RefTagger Now Powering More Than 1000 Sites!

We launched RefTagger at the end of February, and in the six months since it has spread to more than 1,000 websites. Read the press release that went out yesterday: “1,000+ Christian Webmasters Install RefTagger.”

You’ll now find RefTagger powering the sites of major ministries like Grace to You and Desiring God Ministries and a host of church websites like Compass Bible Church and Park Street Church. You’ll also find it on wiki sites like Theopedia and on the blogs of prominent bloggers like Doug Wilson and Ray Comfort.

No matter what kind of site you run or how much traffic you get, if your site has Bible references and you want a simple, free, time-saving solution for providing instant access to the text of Scripture, RefTagger is for you.

For most sites it can be set up in less than 5 minutes. All properly formatted Bible references—past and future—are instantly transformed. You don’t have to do a thing after the initial setup. We even provide step-by-step tutorials for a number of common platforms.

Isn’t time to add it to your site?

Adding RefTagger to a MediaWiki Site

MediaWiki logoMediaWiki is the open source wiki software behind Wikipedia and the lesser known Theopedia, which is now powered by RefTagger. (See an example at http://www.theopedia.com/God.)

A couple of weeks ago I downloaded and installed MediaWiki so I could test it out with RefTagger. It worked very nicely.

Here’s one method for setting it up via FTP access to your site’s files:

  1. Use an FTP program like FileZilla to navigate to the folder where you installed MediaWiki.
  2. Open the "skins" folder.
  3. Locate the file for the skin you are using. The file for the default skin is MonoBook.php. Save a local copy, and a backup copy too.
  4. Open the file in Dreamweaver, WordPad, or your favorite code editor.
  5. Find the </body> tag and paste the customizable RefTagger code from the RefTagger page right above it.
  6. Save the file and upload it back to your server.

You’re done. RefTagger is now transforming your MediaWiki site.

For help with other sites, see the tutorials section on the RefTagger page.

Adding RefTagger to a Drupal Site

LogoDrupal is popular open source Content Management System (CMS) software. Many churches and ministries use it.

A few days ago I got a request from an individual who wants to add RefTagger to his Drupal site but isn’t sure how to get it set up, so I thought I’d provide a quick tutorial.

Unfortunately, Drupal doesn’t allow you to edit the code of your themes from the admin panel, at least not that I can see. But if you have access to your site’s files via FTP, you can add RefTagger very easily.

Here are the simple steps you need to follow:

  1. Use an FTP program to navigate to the folder where you installed Drupal.
  2. Open the “themes” subfolder, and then open the folder for the specific theme you are using. (The default theme is Minneli, which is a subtheme of Garland, so you’ll find the file in the “garland” folder.)
  3. Locate the page.tpl.php file, and save a local copy (and a backup copy too).
  4. Open the file in Dreamweaver, WordPad, or your favorite code editor.
  5. Scroll to the bottom and paste the customizable RefTagger code before the </body> tag.
  6. Save the file and upload it back to your server.

That’s it. RefTagger is now transforming the content of your Drupal site!

If you’re using RefTagger on your Drupal site, please let us know. We’d love to see how you are putting it to use.

For help with other sites, see the tutorials section on the RefTagger page.

RefTagger’s Got Style

When we first launched it back in February, RefTagger simply turned Bible references into hyperlinks to BibleGateway. Then in May we added the ability to have the text pop up when you hover over references, making the web a little more like your favorite Bible software.

Now RefTagger’s got style!

We used to control the look of the tooltip windows. We intentionally made them plain and neutral colored so they would load quickly and work well with the broadest number of websites possible.

Here’s the default look for John 3:16:

We realize, though, that the default style may not be the best fit for every site.

Recently a major ministry that was planning to add RefTagger to their site contacted us and asked if they could override the default styling of the tooltip windows to make them match their site. We thought it was a great idea, so we decided to add it as a new feature.

Now you can have full control over the styling of the tooltips and change the font, font size, font color, background color, padding, line spacing, etc.

Here are some examples of how you can style your tooltips:

You can see customized tooltips in action at the resources section of the Grace to You website and at Desiring God’s Resource Library.

To override the default styling, just follow these three simple steps.

We hope this makes RefTagger an even more useful tool for your website. Thanks for providing great feedback. Please send any problems or further feature requests to reftagger@logos.com.

Adding RefTagger to a Simple Machines Forum Site

LogoOver the last couple of months, several people have asked me if it is possible to add RefTagger to a forum site. I’ve set it up on a couple of different test installs, and it works very nicely. Forums are perfect places for RefTagger. If you run a forum site that deals with the Bible—or have plans to start one—I’d encourage you to give RefTagger a try. If you frequent a Christian forum site that has plain old naked Scripture references, why not send the administrators an emails and ask them to look into adding RefTagger?

There are a variety of different forum programs. vBulletin is probably the most popular, but since it’s not free, many use Simple Machines Forum (SMF) or phpBB.

Here’s a quick tutorial for adding RefTagger to your SMF site.

You simply need to add the RefTagger code immediately before the closing </body> tag in the index.template.php file in all of your active themes. (There are three installed by default.) You’ll find the </body> tag in the fourth section of code.

Here are the steps:

  1. Go to your Admin Center (http://yoursitename.com/index.php?action=admin).
  2. In the left sidebar, click on “Themes and Layout” under “Configuration.”
  3. Click “Modify Themes.”
  4. Select a theme, and click “Browse the templates and files in this theme.”
  5. Click on “index.template.php.”
  6. Navigate to the bottom of the fourth section of code and find the </body> tag (or just use Ctrl + F to find it).
  7. Paste in the RefTagger code immediately above the </body> tag.
  8. Scroll to the bottom of the page, and click “Save Changes.”
  9. Repeat steps 3-8 to add the code to your other theme.

I don’t see how to edit the default theme “SMF Default Theme – Core.” There’s probably a way to do it in the Admin Center, but I don’t see how. There are a couple of workarounds. You can switch your default theme to something else and uncheck the box “Allow members to select the ‘Default’ them.” If you like the default theme, you can always Create a copy of it and set the copy as your default.

If you have FTP access to your site’s files, it is fairly easily to add the RefTagger code manually. Just navigate to the Themes/default folder, locate the index.template.php file, and save a local copy (and a backup copy, too, just to be safe). Open the file with Dreamweaver or WordPad (or whatever program you like to use to edit code), locate the </body> tag, and paste in the RefTagger code. Save the file. Upload it to your server, overwriting the original file. You’re all set. RefTagger should now be up and running on your SMF site.

Adding RefTagger to a Blogger Blog

A few days ago someone asked if we would make it possible to use RefTagger on a Blogger blog. I was happy to let him know that RefTagger works very well with Blogger, and I explained to him two ways to get it up and running on his blog in just a couple of minutes.

It occurred to me that not everyone who has a blog is used to messing with code and editing template files, so I thought I’d do a brief tutorial here on the blog.

If you use Google’s Blogger and would like to add RefTagger to your site, here are two methods for setting it up.

Method 1: Adding a Page Element

Perhaps the simplest way for beginners to get RefTagger up and running is to add a page element. From your Blogger dashboard, click “Layout.” You’ll be taken by default to the “Page Elements” tab. Click “Add a Page Element” at the bottom of the page (not the one in the sidebar), and choose “HTML/JavaScript.” Leave the title blank, and paste in the customizable code that you get from the RefTagger page. Then click “Save.” Blogger should add the new page element to the bottom of your layout page automatically. If it appears in your sidebar, simply drag it to the very bottom of the footer. If you make any changes, make sure to save it before leaving the page.

When you’re done, your page should look something like this:

Method 2: Modifying Your Template File

The alternate method is to manually add the code before the closing body tag in your template file. From your Blogger dashboard, click “Layout.” Then click “Edit HTML.” Scroll all the way to the bottom of the code and paste in the customizable code that you get from the RefTagger page right before the closing body tag (i.e., right before </body>). Then click “Save Template.”

That’s it. RefTagger should now be up and running on your Blogger blog.

If you have any trouble or would like to see a tutorial for another blogging platform, leave a comment on this post or send an email to reftagger@logos.com.

RefTagger Just Got Even Better

At the end of February, we introduced RefTagger, a free tool for your website or blog that instantly turns your Bible references into links to the version of your choice at BibleGateway.com and, if you choose, Libronix.

Scores of sites are using RefTagger. If you haven’t seen it yet, you can check it out right here on the blog or at any of these sites:

The links that RefTagger creates are very helpful and make it easy for your readers to look up the passages that you cite, but it still takes time to open new web pages. Even careful readers will probably look up only a reference or two.

Problem solved. RefTagger now makes looking up Bible references even easier. Instead of clicking a link to navigate to another web page, now you can immediately see the text of the passage. Simply hovering over any link created by RefTagger will instantly give you a pop-up window containing the text of the passage.

For now we have the New Living Translation and the King James Version available. The NLT is used by default. To use the KJV, you need to choose it as your online Bible version. We hope to add more versions in the near future, so stay tuned.

These new pop-ups are on by default. So if you already had RefTagger on your site, there’s nothing you need to do to see them. If you’d like to disable them, you’ll need to add the line Logos.ReferenceTagging.lbsUseTooltip = false; to the code. When you customize the code at the RefTagger page, all you have to do is uncheck the box and the code will be created for you automatically.

If you’ve been holding off on adding RefTagger to your site, why not give it a try? It’s incredibly easy to add and remove. Help us continue to make RefTagger better by sending your feedback and suggestions to reftaggerlogos.com.

Transform Your Site with RefTagger!

One of the benefits of reading books in Libronix is the ease with which you can “look up” Scripture references. Oftentimes in print books they get ignored. It’s simply too much work to flip manually to every passage. But what about Scripture references on the web? There are tens of thousands of Christian blogs and websites with millions—or perhaps even billions—of Scripture references. But we usually face the same problem with Scripture references on the web as we do with print books. They’re just too time consuming to look up. What if you could provide your readers with some of the same conveniences of Libronix on your website? With RefTagger now you can—and without all the time and hard work it takes to create the links manually!

If you have a website or blog, you will definitely want to check it out. It’s a very customizable, free tool that turns all of your Scripture references into hyperlinks to an online Bible. You can even have RefTagger add an icon that is hyperlinked to the passage in Libronix. This gives your readers the opportunity to easily look up the Bible passages that you discuss.

To add RefTagger to your site, all you need to do is paste a few lines of JavaScript code to your template file(s). RefTagger will instantly be applied to all of your site’s content, adding new life to your old blog posts and web pages. When you write a new blog post or upload your latest sermon, it will also instantly have all the added functionality.

If you are a blogger and use WordPress with your own domain name (i.e., not WordPress.com), you can download and install our WordPress plugin and add RefTagger without even having to edit any of your files!

All the details are at the RefTagger page. Head on over to get the code or the plugin and start using it on your site. Once you have it set up, please be sure to let us know by sending an email to reftagger@logos.com. We will put some of the coolest examples on display at the RefTagger page.

If you want to see RefTagger in action, it’s running right here on the Logos blog. Check out these sample posts:

Upgrade Special Ending Soon!

Over a year and a half ago we launched the ground-breaking Logos Bible Software 3. It was and continues to be the most advanced collection of digital tools and resources on the planet for studying the Bible. Logos Bible Software 3 added more than 100 new features and updates to the Libronix Digital Library System and brought even greater value to our base packages by including tons of new books, addins, and other data! (Check out the Top 20 New Features of Logos 3!)

Last Chance for the EARLYBIRD Discount!

Thousands of you have already upgraded and are taking advantage of all that Logos Bible Software 3 has to offer, but many of you are still missing out! This is a call to upgrade before we finally end our “EARLYBIRD” discount permanently. We’ve extended this special for a long time now because we wanted to give everyone the chance to upgrade at a discounted rate, but we plan to discontinue it for good on December 31, 2007. Don’t miss out on this final chance to upgrade with the “EARLYBIRD” discount and get all the added value in our new base packages!

Updating vs. Upgrading: What’s the Difference?

Some customers get confused between updating and upgrading. As a result, many are missing out on most of what Logos Bible Software 3 has to offer! Let me explain the difference.

Updating

Updating deals with the core Libronix software engine and is free. When you update, you get the latest version of the Libronix Digital Library System and the most up-to-date version of your digital books. You can easily update from within Libronix by clicking on Tools > Libronix Update or from the update page on the website. Run the Libronix Update as often as you want, but we recommend checking for new updates at least once a month. If you haven’t updated your software in a while, do it now and see what you’ve been missing out on!

However, if you only update and don’t upgrade, you’re missing out on most of the new features of Logos Bible Software 3!

Upgrading

Upgrading deals with the base packages and is not free. When you upgrade, you get tons of new books and tools that will allow you to take full advantage of Logos Bible Software 3. You are not repurchasing what you already own. You are paying a customized upgrade discount price for the new books and addins that you don’t already have. Our customized upgrade discounter gives you upgrade prices for the various base packages taking into consideration what base package you already own and even some of the other titles that you may have purchased. Visit http://www.logos.com/upgrade to find out what your upgrade options are!

Is It Worth It?

Our base packages are among our most heavily discounted collections. You get thousands of dollars worth of resources for just a fraction of the cost. They are an amazing value. If you don’t want to take our word for it, check it out for yourself. In order to make an informed decision, you’ll want to see (1) what you are going to get and (2) what it is going to cost you.

What Will You Get, and What Will It Cost?

Visit the product page for the collection you already have and look for the to find out what has been added to that base package.

You’ll see that the resources make even upgrading from the old version to the new version of the same base package a tremendous deal. For example, if you own only the Bible Study Library, you can upgrade for as little as $34.66! You should at least upgrade to the new version of the base package you own. But most of you should probably consider making the jump up to one of the higher base packages where you get an even better deal!
After you’ve seen all the items that were added to your base package, check the comparison chart to see all the additional resources that the larger collections add! The best value is Scholar’s Library: Gold. It’s not for everyone, but it may be for you.

Take advantage of your upgrade options before they expire!

Library Builder: Volumes 4-6

Also, don’t miss out on your chance to buy Library Builder: Volumes 4-6. It is available only through the end of the year! Find out why this is such an amazing deal!