February 2009

Answers to the Blog Search Challenge

February 27, 2009 - David Lang — Last Friday, I posted a series of clues to words found in the King James Bible and challenged you to find them using Accordance wildcard symbols and search commands. We promised to give anyone who successfully completed this challenge a $30 credit toward their next Accordance purchase. About fifty people responded to the challenge, so we gave away nearly $1500 worth of credit! Even better, most of the participants reported that the exercise had taught them something new. For the rest of this post, I want to give you the answers to each ...

Last Day to Enter the Blog Search Challenge

February 25, 2009 - David Lang — Just a reminder: today is the last day to enter the search challenge I posted last Friday. If you could use the $30 credit (and who couldn't?), you need to hurry and send in your answers before midnight tonight (Eastern time). So far, we've had submissions from Accordance users all over the world, including the US, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Japan, and Zimbabwe! Most have said they had fun doing the challenge and that it would have been worth doing even without the promised monetary reward. (Not that they were offering to give it ...

Comma Splices

February 24, 2009 - David Lang — My wife and I homeschool, and I find myself sympathizing with my children whenever they try to understand the vagaries of the English language. What's a split infinitive? What's a run-on sentence? Where should you use a comma? It can all be so very confusing. This last question of where to use a comma has also been confusing some Accordance users lately, and it's due to a mistake on our part. When constructing a wildcard search, you can use the question mark symbol to represent any character. The question mark differs from the ...

Test Your Searching Skills and Save Money

February 20, 2009 - David Lang — Accordance enables you to create very sophisticated searches using a variety of search commands and symbols. You'll find a list of those commands and symbols in the Search menu, and explanations of how to use them in the Accordance Help and the PDF User's Guide (in the Manuals & Documents folder inside your Accordance folder). Dr. J has also done one of a two-part series of webinars on using Commands and Symbols, and part two is next Tuesday. Now, I want to give you a little extra incentive to hone your Accordance searching skills b ...

Thoughts on a Month of Webinars

February 19, 2009 - Timothy Jenney — We asked Dr. J. (Timothy Jenney) to give us his evaluation of the first month of webinars, and decided that the best place to share it with you is here, on our blog. As you can see, he overcame considerable obstacles to bring you the weekly session, and we are not done with the improvements. There have already been hundreds of downloads from the Webinars page, where you can access the recording of the session, or Dr. J's notes and Keynote summary. Helen It’s not quite been a month since we broadcast our first ...

Scalability

February 18, 2009 - David Lang — One of the great challenges of software design is how to make a program accessible to the new user while also providing an efficient workflow for the power user. One of the ways Accordance attempts to do that is by making the interface scalable. In other words, rather than offering one set of procedures to the new user and another, more complicated set of procedures to the power user, the Accordance interface scales to meet the needs of both users in the same basic way. For example, if you're working with the most basic kind of Bible ...

Who Determines Your Workflow?

February 17, 2009 - David Lang — I've been following a variety of interface discussions around the web lately—some dealing with Accordance and some involving a debate about Windows Bible programs. The interesting thing to me about these discussions has been how the various participants understand workflow. One Bible program has an initial workflow which is very easy to grasp and very pre-determined: do a broad-based search and then start drilling down through various resources. This approach seems to resonate with some people because it presents them with a lot of ...

Remembering a Friend: Dr. Harold Hoehner

February 12, 2009 - David Lang — I just received the news that Harold Hoehner, Professor of New Testament Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary, unexpectedly passed away this morning. You can learn more about Dr. Hoehner's life and work from this brief DTS tribute. Compared to Dr. Hoehner's colleagues and students, I barely knew him. I would see him once a year at the annual conferences of the Evangelical Theological Society and Society of Biblical Literature, where he was a frequent visitor to the Accordance booth. I say "visitor," but that's really not quite c ...

Creative Window Management, Part 2

February 11, 2009 - David Lang — In my previous post, I showed how you can break tabs out of a Workspace, arrange them using the Tile command, and take advantage of window recycling. In this post, I want to take that setup one step further and show you how useful it can be to hide or minimize windows. You'll recall that I had a separate window containing BDAG arranged beside a Workspace containing the Greek New Testament so that I could see BDAG side by side with the Greek text. But now my Workspace is narrower than I may want it to be. One solution is to hide or ...

Creative Window Management

February 09, 2009 - David Lang — In the course of a Bible study, it's easy to open a lot of different resources. By default, Accordance keeps all of these resources neatly displayed as tabs within the same Workspace, but Accordance also offers a ridiculous amount of options for how to arrange, manage, and reuse windows and tabs. In this series of posts, I want to highlight those features. Break Out of that Workspace! The advantage of the tabbed workspace is that everything is kept neatly in one place. The disadvantage is that each tab covers all the other tabs. So, for ...

Contra Strongnosticism, Part 4

February 06, 2009 - David Lang — For the past several weeks, I've been devoting Fridays to blogging about the error I call "Strongnosticism"—the tendency to use tools such as Strong's numbers to look for "secret knowledge" in the original Hebrew and Greek. In parts two and three in this series, I looked at the word translated "virgin" in Matthew 1:23 (parthenos), showing how to look that word up in a basic Strong's dictionary, how to consult more in depth lexicons, and how to examine every occurrence of that word in context. When last we left off, I had mentioned the need to ...

Brilliant Idea for Multi-Column View

February 05, 2009 - David Lang — Between all our online video training and new webinars, we're making every effort to teach our users all the ins and outs of Accordance. But every so often, our users come up with a trick we haven't thought of. In a recent thread on our user forums, one of our users requested the ability to flow the text of a single Bible text across multiple columns. He even created a mockup of what he envisioned. Here it is: As you can see from the screenshot, the advantage of a multi-column view is that you can see more of the text at one ...

Past Due, but Worth the Wait

February 04, 2009 - David Lang — My wife, Lisa, has been expecting our fifth child. Her due date was January 27, but the baby didn't come that day. He didn't come the next day, or the one after that, or the one after that. With each passing day, we'd get more calls and e-mails asking if the baby had come. Not yet, we would reply, we're still waiting. The well-organized ladies at our church even began bringing us meals before we had a baby to justify them! As January gave way to February, we started to get a little nervous. You see, our first child went two weeks past ...

Creating Concordances

February 03, 2009 - David Lang — Mark Hoffman of Biblical Studies and Technological Tools has an interesting post about creating printable concordances in Accordance and several other Bible Study programs. Even though Professor Hoffman is running Accordance on a Windows PC under emulation, he declares Accordance "the clear winner in accomplishing the task of generating a concordance."

Free Accordance Webinars

February 02, 2009 - David Lang — Last Tuesday, we launched our first in an ongoing series of free Accordance training "webinars." Our live training seminars have been hugely successful, but there's no way we can travel to every location that would like to have a training seminar. Our Video Training DVD, which has now been made freely available online, gives anyone anywhere access to in depth Accordance training, but it lacks the personal connection and interactivity which come with live training. That's where webinars come in. What is a "webinar"? It's an interactive ...