You can… Read the full story

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Introducing Following

Posted October 14, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

Today we’re introducing following, a new way to organize the profiles that interest you, control your notifications, and invite people you know to Geni. Following a profile is as easy as clicking the follow button. Click it again to unfollow the profile. Following a profile does a few things: You’ll receive updates about the profile on your home page. You’ll be added to the list of followers on the profile – this is a great… Read the full story

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Merging Enhancements

Posted October 14, 2010 by Geni | No Comment

As your tree grows and merges with other trees, you may find some profiles in your tree that have duplicates in their immediate family. For example, when you merge two profiles that each have a complete set of kids, you'll need to merge the kids together. In these cases, you should use the resolve duplicates option under the node's more menu to quickly merge them. We've made some changes to this process. After you drag duplicate… Read the full story