BibleWorks 8.0: Now That I’ve Read One of the Instructions

BibleWorks 8 is definitely growing on me. Much of the awkwardness is gone, and my skills are growing. But I had to actually read one of the instructions — but just one.

The program bugs seems to have cleared with a couple of program updates — and I keep getting new free stuff. I just got Philo of Alexandria in the latest download! Very cool.

I’ve been working on the Holy Spirit study — soon to hit the internet! — and the software has helped me search in Hebrew for ru’ach (spirit, Spirit, breath, wind). And I’ve figured out how to do Boolean searches (spirit OR prophe* OR seer*) and how to limit the search to just a book. It’s easy once you learn the command codes — which means I had to read one of the instructions. (This is so, you know, MS-DOS. But sometimes I miss MS-DOS. So elemental.)

The searching features are very powerful — very similar to what lawyers can do in WestLaw or what many people do in Lexis/Nexis. For example, you can search for “faith” within 5 verses of “love” within 5 verses of “hope.” And many of Paul’s uses of that triad span multiple verses. Very cool.

I actually found a very useful citation in the Book of Jubilees — my first Pseudepigrapha (Pseudepigraphum?). I was so proud of myself! (And I know this is going to make me insufferable beyond words.)

Oh … and I figured out how to get rid of the translations I don’t use. I just can’t think of reason I’ll ever never the Vietnamese translation. So by deleting it, I pick up hard disk space and speed program loading.

And I found a set of cross references that actually compiles several sets of cross references and breaks them down into common cross references and less common cross references. Which is great, because my old Quickverse for Windows 95 had some nice cross-references, which I was missing.

And I’ve figured out that I can have several search sessions going on at once in separate tabs. Very easy. Very helpful when you’re working on multiple series at the same time.

So I’ve finally gotten to where I don’t use any of the other tools on my computer or the internet — free or otherwise — and don’t miss what I used to have (hardly at all). It’s not the most intuitive program, but it’s got some serious power. And one day — you can count on it — I’m going to read all the instructions. I am. Just like I’m going to read the manual for the car I bought 18 months ago.

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5 Responses

  1. Is there a Mac version?

  2. Alan S,

    No Mac version, but it can run in a Windows emulator. http://www.bibleworks.com/content/maclinuxinfo.htm.

  3. Jay–

    So is this prog your recommendation for mid-range study, or just if you are going in really deep?

    I’d like to get something as I am getting ready to start teaching some classes. But at my level of scholarship, I wonder if there would be something a little lighter?

    Are you familiar with Quickbooks, Jay? I know it is apples/oranges, but is BW 8.0 more difficult that QB?

    Any other smaller apps you might recommend?

  4. JMF,

    I assume you mean QuickVerse (Quickbooks is an accounting program — and a good one).

    I’m an expert in the Windows 95 version of QV. And QV continues to be aimed at a less technically minded market. If you aren’t looking for Greek verb declensions and digging through the Patristics, BibleWorks is likely more software than you need.

    Unfortunately, you have to buy a top end edition of QV to get any Greek resources at all — and for the same price, you can get a much more powerful program in BibleWorks.

    (Also consider Logos, but I have no experience with it).

    Go back to my first post on BibleWorks and consider the internet resources and ask whether the software is worth the price to you. Bible Gateway is pretty strong for translation comparisons, for example.

  5. LOL Jay,

    No, I actually meant Quickbooks! I know there are different types of programs…was just trying to get an idea if BW was easier/harder to use that QB.

    Thanks man, I’ll check out Quickverse and see if they have some sort of starter program.

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