Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Enter Data Quicker with Keyboard Shortcuts













Beyond the "Quick Place Entry" in Ancestral Quest there are additional ways to speed up the entry of family and source information.

Actual data entry can be cumbersome and seem to take forever, but with the implementation of keyboard shortcuts and the ones that are part of AQ, this process can be enhanced greatly.

There are 3 different types of shortcuts in AQ:
  1. Keyboard shortcuts and mnemonics
  2. ditto abilities
  3. quick entry
Most of us are attached to the mouse and often don't realize that there are quicker keyboard shortcuts that are done without the use of the mouse. While the mouse will do those things, the time it takes to remove ones' hands from the keyboard and use the mouse for a specific command, will consistently take additional time. Using the standard Windows shortcuts are  throughout all the Ancestral screens. Looking at the top menu, "File, Add, Edit, View, Search, Tools, Internet, Collaborate and Help" all have underlines under specific letters which when combined with the "Control" key will take you to those drop down menus.







Within each drop down the keyboard shortcuts are listed there for easy reference. This is the drop-down menu under 'Add'.


In the 'add screen' you can see the _ within the label for each field:


As you carefully look at the data entry screen above, you will easily notice that various letters are underlined, for quick data entry. Holding down the "ALT" key plus that letter will take you to that field or you can use "Tab" to get to the next field, either way it is very easy between the quick entry and using the short cut keys to enter an ancestor's information.

The last item worth mentioning is "Ditto". Within the entry screen above there is a "Ditto" drop down menu which looks like this:






This is where you are able to copy records within the family. If the information is the same in that field in the father, mother or older sibling, you just use the combination listed and it will populate that field with their information saving you having to type it in.

In my case, I was born in the same location as my dad, so when I enter my birth place I would simply hold down the "Shift" key and the F8 together, this will put my dad's birth location in that same field for me. This is definitely a time saver and once you do this a few times you will remember the combination of keys.

The Ditto Down key is a little bit different in that it copies from the screen you are in. So if the place of birth and death are the same, hitting the "F9" key at the death place will copy that information into the death field, again saving you data entry time.

Of course one can still use the "Quick Entry Place" as mentioned in yesterdays blog, this list is compiled as one builds their database and the program will remember the place combinations as you begin to type them in.

Hopefully this has been helpful to those struggling with adding in new and/or a lot of data.

Remember comments and suggestions are always welcomed!

Happy Ancestraling...

Claire ;)
AQ Cues & Clues

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