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News, How-tos, and assorted Views on Accordance Bible Software.

Thursday, April 06, 2006  

More on Changing the Display of Bible Text

In my previous post, I talked about the use of command-T to change the display settings of any pane containing Bible text. I explained how you can set the display of each pane individually, how you can set the default display of each different translation, and how you can go to the Preferences to set the default display of every Bible text at one time. In the comments on that post, someone asked the following question:

David, is there a way to select all of the versions displayed in a workspace and change them all together? Hence, in your illustration, the ESV along with the Message and Living would all be changed.

Also, (this might seem stupid) but when do you use this command? In other words, what does it do for you and when?

The answer to the first question is no, with one exception. (Don't you love those definitive answers?) You can set the default display for all Bible texts at once, but to change each pane in a search window, you would need to select each pane, do command-T, and then make your changes for that pane.

Now for the exception, and today's bonus tip. Above each pane, you'll see a small and large letter "A." These are the text size buttons, and they enable you to increase or decrease the size of text in each pane. If you hold down the option key while clicking one of these buttons, you'll increase or decrease the size of text in ALL the panes of that window. Pretty cool, huh?

With respect to when you would use command-T to change the text display, the short answer is, "Any time you need to change the display of text in a pane." Here are a few practical examples of when that might be:

  • At a few of the recent seminars, I was hooked up to a projector that was limited to a resolution of 800 x 600. This meant I had less screen real estate to work with than normal. At one point, I had four parallel text panes open, and I was looking at a passage containing poetry. The panes were so narrow that it made the poetic formatting look funny. So I did command-T and checked "Suppress poetry." Boom! No more funny-looking poetic formatting.
     
  • In most cases, I want each verse displayed on a separate line with the verse reference displayed. But when I just want to read the text of the Bible, that's a visual distraction. So I'll do command-T and choose "Continuous paragraphs" from the Show as pop-up menu. Then I'll choose "Omit entire reference" from the Format pop-up menu in the References section. Now my text is more conducive to continuous reading.
     
    Actually, I just said all that so you'd know how to make those changes using Command-T. In real life, I never make those settings by going to the dialog box. Instead, I go up to the Display menu and choose "Continuous Paragraphs" from the "Show Text As" submenu. Then I go back to the Display menu and choose "Hide Verse References." We figured these are the kinds of formatting changes that many people want to make on the fly, so we put them right in the Display menu to save you the trip to the dialog box. That's your second bonus tip of the day!
     
  • Okay, one more example and I'll quit. Let's say you've spent years highlighting the text of the Bible with highlight colors, dashed underlines, boxes, etc. (You did know you can do that, right?) That rainbow of color is great for study and future reference, but it can also be distracting when you're trying to read the Bible. So choose command-T and check "Hide verse highlighting" and "Hide word highlighting." Voila! Your highlighting is hidden, but you haven't lost all that work. You can bring it back any time you want, but it's out of the way when you don't want it. Try that with a print Bible and a color highlighter!

    Hope this helps some of you.





  • Comments:
    Cool! Thanks David.
     

    These text display options are great. It also be wonderful if we could do things like change line spacing and color of the text, maybe even background color.
    ;)
     

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