Archive by Author

Of the Making of Books (Part 2)

Today’s guest blogger is Ken Smith, General Manager of Electronic Publishing Services at Logos.
(This is the second in a series of articles about our nearly 60 publishing partners who market their own electronic products using our technology.)

InterVarsity Press (US) and Inter-Varsity Press (UK)
IVP is an example of a “hybrid” partnership, where we have licensed certain titles from them (e.g., The IVP New Testament Commentary Series) and they have marketed others in their own product collections. As always, our primary goal is to make more quality books available to our users, regardless of how they are distributed.

After a few years of licensing books from both the US and UK branches of IVP, we were thrilled when they co-published their Essential IVP Reference Collection in December of 2000.

For the first time, best-selling and highly respected titles like The Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels, The Dictionary of Paul and His Letters and The New Bible Atlas were made available in electronic format and compatible with all of our existing electronic books. All told, 13 of IVP’s best biblical dictionaries and commentaries are included in this tremendously valuable product.

In September of 2005, IVP released another significant electronic product: The Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture (Volume I).

The first ACCS electronic collection includes twelve volumes from this monumental work in progress. Here’s a little trivia for you: What is the connection between ACCS and the Logos edition of the Early Church Fathers? If you guessed Tom Oden, the General Editor of ACCS, you know your Logos history! It was a partnership with Tom and Drew University that made possible the initial digitization of that 38-volume, nearly 19,000 page work.

Previous: Thomas Nelson | Next: Fortress Press

Mindset for Missions

John Fallahee, who works in our ministry and academic relations department, returned last week from 12 days spent visiting the country of Albania. This is his mini-report from the trip…

In a unique partnership with Logos Bible Software, The Master’s Academy International and Southeastern Europe Theological Seminary we were able to train up the next generation of pastors with Logos Bible Software.

With generous donations from the local church, various individuals, institutions, and non-profit foundations each student was equipped with his own laptop, Scholar’s Library, and key Logos compatible books like Theological Journals, HALOT, and BDAG.

These Albanian pastors were trained in theological research as well as equipped to teach and preach, with the assistance of Logos Bible Software. What made this event significant is these men have “leap-frogged” over their peers in the number of resources available to them to study as well as the equipping and training they have received to work with the original languages. In the words of one of the students at the end of training, “I am overwhelmed with the generosity of believers from America, and see now how this tool will save me time and help me preach God’s Word better to my fellow Albanians.”


Note: We have been cleared to use these photos on the site.

Heirloom Books

While going through digital images of books we’ve had scanned at Dallas Theological Seminary library, I recently came across this flyleaf in a commentary by John Owen.

Lewis Sperry Chafer (1871-1952; bio) was the founding president of Dallas Theological Seminary, and he wrote a systematic theology that we just shipped on Monday.

His father, Thomas Franklin Chafer, died when Lewis was just 11 years old. As you can see, the Owen commentary belonged first to the personal library of the father, was passed to the son, and from there to the seminary.

I’ve heard it said (by detractors of the digital library paradigm) that you never hear of anyone bequeathing digital books to their children. But I just checked with our manager of customer support, John Brandt, who told me it has happened a few times during his 6 years with the company. All we need is a letter from the executor of the estate and we can transfer the licenses to the inheritor.

(Note to self: update will to include name of daughter born almost 2 years ago AND specify beneficiary of digital library.)

I find it interesting that used print booksellers, who often acquire entire personal libraries from an estate or a retiring scholar, will sometimes keep that personal library intact. Dove Booksellers does this and lists the books as collections on their website. It’s fascinating to look through the books that belonged to a notable scholar and see what they found worthy of owning. [Caution: this practice can produce severe book envy.]

But it’s only a matter of time until the same thing happens with Logos Bible Software users who have amassed a personal library numbering in the thousands. Maybe someday you’ll find yourself looking through a list of 1,500 electronic books owned by a notable scholar in a field you’re interested in and we’ll offer you a way to buy them all in one fell swoop as a custom collection.
It could happen…

Of the Making of Books

Today’s guest blogger is Ken Smith, General Manager of Electronic Publishing Services at Logos.
While there are hundreds of wonderful electronic books included with our “Library” products or available for individual purchase on our web site, there is also a gold mine of additional books that may not be as well-known to many of our customers.

For nearly ten years, we have been partnering with publishers to produce products for them to market using our technology. Here is one of the first products of that type, released by Baker in February of 1996:

I have had the distinct pleasure of overseeing the production of over 175 products from about 60 different publishers in the past ten years. Today’s blog entry is the first installment in a series of articles that will introduce a number of those publishers and products.

Thomas Nelson Publishers
One of our first and most prolific partners is Thomas Nelson. In June of 1997, they released a collection of more than 70 of their best reference books titled Nelson’s Electronic Bible Reference Library (NEBRL).

The Nelson Reference & Electronic imprint has gone on to publish nearly 500 titles using our technology. In March of 2002, the NEBRL product was reconfigured, updated to use the new Libronix Digital Library System and rebranded as eBible™. Their other products range from collections of best-selling books by Max Lucado, John MacArthur, Charles Stanley, Jack Hayford, J. Vernon McGee, David Jeremiah and John Maxwell to the highly-respected Word Biblical Commentary series.

Most of Nelson’s products are available for sale on our web site, either in collections or individually. In fact, we recently added a “mega-collection” of 325 Nelson titles at a huge savings over the individual purchase price.

Max LucadoJohn MacArthurDavid JeremiahWord Biblical CommentaryNelson 325 Book Unlock

Partnering with Nelson has been a very beneficial relationship for both companies. Using our technology allows Nelson to carry a full range of the highest-quality electronic products with zero investment in programming. Adding Nelson’s outstanding reference and trade titles to the Logos “family” has heightened our profile among religious publishers and given our customers a much greater selection of quality books to integrate with their existing Logos products.
Next: InterVarsity Press

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

The Logos elves were hard at work decorating the place last week. I caught a couple of them (Jacquie and Tracy) in the act…

Click a thumbnail image to see a larger version.

Where Do You Live: Update

More than 100 people have added themselves to the Logos Bible Software Blog map at Frappr! It’s been immensely interesting to me to learn where folks are from and to view photos and greetings from many.

If you visited the page early on and haven’t been back, here’s the link again: http://www.frappr.com/logosbiblesoftwareblog

Update (12/12/2005): I removed the mini-map from this page because it slowed the page load time. The current number of readers registered on the Frappr map is 153; click the thumbnail image below to view the map and/or add yourself.

Sometimes It’s The Little Things

I love the work of Edward Tufte, a data design guru who writes beautiful books that also serve to illustrate his ideas about design.

I was first introduced to Tufte’s books shortly after I graduated from college, and immediately asked for one for Christmas (they’re not cheap). I find that his ideas challenge me to pay attention to design in everything I do, and help me think about how and why design matters.

That’s why I was excited to see that a new feature in Libronix DLS version 3.0 (the first beta release was recently posted, and all I can say is WOW!) is rooted in one of Tufte’s ideas for conveying a lot of information in a compact, unobtrusive form.

In the second-generation Exegetical Guide, there is a small graph next to each word from the passage. It’s called a “Lemma Density Graph” and it’s an example of what’s known as a sparkline.

Sparkline is a term coined by Edward Tufte to describe “small, high-resolution graphics embedded in a context of words, numbers, images. Sparklines are data-intense, design-simple, word-sized graphics.” You can read all about sparklines in this draft chapter from Tufte’s new book, along with a lengthy series of posts on how sparklines are being used in various contexts.

In the example below, taken from the new Exegetical Guide, the Lemma Density Graph sparkline indicates the density of the lemma ὅτι across the New Testament. The more a particular biblical book uses ὅτι, the taller the bar is for that book. Of course, the height is proportional to the total number of words in each book so that the graph is not skewed toward long books like the Gospels.

As you can see, the word occurs 1296 times in the New Testament. Each category of Bible book (Gospels, Acts, Pauline epistles, other epistles, Revelation) gets its own color and you can see that a yellow bar near the end is the big winner.

So which book is it dominating the graph here? By hovering the mouse over the bar in the chart, I can see that it’s 1 John and the word is used 76 times.

This is not a surprise to anyone who has studied 1 John and noted the tight, logical progression employed by the author. The sparkline provides a great visual illustration of this rhetorical characteristic, and it’s viewable at a glance, inline with the rest of the information.

I can even interact with the graph in ways that take me a step deeper in my study of ὅτι…If I click the 1 John bar, Graph Bible Search Results opens and I can choose any number of graphs to tease meaning from the data (e.g., Number of Hits in Chapter / Number of Words in Chapter) or export it to Excel and work with it there.

These sparklines can draw out all manner of word usage patterns such as hapax legomena, words peculiar to a single book or author, or words that appear more often in certain genres.

I think it’s a very nifty little feature, one that I trust our users will find to be a helpful addition to version 3.0. I also think it’s very cool that this feature is rooted in solid design principles from one of the leading minds on the subject. One of the things I appreciate about our application is that the developers pay attention to “small details” of design so that it not only functions well but looks great, too.

(Note: If you get excited by this post and decide to install the beta, please note that our beta releases are unsupported and be sure to read the warnings first.)

Where Do You Live?

Our blog stats show that we get visitors from all over the world. Just for November, I see visits from Hungary, Israel, Singapore, Bahamas, Denmark, New Zealand, Brazil, Spain, and Japan, to name just a few.

Rick Brannan recently pointed me to a cool new site called Frappr (“Friend Mapper”) that’s a Google mash-up: it combines Google Maps with group labeling features.

I created a map for Logos Blog readers so we could meet one another. To add yourself, go to the Logos Bible Software Blog map and click “Add Yourself” in the right-hand column. You can add a photo and short message, if desired.

If you get a moment this weekend, stop by and say hello!

ETS/SBL Booth Signage

The ETS and SBL meetings wrapped up yesterday and the Logos team is heading home (perhaps some will make it back in time for our big Thanksgiving lunch at noon today). It sounds like the meetings were very fruitful, with a great deal of buzz around our current and future products.
For those who weren’t able to attend, I thought it would be fun to show off the signage that adorned our booth at both events. Click any of the thumbnails below to pop up a larger version.



National Bible Week Essay Contest

In honor of National Bible Week, which is this week, we’re sponsoring an essay contest on Logos.com.

You are invited to write and submit a brief essay on Bible study. If we display the essay on the site, you’ll receive a $30 book unlock credit. The sign-up form is here.

We’ve posted 30 essays to date, with a nice variety of themes and perspectives represented. The essays give a flavor of all the different kinds of ministry going on among Logos users. I find this to be a real encouragement amidst the day to day grind; I’ll highlight below a couple of my favorite selections (you can read them all in their entirety on the Essays page)…

Continue Reading…

Page 22 of 24« First...10«2021222324»