HRE for users of The Master Genealogist

HRE is designed to provide an onward path for genealogists who currently use the now-discontinued program The Master Genealogist (TMG), previously sold by Wholly Genes.

We are working to provide the ability to import existing TMG projects without data loss.  For standard TMG setups, we aim to provide better functionality than TMG.

But many things will work differently, as HRE is not simply a re-write of TMG but is an entirely new and more powerful program. In particular, the graphical user interface (GUI) will be different, as will the sentence-creation and reporting functionality. We intend to provide import-translation tools that will convert a TMG project (v8.5 and later) into the new HRE formats, so as to maintain so far as possible expected sentence outputs.

Existing TMG users should note that HRE is an ongoing project and fully-operational software will not be available for some time.  In the meantime, we recommend continuing to run your existing TMG program, and keeping your data up-to-date ready to transfer once HRE has been released.

If you need to move away from TMG immediately, then HRE is not for you, and you will need to select one of the available commercial genealogy options. Unfortunately that will mean sacrificing significant functionality as there is at present nothing that can match TMG’s feature-set.

Advantages of HRE over TMG

Development Tools: TMG’s use of the Visual Foxpro (VFP) platform eventually made TMG difficult to maintain and develop further, due to the termination of support for VFP. Hence the development tools for HRE (Java and H2) have been carefully chosen as standard, widely-used products with a strong developer and user base. Additionally, HRE has been structured so that the H2 database can be easily exchanged for another SQL database, if required.

Future-proofing: apart from use of the standard software tools mentioned above, HRE is being developed as an open-source product. This means that regardless of the activities of the current developers, anyone will be able to continue development of HRE in the future. Users will never be dependent on the commercial viability of the product or the  status of a company that no longer wishes to provide support.

Operating Environment: due to its development in a platform-independent language (Java), HRE runs natively under Windows, macOS and Linux – no emulators required.

Remote and Multi-user Access: HRE can operate as a single-user system (like TMG) but also as a server for another copy of HRE used as a client. And via access over the internet, more than one HRE client can access an HRE database.

Languages: TMG supported a number of languages but only at a very basic level. HRE is designed to support a screen language which may differ from a data language which may differ from a report language – a concept unique to HRE. This is currently supported across 4 languages – more translator skills can expand this set.

Extensions to HRE: a ‘plugin’ capability has been implemented in HRE – this enables anyone to add their own code to extend HRE’s capabilities by adhering to a simple defined interface. Such plugins can be ‘turned off’ in total or ‘turned on’ on an individual basis.

Data Compatibility: HRE aims to import all of your TMG database without loss of data or functionality, while converting this data to HRE format. Naturally, HRE provides support for UTF-8 character sets, which TMG could not.

Wholly Genes, Inc.

HRE is being written from scratch, and does not directly use or copy any of the program code within the Wholly Genes product TMG.

However, we recognize that in order to ensure compatibility with existing TMG user data, there may be some similarities between TMG and HRE, including underlying data structures, default sentence structures, modes of operation, and potentially “look and feel”.

We are very pleased to be able to say that Wholly Genes (Bob Velke) has kindly granted us permission to reuse any aspects of TMG (other than the source code) for which they control the copyright. As HRE is an entirely new program, we have not sought permission to re-use or de-compile TMG source code.

Ownership of copyright in some elements of TMG, including translations and some timelines, remains with the original authors and if there is any benefit in our reusing such third-party content, we will make separate arrangements.

We are most grateful to Bob for his generosity and encouragement in our endeavour to build on his ground-breaking original work in event-driven history research software.

Wholly Genes disclaimer.   Wholly Genes, Inc., the developer of The Master Genealogist (‘TMG‘), is not directly involved in the HRE project and will not provide technical support nor assume any responsibility or liability for the project.

All trademarks of Wholly Genes, Inc.,  including ‘Wholly Genes’, ‘TMG’, ‘The Master Genealogist’, ‘GenBridge’, ‘VCF’ and ‘Visual Chartform’ are acknowledged. Any use by the HRE project of these marks is by permission and is subject to the above disclaimer.

See also our HRE disclaimer.