Genealogy research can be extremely serious. It can also be used in ways that are just plain fun. A website called Kin2 will let you explore the family tree of the characters in the new “Dark Shadows” movie. Playing around with the genealogy of fictional characters is always amusing!
Kin2 is the website created by a small company that is based in Utah. It grew out of a website called OneGreatFamily, (which is now 12 years old). OneGreatFamily lets users submit information about their ancestors to the website. It then works on matching them with the information that was submitted by other users about their ancestors. This method is used to create extensive family trees.
OneGreatFamily has created a huge database of over 250 million names. The basic idea for Kin2 was that it would be a way to take all of those names and put them into something that consumers could have access to. Kin2 is currently in beta. You can use it right now to find family connections between your family tree and the family trees of celebrities and historic figures. It will launch after the bugs have been worked out.
“Dark Shadows” is the name of a new movie that directed by Tim Burton. It stars Johnny Depp as a vampire named Barnabas Collins. He was imprisoned for years, before being accidentally set free. Barnabas returns to his ancestral home to meet his descendants, who, as it turns out, are rather dysfunctional. This movie is a remake of the original “Dark Shadows” TV show that aired in 1966.
Want to learn more about the family tree of Barnabas Collins? Kin2 has an extremely fun way to do that. When you first arrive at the Kin2 website, you need to click the link that says “Dark Shadows”. At the top of the screen, you will see very stylized images of each of the characters that are in the movie. Click on any of them and drag the image into the family tree on the page. Soon, you can see exactly how each of the characters you selected are related to the other ones you placed into the family tree.
When you are done playing around with the “Dark Shadows” family tree, you can leave a comment for Kin2. As I said, it is currently in beta. Comments from people who tried out the website can help the designers to identify and fix whatever problems you may have found with the functionality of Kin2.
Image by Dana Deskiewicz on Flickr