Using the Information Panel

Friday 8 November 2019 by Fouke Boss

All genealogical software allows you to enter information about persons and their relationships. Centurial is different in that information is entered in the context of a source. For every source the user draws a small graph describing the persons in the source and their relationships. In this blog we take a step-by-step look at how to draw these information graphs.

Information Panel

The information panel is the panel in the bottom-left corner of the source editor. After you've created a new source using the source dialog, the information panel is completely empty. It is now up to the user to start drawing a graph of all people in the source, and the relationships between them.

The easiest way to start off is to use the hyperlink in the centre of the empty panel (click on the image to enlarge):

Simply click on the green link that says 'adding a person' once, then move to where you want to draw the first person, then click once again. Done!

Editing the claims for a person

After you've created a person, it is selected, which is indicated by the green border around the person rectangle. If exactly one person is selected, you can start editing the claims of that selected person in the claims panel, like so:

Notice that an unselected person rectangle can be selected by clicking it once.

Adding a partner

To add a partner to an existing person, click the existing person with the right mouse key and then choose Add partner from the context menu. Move to the location of the partner, and click once:

Please note that you could abort the current action by pressing the Escape button, as long as you haven't clicked once to place the new person.

Editing the claims for a relationship

Just as you edit the claims for a person, you can also edit the claims for a relationship by selecting the relationship by clicking it once with the left mouse key.

After clicking the relationship, the claims panel shows the claims for the relationship, allowing you to edit them. Have a look at this earlier blog for a reminder on how to use the date editor.

Adding a child

Adding a child to an existing person is similar to adding a partner, again click the existing person with the right mouse key, but this time choose Add child from the context menu. Move to the location of the child, and click once:

Notice how this new child is only a child from the selected parent, and not from the partner of the selected parent.

Adding a parent

Adding a parent is again no different than adding a partner or a child. In this case, however, both child and parent are already present on the panel. This does not change the sequence of actions:

Click the existing child with the right mouse key, choose Add parent(s) from the context menu, and then click the existing parent. Easy peasy.

Moving persons around

Next, we want to add some more children to the parents. To make a little room for them, we move the first child a little:

Place the mouse pointer over the person you would like to move, press the left mouse button and while keeping it down, move to the new location of the person and finally release the mouse key. Notice how the relationships move along nicely.

Adding a child to two parents

Every child has two parents, and sources usually mention them both. Therefore Centurial allows to create a person from two parents in one action:

Place the mouse pointer over the partnership of the two parents, click the right mouse key and choose Add Child from the context menu. Move to the location of the new child, and press the left mouse key once.

Adding an new person (revisited)

We started this blog off by adding a new person using the a hyperlink. There are 2 additional ways to add a new person to the canvas. The first one is to use the Add a Person item from the toolbar:

Click the toolbar icon with the left mouse key, move to the location of the new person and again click once with the left mouse key. The second way of adding a new person is to click with the right mouse key in the empty space between the persons, select Add a Person from the context menu, move the mouse pointer to the location of the new person and click once, again with the left mouse key:

Adding two parents to a child

Centurial also allows a child to be connected to two parents simultaneously, like so:

Move the mouse pointer over the child, press the right mouse key and choose Add Parent(s) from the context menu. Move the mouse pointer over the partnership between the two parents, and click once with the left mouse key.

Selecting multiple persons

Centurial allows the user to select multiple persons at the same time, and there are several ways to do so. The first way is by using the Ctrl key on your keyboard. Select the first person you want to select by clicking it with the left mouse key and then, while holding the Ctrl key down, click the second person with the left mouse key. Both persons are now selected and can be moved around simultaneously, like so:

The second way to select multiple persons is to use the selection box. Click in the empty space between the person rectangles with the left mouse key, and while holding down that key, move the mouse pointer around. This will draw a temporary rectangle which is called the selection box. Notice how all persons inside the selection box become selected:

The last option is to select all persons and relationships, either by choosing Select All from the context menu or by pressing the Ctrl+A keys. This allows you to move all persons in one go:

Deleting persons and relationships

To remove a person, a relationship or a group of persons from the network, first select the obsolete persons or relationships, place the mouse pointer over one of the selected persons, press the right mouse key and select Delete from the context menu. A popup will appear, inquiring if you are sure you want to delete the selected items. After confirmation, the selected items are removed:

Please note that the popup will only appear if any claims are present for the selected persons and relationships.

Using templates

Finally, Centurial offers some predefined templates for frequently used graphs, like the Birth template (consisting of 2 parents and the newborn child) and the Marriage template (the two newlyweds and their respective parents). Both templates are available either from the toolbar or the context menu:

Select the template from either the toolbar of the context menu and click once to place them on the canvas.

Summary

Extracting new and previously-unknown information from a fresh source is one of the more exciting parts of doing genealogy, and with the new skills acquired from this blog, the experience becomes even more fun.