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Thankful for This Job

There are lots of reasons I love my job. I like the technology, the business, and the people. But most of all, I appreciate the incredible privilege it is to be developing tools that help people study the Bible.

Recently I came in to work to find this email from a Bible college president sitting in my inbox:

I’m sitting here, w/ a notebook computer, in a “not yet open Starbucks,” in <city name> (giving a series of lectures at <seminary name>) using Logos / Libronix in my devotions and am still amazed. I cannot believe the ease w/ which I can do word studies, check commentaries, compare versions, and get lost in Logos trails… it is truly amazing what you have done. Thanks again. This tool is a huge blessing to me. Appreciate you more than you’ll ever know.

I believe that I could work unto the Lord in many different occupations; I know people who do in a variety of jobs. But I know that it is a rare and unusual job where you provide tools that so directly support people’s Bible study and teaching, and where you can get such direct encouragement and feedback. I am thankful for this job, and for the many users who have taken the time to encourage, challenge, and pray for us.

Nobel Prize in Economics and Game Theory (at Logos!)

It all started innocently enough. I went for a cup of coffee on Monday afternoon at the Starbucks up the street. When I was there, they gave me a coupon for a free Pumpkin Spice Latte.

I like my coffee straight. No cream, no sugar, and certainly no “pumpkin spice”.

So, on my way back to the office, coffee in one hand and coupon in the other, I started thinking. Earlier that day, the Nobel Prize in Economics was announced. It went to some guys (Thomas Schelling and Robert Aumann) who did foundational work in Game Theory. (yes, I can be a bit of an econ geek … )

I had the brainstorm of giving away the coupon via Logos company email, but experimenting a little with game theory in the process. Read on if you’re interested …

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Street Signs

LogosHighwayBanner.jpgGetting ready for AAR/SBL this year got me thinking about our booth in previous years.
ParkingForHebrewScholars.jpg

One of my favorite booth themes was our 2003 display with the road sign theme. We did a big banner with a highway overpass and freeway graphics and then made up custom street and parking signs to decorate the booth.

We got a lot of great feedback from people walking by the booth, and lots of people wanted to buy our “Parking for Hebrew Scholars Only” sign. But we kept it, and it now decorates the wall above our Hebrew scholar’s desk. The street signs are in our lunchroom.

(We ordered our signs from Cute Signs, where you can get your own custom parking sign for under $20.)

The Lost Photo Shoot

The attentive reader of Bob’s Sept. 27 post will recall that he mentioned using the ECF volumes for a recent photo shoot.

We were shooting Bob for the Red Herring article and trying to come up with some creative images. The reporter said the more interesting the image, the more likely it would be used in the story.

As with many projects at Logos, this was a no-budget affair. Sean, the graphic designer and all-around art guy, brought in his digital SLR camera and we grabbed some lights from next door…

After getting out the ladder so Bob could climb up and stand atop the 15-foot wall, we abandoned the idea as impractical (not because it was dangerous but because the angles were all wrong). We considered going next door to the dusty, gutted-out building that is being prepared for us to inhabit soon, but that idea was discarded as being an irrelevant backdrop.

We like the aluminum sign that hangs in the reception area, and somebody suggested using some books as a prop. Next thing you know, we’re trotting back to one of the bookshelves to retrieve the Early Church Fathers volumes. Where else can you find a stack of uniformly bound books that reaches more than waist high?

Here are some shots of the shoot in progress…
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Speaking of the Early Church Fathers …

Reading Bob’s post and seeing the picture of Eli holding 37 volumes of the Church Fathers’ writings brings back memories.

I remember when we did the ECF project. That was Eli’s baby, and what an incredible job he did in pullling that thing together. I can recall helping his team out by proofing through Greek in footnotes to make sure it was actually correct. I think I may have even keyed some of the footnotes.

But what I remember most is the topical index.
Huh? You didn’t know that the 37-volume Logos Bible Software edition of the Early Church Fathers has a topic index? Well, it does. And that particular topic index doesn’t exist anywhere else.

This article looks back on how all that happened. Ahhhhhh … nostalgia!

It must’ve been 1996, but it sure doesn’t feel like it was that long ago. Eli and I were just figuring out what it meant to make electronic books, and were “kicking the tires” both with LLS resources and with our still-developing programming skills.
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Red Herring

redherring_cover.jpgThe issue of Red Herring that hits newsstands today includes a feature article on religious software, with Logos receiving the lion’s share of their coverage of Bible software.

Red Herring is a national print magazine that reports on the business of technology; it’s read by technology company execs and Fortune 1000 execs, with a subscriber base of around 45,000.

The article is not yet posted at RedHerring.com but the October 3 issue is available at Barnes & Noble and Borders. Here are a couple of excerpts:

God is getting many more clicks these days, powering up a niche software segment…

What seems clear is that more Americans are using PCs as a medium to God. Bob Pritchett, founder of Logos Bible Software, saw this coming nearly 15 years ago.

…Today, Logos has 5,000 titles and its products accounted for 65 percent of dollar sales in the top 10 Bible Reference Software Category titles in 2003, according to Packaged Facts. Last year, Logos had revenues of $8.9 million.

The company’s pitch is simple: There is no higher purpose for your computer than using it for Bible study. Its goal is to replace every Bible with CDs.

“We are out there to take market share from the books that people have [spent] years accumulating,” says Mr. Pritchett, whose customers are largely pastors and seminary students.

I’m pretty sure Bob didn’t say that we want to replace every Bible with CDs (see our stated mission). Had this reporter done the interview in person rather than by phone she would have seen the heavy-laden bookcases in Bob’s office and known better.

But I think it’s safe to say that we’d love to put Logos Bible Software on the computer of every serious student of Scripture.

One quote that the magazine got dead-on was this:

“I don’t believe in luck,” says Mr. Pritchett, “and I am quite certain that the success we have seen at Logos Bible Software is not due to my own brilliance, but rather to God’s choosing to use us to accomplish His purposes.”

Amen.

What People Say About Logos

magazines2.pngDuring the past four years, Logos Bible Software Series X has been reviewed by well over 100 magazines, newspapers and theological journals…and that number continues to grow. For each one, an independent reviewer installs the software, surveys its contents and functions, and records his or her impressions.

You can read 93 of these reviews on our Reviews page.
If you’re researching Bible software prior to purchasing, this page is a goldmine of information. If you’re already a user, point a friend or colleague to the reviews so they can see independent confirmation that Logos is the smart choice. Looking at the comments left on the reviews, it’s clear that some users also find it interesting and encouraging just to see what people are saying about Logos.

Because Logos Bible Software has been reviewed by a wide range of publications which serve various audiences, you’ll find evaluations of the software aimed at the twentysomething, business person, Christian counselor, parent, seminary student, preaching pastor, youth pastor, biblical scholar, classical scholar and Bible translator…not to mention all the different denominational publications represented!

The common thread in all these reviews is that Logos Bible Software is an essential/invaluable/useful/amazing/insert-adjective-here tool for Bible study and exegesis. (Did you expect them to reach any other conclusion?) :-)

As new reviews are posted, they show up on the Logos.com homepage and in the RSS feed. We are usually granted permission to post the full text of the review on our site and link to the reviewing publication so that readers can learn more about what kind of publication it is.

Expect to see some reviews of new products soon, such as the The Parallel Aligned Hebrew-Aramaic and Greek Texts of Jewish Scripture by Prof. Emanuel Tov and Works of Philo: Greek Text with Morphology.

Why Electronic Books are Better

EliECF.jpgMy favorite story about why electronic reference books are better than print is from AAR/SBL 1996. We had just released the Early Church Fathers on CD-ROM and a woman came up to our booth to place an order.

“I am so glad you have this in electronic form,” she said. “I already have it in print, but I am a student and have had to move the 38 volumes three times to second floor apartments. I’m selling the paper!”

With more than 5,000 titles available today, the case for saving space and weight is made. Still, the ECF remains our first, best single-title example, and we still drag the paper edition out as a prop for photographs.

During a recent shoot, as several of us hauled the set out to the lobby, I observed that I had seen someone carry the whole set. Logos blogger Eli Evans did not believe me –- but he was the one who did it. I found the photo, from 1998, though the evidence shows he could only handle 37 of the 38 volumes.

Soup Cookoff Recipe #1: Grandma Approved!

The top vote-getter in our 2005 Soup Cookoff was Jerry Godfrey’s soup, Grandma Approved!
His prize-winning recipe is below.

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Soup Cookoff Recipe #2: Pottage of Pollo Parousia

The runner-up in the 2005 Logos Soup Cookoff was Landon & Krissy Norton’s Pottage of Pollo Parousia.

Landon says: “By the way, the title of this tasty treat when translated by a team of our scholars overseas means: The Second Coming of Chicken Tortilla Soup.” His recipe is below.

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