Last year I wrote a little script for producing GraphViz graphs, and LaTeX books, from werelate.org family history data. I’ve been tweaking it a bit now and then, and using it for my mum’s genealogical research. It works, but the more I want to do with it the more I think it needs a good ground-up refactoring. So, I’ve set to work turning it into a MediaWiki extension, so I can use an installation of MediaWiki as the cache (instead of text files), and update this installation in a separate operation to the tree-generation stuff. (I found that I was playing around with regenerating things more often that I wanted to be waiting for downloading modified data, and it was set to check for modifications if it’d been longer than a day since the last check…) The other big advantage of sync’ing into a local MW is that I’ll have a complete, working, backup of all our data.
The basic idea is that the ancestor and descentant lists, which define the starting points for the tree traversal, will be defined in normal wiki pages, and both the syncronisation and the tree-generation processes will read these and do what they need to do.
I’m setting up a test wiki at http://test.archives.org.au, if anyone’s interested.