Big news this week seems to be the announcement of the next season’s line-up of celebrities on NBC’s “Who Do You Think You Are.” While I can’t say that I’m super-excited about watching any of these folks, I’m sure I will watch the show just to hear them talk genealogy. My hope is that they were all selected because they have interesting family history stories.

Also, I’m hoping Steve Buscemi is as much of a character in real life as he is in some of the movies in which he’s performed.

In the News:

Today is the 75th Anniversary of the Plane That Changed Everything

If you’re traveling to a Spanish-speaking destination, or need to translate Spanish-English or English-Spanish documents, you need this iPhone app – Word Lens: Augmented Reality App Translates Street Signs Instantly. I can see lots of uses for this, once they release a few more languages!

A train-wreck in motion – Yahoo Has Hit Rock Bottom And Is In “Absolute Disarray”

Kind of interesting, from a historical perspective – Cultural Evolution Could Be Studied in Google Books Database

Print at home? Print at Costco? – Calculate Whether to Make Prints at Home or Through a Printing Service

If you love maps, check out this post (and the whole site!) – Mapping American Slavery

UPDATE: I forgot to add these yesterday! King Henri IV’s head has been very busy lately: Scientists ID Head of France’s King Henry IV, Suspected Henri IV Head Back With Heirs, and video here.

From the Blogs:

A terrific post about the misrepresentation of African American history – “Old Tom” in Grant County. A Disappointment and an Opportunity from My Ancestor’s Name by Angela Y. Walton-Raji.

Do not operate heavy machinery after drinking this! And Now… for your Holiday Nogging Pleasure: The Eggnog Recipe from The Family Curator (thank goodness Mr. Curator found the omission!)

A very interesting series about how a scientist looks at genealogy – Applying The Scientific Method to Genealogical Research (Part 6) from Steve’s Genealogy Blog by Steve Danko. Start with Part 1 here.

As much as I love technology (and want a Nookcolor for Christmas!), I still worry about this stuff – Books Are Your Friends from Random Notes by Leah Kleylein. Anyone who has tried to open an important, old file on obsolete media will understand.

Maybe this is why I can’t find Louise Rudity/Redsuty/Redsouty/WHATEVER – But I KNOW My Great Grandma’s Name! So Why Am I Stuck? from Olive Tree Genealogy Blog by Lorine Schulze

Because I loved Part 1, and “showing is better than telling” – Interviewing while looking at photo albums (Part 2) by Susan Kitchens of Family Oral History Using Digital Tools.

How genealogy can save the world – Family History–What’s in it for me. from The Chart Chick by Janet Hovorka. Seriously though, Janet is so very awesome, a fact that is not lost on the Utah Genealogical Association.

If you can translate Swedish, Jennie could use your help – see Swedish, Anyone? on They Came To Montana. Too bad Word Lens doesn’t do more than Spanish!

A possible case for The History Detectives? OTIS V. GRAY: A HISTORY MYSTERY from West in New England by Bill West.

Because I love a good scoundrel ancestor story – The Brooklyn Midnight Assassin from The Virtual Dime Museum by Lidian.

The Last Byte

More big news this week was the announcement of nominees for Family Tree Magazine’s 2011 40 Best Genealogy Blogs. While I have mixed feelings about this whole thing, I do want to thank (again) whoever took the time to nominate Little Bytes of Life for this honor. I’m happy that you read this blog, and I’m happy that I’m not always talking to myself… like I usually am at home.

I started this blog because I was a lonely, isolated, stay-at-home mom, and I needed to talk grown-up talk with somebody, anybody, even if nobody out there was listening. I assumed in the beginning that I would be a “mommy-blogger.” Sitting in my pajamas, I was just going to write about life, dull as it was, and hope to be struck by inspiration. Frankly, I never intended for this to turn into a genealogy blog (hence the odd title), mainly because when I started blogging, I didn’t know that there was such a thing as a genealogy blog.

What I found out later was that there was this amazing group of renegades people out there who shared my passion for genealogy, and were already blogging about it and sharing their knowledge. I accidentally stumbled across this group one day when I Googled my way onto Bill West’s blog, West in New England.

I’d found my genea-soulmates!

Much has changed in the genealogy blogging community in the past 3 years. It’s taken seriously now, and is no longer a “frontier,” trail-blazed by renegade genealogists using this strange thing called a BLOG. I mean, what sane person puts personal stuff like genealogy out on the internet like that? It’s just UNHEARD OF (or so I was told)!

I kind of miss the frontier days… but alas, that’s a post for another day.

What hasn’t changed is the people. Genealogy bloggers are still the most caring, helpful people you’d want to meet anywhere… not just on the WWW. And they’re a lot of fun in person, too!

And I’m still blogging in my pajamas, wiping noses and bottoms in between posts.

So, that being said… if you like this blog, I hope you will consider giving it a vote (or two!). The fact that you even took the time to read this post is much-appreciated!

*   *   *

Please note that “Best Bytes for the Week” will be on hiatus for the next 2 weeks in observation of Christmas and New Year’s.

To subscribe to my Google Reader shared items (where there are many more cool things to read), please visit my Google Profile. Be sure to check out the weekly picks of Randy Seaver, Diane Haddad, Megan Smolenyak, Susan Petersen, Greta Koehl, Donna Pointkouski, and the Follow Friday posts listed on Geneabloggers. Happy reading!

Copyright © by Elizabeth O’Neal

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