Home, Home on the Range

Landon is doing the second leg of the Bible Road Trip; this is his second post from the road (read previous Road Trip posts).

It was quite a unique homecoming this past weekend. You see, I graduated from Rampart High School in Colorado Springs, CO, where I played in the state basketball championship in 1995 and so, I guess it was fitting that the Logos Road Trip stop in Colorado Springs at Village 7 Presbyterian Church was held in their brand new basketball gym (I’m not sure I’ve ever taught in a gym before…) nearly 11 years to the day after I received that diploma.

What a neat experience it was, then, to spend the weekend at the base of Pikes Peak on the front range of the Rocky Mountains showing my wife and daughter some of my old stomping grounds and many of the world famous sights just minutes from our base camp.

We visited my high school and the Wal-Mart where I used to work. We had dinner at my first and hometown Cracker Barrel (where I handily beat Taylor in a game of table checkers, I might add). We drove up and saw the United States Air Force Academy parked the RV in front of the Garden of the Gods and even took Taylor to the “North Pole” to visit Santa’s Workshop.

During one of our stops, we had a gentleman named Michael knock on our window in a parking lot and ask for an order form (what kind of “wings” would that be?) and comparison guide, wishing he hadn’t missed our presentation the night before.

After driving up to Denver to stay Sunday night before our presentation Monday night at Calvary South Denver, we headed up into the mountains a bit to eat at the world-famous (okay, so it’s just famous to the locals) Beau Jo’s pizza where many a skier or snowboarder has contributed his/her own napkin drawing among the many on the old wooden walls of this antique building from the good-old mining days. When they make pizza, it truly is a pie!

Today, we leave the Rocky Mountains behind and head into the plains of Kansas where presentations in Shawnee (outside Kansas City) at Mill Creek Community Church and in Wichita at Calvary Bible Church will bring pastors, teachers, Bible students, and anyone interested in better, more frequent and deeper Bible study out to see the brand-new Logos 3!

Don’t miss it! Right, Michael?

Leaving the West Coast

Landon Norton here from the Bible Road Trip RV with the first of what will inevitably be many entries over the next 5 weeks.

After a one-way plane ride to San Diego to meet Bob Pritchett and relieve him and his family, Kristine, my wife (pregnant with Nicholas Drew – a boy due late July), Taylor (our 19 month old daughter) and I decided to take the RV over to Sea World and the world famous San Diego Zoo for some sightseeing before starting out on our 37-day leg of the Bible Road Trip.

SIDENOTE: We learned a very valuable lesson here about where to park as we had to stop parking lot traffic and complete what must have been the world’s first 27-point turnaround to extricate ourselves from the busy parking lot.
Bushed, we spent the night at Mission Bay RV Park before leaving the west coast as the sun went down behind us on Interstate 8. As we rolled along towards the next Road Trip stops in Phoenix, AZ, we received many curious stares, many picture takers and even one enthusiastically honking youth who had a massive “Jesus Freak – Hard Core” window decal adorning his truck window. We headed east through the desert along the southern border of the United States and little did we know that those 7 hours on the road would be the most relaxing time we would have that weekend.

Pulling in to the Desert’s Edge RV Park at 10:30pm Sunday night, we encountered electrical problems when attempting to “jack” the RV up for the night and were unable to put all the legs down or slide out the living room and bedroom. Calling roadside assistance could not even resolve our 3-legged coach or our cramped quarters overnight because of the late hour so Monday I spent most of the day with a pleasant technician named Chad who finally found and flipped the breaker (now I know where it is for next time!) which reset the electricity to the system and who (after somewhat reluctantly accepting a Logos Bible Software water bottle full of ice-cold water for his help) sent us on our way. Unfortunately, not before the added trauma of Taylor’s first face-to-face meeting with asphalt!

Backing our schedule up this much caused us much distress as we rallied to attend our scheduled event at Stone Creek on Monday night. Audiences there and at Red Mountain Christian Church in Mesa, AZ on Tuesday, the 16th, were excited and thrilled to experience firsthand the myriad of new features and resources in Logos 3 as we spent two evenings in Phoenix studying God’s Word using these amazing, brand-new tools.

We woke up yesterday, with a bit of a reprieve as we had only a short, yet beautiful drive out of the desert basin up to Flagstaff, AZ which sits at over 6000 feet elevation. On the way we had lunch at In-N-Out (if there’s a better burger in America, I haven’t found it!), and visited gorgeous Sedona, AZ, stopping for some pictures of the RV in front of some of the most breathtaking and amazing handiwork our Creator ever touched.

Last night, we were at Hoffmantown Church in Albuquerque, NM to introduce people to this amazing new software and fellowship with long-time users of Logos Bible Software. We are privileged to be a part of such an awesome endeavor for His glory and we look forward to meeting people across the Midwest who are hungry for better bible study and the inevitable impact that it will have on their children, church, community.

We’ll check in again soon…

From the RV,
The Norton Three (+1)
(View more Bible Road Trip photos on our page at Flickr.)

Day Eleven: Technical Difficulties

Day Eleven saw the Pritchett family off to the Richard Nixon Library and Birthplace for another attempt at some education. Despite protests beforehand, the kids paid attention and learned a bit about the presidency and American politics. And we got to see the bulletproof presidential limo.

In the evening we headed over to Faith Community Church, where we found a pretty impressive technical setup with multiple projection screens. The only problem was that my laptop couldn’t “see” the projector over the extra long video cable. It would not switch into projection mode because it did not see the projector. After a bunch of messing around with the help of Faith Community’s great tech team, we discovered that we could go into projection mode using a short cable and my backup projector and then swap the longer cable in without leaving the mode. It all worked just in time.

Tonight is my last presentation before flying home from San Diego tomorrow. Landon Norton, one of our Ministry Relations reps, will be flying in with his family to take the RV on the next leg of its journey around America.

I have really enjoyed being on the road with my family, and it has been fantastic meeting so many people at the evening events. If you are anywhere near San Juan Capistrano, California, I hope you’ll come out and join us tonight at Ocean Hills Church.

Day Nine: Cars

After ancient artifacts, I decided to do something on the kids’ list. So we went to a go-kart racetrack and arcade. It was pretty empty on a Tuesday afternoon, so they got to do all the racing and game playing they could handle.

In the evening we were at the beautiful New Life Community Church in Artesia, California. I was impressed by the large wall of windows in the sanctuary looking out onto a huge lawn. I was surprised to hear that it was designed to allow drive-in attendance, and that some people still show up for services in their car.

After the presentation a Logos user brought me his copy of Fire Someone Today to sign. Even better, he was wearing a Facilitates Serendipitous Discovery t-shirt!
Next stop: Faith Community Church in Irvine, California.

Day Eight: Ancient Artifacts

The Road Trip RV is using Anaheim, California as home base for this week’s events. I wanted to get something a little more educational than roller coasters out of our free time during the day, so after lunch at In-N-Out Burgers we headed north to the Getty Villa for some Greek and Roman art and artifacts. The Villa staff kindly found us parking among the tour buses, and I got a new sense of appreciation for bus drivers. It isn’t easy taking a huge vehicle up those narrow driveways.

The steep, winding Malibu Canyon Road slowed us down (and frustrated sports-car drivers behind me, despite my frequent use of turnouts) but it didn’t keep us from the Evangelical Free Church of the Conejo Valley. There I met two Logos 1.0 users and got some very encouraging feedback: one user stayed late afterwards just so he could tell me in person how ‘your software changed my life and teaching.’

What a privilege it is to have a job building tools for Bible study! And to have such wonderful people as customers.

Next stop: New Life Community Church in Artesia, California.

Logos Curry 2006: Green Monster

We mentioned our Sixth Annual Logos Curry Cook-Off last week and promised recipes of the top three curries.

James Van Noord’s curry “Green Monster” was another excellent curry, garnering the third most votes. Here are James’s curry making notes:

My base recipe can be found at AllRecipes.com.

My modifications (with thanks to Vincent and Eli for pointers):

  • added lime juice
  • added kafir lime leaves
  • added bird’s eye chilies
  • added extra green curry paste
  • I didn’t use as much lemon grass as is called for. I fished out most of the lemon grass before lunch.
  • I used 14-oz cans of coconut milk

I tripled this recipe for the cook-off.

Day Four on the Road: A Great Evening!

What a great evening! After a nerve-rattling ride over some bumpy, narrow state highways (“Windy Levy Road Next 3 Miles”), and a trip over the feels-too-high-and-narrow-for-this-RV Antioch Bridge, we arrived at Mount Zion Baptist Church in Pittsburg, California.

Pastor Maurice Bates and everyone at the church really put out the red carpet for us. They had prepared a big spread of food for us, and they recorded my presentation on both audio and video. Attendance was great — our largest group yet! And after I demonstrated Logos Bible Software 3 they sent me off with a big basket of snacks and drinks for the road. I felt like a celebrity!

There were some more familiar names to meet in person, and Dean Forbes (co-editor of the analyzed Hebrew text) came, too. Best of all, there were lots of people there with a real interest in Bible study. It was a fun and encouraging evening.

Next stop: Evangelical Free Church of the Conejo Valley in Newbury Park, California.

Personalized Upgrade Discounts

One of the cool web features we’ve built for the roll-out of Logos Bible Software 3 is an online upgrade tool that gives personalized discounts based on your customer account. The tool reads your licenses, shows all the upgrade paths available to you, finds the discounts you are eligible for, and posts a chart showing all the new books and resources you’ll get with your upgrade.
Here’s how it works…

Visit www.logos.com/upgrade and enter your Libronix Customer ID. If you’re like most users, this is the email address you used to activate your first Libronix-based product. If you’re like me and can’t remember that far in the past, you can either guess until you get it right or click the Help link on the upgrade page for directions on how to retrieve your Customer ID.




So I just “Enter Customer ID, click Go!” (sound familiar?) and behind the scenes, the upgrader tool finds my licenses in the Libronix activation database, calculates all my upgrade options and pricing, and presents me with this fine-looking page.



Let’s go through this item by item…

  1. Validation of my Libronix Customer ID. Everyone needs some validation from time to time.
  2. This text lets me know which Logos Bible Software Series X base package is licensed to me (in my case, Pastor’s Library – RA). My upgrade options are calculated from my ownership of this collection. I’m also provided with a few details about the upgrade process. Since I have a DVD drive, I will definitely want to choose the DVD option as it makes installation more convenient (and it holds more rebuilt resources!) than the 7 CD-ROM package.
  3. The product chart shows all the upgrade options available to me and how much I’m saving. Sweet!
  4. A list of the discounts I qualify for (they have already been applied to the prices above). The additional 25% off the upgrade price is very nice. And a limited time offer, by the way.
  5. Chart showing the new books and addin modules I can add to my library by upgrading to each of the available collections. This is just the top of the chart…it goes on and on.

From here, I just decide which collection I want to upgrade to, add the DVD version to my cart, and check out. My new licenses will be sent by email within seconds; the discs required to install the new Logos Bible Software 3 engine, books, addins, and data files will come as fast as the good delivery people find my house. I can even choose UPS Next Day Air Early AM if I just can’t wait!
As you can see, we’ve tried to pull together on one page everything you need for a smooth, easy, and dare I say bargain-priced upgrade experience. Not convinced? Here’s one last very cool feature of the upgrade page…




As you hover the mouse pointer over each title in the chart (with a few exceptions) you’ll see a little preview window that shows a picture of the bookcover and a brief blurb about its contents. You’ll also see the retail price for the book or product.

This one happens to be New International Greek Testament Commentary Series which has a retail price of $660.00 but is included when you upgrade to the new Scholar’s Library: Gold!
We added these preview windows to make it easier than ever for customers to get a handle on the contents of a collection…and see just how much value is inside!

If you haven’t done so already, give the upgrade tool a whirl and see what upgrade options you qualify for and how much you save!

Day Three: Making friends, eating olives

Olive Pit OlivesThe whole point of driving around in a big billboard is to get attention. It has been working: day three started with a visit from a pastor and his wife who were staying in the same RV park. Later that morning a couple of girls stopped us so that they could pray for us, and at a gas station a man shared his testimony and took product information for his pastor.

On the road, I only needed to see one billboard to know that our first stop was going to be the Olive Pit, in Corning, California. An olive tasting bar, burgers, shakes, and RV parking. How could I resist? A succession of billboards, starting more than thirty miles away, only built my anticipation.

When I left the freeway the family wondered why. When I pulled into the Olive Pit, confusion turned to delight. We sampled an incredible array of stuffed olives, and Jacob and I had burgers loaded with sliced olives. Yum!

In the store, yet another stranger turned friend—introducing himself as a Bible student and talking with us for a while. Then we loaded up our olives, jams, and pickled garlic (the kids insisted) and headed to Central SDA Church in Sacramento, where I presented Logos Bible Software 3 and got to put some faces to names I already knew.

Next stop: Mount Zion Baptist Church, Pittsburg, California.

(Folks at the office: I wanted to share a bit of the road trip experience with you, so there is a case of olives on its way. Save me some of the ‘Dynamic Duo’ – jalepeno and garlic stuffed!)

Day Two on the Road

Day two was a long haul! We had a late start after stopping for some maintenance issues. We then discovered that I-5, from Portland, OR to Redding, CA, is beautiful, mountainous, and under construction. The RV crawled up the slopes and barrelled down the other side. It was high-adventure driving for this RV-newbie.

We arrived 20 minutes late at Shasta Bible College where a patient crowd was waiting. I was happily surprised to see twice as many people as had RSVP’ed. Most were already Logos users, and I gave them an overview of the new features in Logos Bible Software 3 while still feeling like I was bouncing around in the driver’s seat!
Next stop: Sacramento!