Accordance Blog

January 2009 — December 2009

Did we not go far enough?

November 13, 2009 - David Lang — In Tuesday's post, I described a new feature of Accordance 8.4 as offering "help for the Google generation." Now, if you enter a string of words and hit return, Accordance will do as it always has and assume you want an exact phrase, but if the exact phrase is not found, Accordance will offer to perform an AND or OR search for the words entered. One user, however, commented that he doesn't think we went far enough: I think its right to cater for the Google generation, because that's what we are and that's what we expect. It's not ...

I Can't Believe You're Not Waiting 'Til 9 For This!

November 12, 2009 - David Lang — Releasing a new Accordance version to our beta-testers always inspires excitement and a little nervousness on our part. Rather than just throwing half-baked features at our testers and users, we work hard to get them right before anybody outside of Accordance staff ever sees them. If our beta-testers indicate that a new feature requires major tweaking, our planned release schedule may have to get pushed back. So we're always hopeful that new features are essentially good to go. By the time we sent 8.4 out to the beta-testers, we had ...

Bibliography Citations in Accordance 8.4

November 11, 2009 - Rick Bennett — Yesterday David announced the release of version 8.4, and one of our newest features: export of bibliographic citations for tools. Today I'd like to describe this in more detail, and highlight some of its strengths. As of today we support two citation styles: SBL and Turabian. SBL is the standard for most in the Biblical studies field, but Turabian is widely used in colleges and seminaries. At this stage we felt that these two styles would meet the needs of the majority of our users. But, there's one problem: neither of them has a ...

Accordance 8.4: Bibliographic Citations and More

November 10, 2009 - David Lang — I'm pleased to announce the release of yet another significant update to Accordance 8. Accordance 8.4 adds a number of cool new features and interface enhancements, and can be freely downloaded here. Bibliographic Citations: Now when you use the Copy As Citation command to copy text out of an Accordance tool, Accordance will automatically append the Bibliographic information for that selected text. You can currently choose from four citation formats (SBL footnote, SBL bibliography, Turabian footnote, and Turabian bibliography) in the n ...

Our Greatest Asset

November 06, 2009 - David Lang — My boss has repeatedly said that our company's greatest asset is our users. Sure, your purchases enable us to feed our families, keep the lights turned on, and fund new development, but that's not what he's talking about. Rather, he's talking about all of the intangible ways you contribute to what we do. Here are a few examples. You push us to be our best: In a little more than a week I'll be heading to the annual meetings of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Society of Biblical Literature. My favorite part of demonstrating ...

Dr. J Teaches Greek Searching

October 28, 2009 - David Lang — Dr. J has just released a new podcast episode covering Greek searching. If you're wanting to work with grammatically tagged Greek texts, I'd strongly recommend this podcast. Dr. J explains root, lemma, and inflected searches in a way that those without a detailed knowledge of Greek can easily understand. Just don't get thrown by his discussion of the English words "dessert" and "desert"! ;-)

Lessons from a Kamikaze-Woodpecker

October 26, 2009 - David Lang — I'm sitting in the library of the local seminary checking a few modules I'm working on against the corresponding print editions. Every few minutes or so, I find myself interrupted by a loud bang. I look out the high picture windows to see a large pileated woodpecker sitting on the ground, looking a little dazed and confused. Obviously, it had launched itself at the reflection it mistook for a rival, and instead of driving away another bird, found itself beating its head into a wall. How fortunate for the woodpecker that he was built to ...

The Case of the Disappearing Search Argument

October 20, 2009 - David Lang — Good interface design is tough. Like any form of engineering, the devil is in the details, and it is the little things that often determine whether a program is hard or easy to use. Whenever we make even small interface changes, we can go round and round about the various pros, cons, and potential pitfalls. Even then, we don't always get it right. One little thing which I think we have gotten right is this: when you enter a search and hit return, your search argument stays put. In other words, if you enter "Adam" and perform your s ...

Booking Time in Dr. J's Studio

October 16, 2009 - David Lang — Back when I was developing our first two Accordance video training DVDs (the video from which is now freely available online), I recorded the audio in my bedroom using a reasonably good microphone setup. This meant recording either when my wife and kids were not in the house or after the kids had gone to sleep. (If you listen carefully, there are a few sessions where I sound a little sleepy myself!) The quality of the audio was passable and we thankfully had someone who knew how to clean it up. I recently needed to record some audio for ...

Accordance 8.3.3 and BDB Complete

October 15, 2009 - David Lang — Last week, we released yet another Accordance update. Accordance 8.3.3 fixes several minor bugs and cleans up corruptions in User Notes modules. There are no new features to report this time . . . or, are there? Okay, so we can't seem to resist adding at least one new feature in every update, and this is one most people will never notice. Right now you'll only experience this feature if you use BDB Complete, which has recently seen major improvements. Eventually, you'll see it in other modules as well. Before I describe this new f ...

Is There an Echo?

October 12, 2009 - David Lang — The other day on a Bible software forum, I saw a request for help with an interesting search. An individual wanted to find all places where someone's name is repeated, such as in Luke 10:41 where Jesus says, "Martha, Martha." How, he wondered, could this pattern be found for any name? Naturally, such a search is trivial using Accordance. To construct it, open the GNT-T, click the Words button, then open a Greek Construct window by going to File --> New Construct --> Greek or using the keyboard shortcut command-2. In the construct ...

Searching for Abundance

October 08, 2009 - Helen Brown — I came across the word περισσεια (perisseia, abundance) and wanted to study it further. Easy, I thought, I'll just option-click the Search button on the Resource palette to find all the words derived from the same roots. Problem: I get 710 hits since the root peri is used in many compound words with otherwise unrelated meanings. But perisseia has only the one root, so how will I find similar words? I open a Greek Construct, dragged in ROOT and select περι from the list. Then I option-drag this Root item into the same column, add *- ...

Who's Your Daddy? Part 2

October 06, 2009 - David Lang — In yesterday's post, I began offering tips for how to get the most out of Accordance's edition of the Church Fathers. I began by showing how to combine the three modules which comprise the church fathers into a single Search All group. This makes it easy to search for a particular father without having to remember if he appears in the Ante-Nicene series (CF-AN), the Nicene and Post-Nicene series one (CF-NPN1), or the Nicene and Post-Nicene series two (CF-NPN2). Today, I want to show you how to narrow a search to a particular father or even a ...

Who's Your Daddy?

October 04, 2009 - David Lang — Accordance's Church Fathers with Church History CD-ROM includes 37 volumes of the Early Church Fathers in English, along with Philip Schaff's eight-volume History of the Christian Church. Priced at just $129, this massive collection of material is available for less than $3.00 per volume. At that price, this add-on is a no-brainer for anyone interested in patristics, church history, or the history of interpretation. Yet once you have all this material available within Accordance, how do you get the most out of it? ...

Verses? We Don't Need No Stinking Verses!

September 29, 2009 - David Lang — When I was a teenager attempting to read the Bible for the first time, it was unlike any other book I had ever read. Yes, reading the Bible for myself was uniquely life-changing, but I'm referring to a distinctive which is much more prosaic and practical. Reading the Bible was unlike reading any other book not just because of its content, but because of the way it was laid out. In no other book that I had read to that point was each sentence (sometimes even the briefest parts of a sentence) divided up into separate chunks and numbered for e ...

Burning Ears: more blogs about Accordance

September 28, 2009 - Helen Brown — Dr. Joel Willitts of the Euangelion blog discusses the value of our many tagged texts on Accordance and Me, Part 5: Using Accordance for Research, while over at for the Sake of Truth Josh Mann tells his readers What I Love About Accordance. Way to go, guys! We don't mind how much our ears burn as long as our users are satisfied with Accordance and telling others about it. If you are not satisfied, we also want to hear about it, preferably directly or on the Forums where we can respond promptly to your concerns.

Sunday's Guest Preacher

September 25, 2009 - David Lang — This past Sunday morning, my family and I didn't make it to church. Yes, I forgot to set the alarm and my wife and I slept late. We decided therefore to have church at home. iTunes provided the worship music, and Accordance provided the preacher: I read from Jonathan Edwards' famous sermon, Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God. Why would I read the quintessential "hellfire and brimstone" sermon to my wife and children? My oldest son had recently read it for school, and when I asked him what he thought of it, his response was: "Well, D ...

Odds and Ends

September 24, 2009 - David Lang — Yesterday I posted a link to the TUAW review of Accordance. A blog focused on all things Apple, it has an audience with a wide range of religious and non-religious views, and that showed in the comments on the TUAW review. But amid all the noise several users voiced their personal enthusiasm for Accordance. One even gave his own excellent comparative review. Be sure to check it out. By the way, the author of the TUAW review lamented the poor signal-to-noise ratio of the comments his Bible software reviews have received, and I told him w ...

TUAW Reviews Accordance

September 23, 2009 - David Lang — The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW) has posted an excellent review of Accordance, emphasizing that many students of the Bible have actually switched to the Mac just to be able to use it. Be sure to check it out, including the always entertaining discussions in the comments!

Zondervan Partners with Accordance . . . in 1999!

September 22, 2009 - David Lang — Today Zondervan announced that it is discontinuing its Pradis Bible Software for Windows and will be licensing its materials to other Windows Bible software developers. This is a major shift in policy and welcome news for Windows users who did not want to use a separate Bible program exclusively for Zondervan content. The first of Zondervan's new partners is naturally and excitedly publicizing this long-awaited change, and some people may be getting the mistaken impression that this product has somehow replaced Pradis as the exclusive p ...

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