Oct 16, 2012 David Lang

A Surprising Change in Workflow

10-lamp-sm I've written before about how varied my use of Accordance tends to be. I use it for my own research projects, to do quality control checks of modules which are nearing release, to help with the occasional tech support question, in family devotions, in teaching a Sunday School class, and more. This usually means that I have dozens of tabs open at any given time, and it's rare for all of them to be focused on the same task.

Since I've been using Accordance 10, I've noticed an interesting shift in my workflow. Where previously I would use a single workspace with a hodgepodge of tabs devoted to different tasks, I now tend to open a new workspace when I shift from one task to another. For example, my main workspace is devoted to a big research project I'm currently working on, but when I need to prepare my Sunday school lesson or lead a family devotion, I now go to the File menu, choose New Workspace, and then dedicate that separate workspace to the new task. By using separate workspaces for different tasks, I can be sure the resources I need for my Sunday School lesson don't get mixed up with the ones I need for my research project.

The strange thing about this shift in workflow is that it happened naturally when I began using Accordance 10, even though I could have done the same thing (but didn't) in previous versions of Accordance. Ever since we introduced the Workspace window way back in Accordance 6, you have been able to open multiple workspaces and dedicate them to distinct purposes. I just never did so until now.

I'm not sure what it is about Accordance 10 that prompted this change in behavior, but I suspect the move to a single-window interface has made the idea of opening multiple workspaces seem less daunting to me. Put another way, perhaps the integration of all those palettes has made managing multiple workspaces seem more palatable. (Pardon the pun!)

When I think about it, it wasn't any harder to manage multiple workspaces when the Library window, Resource palette, and Instant Details Box stayed put in their respective places on my screen, but perhaps the presence of those separate floating windows made me feel like it would be harder to keep track of more than one workspace. Now that those palettes are integrated into each workspace, it is as if I can simply switch between two or more self-contained study environments. I therefore find myself doing that more and more.

This is just one example of how improving the design and aesthetics of a program can also enhance its usability.

What about you? Do you find the changes in Accordance 10 have affected your workflow in surprising ways?

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Archived Comments

Abram K-J

October 17, 2012 6:28 AM

I didn't use Accordance prior to 10, but I do love and make heavy use of different workspaces for different tasks.  I've got one called "Read Commentary" that is just for reading through a resource. I've got one called "NT in the OT" that is set up to nicely and quickly look at NT uses of OT passages, both in NT greek and original OT Greek and Hebrew contexts. And so on.  It's a really nice feature!

Abram K-J

October 17, 2012 6:29 AM

Make that--"OT in the NT"!  NT in the OT is another issue.  :)


October 23, 2012 5:46 AM

Hi David

I have taken the same approach with workspaces that you have outlined. As you have identified, I think the look and feel of Accordance 10, the more complete integration of the zones, the more intuitive approach that 10 takes when opening modules, the flexibility to adjust your personal look and feel, and the ease of use, all lead you to a place where having seperate workspaces becomes self evident. 

I started using multiple, dedicated workspaces prior to 10 (I think I started with 8 or definitely 9), but I have found them far more powerful and usable with 10.

It is such a blessing having Accordance as a tool to study the Scriptures, and as I have shared with people for over 10 years now, Accordance is a good enough application that will justify the purchase of a Mac computer (if anyone is looking for an excuse).

Accordance 10 continues to validate that statement as the premier application for Bible Study - IMHO.

Keep up the great work, and thank you to all the Accordance team.

Teena PAUL

October 26, 2012 3:51 PM

I have a basic question, being just a new user:

How does one swap between workspaces when they don't have a saved name?  Is there some command/keyboard shortcut?  At the moment I just reduce the size of the workspace to click the normally hiden workspace.