Ok. So last night I went to Charlemagne's MP and pushed the little blue button to find out how I was related and it told me
Charlemagne is Beth Beeman's 7th cousin 22 times removed
Then my mother did it and it says
Charlemagne is Ruth Bavetta's 28th great grandfather
My mother's brother's son - my cousin gets that he's a 29th great grandfather.
I think it's broken, mine doesn't make sense!
LOL. The path algorithm in Geni is very dynamic and calculates the easiest / shortest route for each person. Then it caches those results for about seven days, I think - by which time the merge state of the tree may have changed. So I have learned to use it as a general rule and look at the "hops" (number of steps along the path to someone else). That helps me look at what areas of the tree may need some attention.
Your mom's results seem stable and more or less accurate, so you can tell people you're Charlegmagne's 29th great granddaughter! Pretty cool.
I also use Noah Tutak as my "cousin baseline." Someone has been working on his Wright ancestors because for a while there they were really prominent in the path. Then inexplicably they vanished. I think my Starbucks will come back into play. :)
So ... pick someone you have a couple of lines to within say 12th cousin hood and test it every month or so is my suggestion. That's a very interesting experiment.
Beth - good catch. That baffled me for a long time, but as Erica says, Geni caches results and recalculates weekly maybe, so I had to learn patience and remember to come back and recalculate.
One of the things I love about the relationship tool is that I have found all sorts of fascinating ancestors many generations back through the tool, but looking at the in-between people, and my family loves my sharing information with them about all our ancestors.