It seems appropriate to begin the experiment with my Smith line, since here we are the day before St. Patrick's Day, and my immigrant Smith ancestor was from Ireland. I've previously written about these Smiths just last August.
So we begin with the personal trees. I entered my known Smith line into MyHeritage, and synced it with my copy of Family Tree Builder 7. So far, I'm the only one who has viewed my MyHeritage tree, and I don't yet have any Smart Matches™.
Then I turned my attention to Ancestry.com (with the intent to sync to Family Tree Maker 3 for Mac). While entering the data for my father, George Thomas Smith, I saw two public trees that gave an incorrect county name for his death. So I have emailed the two people who had the incorrect data (I assume that one got it from the other). As I reviewed the hints for Dad, I saw one referring to an obituary. But the name of the paper listed at the top of Ancestry's screen was incorrect. The obituary was clearly from the Greenville (SC) News, not from a newspaper in Massachusetts. How odd!
Adding my grandfather, William Henry Smith, resulted in 6 hints from public trees. These all had information that I already had, but I left them for now as people I might want to contact. As I reviewed the other hints, I saw the one for him in the 1910 census. Interestingly enough, it had an incorrect middle initial for him (L instead of H), but it was clearly the right family.
With great-grandfather Charles Henry Smith, there were 9 hints. One was for a hint from 10 public trees. Again, I left these for a later date (one had what appeared to be an incorrect mother's name). One of the things that I noticed is that the baptisms for the Irish Catholic church in Newark had been added to Ancestry, which I had previously viewed on microfilm some years ago when I was at the Family History Library.
Finally, I added James Smith, but so far, no hints were forthcoming. UPDATE: 2 hints were eventually suggested. One was the usual from public trees (I won't bother mentioning those in the future). The other was a New Jersey death and burial index, which actually gave a more precise date for the death of James (15 November instead of just November). I then went over to FamilySearch to see the records on that. I may have to find out if I can get a source for that particular date beyond the indexed film.
Having added all my known Smiths in the direct line, I then downloaded the Ancestry.com to Family Tree Maker and linked it. So far, no particular problems.
It is time to move to the unified tree options.