Bible Study Software - Gramcord
JFantin at aol.com
JFantin at aol.com
Wed Mar 13 05:45:43 EST 2002
Please forgive me if this has been covered already, I receive the digest and
thus any post since the last digest I have not received.
> Michelle Vetter stated:
>Any comments on GRAMCORD? Bible Companion
> has a $50 off special this month on their ultimate bundle,
> with 2 extra add-ons free...
As has been mentioned before, the choice of bible study software is somewhat
personal and thus its choice should be made on the basis of need. Therefore,
I am uncomfortable of claims that one bible study package is the best. People
have different needs. Some packages may appeal more to some while other
packages will appeal to others.
There is much I could write but I will restrict my comments to those below.
I have used Gramcord since the days of DOS and continue using the windows
version (I used the DOS version again two days ago for a feature on
occurrences per 1000 words). I have used on occasion BibleWorks 4 and Logos
but really have not learned them. But for me what these packages offer do not
entice me away from GC.
I suspect the Bible Companion Series format on which GC is presently run is
not as feature packed (and thus as useful for some people's needs) as other
packages. However, it certainly is sufficient for my needs. I believe
Gramcord is working on their own format (Lightening-info was given out at
SBL) which will probably make it more attractive to those who like all the
features of the other programs.
For me the main feature by far that I want from a package is the ability to
create complex and accurate searches in the biblical languages using the most
accurate databases available. I believe that GC is first in this area. They
are the ones updating the text. In fact, Dr Wheeler (on this list) is
responsible for the present Hebrew database. I will stand corrected if
someone can tell me otherwise. I am not sure how quickly or when
corrections/changes get into BW, Logos, etc. But I am more comfortable
knowing biblical scholars are behind the text I am using. They are able to
make educated decisions about the database.
Though I am not concerned about having 100s of translations to choose from. I
do like to have a few of the most important. GC does provide these. Some
packages have 100s of texts that I will never use. I do not mind that these
are there but I do not think they are a selling point. I am waiting for a
Klingon translation to be added to the huge list offered by some.
One further point (well points) I want to make which really is not related to
usability. GC was created for scholars and is a nonprofit organization. In
the times I have needed help they are always there. On two occasions because
of problems that could not be solved through e-mail they have not hesitated
to send me free of charge the latest database CDs which considering my
Internet hook up in the UK, saves me a lot of time and hassle. Also, their
pricing is very reasonable. At SBL they even offer more types of discounts
(correct me if I am wrong but I recall they offered free packages to teachers
when a certain number of students purchased the package at a very low price
last SBL). Students can get discounts when the college has a (reasonably
priced) site license and when they order in groups. When I upgraded from DOS
to windows, the cost was minimal ($25 if I recall correctly). I was shocked
that BibleWorks upgrade 5 cost $150 from version 4. Though some were pleased
with the added databases, only one or two looked helpful to me and these was
definitely not worth the cost (in my opinion).
For me concentrating on research (and in the future seminary teaching) it is
important that the people working on the most important biblical study tool I
use really understand the complexities of the languages. I want to feel
confident that if I address an issue, I will get an informed response.
Finally, as a personal preference, I am glad that GC is a nonprofit
organization. This frees them up from needing to appeal to the masses. I have
nothing against the masses owning bible software; however, I have different
needs than the average person. GC does operate as a nonprofit organization
and the way they deal with people reflects this.
Just by two cents
Sheffield and Dallas
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