Jump to content


Photo

Why Buy Graphics Modules When You Can Google Images?


  • Please log in to reply
29 replies to this topic

#1 David Lang

David Lang

    Platinum

  • Accordance
  • 756 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Mount Dora, FL
  • Interests:Accordance development, writing, spending time with my wife and five kids
  • Accordance Version:9.x

Posted 19 January 2012 - 11:32 AM

Most of you are familiar with our Bible Lands PhotoGuide and other graphics modules. We're actually working on and planning some similar resources which offer lots of images designed to illustrate the historical and geographical background of the Bible.

Yet in planning these projects, some have questioned whether there really is a demand for those kinds of graphic-heavy resources. After all, if someone needs an image, they can just do a Google image search for free. Why then would they pay for collections of images in Accordance?

I have my own answers to those questions, but I'm curious to see what you, our users, think. Are you eager to purchase more resources like the PhotoGuide and American Colony photos, or do you see them as a waste of money? Why would you be willing to pay for those kinds of resources in Accordance when you can search for images on Google? Do Accordance graphics modules offer any advantages over Google image searches?

Let us know what you think. It will help us gauge whether these projects are worth pursuing.
  • Elliot Taylor likes this
Sincerely,
David Lang
Accordance Developer
http://www.accordancebible.com

Author:
Feet to Follow, Eyes to See
http://feettofollow.wordpress.com

Macs in the Ministry
http://www.macsinministrybook.com

Leader of the "Lang Gang"
http://www.langgangland.com
http://twitter.com/DavidAllenLang

#2 Tony Lawrence

Tony Lawrence

    Gold

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 226 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:McMinnville, TN
  • Interests:Hosting Bible Land Tours, Expository Preaching, My granddaughter
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 19 January 2012 - 12:00 PM

I am glad to see Accordance consider offering more of the American Colony type packages. I purchased the Pictorial Library of BiblePlaces.com from Todd Bolen several years ago and I can tell you that his photos are superior to anything one can download from the Google or even specific sites devoted to such (like my own biblelandphotos.org). His photographs are taken with professional grade equipment and are in high resolution. However, what makes his packages rise above any of the competition is the presenter's notes in the Powerpoint files. I immediately purchased the American Colony package from Accordance when it was offered because of Accordance's powerful search capabilities.

Let me give you an example of how one might use this: say one wishes to have a photo of a tamarisk tree while studying 1 Sam. 22:6 (There it is Ramah). In the Pictorial Library it is under the photos on Beersheba. Accordance would find it immediately. I can use the index and locate it under the photos on Beersheba, but having it Accordance would be much simpler and faster.

Imagine while being on a tour to the Bible Lands having the Pictorial Library in Accordance on an iPad. I want to encourage you to pursue it!
Tony Lawrence
biblelandphotos.org

#3 Elliot Taylor

Elliot Taylor

    Member

  • Active Members
  • Pip
  • 28 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Accordance Version:8.x

Posted 19 January 2012 - 05:01 PM

I agree with Tony... Especially with regards to his comments on the BiblePlaces.com work from Todd Bolen. I don't personally own Bolen's work, but one of our teachers at church used several of Bolen's pictures/images while teaching through the book of Leviticus and they were incredible!! - really beneficial for us pastors and Bible college instructors.

I understand that Accordance has to balance cost, competition, user demand, etc. But I am certainly open to saving my $$$ and purchasing these type of packages if they are produced at a high level of quality and can be efficiently utilized through the Accordance interface.

Thanks for asking the question David!


Elliot

#4 Ryan Gustason

Ryan Gustason

    Silver

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 169 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 19 January 2012 - 07:01 PM

I personally find them a waste of money. I would only recommend one "graphic" module: The timeline module.

#5 David Lang

David Lang

    Platinum

  • Accordance
  • 756 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Mount Dora, FL
  • Interests:Accordance development, writing, spending time with my wife and five kids
  • Accordance Version:9.x

Posted 19 January 2012 - 07:45 PM

Ryan, would you mind elaborating a bit? Have you purchased graphics modules other than the Timeline and found them unsatisfactory, or have you avoided purchasing them because you don't think you would use them?

Do you see them as a waste of money because you don't often incorporate images into documents and presentations, or because you're content with free sources for images?
Sincerely,
David Lang
Accordance Developer
http://www.accordancebible.com

Author:
Feet to Follow, Eyes to See
http://feettofollow.wordpress.com

Macs in the Ministry
http://www.macsinministrybook.com

Leader of the "Lang Gang"
http://www.langgangland.com
http://twitter.com/DavidAllenLang

#6 Robert Holmstedt

Robert Holmstedt

    Platinum

  • Accordance
  • 512 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 19 January 2012 - 08:14 PM

I use the location photos extensively when I teach ancient Israelite history and Dead Sea Scrolls courses. There is no substitute for a high quality photo when you want to coordinate with map work and give students a feel for the archaeological site or geography.

I would be thrilled to see even more photo collections offered.
Associate Professor, Ancient Hebrew and Northwest Semitic Languages
Dept. of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
The University of Toronto
blog: ancienthebrewgrammar.wordpress.com

#7 Joe Weaks

Joe Weaks

    Platinum

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,043 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Raytown, MO (outside KC)
  • Interests:I like things that are Orange, and possibly Blue.
  • Accordance Version:8.x

Posted 19 January 2012 - 11:38 PM

I would only recommend one "graphic" module: The timeline module.

Of all the graphics module types available in Accordance, the Timeline is the only one I've had no use for. Just goes to show it takes all kinds.
Joe Weaks
The Macintosh Biblioblog

Sometimes I'm so helpful even I can't stand it.

#8 A.D. Riddle

A.D. Riddle

    Member

  • Active Members
  • Pip
  • 37 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Highwood, IL
  • Accordance Version:9.x

Posted 20 January 2012 - 10:01 AM

I ordered the Graphics Bundle two years ago and then returned it for a refund.

For photos, I have benefited greatly from Todd Bolen's work. I prefer having the photos not wrapped up in a software program, and between Bolen's filenames and Spotlight, it is neither hard nor time-consuming to find the right photo.

The Timeline was not customizable enough for my needs. I wanted to be able to expand it to include many more kingdoms (Ugarit, Aramean and Neo-Hittite states, Urartu, Phoenician city-states, etc.). As I recall (I no longer have it to look at), I could add these but I was forced to group things under Mesopotamia, Egypt, etc. which was not very helpful.

The Atlas tool was not as helpful for research (it is more for teaching).

I might take notice if Accordance provided more graphic packages, but it will not be my first stop for such resources. I am happy to use Accordance for textual research, and other resources for graphics.

Edited by A.D. Riddle, 20 January 2012 - 10:03 AM.


#9 David Lang

David Lang

    Platinum

  • Accordance
  • 756 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Mount Dora, FL
  • Interests:Accordance development, writing, spending time with my wife and five kids
  • Accordance Version:9.x

Posted 20 January 2012 - 10:37 AM

A.D., I'm a bit puzzled by your impressions of the Timeline. Out of the box, there are already periods for Neo-Hittite states and Urartu in the Anatolia region, as well as Phoenicia and Aram in the Syria region. All you would need to do is add more specific items to those periods. The Timeline includes regions for Egypt, Israel/Palestine, Aram (Syria), Mesopotamia, Asia (Anatolia), Greece, and Rome. We would never make you group items for Syria and Anatolia under Mesopotamia and Egypt!
Sincerely,
David Lang
Accordance Developer
http://www.accordancebible.com

Author:
Feet to Follow, Eyes to See
http://feettofollow.wordpress.com

Macs in the Ministry
http://www.macsinministrybook.com

Leader of the "Lang Gang"
http://www.langgangland.com
http://twitter.com/DavidAllenLang

#10 A.D. Riddle

A.D. Riddle

    Member

  • Active Members
  • Pip
  • 37 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Highwood, IL
  • Accordance Version:9.x

Posted 20 January 2012 - 10:55 AM

David,

As I said, this was two years ago, and I no longer have the Timeline to consult. You actually worked with me at an SBL meeting to see if it could do what I wanted, and at the time we were able to come up with makeshift ways to do some things, but agreed that it was not entirely flexible enough for my needs.

I am not trying to beat up Accordance over this. But I remember having high expectations for the Graphics Bundle, and feeling somewhat disappointed. It is not that the product is bad, per se. But unlike my other Accordance tools which I am very happy with, it did not allow me to perform the kinds of research tasks that I wanted.

You probably want me to be more specific, but I do not remember the exact details of what we tried to do.

A.D.

#11 Ryan Gustason

Ryan Gustason

    Silver

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 169 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 20 January 2012 - 05:16 PM

Ryan, would you mind elaborating a bit? Have you purchased graphics modules other than the Timeline and found them unsatisfactory, or have you avoided purchasing them because you don't think you would use them?

Do you see them as a waste of money because you don't often incorporate images into documents and presentations, or because you're content with free sources for images?

I have avoided buying them for the aforementioned reasons. I do use images such as maps etc... in my blogging but generally not for teaching or preaching. If I did, I'd probably just do a google search for the image I would need or use something like wikimedia commons.

#12 John Brownie

John Brownie

    Member

  • Active Members
  • Pip
  • 21 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Ukarumpa, Papua New Guinea
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 20 January 2012 - 05:21 PM

I'm in a slightly different position than most, working in Bible translation in a country with poor, expensive internet access. Having a good collection of photos locally on the computer is far more useful for helping the translators to visualise places and objects.
  • Dennis M Callies and Donovan R. Palmer like this
John Brownie
Summer Institute of Linguistics
Ukarumpa, Eastern Highlands Province
Papua New Guinea

Mussau-Emira language, Mussau Island, New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea

#13 David Lang

David Lang

    Platinum

  • Accordance
  • 756 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Mount Dora, FL
  • Interests:Accordance development, writing, spending time with my wife and five kids
  • Accordance Version:9.x

Posted 21 January 2012 - 10:45 AM

Todd Bolen has now picked up on this discussion and linked to it from his Bible Places blog, so would anybody else like to chime in?

So far, a few of you have argued that Accordance graphics resources offer higher quality images than you can generally find on the internet, that they are helpful to those without inexpensive internet access, and that they're useful in teaching. Others have said that Google is adequate for their purposes.

What about those of you who aren't looking for images to use in teaching, presentations, or documents. Are resources like the PhotoGuide useful for those who are merely studying on their own?
Sincerely,
David Lang
Accordance Developer
http://www.accordancebible.com

Author:
Feet to Follow, Eyes to See
http://feettofollow.wordpress.com

Macs in the Ministry
http://www.macsinministrybook.com

Leader of the "Lang Gang"
http://www.langgangland.com
http://twitter.com/DavidAllenLang

#14 Ryan Gustason

Ryan Gustason

    Silver

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 169 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 21 January 2012 - 02:50 PM

I'm in a slightly different position than most, working in Bible translation in a country with poor, expensive internet access. Having a good collection of photos locally on the computer is far more useful for helping the translators to visualise places and objects.

This would be the only reason I would buy the photo guide... if I was a missionary who had limited access to the internet.

#15 Outis

Outis

    Gold

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 242 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:West Newton, PA
  • Interests:Hiking, Mountain Biking, Swimming,Translating Hebrew & Greek, good coffee, loose-leaf tea, homebrewing, stinky candles.
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 22 January 2012 - 08:09 AM

Hi David,

I use the "Bible Art" module all the time. The problem isn't finding pictures on google. The problem is finding ones that fit the part of God's word you are working with. So also, the problem is finding pictures that one can actually use without breaking copyright law. So many of the pictures google images finds aren't legally useable (at least for free).

For the bulletins I print week by week and the bible studies during the week the Bible Art module has become very useful.

So, my encouragement to you is to expand the bible art module.

Thanks.

Edited by Outis, 22 January 2012 - 08:09 AM.

Pastor Steve Bauer

stevebauer.us
pastorbauer--> at <--gmail.com

sic fatvs nocti se miscvit atrae...

#16 Ryan Gustason

Ryan Gustason

    Silver

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 169 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 22 January 2012 - 08:46 AM

Hi David,

I use the "Bible Art" module all the time. The problem isn't finding pictures on google. The problem is finding ones that fit the part of God's word you are working with. So also, the problem is finding pictures that one can actually use without breaking copyright law. So many of the pictures google images finds aren't legally useable (at least for free).

For the bulletins I print week by week and the bible studies during the week the Bible Art module has become very useful.

So, my encouragement to you is to expand the bible art module.

Thanks.

That would be a good reason to use them as far as organized by bible section. As to finding images for free use, thy Wikimedia Commons.

#17 Lorinda H. M. Hoover

Lorinda H. M. Hoover

    Platinum

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,129 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Iowa
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 22 January 2012 - 01:29 PM

I'm another one who would be most interested in graphics modules tied to Scripture verses, less so in others. I currently use the Atlas a lot in teaching, the timeline not-so-much. I tend to forget about the Bible Photo guide, in large part because I got it at a time when I wasn't serving a church that had a projector, color printer, or the like. Now I am but am still working out my workflow to find images for each week.

The Bible Art module has been tantalizing and frustrating at the same time. Too often there's not a picture for the passage I'm searching for, or the one that's there doesn't fit my needs or tastes. (e.g. many of the Doré works are too dark and too detailed to work well as black-and-white bulletin covers). Having multiple options and photos/Art for more passages would be great.

For the moment, I'm reliant on Flickr (with CC license search), and a few other sites I have stumbled across that offer images related to the lectionary I follow.

I'm far less interested in the American Colony photos and the like.

My own preferences would be to see Accordance focus its Graphics work on "Reference" modules, as long as it's not done at the expense of developing more commentaries, tagging the BHQ, etc.
  • Lung likes this

Running Accordance on:

Mac 10.9 (Mavericks)

iOS 7 (iPad)

Windows Vista Home Premium


#18 Matthew Burgess

Matthew Burgess

    Silver

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 116 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Charlottesville, VA
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 27 January 2012 - 08:06 AM

I use images--of places, artifacts, or maps--in almost all the classes that I teach. Many students are visual learners, and need to see a picture or a map in order to bring an event to life. I use the PhotoGuide frequently, because not only are the majority of images very high-quality, but they've already been identified and described by a trustworthy source. My main problem with simple search engines such as Google is that the provenance of the images can be difficult to determine. If you search for lesser-known archaeological sites, for instance, you can't guarantee that the hits will be from the correct sites, or that they will be of sufficient quality. Wikimedia Commons is good, but not comprehensive, and you've got to be connected to the web. An Accordance module solves all of these problems. I would be very interested in a version of the PhotoGuide that incorporated more images from important sites such as Antioch (four images), Persepolis (two images), Alexandria (description, no images), and Berytus (description, no images) as well as a wider distribution of sites throughout the Mediterranean.

I would also be interested in an expanded version of the Bible Art module. I must confess that I've been a little disappointed with this one; I understand that licensing costs would probably make a more thorough module much more expensive, or even cost prohibitive, but the current module is pretty bare. There are only nine images from the Book of Revelation, one of the most richly illustrated literary works in history. Some books have no images at all. A large percentage of the image library--perhaps even a majority of it--are engravings from Dore that are easily available on the internet. Currently its pedagogical value is pretty limited, but if I could get a module that would offer more of the diversity of expression that millennia of Jewish and Christian artists have brought to the biblical books, I would pay a lot more.
  • Dennis M Callies, Lung and Abram K-J like this

#19 Tony Lawrence

Tony Lawrence

    Gold

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 226 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:McMinnville, TN
  • Interests:Hosting Bible Land Tours, Expository Preaching, My granddaughter
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 27 January 2012 - 08:57 AM

I was one of the first to chime in on the encouragement for more graphic files. I was somewhat astounded by the ones who expressed a lack of desire but after reading all the posts here are some conclusions I have drawn:

1. Some are more visual and verbal. The old proverb a picture is worth a thousand words comes to mind. I personally like something that visually focuses my attention. The congregation where I preach express appreciation for the use of visual aids often. I understand in this case it is simply a matter of style.

2. Then there is the issue of art versus photos. I use photos much more than art but I can see the need for both. Photos of remote biblical sites can be of great value in teaching. There value is enhanced even more when there is accurate information that illuminates the photo. Even if one is fortunate to visit the Bible Lands they will not visit all the sites and some places may no longer be accessible. The American Colony set is excellent to show many of the sites before modern buildings were constructed.

3. It is also a matter of quality versus quantity. Much of the art is available on the Internet (Google, Wikimedia) is often diluted by the vast number of images that one must sift through to find the right one at the right resolution. The packages offered by Accordance are well organized and high resolution (for the most part). Don't discount the amount of time put in to choosing the best photo at the best angle.

4. I do not want my final observation to be inflammatory but some express strong opinions with little knowledge and experience. It is hard for one to comment on some packages unless they own and use them. My comments on the Pictorial Library by Todd Bolen comes from several years of use. I would encourage people to not dismiss their value without at least looking at what is offered. I own the GraphicsBundle (Atlas, PhotoGuide, and Timeline) American Colony Collection, BAR Archive, and the Carta Select Combo (Sacred Bridge, Quest, Bible Atlas, Encyclopedia of the Temple, Jerusalem Illustrated Atlas) from Accordance. From BiblePlaces.com I own the Pictorial Library (8 CDs), The Bible And The Land DVD, and the Views That Have Vanished: The Photographs of David Bivin CD. I also purchased the ESV Bible Atlas (with accompanying CD) and downloadable graphic files with the Moody Bible Atlas. I have used all these to great profit in teaching.

I believe there is a great market for more graphic resources from Accordance. My desire in order of preference would be:

1. Todd Bolen's Pictorial Library of the Bible Lands converted to Accordance Modules.
2. A module with pre-designed maps similar to those in the Moody Bible Atlas. (I know I own and use the Atlas, but sometimes it is not necessary to reinvent the wheel).
3. Short video clips of fly-overs of Biblical sites. (I know this is whole new area).
4. Larger collection of Bible Art and in higher resolution.

David, thanks for asking for our input! Thanks to everyone else for commenting, including those who have different interests that myself.

Tony Lawrence
Tony Lawrence
biblelandphotos.org

#20 Donovan R. Palmer

Donovan R. Palmer

    Silver

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 139 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:West Africa
  • Accordance Version:10.x

Posted 27 January 2012 - 03:44 PM

I'm in a slightly different position than most, working in Bible translation in a country with poor, expensive internet access. Having a good collection of photos locally on the computer is far more useful for helping the translators to visualise places and objects.


Agreed. I also prefer for these resources to be integrated particularly so that I can jump to them from my Bible study.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users