The Family History Information Standards Organisation (FHISO) is an international organisation established for the purpose of developing and recommending information standards for genealogy and family history purposes. It exists to bring together genealogy companies of all sizes, as well as professional genealogists and hobbyists, to collaborate on standards that will benefit the work of genealogists around the world.

The standards development process was initiated March 22, 2013, with an historic Open Call for Papers.

Drew Smith, Chair of FHISO, sums it up this way: “The mechanical, electrical, and digital products and services that we use every day function as well as they do because international standards organizations were formed in the early 20th century, and the standards they created were adopted by all successful manufacturers and service providers. FHISO was created to do the same thing for the information-based products and services of the genealogical community. When both companies and consumers join us in the work that we exist to do, they make it easier for all genealogists to create, transform, and share information without the risk of unintended change or loss.”

FHISO Board Meeting 12 September 2017

ACProctor : September 19, 2017 8:55 am : Announcements

The FHISO Board met by Google Hangout on 12 September 2017 at 1800 UTC. Subjects covered include their finances, domain names, technical work, and the website.

The minutes of this meeting are available here: http://fhiso.org/minutes/2017-09-12/

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Second Release of Draft Standards for Public Comment

ACProctor : September 11, 2017 10:44 am : Announcements

A little over two months ago we released our first two draft standards on Citation Elements: one on General Concepts such as the data model, the other giving RDFa bindings for tagging citation elements in HTML formatted citations.  This generated some very useful discussion which identified many places where the documents could be improved.   Most consequentially, we agreed to change the following three points:

1. Remove the notion of a layer identifier and defer metadata support for the time being.

2. Change all our http: IRIs to https: due to security and privacy concerns.

3. Expand the notion of a translation set into a more general localisation set to allow a combination of structured and unstructured values.

We have now applied these changes, and have also added significantly to the number of examples and explanatory notes in the documents.  The new documents can be found linked from our public drafts page:


It has taken some time to make these changes, partly because of holidays and other intrusions of real life, but mostly because the change to localisation sets had significant consequences elsewhere in the data model, many of which we discussed at length on the tsc-public mailing list back in July, though others only came to light during the redrafting process.

We welcome any and all comments on these drafts on the tsc-public mailing list


and as always invite anyone who would like to be more directly involvedin writing and revising documents to let the TSC know.

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FHISO Board Meeting 1 August 2017

FHISO : August 5, 2017 6:29 am : Announcements

The FHISO Board met by Google Hangout on 1 August 2017 at 1800 UTC. Subjects covered included finances, extending existing memberships, and a report from the Technical Project Team on the two draft standards released on 29 June.

The minutes of this meeting are available here: http://fhiso.org/minutes/2017-08-01/ 

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