According to the Wikipedia encyclopedia, "Family Tree Maker is genealogy software that allowed a researcher to keep track of information collected during research and to create reports, charts, and books containing that information.

Here is a little trivia for you.  Kenneth Hess created the first Family Tree Maker, and he released it in September 1989. Not only has it changed hands numerous times, but so have the iterations and now discounted after Ancestry bought it as of December 31, 2015.

Family Tree Maker

Today, there is a gazillion other genealogy software on the market with similar names and purposes and are downloadable; for example,

  • Family Tree Builder; by January 30, 2021 
  • Legacy 9; by 
  • Family Historian 6; by
  • RootsMagic 7; by

With so many kinds of software on the market making family trees, it is hard to choose, and having abundant choices often leads to confusion.  Consequently, people are unsure of which software is correct for them or will fit their needs.  Fortunately for us, plenty of Professional Reviewers online help us sort it out. So, these services sure make our lives easier.

Therefore, here is a link to a Professional Reviewer, Mark Orwig, for instance.  He did a review entitled "Best Genealogy Software;" check it out if you are curious and want to see his entire analysis.

Mark Orwig Analysis

Regardless, briefly stated, he said, all genealogy software has similar functions, in that, they:

  • Let you build a family tree
  • Record information dates, locations, relationships of family members
  • Allows you to document your research, and sources and provide a link to your Family Tree.
  • You can also maintain multiple databases and charts, as well as print them out with your reports.
  • Modern genealogy online database providers offer many valuable services, such as storing your data,  backups to safeguard your audio, video recordings,  scans of your relatives and documents, hints, and clues to more searches.
  • Export your information to other genealogy programs; and import specific online data
  • Download information directly from some companies' online assets
  • Also, map your ancestors' history from Long ago

So, that brings us to a poignant question. If all genealogy software is similar, why does it matter which one we pick?  The answer is some family tree maker software is better than others at specific tasks; hence, the best software is the one that solves your particular problem and needs.

We have established that most genealogy software such as Family Tree Builder, Family Tree Maker, Legacy 9, Family Historian 6, and Roots Magic 7 are about the same. It boils down to your preference. However, if you desire software that is different from the run-of-the-mill software, well, The Photo Family Tree Builder (PFTB) is for you.

Just how different will the Photo Family Tree Builder, Version 2 when relaunched?

Am I glad you asked? For one thing, look at the output in the table above. The Photo Family Tree Builder app allows the creation of beautiful, unique Family Trees that mimic real trees. Its production is very different from all the rest of the family tree makers. That is why the United States Patent and Trademark Office granted it a patent number. No two trees are ever the same. So, each user customizes their family tree according to their genealogy, family history, and taste.

Two, the PFTB is a specialized photo Graphical User Interface (GUI). The GUI makes a variety of family trees. Therefore, anyone can use it; even school kids can create family trees for a school project.  Seniors can use it as a project:  by themselves, with friends, or with their grandkids. There is no hurry; everyone can take their time building their family tree. They can work at their own pace. So, their work does not reside on a server somewhere but stays on the user's PC. They save it, open the tree file; work on it, and save it as many times as necessary to make the perfect family tree. There is no rush.

Three, if one is a family historian or a genealogist, they use this tool in conjunction with those other research-based software and database sites.  One merely uses the PFTB to create elegant displays for themselves and others.

The tool

  • Patented Number: 9,947,122 B2
  • Requires hardly research when using the Copper, Bronze, or Silver plans
  • PFTB's symbols of the trees' parts are easy to understand
    • Ability to feature photos of your ancestors; and extended family members
    • It comes with a plurality of picture frames and non-frames, branches, leaves, and End Caps used for decorating and showing the end of a lineage
    • Customizable, flexible, and expandable through some generations; Gold Plan
    • Describes family members and relationships at a glance
    • The ability to differentiate between married couples unmarried couples
    • Tell the differences between nuclear families and incorporate blended families
    • Has the ability to show adopted children, single and multiple births of children
    • Allow the inclusion of same-sex marriages in the family tree
  • The Photo Family Tree Builder comes with:
    • Text tool:  records snippets of information, namely, names and dates on frames.
    • Tree Types: seven different Tree types are available
    • Mask technique:  allows for dropping and dragging of photos from around the picture frames.
    • Images: can be flipped and rotated
    • Light Built-in image editor
    • Backgrounds: which makes the composition more interesting
  • The output:
    • Commercial four-color printing:  
    • Four sizes:  16" x20", 18" x24", 20" x24", and 24" x36."
    • Conveniently Delivered:  


If you are a historian or a genealogist, Photo Family Tree Builder solves an age-old problem. That is, what is the best way to show off one's hard work, other than using charts, reports, or books? After all, one has done the research, knows the family's story, and gathered related photos. After that, one place all that collected information in charts, reports and tucks it away somewhere. A place usually no one else sees; unless one pulls it out for showing someone.  Using the family tree maker (PFTB) solves that problem. The harvested information goes on a wall for all to see.

On the other hand, if an average person merely wants to personalize their home with family photos, this software makes family trees straightforward and fun. In either case, the App makes a tremendous gift for someone.

No more Downloading the software. It will be Browser-based now. It is not a research-based software or database, and it only enhances research by allowing the creation of one-kind-family Tree displays. That is, the GUI lets one construct incredible family tree displays exclusively.

Make Family Tree

In many cases, there is no research evolved, use of readily available photographs. If a picture is not available, it has a substitute non-picture frame that blends in perfectly. When a snapshot becomes available, remove the substitute and insert the photo. But of course, you will need to create a new tree. Nonetheless, one can leisurely construct a tree.  After all, time is required to assemble all the photographs needed for the project. Then, drag and drop them into your tree composition.

Finally, once done with scanning, one is ready to start designing their tree. Drop and drag the photos of relatives, as needed, into the Photo Palette. Then, arrange the images in chronological order around the family tree and grow it. Therefore, if one wants each family member's names and actual dates recorded, they use the text tool to identify each person in photo frames in a name tag. Once you finish your family tree, print it.  Hang it when delivered. It is easy as one, two, and three.  

As said previously, the builder is undergoing improvements.  Version 2 will be available later in 2022.   If you wish to know when the new version becomes available, please let us know and we will drop you a line.



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