Family Tree Builder 1.7
Despite its title, Family Tree Builder is more of a basic charting tool – can it deliver?
Order is everything here – individuals are displayed underneath the parent according to where they appear in the list
Publisher: IWTechnologies w. http://familytree.chartmakerapp. com Price: £9.95 First things first – this is not the MyHeritage app of the same name, but a standalone Mac app you purchase through the Mac’s App Store. Family Tree Builder promises much – fast tools for building and organising your tree, support for rendering charts in full screen and the ability to export and share your tree widely.
The reality is somewhat different. It’s actually a very limited tool for building a single descendant chart that contains only the very basic information required: name, dates and details of spouse. These are then linked to a ‘root’, namely the parent. Thus you slowly build the tree up – there’s no GEDCOM import, and the only potentially time-saving tool is the option to set up your tree in your spreadsheet (a template is provided) before importing it into Family Tree Builder.
Selecting a root is probably the most sophisticated part of the program – here, you select your parent (or previous family group if inputting details of a second marriage), plus choose a solid or dotted line. Order is everything here – individuals are displayed underneath the parent according to where they appear in the list, not birth date, so some planning is required.
As you add people, you’ll see the chart update in real time to reflect your changes (don’t forget to save regularly – there’s no automatic save). There are tools for changing the fonts, colours and icons – but no support for including photos. It means the final chart is clean, but still basic.
Once complete, you can then share the chart as a PNG image or PDF file, or export it in either format or CSV format. A print option is also available. While it’s simplistic, Family Tree Builder is well presented and easy to grasp, but its premise is so basic we can’t help but feel cheated at spending out £10 on what is nothing more than a basic charting app.
You can customise your tree’s appearance, colour, font and size with some easy tweaks