15 November 2007

Logos Bible Software: a review

by Dan Phillips

For several months now, I have been using Logos Bible Software in addition to BibleWorks 7. I began with the Scholar's Library: Silver, then upgraded to Gold. I've also added language reference modules and commentaries.

Forward
I've used various Bible study programs over the years. At first, in the 1980's, I used Gramcord for Greek. Then I used BibleWindows (now called Bibloi). Somewhere in the 90's I switched to BibleWorks, which I've used ever since (ever since version 3, I think). I've been through it's buggier and more awkward stage, and now enjoy robust and stable version 7 on a daily basis.

I stepped into the Libronix Digital Library System in order to use the Theological Journal Library, for a convenient way to search Biblically related journals.

And so, Logos? I'd always passed by Logos because of its price, frankly, because I didn't really love the Libronix engine. Besides, I was very happy with BibleWorks.

Now I'm a Logos initiate. Here are my....

Impressions: favorable
I've used Logos pretty extensively over the last half-year plus, and have developed a feel for it.

What stands out above all is what an amazing resource it is. You can do a "Passage Search" on any Biblical text and, within a few minutes, have all the references to that text in all the commentaries in your database, plus much more. For instance, I laid in Luke 4:29, and when the search was done I had about twenty commentaries, cross-references, listings in six Gospel harmonies, SermonCentral.com listings of ten sermons (with more available), a map, listings from the journals I have loaded, and a good bit more.

From that window, click on the "Exegetical Guide," and I have the text in Greek, references to any grammatical notes on it (Burton, in this case), the Novum Testamentum Graece's critical apparatus, and lexical listings on each word, including articles in TDNT and EDNT. Plus, there are syntactical diagrams.

If I click on "Search Entire Library," after a longer stretch I have every reference to that verse in every commentary, theology, book, dictionary, church father, journal, or any other Libronix resource in my database. The result is simply a massive array of resources, all available at a click. (In this particular case, it listed 665 resources.)

At that one click, the particular resource opens in its own window, at the place where the passage is referred to. If I then copy that passage to Word, it also automatically copies the bibliographical information in a footnote, formatted.

You can also study words, topics; you can set it up for a daily Bible reading schedule, or for use with devotionals. I have it set for Spurgeon's Morning and Evening.

My couple of experiences with their technical support were entirely positive. I had a live person online with me within a few minutes, and the answers I needed not long after that. Knowledgeable, friendly, responsive, top-notch.

Another wonderful feature is the extensive hypertexting. Every Bible reference is hypertexted, so that with a simple mouse-over you can see the verse. But it goes far beyond that. References such as Kittel's Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, or Metzger's textual commentary on the Greek NT, contain names and symbols you may not immediately be able to identify. No worries: mouse-over, and you'll be reminded the manuscript name, date, library, and contents; or the church father's date, the scholar's name, and on and on. This extends to all manner of acronyms and resources and names, all available at a mouse-over.

Also, the fonts and type-setting (to use an archaic term) are very pleasing to the eye. It isn't all just 12-point Arial; the font and the layout are, as far as I can tell, the same as the hard copy version.

Plus Logos provides a great variety of tools for interaction with the text, including the ability to highlight text and affix the equivalent of marginal notes.

As I mentioned, I've already added to my initial investment. I intend to keep doing so. In fact, Logos notifies its customer base when it is contemplating converting a book to its format. By expressing interest, you move the book towards listing as a project, and get a discount on it to boot; I'm lined up to purchase several as it is.

It used to be that I'd go on vacation with a ton of books. Now I just bring my laptop — and, with it, thousands of books and journals. Thanks to Logos!

Impressions: less favorable
It is a bit ponderous. The search on Luke 4:29 mentioned about took 77 seconds, on a pretty fast computer. If you leave Logos to work on other programs, then come back to it, it can take some time to "wake up." But Logos is searching a massive database and, while I don't love that about it, I don't mind it. I just start the search, go work in another program, then return after a couple of minutes.

Plus, it simply isn't easy to make one's way around in lightly, quickly, and deftly in Logos; or, if it is, I still haven't mastered it. Switching translations, looking up words, checking individual resources — I haven't found the quick and easy way to do it.

It is expensive, I won't lie to you. But some of the sting is taken off if you qualify for Logos' very generous Academic Discount program; but it's still quite a few Happy Meals. Nonetheless, the result is an extraordinarily useful and powerful resource. How many times have you paged through book after book looking for something you think you remember reading? Logos could do the search in a fraction of the time, if you have the resource electronically.

Also, I admit to my shame that I find it not totally intuitive. It's a very powerful program, but very powerful usually = very complex. You can customize it to a degree, but the customizations aren't easy to find nor manipulate — and I say this as an IT professional. Contrast this with BibleWorks, which concentrates virtually all its customizations in one place.

To offset the complexity of the program, Logos provides a wealth of training videos for free, both with the program and online. Plus there are online sites, blogs, and many resources. But I have the frustrating knowledge that I'm only scratching the surface of a very powerful tool.

So...which one?
You know I reviewed BibleWorks very favorably both here and at my blog. You have to wonder which tool I recommend.

First, let me dither and beat around the bush a bit. Choosing just one of the programs is an apples and oranges proposition, or scalpels and chain-saws. To tell you which is better, you have to tell me what you want it for. If you want to cut down a tree, a scalpel is a terrible tool; if surgery — step away from the chain saw. And so, each program does what the other doesn't.

At first, I wondered whether Logos could replace BibleWorks. I looked for my favorite BibleWorks features. I can tell you now: it can't, and they weren't there. Logos simply does not do what BibleWorks does, even fractionally as well. I am absolutely in love with BibleWorks' speed, lightness, power, and integration. For exegetical work, it's a dream. But almost above all, I love the verse-by-verse text editor that brings it all together. And BibleWorks is very decently priced. For under $400, you simply cannot beat the gold-mine of tools BibleWorks provides.

But you'll recall that I have upgraded Logos from Silver to Gold, have added resources, and plan to add more. Why? Because Logos has BibleWorks beat as a comprehensive, massive database. It simply is a tremendous work-horse of a resource for sermons, papers, theses, research — and Pyro posts! I'm glad to have it, and I expect to keep adding and upgrading.

The practical upshot is that when I do my Bible reading, studying, sermon prep, I have both open, and I use both. I use BibleWorks primarily, but also use Logos.

So which one do I recommend? Both. For working in the languages, and the text of Scripture directly, BibleWorks. For whole-field research and breadth and depth of study, Logos. My heart belongs to BibleWorks, but I've grown to respect and appreciate Logos. I only see it getting better and better, and expect to keep building and using it indefinitely. I'm glad to be able to use both.


For further reading
The review by Andrew D. Naselli discusses the concept, scope, strengths and future of e-books in general, and reviews Logos' Gold version in particular, comparing it with other Bible study tools.

Mark V. Hoffman has an impressive array of links Logos and BibleWorks, including user-created downloads that can be added to each of the to resources, reviews and discussions of programs.

Phil Gons posts a helpful brief comparison of BibleWorks and Logos that includes links to other reviews and discussions.

There are scads of pbb (Libronix compatible) files available for free at Truth Is Still Truth. The scope is amazing; you'll find works by John Owen, B. B. Warfield, Boston, Watson, John Gill, Alexander Maclaren, and a host of others. They're all formatted for Libronix (which Logos uses), and they're all free. Find instructions for using the downloads here.

Any such resource becomes part of the Logos database.

Dan Phillips's signature


84 comments:

JackW said...

Thanks for all those links Dan. Turns out that MacArthur Library owners can upgrade and get a 25% discount.

Andrew Jones said...

cool. thanks for the review. the guy that invented gramcord (paul) used to go to the church i was pastoring and in the 80's i watched him tap taping on his pda while i was preaching.

what do you think of accordance?
and what about some online resources like e-sword?
and do you think logos isa good investment if the online stuff is getting more and more complete.

dac said...

I feel like the poor second cousin, stuck with e sword and Next Bible (http://net.bible.org/bible.php)


David

Benjamin Nitu said...

It is quite expensive.

Here is a tool that is free and does a lot of the same things that Logos Bible Software does:

E-Sword

Benjamin Nitu said...

I guess E-sword is quite popular ... for poor people like us dac :)

Jason Vaughn said...

One of the best kept secrets with Logos that I maybe skimmed over in your article: http://logos.com/videos

These are online training videos that really do make a difference!

DJP said...

If you'll look at my review of BibleWorks at my blog, and the comments section, you'll some some of my many commendatiosn of e-Sword.

I would be puzzled, however, at how anyone could read this review and say e-Sword makes Logos unnecessary. It's a bit like saying, "I have a bicycle; what do I need with a car?" Well, maybe you don't. If you don't need a car, then by all means, don't buy a car.

But the implication (if intended) that a bike does what a car does because both have wheels and move — or that e-Sword does what Logos does because both have resources — well, it gives me one of those "Why bother writing with such care and detail?" moments.

There are some very good online resources. I don't see them taking the place of local installations such as I've reviewed ever — or at least not until one has universal internet access globally 24/7 at a speed comparable to internal pc access.

Yes, Andrew, Gramcord was wonderful when new. I think it was about the only software of its kind when it came out. I think I used it on my 8088.

Accordance is only for Macs, and since I use a real computer, I can't test it.

(c;

DJP said...

Jason, that's what I was alluding to when I wrote:

"To offset the complexity of the program, Logos provides a wealth of training videos for free, both with the program and online. Plus there are online sites, blogs, and many resources."

But I'm glad to have you provide the link. Thanks.

Johnny Dialectic said...

I've used Logos for several years, and love it. I start the day with devotionals. I read Spurgeon and Thoughts for the Quiet Hour and the texts they expound. I then go to the particular text I'm studying and do all sorts of things.

I also love how you can define resources for yourself and search only those. For example, my extensive Torrey library is all together. I also like creating my note files for sermon illustrations, quotes and general theology.

I have my pet approaches to things, but know there's probably a lot more I can do. I've toyed with going to one of their Camp Logos sessions.

Regardless, this is a powerful program with lots of instant benefits.

Eek said...

I used used Logos for a while but now I use PC Study Bible from Biblesoft. Its pretty fast and VERY easy to use. My library has grown to be pretty extensive and now I use it almost everyday. The interface is excellent.

SolaMeanie said...

I hate to be the Luddite here, but I will just to throw a spanner in the works. I am the meanie after all.

Give me my old dusty hardcover books on my bookshelves and an old Royal manual typewriter any day. My eyes are almost put out now from having to stare at a screen for much of the day.

As a matter of fact, I've been considering raising pheasants in my back yard just so I can have the quills for pens. Anyone know where I can find indigo ink on the cheap?

Kidding aside, thanks to Dan for the review. I do have OnLine Bible, but that does have its limitations.

DJP said...

Eek — thanks for your note.

I went over to the Biblesoft site and looked over what they have.

Eek, honestly, I'm not meaning to knock it, but only saying this for information. The selection over there is SO very narrow, compared to what Logos makes available. And a great many of those resources are public domain — you can get them for free with e-Sword, or for Logos.

If it does what you want, keep it and be happy!

I'm just saying that Logos makes 10X the resources available, for those who want or need them.

Chris Roberts said...

"The practical upshot is that when I do my Bible reading, studying, sermon prep, I have both open, and I use both. I use BibleWorks primarily, but also use Logos."

You are not alone there. I just bought Logos a few months ago (Scholars Gold) after falling in love with the demo's of its passage guide. Its power with searches has further impressed me and I love its outlining tool.

That said, I still love BibleWorks 7. If I'm working with a passage I always keep both programs running. While Logos has some good resources for original language tools (the Exegetical Guide is excellent!) as you say it can't beat some of the things BibleWorks can do, but BibleWorks lacks in certain resources. So the two work together very nicely and it's hard to imagine going back to doing everything by books. It's so much faster with these programs helping.

Chris Roberts said...

eek,

"I used used Logos for a while but now I use PC Study Bible from Biblesoft."

To each his own but I've grown annoyed with PCSB. It was the first Bible study platform I used, starting with version three. Upgraded to four when it came out. Don't plan to upgrade any more. Programs like Logos and BibleWorks seem pretty clearly intended to help those studying the Bible do so even better. PCSB strikes me as intended to make a buck. The model is completely different. IMO the interface is not as clean as the one for BibleWorks or for Logos and Biblesoft has not done enough to fix its glitches under Vista. I've got several libraries for PCSB but I'll just have to let them go because I have no intention of updating again or continuing to use it.

Chris Roberts said...

solameanie,

"Give me my old dusty hardcover books on my bookshelves and an old Royal manual typewriter any day."

These programs don't quite replace books. :) I recently bought Even-Shoshan's Hebrew concordance and someone asked why in the world would I do that with the programs I have? Because I don't like to rely solely on the software. I use the programs almost exclusively, but where it is feasible I like to have books I can use (and know how to use them!) if I need to for some reason (I don't want to be stuck without tools if aliens should sabotage the world's power grid!)

DJP said...

(I don't want to be stuck without tools if aliens should sabotage the world's power grid!)

Good point. I did overlook that one.

Benjamin Nitu said...

djb said:
" There are some very good online resources. I don't see them taking the place of local installations such as I've reviewed ever — or at least not until one has universal internet access globally 24/7 at a speed comparable to internal pc access."

I made a donation at e-sword and they sent me the CD containing everything. You can install it locally.

As for the review, I think it was very useful.
And remember, a bike is better for your health.

Joking aside, it definetly looks like Logos is a great tool. All I'm saying is that if people would use it to its full extent then it is a good investment. Otherwise, E-Sword is enough.

To use your analogy: If I only have to go 300 yards there is not a huge difference between using a bike or a car.

This reminds me of people that would pay big bucks to buy Photoshop and they would do stuff that can be easily done using Paintbrush.

Bottom line, for amateurs like me E-Sword is enough. When I grow up, I'll look for a good car. :-)

Benjamin Nitu said...

yes, Dan

in Steven Curtis Chapman words:

We've got CD sets and videos, radio and TV shows
Conferences, retreats and seminars
We've got books and magazines to read on everything from A to Z
And a web to surf from anywhere we are
But I hope with all this information buzzing through our brains
That we will not let our hearts forget the most important thing
...
This is the reason we were made
To know the love of our Creator
And to give the love He's given us away
Yeah, the Maker, and the Father, and the God of everything
He says to love, love, love
He says love, love, love
Love, love, love
'Cause after all, it's all about love

Gods says love, love, love, love, love
It's all about love, love, love, love, love
Everything else comes down to this
Nothing any higher on the list than love
'Cause after all, it's all about love

DJP said...

(edited for spelling, goes before Benjamin's last comment)

Sounds like we agree, Benjamin.

You don't need the CD to install e-Sword locally, though; it's all available online. I love e-Sword, and I've recommended it frequently both online and off.

Phil Johnson said...

I think what's "intuitive" might depend largely on which of these resources you learn to use first.

I've used Logos for well over a decade (I think I was running Windoze 3.1 when I first installed it), and I've upgraded through every new edition of the program. It's the only program I've kept in my start menu that long. And it's the only one I can think of that truly gets better with every new edition. It's worth the price.

Oddly enough, when I installed BibleWorks a few years ago, I found it clunky and counterintuitive in almost every way. I tried it for a week and then uninstalled it.

Like Dan, I consistently use two main Bible programs. When I need a bicycle rather than a Humvee--for quick searches, cut-and-paste operations, and fast lookups--my first choice is still Quickverse 4.0. It's the finest, fastest simplest, most useful quick 'n' easy Bible program ever. But Quickverse was "upgraded" about a decade ago in a way that rendered it unable to do the very things it formerly did best. The current edition of Quickverse bears no relationship to version 4.0, and I don't recommend it.

So Logos is the reigning king, by my estimation--if only for the sheer wealth of resources you can get with it. Furthermore, Logos is now faster and more useful than it was a decade ago. It's a a mystery to me why software development usually results in slower, clunkier programs, but Logos's developers clearly have the right idea.

So it's two thumbs up for Logos.

Thanks for posting this, Dan.

DJP said...

It should be noted that Phil (obviously) uses Photo Shop Elements like a pro, whereas I just periodically glare at my copy of it, and it glares back at me.

Writing and Living said...

Great review. Logos is my husband's *favorite* toy, erm, tool.

But you need to make something clear: If you buy this, you WILL want to upgrade. So sit your wife down, and give her the bottom line from the start.

Just so you know.

I say that with a smile. And I am thankful on my knees that I married a man who spends money on Bible study tools.

Andrew Jones said...

pc = REAL computer?????? - i dont think so and i can see now why we dont see eye to eye.

hey - in the old media world, when my computer is not available, i am a big fan of the Net Bible and its 60,000+ notes that are really helpful.

DJP said...

Writing and Living, you ended up on a very sweet note...

...but you made a lot of husbands pout on your way there.

(c;

Dan said...

Chris, you are right on the money about the aliens. I too "...don't want to be stuck without tools if aliens should sabotage the world's power grid!"

I wonder if Logos' Academic Editor, Michael S. Heiser has anything to do with thwarting the aliens' plans to knock out the grid!

Logos not only has the best Bible software in the world, it also keeps the aliens from sabotaging the power grid!

Thanks Logos! ;-)

DJP said...

Wow. Those guys have thought of everything.

Phil Johnson said...

I should mention that anyone who is frustrated by my recommendation of Quickverse 4 (a program now almost impossible to find and install), I also strongly recommend e-Sword for those who want a bicycle with all the gears and bells and whistles. And the best part is that the program is free, and if you want to add on modern Bible versions and simple study resources, they are really cheap.

And Andrew: I'm a Mac dude now, too, but I still have to run Windoze on my Mac to get some of my favorite software running.

Perhaps I should also mention that when I got the Mac, the other Pyros insisted that I install some accountability software to make sure I don't start to go Emergent on them.

Chris Roberts said...

Chris, you are right on the money about the aliens. I too "...don't want to be stuck without tools if aliens should sabotage the world's power grid!"

It's actually interesting to note that Logos is providing help in case the aliens succeed. Since I'm still new to Logos I don't know if this has been a long practice, but I noticed that many of their products are now advertised as shipping with a print copy of the work. This doesn't seem to be the case with most of the more scholarly works, however. I assume it's only with particular publishers with whom such arrangements have been made.

troutdude said...

I switched to Logos a couple of years ago, frustrated that Quickverse dumbed down. And I haven't regretted it. The first time I used the exegetical guide I realized that someone who loved the teaching of God's Word developed this program!

Worst drawback: funding my habit! Logos ain't cheap, but it is a good investment.

Spurgeonwannabe said...

Don't know if I should put this here but oh well - For those who balk at the price tag of Logos - there is another way of getting this software if you are in ministry

There was a Campus Crusade pastor's conference for local pastors in our area - for attending and listening to the availability of their programs they give you Leader's library edition of Logos - as well as various other books and resources

The only cost of this seminar was $180 dollars - I can't remember what we got but it was quite a bit of stuff some good some bad

The major downside was this: Campus Crusade tries to reach across ecumenical lines so I sat beside a united church minister whom I suspected was not heterosexual

To have one of these seminars all you need to do is call them up and request one for your area - there is no other cost associated

PS - As a non-scholar Leaders Library version is plenty for me at this point

greglong said...

Thanks for the info on BibleWorks and Logos, Dan. Very helpful.

I use PC Study Bible 4, and so I read with interest Eek's and Dan's comments. It seems to do what I need it to do, but I'd be interested to hear from anyone else who decided to leave PCSB for another program and why.

SolaMeanie said...

Dan,

I had wondered about the relevance of the artwork showing the man passed out with a bottle, but thought better of asking. I was afraid it might have something to do with technophobes like me.

Phil, let's not let the Emergent Church co-opt us and claim the wonderful Macintosh for their own. I have used Mac exclusively since 1993, and I have yet to get sucked into a labyrinth or into buying my first pair of Birkenstocks.

If anything, the Windoze system and PCs ought to be Emergent territory because of their incorrigibility and utter un-understandibility. I strongly suspect Brian McLaren has a side job as a Windows programmer.

Solibond said...

DJP: Have you taken a look at E4? I think for the price it is hard to beat.

http://www.freebiblesoftware.com/

DJP said...

MeanieI had wondered about the relevance of the artwork showing the man passed out with a bottle, but thought better of asking.

Hover your mouse over the picture.

At least that works with a real computer. Don't know about Macks.

Stefan said...

For those of us without the means to procure the software, probably the best free, online compendium of sermons listed by Scripture is Monergism's Expository Sermons from Genesis to Revelation, although inexplicably, there are no spurgeon.org links (although there are biblebb links to sermons by Spurgeon).

And there are of course other excellent resources, perhaps most notably the Christian Classics Ethereal Library. Check out the wealth of stuff on the Bibles and Commentaries and Sermons pages.

Stefan said...

Benjamin: Thanks for the tip about e-Sword!

centuri0n said...

I didn't insist on anything, Phil. I suggested we start a conversation about whether it's helpful to distinguish between Mac personal computers and Windows personal computers as we all ultimately use a CPU.

And in case you haven't heard it yet, Darrin Patrick's use of the PoMotivators was almost entirely flattering.

centuri0n said...

Hey waitaminit -- did you just out me?

Stefan said...

Solameanie:

Ultimately, I'm with you. I usually print out long material worth reading, rather than try to read it online. Would love to get my old Underwood repaired, but the only typewriter shop in town couldn't fix the broken space bar.

And if any of us is ever stranded on a desert island, I'm sure there's only one possession any of us would want to have, and it wouldn't be a computer nor a commentary, but a good, old-fashioned, hold-in-your-hands Bible.

Stephen Newell said...

Maybe it's just my personal stubbornness, but I have resisted the Logos "train" for a couple of years. Mostly because there's this guy named Dan (no, not DJP) who apparently works for Logos who makes drive by comments on blogs pushing the latest Logos software. There's just something about that I find distasteful.

But reviews like DJP's -- that is where you find out whether this stuff is worth it or not. Thanks DJP for giving me something else to consider when my family asks me what I want for Christmas. ;-)

SolaMeanie said...

Stefan,

I have this fear most likely from reading George Orwell. Snapping to attention whenever the email or error alert sounds is just too much like Winston Smith snapping to attention for the Two Minutes Hate.

Dan,

"real computer." LOL. You've perfected the dig to almost cryogenic proportions with that one!

S. Todd Young said...

I jumped in on Logos a few years ago when I was able to purchase the Scholar's Library at a half-off discount. They were offering Southern Seminary students and staff an academic special, and it has been a great resource.

Interestingly, I only really discovered some of its vast power recently while preparing a sermon for a preaching class. I took elementary Greek two semesters ago, and I decided to click the exegetical guide. Holy Bible, Batman! I got more Greek help than I knew what to do with.

By the way, I'm not sure how you guys feel about the developer, but RE:Greek shows some promise for online Greek study.

Thanks for the post!

Todd

(busted the link in that first post... doh!)

DJP said...

Yes, Sola, but... did the mouse-over work?

jbuck21 said...

Dan,

Great info - I'm a Bibleworks guy for sure myself. It's a great tool, and the language stuff in it is excellent.

How much, if you don't mind me asking, did you drop on Logos? I've been interested in getting the software for the reasons you'd mentioned, but I need to know if I'll need a second mortgage or not.

Thanks!

jon

Daniel said...

Speaking of free bible software, Interlinear Scripture Analyzer 2.0 is a powerful, but lightweight interlinear Bible and concordance search software tool that parses the Greek and Hebrew texts etc. It's free, so it fills a gap that E-sword doesn't.

SolaMeanie said...

Dan,

No, alas..it did not. It's a conspiracy, I tell you, a conspiracy, with a healthy dollop of discrimination folded in. I will forever be in mystery over the inebriated man passed out in the post all because I prefer Mac to Windows. (weeping loudly)

We Mac users are an oppressed minority, but we have no advocacy groups willing to file class action lawsuits or protest on our behalf. I guess we will have to stage a sit-in or Operation Rescue-type demonstration at the homes of Bill Gates and Michael Dell.

DJP said...

So... maybe you could start with asking for a Real Computer for Christmas? You can get them for very reasonable prices. Not like... you know... that other thing.

SolaMeanie said...

Nope. An oppressed minority I will remain. I have no desire to take an undergrad course just to learn how to use the cheaper computer and related software . . . that is until the next glitch surfaces and Microsoft has to release a new patch.

Besides, I have total confidence that Phil will convert you to Mac in due time. Use one for a month and you'll never go back. As Darth Vader said to the Emperor -- "But . . . if he could be turned . . . . .

~Mark said...

I've been using WordSearch for a long time and it's been really helpful and simple to use. Not a powerhouse like some but it has plenty for my current purposes. Several people have told me about E-Sword lately and I think I may add that too!

Craig P said...

to greglong:

I use PC Study Bible, and will still use it since I'm familiar with it and don't want to shell out more money to start over.

BUT I am annoyed that they won't address problems with scriptural text. Specifically, some translations italicize words, and PC Study Bible doesn't always get it right. I haven't noted any actual incorrect words, though. So I found that I sometimes needed to refer to a printed copy of the Bible while studying on the computer to make sure the italics were right in those cases where it made a difference.

I also noted some mistakes in the interlinear Hebrew (the wrong Hebrew word for the English word).

I emailed them about these concerns a few years ago. (The problems came when they went from version 3 to 4.) I don't recall their exact response, but the result was that a fix wouldn't be coming from them.

Annoying. And disappointing. It may be that they fixed these things with version 5. But I'm not going to pay more $$ for the upgrade to find out.

VcdeChagn said...

who apparently works for Logos who makes drive by comments on blogs pushing the latest Logos software.

I saw this guy on preteristarchive where I was doing some research on Peter Lange to decide if I wanted to pick up his commentaries on Logos.

I use Quickverse (MacArthur, Barclay, NIV commentary), Logos (everything under the sun), WordSearch (only complete Ironside commentary and Thompson Chain software) and E-sword (best for quickness).

No one software seems to do it all. Prepping for Sunday School last week, a little bit came from each resource.

BTW, for those interested in the MacArthur Library, there is a new version coming out for LBX in Jan 2008 per CBD.

As far as Macs go, my kids have enough toys :)

TruthStands said...

Dan, just a quick tip... to switch translations, with any Bible open, just hit the right or left arrow key. You can cycle through all your related resources with the arrow keys. With a Bible you can go through all your Bibles, with a commentary you can just cycle through all them with one key.

For looking up words, just right-click the word (in any language), hover over the "Selected Text: ..." menu, and you have a ton of options for search based on that word or opening a specific resources (dictionaries, lexicons, etc.).

That's a quick and easy!

VcdeChagn said...

Oh, and I absolutely despise QV...I keep upgrading it hoping at some point to get a decent interface...but no where else can you get Barclay and I already have stuff that would cost a fortune to add to other software in it...

As someone I know used to say about Windows..is this the version that doesn't stink?

DJP said...

Now now now:

1. No Dan-bashing!

2. If it's the "Dan" I'm thinking of, he's a perfectly nice guy. He's enthused, and he's employed. Can you blame him for Spreading the Logos?

Truthstands — I'll try to remember to try that after I get home. I think that, frankly, most of the right-click things I see just puzzle me.

SolaMeanie said...

On Mac, you don't have to right click or left click. You just click. One more reason why Mac clicks for me.

vcdeshagn, my computer will bite you for the "toys" crack. ;)

Conservman said...

I found a free Bible Study Software at http://www.theophilos.sk/. Haven't downloaded it yet, but what to if I ever use Windows :). Since I'm a Linux Guy it would not be used, anyone know of an open source Bible Study Software for Linux?

Grace said...

Dan,
Why are you putting kittens in cups? They look quite uncomfortable.

And no, I didn't have time to read the post, although I directed my seminary student husband to look at it in case he was interested. He'll probably be needing some new Bible resources soon.

Robert M. Warren said...

"VcdeChagn": If you're really tired of QV, be advised that eSword will read Cross format files using its separate Cross module (see the eSword toolbar on the right end).

Dan: Check this site out for tips and a toolbar to help you arrange Logos windows for quick switching:

http://www.jeff-jackson.com/new/religion/logos/toolbars.html

I use Logos similarly; I divide the workspace into quadrants and have 4 sets of stacked windows, usually so I can have ESV, NAS (for Englishman's Concordance), and MacArthur Study Bible visible, with other resources stacked behind them.

"jbuck21": Speaking from a non-professional perspective (not a pastor or seminary student), Logos can be had on the cheap. Start with Nelson's free "demo" (fully functional) with KJV, Strong's, and a few other resources. Link:

http://www.nelsonministryservices.com/nms/dept.asp?dept_id=5076&ref=11537

From time to time Nelson has their author/anthology sets (I have MacArthur's) very reasonably priced, but not right now apparently. GTY has MacArthur's for $50 (shipping included) here:

http://www.gty.org/Products/Software/41MLWL

Check out Rejoice Software's prices on Nelson eBible packages here (very inexpensive):

http://rejoicesoftware.com/ebible_deluxe.htm

(sorry this became so long and I hope I haven't violated any policies on commercial links)

Robert M. Warren said...

"VcdeChagn": Sorry, I meant STEP format for QV, not Cross.

Tim Brown said...

Having used the MacArthur Lifeworks CD for some time, I find it to be extremely good. Logos makes good stuff!

Sacchiel said...

Logos is a respectable software, almost a year ago I thought about purchasing it, but it would have been quite an investment.

mgvh said...

Thanks for the fine review, Dan. I'm right with you on your use of BibleWorks and Logos. Hey, what good is a dual monitor setup except to have one program running on each screen?! Thanks for linking to my collection of BW/Logos links. I'm also regularly commenting on the two programs at my Biblical Studies and Technological Tools blog.

DJP said...

graceI didn't have time to read the post

Thanks. Most people don't admit that.

(c;

VcdeChagn said...

If you're really tired of QV, be advised that eSword will read Cross format files using its separate Cross module (see the eSword toolbar on the right end).

Yeah, I thought it wasn't possible but eSword's STEP reader (I knew what you meant) is actually worse than QV.

I've thought about putting WS 5 on because it does STEP...but haven't gotten around to trying it and don't know how it will interfere with WS 7

kschaub said...

I've seen both Bible Works and Logos in action . . . and I vote?

I would love to have either program, but would rather buy 10-15 'non digitized' books for the same price. I know they offer a lot of books in the program, especially Logos, but I naturally push it away for the same reason I don't want Vista (ultimate!). I want the program, but I'd rather have books I can access and actually feel like I own without touching a computer.

I'd still like Logos, if I can get past paying for it. It is awesome.

For now, if you wish, check out http://laparola.net. It's an Italian site, but one of the best for Greek studies and helps. If you know any Spanish, you'll have no trouble accessing the Greek New Testament. And all parsing and lexicons are in English.

tcblack said...

Dan,
Thanks for the link to Stilltruth.com's PBB files.

Like you, I start with Bibleworks and then transition to Libronix. I've got the Scholars Gold Library plus all the PBB's plus a plethora of other resources purchased over the years and I really do thank God for such a great resource.
--
tcblack

DJP said...

Say, tc, though — do you know any way to view that site by most-recently-added files? Or do you just have to look at every blessed file every time, to see if anything's new?

tcblack said...

Dan,
There are two solutions for you.
1. Since you asked, the new default sort is by date on this page: http://stilltruth.com/allpbb

2. In order to make sure you have all the files available you might want to look into the brand new PBB Updater which was built by gephartr. See http://stilltruth.com/2007/pbb-installer for details.

DJP said...

Thanks!

Dave Mallinak said...

I skimmed through the comments, so I might have missed if someone else said this already. But after my church gave me Logos for Christmas a couple of years ago, the first thing I did was to buy the Spurgeon collection. With the Spurgeon collection, whenever I punch in a passage, the search brings up every time Spurgeon preached from that passage, did an exposition on it, or simply read it for the Bible reading before the sermon.

But one thing that you didn't mention as a possible drawback to Logos... information overload. One could not possibly read all that comes up in one of those searches. Could they?

But they sure could try!

Alan Kurschner said...

I used Bibleworks for a few years and it is a very good program for the langauges as far as PCs go. But I kept coming across comparison articles between Accordance and Bibleworks and saw that Accordaned performed better on different levels. I messed around with a friend's Accordance program and fell in love with it right away. So I switched to a Mac for the very purpose of Accordance and have never looked back.

All I will say is one may want to check out Accordance before investing hundreds or thousands of dollars into BibleWork modules.

I know individuals who have switched from Bibleworks to Accordance, but no one switching from Accordance to BibleWorks.

My two cents.

DJP said...

Robert M. Warren — thanks; I'm going to check that all out.

DJP said...

Robert's URLs were lost, so:

HERE is the toolbar link

HERE is the Nelson link

The others displayed fully.

lee n. field said...

"I had a live person online with me within a few minutes, and the answers I needed not long after that. Knowledgeable, friendly, responsive, top-notch."

plus the expense

--> "vertical market" software for professional theologians.

"Accordance is only for Macs, and since I use a real computer, I can't test it."

Pshaaw! What do you think us Linux geeks use...

lee n. field said...

>anyone know of an open source Bible Study Software for Linux?

Actually, I do.

Gnomesword and related projects at http://www.crosswire.org. Just an apt-get away for Debian (and Debian derived Linuces) users.

Jacob Hantla said...

As for the difficulty easily switching between resources, you have to set up the parallel and serial resources. For example if you set your favorite Bible translations as parallel resources, a simple click of the right arrow will switch between translations. Libronix truly is a heavyweight application, but it can be streamlined to what you do with all the very customizable options.

Thanks for the review. I have stopped using BibleWorks and completely switched to Logos.

Dave Marriott said...

I'm computer stupid. I can admit that and live with it:)

However, I don't want to Bible-stupid --- I can't live with that. That being said, I am having a hard time narrowing a search using libronix. Do boolean operators such as AND/OR work on libronix? If not, how do you perform a similar function?

TruthStands said...

Dave,

What search are you trying to perform, and are you doing it on your whole library, just Bibles, or some other limited search?

Dave Marriott said...

Hey truth,

I'm just searching the theological journals. I am searching for Spirit AND filling AND history (or another related word). I am trying to study the various interpreations of Spirit-filling using a historical theology approach. Thanks for your help!

TruthStands said...

Dave,

I see your problem! Maybe what would be best would be to search for particular scriptures that relate, and also find articles are that cover the work of the Spirit.

It is possible that someone can talk about a historical understanding without using the word "historical" and simply referenceing the names of the fathers.

In other words... I don't think there is one particular search that is going to get you exactly what you want, but you can narrow the field and do a lot of skimming.

Sorry I couldn't be of more help!

Dave Marriott said...

truth,

Thanks so much for you help --- I can do the other searches, but libronix would be a lot better if you could search it as you search google. Thanks...

DJP said...

I'm with you, Dave. It was Libronix that gave me my hesitations about Logos. That and the price.

TruthStands said...

Well, keep in mind that Google's goal is to search a smorgasborg (sp?) of information.

Libronix's goal is to do very specific searches for theological and textual studies. It's like any tool, designed for some purposes, not so great for others. It just so happens you're not doing a word or passage search, but a topical search, even looking for how that topic was dealt with in history. That's not something you can do a simple search and get all relevant results. No matter what the search engine is you'll have to sift through the results to find meaningful ones.

With the theological journals, it's best to find articles, not sections of articles, that deal with your theological topic. Then skim the article and see if it makes reference to a historical understanding.

:)

Grigs said...

I am sorry for the shameless promotion, but I have to give a shout out. Yesterday, LOGOS and Coral Ridge Ministries had a contest via www.godtube.com
I won the Gold edition with truths that transform with it. I just want to say thank you to coral ridge ministries, LOGOS, and Godtube.com
Coral Ridge and D.James Kennedy have been a great help in my Christian life since I was a baby Christian. Thank you so much for Logos these ministries!