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Investing in UBS Handbook - good idea?


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#1 Unix

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 03:46 PM

I've invested in a different software where I have hundreds of books (many of which I don't use) plus I have printed matter that I use for at least a few hundred $. But Accordance is curently offering the UBS Translators Handbook for a significantly lower price.

 

Should I get Starter, UBS Translators Handbook, Revised English Bible and NETS from Accordance? What I'm thinking about are the concequences in the long run: I would expect to use UBS for approximately 30 years: will I have to pay a lot to maintain the software during a lifetime? Customer service was unable to promise what will happen when version 11 comes out, how much do You think I would have to pay each time to get the newest version?

An idea would be to update to the latest version only every second time. What is the probability that Accordance will stay in business for decades? I'm wondering if they are going to be able to charge the high prices.

 

(I will be studying Gk in college, first classical Gk, later on Biblical Gk. Probably I'm also going to study a bit of theology. I don't expect that to lead anywhere nor that I gain very much skills.)

 

In the future, what would it cost to sell everything I have to someone? I'm thinking of getting rid of all the software when I'm too old and have found someone to give them to. How much is the transfer fee?



#2 Julie Falling

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 04:01 PM

The upgrade from version 9 to version 10 was only $49.99 ($50) - a bargain in my opinion, and it came with a couple of modules.

 

If an updated version of the USB4 Handbooks should be released, you pay a fraction for the upgrade, not the full price.  

 

I look at my software the same way I look at my computer (or my car or our house).  They all require occasional upgrades and maintenance.  And it's all worth it for the service you receive back.

 

I use Accordance for several hours each day.  I'm just a serious Bible student who teaches Sunday school, but Accordance has been worth every penny I've put into it.


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#3 R. Mansfield

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 04:22 PM

Unix (nice handle, btw), this question about the longevity of this or that Bible software program comes up now and then, and although it's a legitimate question to ask, ultimately, I think it's impossible to answer. 

 

I'm sure a shudder went through a lot of people when Zondervan discontinued their Bible software (can't even think of the name of it right now) a few years ago. And there are companies that have come and gone through the years. 

 

My feeling is this, however: I don't know where I'll be decades from now, but I know where I am today, I know my needs, and I'm going to use the best tool(s) at my disposal. In other words, I'll let tomorrow worry about tomorrow. Accordance/OakTree isn't the largest Bible software company, but even a large and successful company can over-speculate and get into financial trouble (anyone remember Osborne Computers?). 

 

I have significant financial investments in at least four Bible software packages. If I had everything to do over with, I wouldn't have put as much into at least two of them (I'll be nice and let them remain nameless), but I can tell you that of those four programs (all of which are current on my MacBook Pro), it is only Accordance that I never close. 

 

I used to say that Accordance was one of those programs that I use every day. Now, I'd prefer to say that I never exit out of Accordance. It's always there. It's handy, it's fast, and what I need is at my fingertips. 

 

To quote someone we've all heard of, "tomorrow will take care of itself" (Matt 6:34). All I've got is right now, and I'm going to use and continue to invest in Accordance. I'm in for the long haul


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#4 Julie Falling

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 04:35 PM

Well said, Rick.


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#5 JonathanHuber

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 05:21 PM

My thoughts are similar to Rick's. You will have to pay to keep software up to date, so that's a drawback over buying print books. But software enables me to do things that I couldn't do with print, and that's significant. Accordance makes it possible for me to learn so much more than print books due to searching, portability, cheaper costs compared to print, etc. If I only bought print books, I either wouldn't have some of my books or I would get less out of them. For me, the value of learning the Bible better offsets the future costs and risks of software. Investing in software is a risk (so is investing in book- mold, fire, water), and you have to judge whether you're willing to take that risk.



#6 Unix

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 07:18 PM

Actually ... I have a fireproof safe. It can contain some of the books. Having two softwares would approximately double the risk. All I'm looking for is to save a buck, but I'm never going to buy UBS Handbook for the higher price that my current software offers:

My thoughts are similar to Rick's. [...] Investing in software is a risk (so is investing in book- mold, fire, water), and you have to judge whether you're willing to take that risk.



#7 Unix

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Posted 05 February 2013 - 08:51 PM

Julie Falling, but in my ears those $50 sound expensive, I would have expected some kind of discount compared to new customers. ... True they made improvements and added important features - but still. There are competitors so adding features and making improvements will probably be necessary in future version upgrades too, I'm afraid. So the future version upgrades might very well cost as much and that's very close to too expensive.

 

Rick, thanks, it's my name. (Was able to change my names. The surname too - to a Swedish word that sounds like a profession or hobby):

(nice handle, btw),

 

 

JonathanHuber, Well yes searching is certainly a benefit over printed matter, I won't disagree when it comes to the bulk of what I possibly want to get.
 

I would not build the library in Accordance much more than I said in my OP. Only exception might be LSJ IF and only if it will be cheaper than in my current software: http://www.accordanc...?showtopic=7225

The chance that Accordance issues titles that I want is somewhat slim, I allready asked customer service about Anabaptist books in my initial email and they responded that they haven't heard of any volumes marked as such. And I don't want to be too divided between two different softwares, so it would be better to radically limit the spending on the newer investment (Accordance). (Additionaly I've been buying a couple of packages of Roman-Catholic books (one somewhat small, one tiny), but unfortunately there's very little UP-TO-DATE books in that genre in any software and since it's so tedious to find out about them I've basically given up looking.)

 

All-in-all, what I mean is, that if I end up paying as much for the version upgrades during the time frame I would use it + the initial

Starter as for the main purchase it gets silly.

 

If only my current software would offer UBS for close to the same price ... but it's multiple times higher!

 

Julie Falling, if Edition upgrades really are discounted that's really surprising but in this case doesn't add a lot of value and willingness to upgrade because I'm basically not interested in the very newest English Bible versions (from the previous decade and onwards, and the very few that are interesting won't show up in UBS Handbook for sure: for example Updated Bible Version (http://updated.org), 2004 3rd Edition Good News Translation UK-English only; possibly similar older versions/Editions will, but ...). (UBS Handbook talks a lot about English Bible versions and some are really interesting such as JB that I've seen from a screencapture from UBS Handbook.)



#8 bkMitchell

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 09:24 AM

Hello Unix,

     

               The 50 USD Accordance charges for one to upgrade is far cheaper than what any of the other Bible/Library software companies charge for one to upgrade. And, Accordance includes all the basic functionality in their upgrades unlike another company I know of. 


Edited by bkMitchell, 06 February 2013 - 09:27 AM.

חַפְּשׂוּ בַּתּוֹרָה הֵיטֵב וְאַל תִּסְתַּמְּכוּ עַל דְּבָרַי

 

 


#9 Julie Falling

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 09:52 AM

Actually ... I have a fireproof safe. It can contain some of the books. Having two softwares would approximately double the risk. All I'm looking for is to save a buck, but I'm never going to buy UBS Handbook for the higher price that my current software offers:

 

Unix - You might want to just check a used book store.  Even Amazon has the translators handbooks used.

 

The major version upgrades in Accordance are not just tweaks of the UI and a couple of bells and whistles.  They are major overhauls that make a huge difference to the user.  I could not begin to estimate how many developer-hours it must have taken to produce version 10.  I, for one, am grateful - grateful for all the labor and grateful for the result; grateful for the excellent customer support; grateful for the efforts to bring us new resources.  And grateful for the helpful community on these forums.


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#10 A.D. Riddle

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Posted 06 February 2013 - 10:09 AM

Unix,

 

It is also worth pointing out that it is not always necessary to upgrade every time that Accordance releases a new version. I am still using version 9 and I am able to do all the work that I need to do just fine. I may be missing out on something, but if nobody tells me, then I will never know.

 

Also, to save $$, you can download pdfs of NETS from this website.

http://ccat.sas.upen...u/nets/edition/

The site says, "You are free to download these files for your personal, scholarly purposes. They may not be sold or redistributed."

 

A.D.



#11 Unix

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 11:27 AM

Julie, I don't live in the U.S., Canada, Australia or U.K. There are few if any used book stores over here that specialize in English literature, and none of them in religion/Christianity. A few sell used Christian books in the local languages and have a very limited stock in English. There's not a chance that they have UBS Handbook. If I would order from Amazon or Abebooks from U.K. there would be postage costs - I can't imagine that the set, even just the necessary parts of the set, would be as cheap as Accordance's offer.

 

Julie and bkMitchell, I have close to 1,000 books in the other software (many of them which I'm going to hide as soon as I have time, I'm a bit busy right now) plus Gk tuition videos - keeping it up to date is a small fraction of the cost. Keeping Accordance up to date would be a substantial part of the cost and that's what this is all about. The Accordance price for the UBS Handbook without the software, is quite good. Besides the other software can be updated for free, it's freeware (although it is true that You get much more functionality if You pay), but Accordance is not.

 

Unix - You might want to just check a used book store.  Even Amazon has the translators handbooks used.

 

The major version upgrades in Accordance are not just tweaks of the UI and a couple of bells and whistles.  They are major overhauls that make a huge difference to the user.  I could not begin to estimate how many developer-hours it must have taken to produce version 10.  I, for one, am grateful - grateful for all the labor and grateful for the result; grateful for the excellent customer support; grateful for the efforts to bring us new resources.  And grateful for the helpful community on these forums.

 

What is it like to have two different software and missing a lot of necessary books and thereby parts of  the functionality in one of them? Is this whole idea crazy?



#12 Julie Falling

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 12:00 PM

Unix - I don't live in a big city, so I can identify, a little, with limited access to used books of interest.

 

I only own Accordance, but there are a number of folks on these forums who own Accordance, Logos, and some even own a third program.  The usual motivation is to get a resource that is not available in their main software.  Most who own more than one program do all, or almost all, of their searches and research in Accordance.  The short answer is, "No.  The idea is definitely not crazy."

 

You can run Accordance as a demo (have you tried it?).  You would have to contact them to see if you can run a purchased module on the demo.  It may be that if you purchase the module, the engine comes with it, but I don't know.

 

The big advantage to having your stuff in one program is being able to smoothly move from one resource to another, to do searches in multiple resources at the same time, etc.  

 

I've never owned any Bible software but Accordance.  (My husband had a program based on the Libronix system back when he still had a PC, but I absolutely hated it, and knew I didn't want to go that route.)  I have owned Accordance for more than nine years now.  I have no idea how many $$$ I've sunk into it, and like you, would hate to even consider "reinvesting" in another program.  Since I'm completely satisfied with Accordance, that's not an issue for me.

 

Accordance 10 was a major release.  My guess it that it will be another couple of years before version 11 comes out.  Any upgrades in between are free.  Here's a link to "Accordance History" that will give you the dates major releases - http://www.accordancebible.com/History.

 

And A.D. is absolutely right - you don't have to go to the next version just because it's out there.  The only time you have to make a move is when your OS and your software cease to get along with each other.  Then your hand is forced.  I tend to stay updated with everything because the "trauma" of getting hit with a bunch of incompatibles all at once is something I seriously want to avoid!

 

The folks in Customer Service are very knowledgeable and very helpful.  They would certainly be able to tell you whether a purchase of the UBS Translator's Handbooks buys you the engine, too.


Edited by Julie Falling, 07 February 2013 - 12:10 PM.

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#13 Unix

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 12:29 PM

Julie, the very high price offered for the UBS Hanbook in the software I currently have, is almost like they don't offer it at all!

 

Having to do searches separately in two different softwares would be no problem for me. UBS Handbook is quite specialized so it's easy to learn when to do the searches in Accordance.

The first thing I asked Accordance customer service was whether Starter would be necessary, and they said that it would be:

The big advantage to having your stuff in one program is being able to smoothly move from one resource to another, to do searches in multiple resources at the same time, etc.

[...]

The folks in Customer Service are very knowledgeable and very helpful.  They would certainly be able to tell you whether a purchase of the UBS Translator's Handbooks buys you the engine, too.



 

Now that Accordance develops the software both for Mac and Windows, maybe there's a chance that the new versions will come a little less frequently?


The idea of buying UBS Handbook in Accordance is starting to sound like a good idea. Anyone more with experience of UBS Handbook or different softwares who could give me advice?

 

Maybe I would not use UBS Handbook for an as long time as 30 years.

 

So let's say that there would be 8 major releases during a "lifetime" (a lifetime is probably shorter than 30 years - how much shorter I don't know) and that I would not upgrade every time. Let's suppose the upgrades cost $65 each time (speculating that Accordance will raise the price because of increased development costs). So that would be an additional cost of 4*$65=$260. The UBS Handbook set costs $200. Let's say there comes additional volumes to it that cost a total of $50. Let's say that the additional books I buy in Accordance during a lifetime including the ones I said in my OP cost $90. So the books are $340. All-in-all the cost for the software would be as much as 43% of the total cost. The lack of convience having to switch back-and-forth between different softwares (the two Bible study softwares and Microsoft Word) would cost many hours of additional effort.

Totally all the effort and software cost would be at least 47% of the total cost (lost hours switching between the two softwares $30 - I don't count my time all that valuable in $). Putting it like this the investment is a somewhat bad idea from start!

 

So I'm undecided. But I will have to make up my mind. The current sale on UBS Handbook has already lasted for a long time so it won't last long anymore and I'm definately not keen on waiting for the next sale. The options are to either get it in Accordance soon before the sale ends, or not buy it ever.



#14 Julie Falling

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 01:05 PM

Unix - The Handbooks already cover the entire NT.  I wouldn't expect new volumes.  (We can only speculate as to whether or not there will be revised editions.  That can be said of any book.)  When financial resources are limited, the decisions can be tough.

 

It should be noted that these handbooks are not just for translators.  They also function as commentaries - in that sense they will never be "outgrown."


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#15 Unix

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 01:07 PM

Originally investing in Accordance would have been very problematic. Perhaps I could have got most of the needed reference works and original languages titles, but Accordance doesn't seem to have Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church just to name one. Additionally so many of the books I wanted, are either not in Accordance or I got them cheaper (on a good sale) in my current software than I would have got in Accordance.

I have put much less (if not several times less) money than You would think, into my current software. The main problem is that I bought the original languages books and features in it - my Gk knowledge is still so basic, I'm a novice, that I would not have needed to hurry to do that. If I would not have hurried with original languages there would have been more options for me. What I'm missing in my current software is also for example a Bible in the local language over here where I've done most of my studies. I didn't think about needing a Bible in the local language in studies - the college actually requires that. I thought English would have been OK. Bibleworks offers the Bible in the local language, but the problem with BW is that You can't customize the "package" plus they offer almost no additional books so getting the books I want to it would have been problematic. Now I noticed that Accordance offers the required Bible in the local language for $30:

I have no idea how many $$$ I've sunk into it, and like you, would hate to even consider "reinvesting" in another program.



#16 Unix

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 01:12 PM

Well, I want the volume on Sirach. In case Accordance is somehow opposing the Apocrypha I think there's a chance that it will come in my current software - then the option would be to get just that volume in it.

Unix - The Handbooks already cover the entire NT.  I wouldn't expect new volumes.



#17 Abram K-J

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 02:01 PM

Accordance doesn't (in principle) "oppose" the Apocrypha, so no worries there. And I don't know whether Accordance will choose to pursue these or not, but the UBS Handbook for 1-2 Maccabees, for example, is in print (or will be soon--don't recall just now).


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#18 Unix

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 02:18 PM

The Sirach volume has been released 4 years ago! So it's unsure in which software it will come:

Accordance doesn't (in principle) "oppose" the Apocrypha, so no worries there.



#19 Rick Bennett

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 02:22 PM

The e-texts for the OT and Apocrypha offered to us by the publisher were incomplete so we decided to wait and see if anything progressed there before pursuing them. 

 

In the 7 years that I've been an Accordance user (going on 6 as an employee) I've never seen the upgrade price from one version to the next exceed $49 (less applicable discounts) that I can recall. Maybe that will change, but I wouldn't necessarily agree with basing any costs on that speculation.

 

While we certainly wouldn't discourage you from buying the Starter Bundle + UBS Handbooks NT, we hope you'll find that there are a lot more reasons to use Accordance other than as a reader for this set of resources. That's the driving force behind our philosophy on being a paid app (on Mac). It's a tool to help you dig deeper into the text of the Bible, and of course with the aid of secondary resources such as this one.


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#20 Unix

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 02:50 PM

When it comes to the bundles, I'm not interested in a higher bundle. I have quite a varied library already:

While we certainly wouldn't discourage you from buying the Starter Bundle + UBS Handbooks NT, we hope you'll find that there are a lot more reasons to use Accordance other than as a reader for this set of resources.






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