Modern Software Experience




This is a quick overview of articles about FTW TEXT.

There are two series of a few articles each and several related articles. The two series are FTW Text Primer and FTW Text for Developers.



It is assumed that the reader knows what GEDCOM is.
If not, A Gentle Introduction to GEDCOM provides the basics.


The FTW GEDCOM article discusses some issues associated with the problematic GEDCOM dialect used by Family Tree Maker for Windows, and provides pointers to some of the tools for fixing various FTW GEDCOM defects. It is a lead-in to the FTW TEXT Primer.


The FTW TEXT Primer consists of two articles, FTW TEXT and The FTW TEXT Problem.

FTW TEXT explains what FTW TEXT is, how it differs from FTW GEDCOM, why it isn’t a GEDCOM dialect, and the deliberately misleading FTW terminology.

The FTW TEXT Problem article shows what problems FTW TEXT files cause in practice when you try to import them into other genealogy applications.


The FTW TEXT for Developers series is aimed at developers of genealogy applications. It discusses how to solve the problems that FTW TEXT causes. This series relies on the GEDCOM Magic article.


The GEDCOM Magic article discusses how to correctly detect a GEDCOM file, several mistakes various vendors make, how to deal with errors in the GEDCOM header and how to easily distinguish between GEDCOM and FTW TEXT files.

FTW TEXT for Developers

The FTW TEXT for Developers series consist of four articles; Supporting FTW TEXT, Dealing with FTW TEXT, Documenting FTW TEXT, and finally, and FTW TEXT.

One possible way of dealing with FTW TEXT is to support it. Supporting FTW TEXT discusses how to do so. It shows that several vendors who aim to support FTW TEXT in addition to GEDCOM made the mistake of supporting the mixture FGTEWDTCEOXMT instead of GEDCOM. It explains how supporting both is both better and faster than supporting the mixture.

Dealing with FTW TEXT discusses what to do about FTW TEXT; ignore the FTW TEXT problem completely, provide support for FTW TEXT or inform the user about it?

Documenting FTW TEXT discusses how to document FTW TEXT; how to deal with FTW’s deliberately misleading terminology and how to describe things correctly.

Finally, and FTW TEXT is about the responsibility of, the vendor of Family Tree Maker, and calls upon to provide a free FTW TEXT to FTW GEDCOM conversion utility.


2010-09-24 GEDCOM Introduction

Added mention of and link to the A Gentle Introduction to GEDCOM article.




FTW TEXT for Developers