Why not allow users to modify book descriptions?

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Posts 276
Greg F | Forum Activity | Posted: Mon, Jul 4 2016 11:44 PM

An ongoing pet peeve of mine: the book descriptions on the info panel tend to be very unhelpful. In particular for multi-volume sets: take the Sacred Books of the East for instance. I'm interested in reading Buddhist texts, so I go to my library and stumble upon The Saddharma-Pundarîka, a fundamental text for the religion according to the series index.

However, the description of the book is a one paragraph overview of the entire series (Confucianism, Taoism, Islam, etc.) followed by a paragraph with the typical Logos marketing mumbo jumbo ("massive", "lightning-fast", "fully integrated", etc.). Not a word about the book I'm interested in reading and learning about.

What about allowing users to fill this info panel with useful information, such as our own book descriptions, or personal notes about the specifc book? I could see myself going to Wikipedia, or some other encyclopedia, and finding useful information about the Saddharma-Pundarîka, which I could then come back to and reread later.

What do you think?

Posts 11433
DMB | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 6:18 AM

Excellent idea! And probably not expensive to do. Though not free.

Initially I thought 'huh?'  since the descriptions are always a waste, even on the logos.com page. And repeat themselves when I try to remember where a church father is (dead).

But as an alternate to book notes (high level), it'd be perfect.  Or what's in that book. Or which chapter has what I want.

I use the other editable fields a lot, and this would be icing!

"God will save his fallen angels and their broken wings He'll mend."

Posts 1112
EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 6:39 AM

I like the idea, but I do see one potential downside.  To be most useful, it should be a community process, so we could have the benefit of edits made by other users. But, people being people, some users will inevitably be tempted to trash books with views that they disagree with. Without some level of editorial review, this could become ugly in some instances.

Posts 276
Greg F | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 6:44 AM

No, sorry, I don't think I made myself clear: I don't want others to see my personalized book descriptions, I just want to be able to edit the description for own my personal use (much like the long and short titles can be modified locally by users).

Alternatively, as Denise noted, I would also be happy with just having an empty box on the Book Info Panel where I could jot down book-specific notes (ie. why I want to read this specific book, what chapters to look at, where I found it, etc.)

Posts 1112
EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 6:59 AM

Greg F:

No, sorry, I don't think I made myself clear: I don't want others to see my personalized book descriptions, I just want to be able to edit the description for own my personal use (much like the long and short titles can be modified locally by users).

Alternatively, as Denise noted, I would also be happy with just having an empty box on the Book Info Panel where I could jot down book-specific notes (ie. why I want to read this specific book, what chapters to look at, where I found it, etc.)

Sorry I misunderstood. I can see how that could be a useful feature - sort of an empty flyleaf at the front of the book for jotting down notes.

Posts 3094
Doc B | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 9:16 AM

Greg F:
"massive", "lightning-fast", "fully integrated", etc.

If you can't tell the difference between a Logos resource and an NFL linebacker, then perhaps the description indeed ought to be editable.

Smile

My thanks to the various MVPs. Without them Logos would have died early. They were the only real help available.

Faithlife Corp. owes the MVPs free resources for life.

Posts 11433
DMB | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 10:22 AM

Maybe a linebacker works at Logos?  His(?) favorite word is 'awesome'.

I've thought about this some more.  And it's even better than excellent.

I absolutely detest the constant book-level popups. In the library, they're truly awful. I have to keep my mouse away from the library, to avoid the mouse being smothered.

But .... with MY descriptions, notes, etc, I think just the opposite. The book popups would be quite useful. Indeed, I'd be whining about the book popups that expand the title (Logos4 leftover) instead of the book info panel (Logos4.x era).

And a fly-leaf concept ... I often list the pages of key tables on the flyleaf. Yes!

"God will save his fallen angels and their broken wings He'll mend."

Posts 1993
Donnie Hale | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 10:30 AM

Greg F:
Alternatively, as Denise noted, I would also be happy with just having an empty box on the Book Info Panel where I could jot down book-specific notes (ie. why I want to read this specific book, what chapters to look at, where I found it, etc.)

I suspect you've unintentionally hinted at what FL's answer would be: Use a note. If you use a resource-specific note file, by convention you could simply make the first note in a resource's notes file contain whatever you wanted to record about the book. Alternatively, you could have one (or a few) "Book Descriptions" notes files where you recorded this information.

I see the value in recording the information. But I'm not sure FL wouldn't have a legitimate response of, "We've already given you such a facility."

Donnie

Posts 1395
James Taylor | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 10:31 AM

I see the need, but disagree on the fix. I think Logos should provide the appropriate descriptions of books at the book/volume level not simply at the series level. 

Logos 8  | Dell Inspiron 7373 | Windows 10 Pro 64, i7, 16GB, SSD | iPhone X | iMac 27" i7, 16GB, SSD | OS 10.13

Posts 1112
EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 11:01 AM

Donnie Hale:

I suspect you've unintentionally hinted at what FL's answer would be: Use a note. If you use a resource-specific note file, by convention you could simply make the first note in a resource's notes file contain whatever you wanted to record about the book. Alternatively, you could have one (or a few) "Book Descriptions" notes files where you recorded this information.

You could, and it would store the same information.  But in my mind at least, storing information about a resource isn't really the point of this suggestion. Instead, it's flagging a book with a short description and perhaps a reminder of why you may want to read it - in such a way that they show up automatically whenever you look at it in your library. In the paper world, it might be a cross between a blank flyleaf in the front, and perhaps a sticky-note you've stuck on the cover.

A notes file is much more like the spiral-bound notebook you brought to class along with your textbook. That's absolutely essential, and a more basic "core" function, but not quite the same thing. A user-editable resource description would be a convenience feature instead of a core function, but could make the system easier and more pleasant to use.

Posts 8967
RIP
Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 11:52 AM

James Taylor:

I see the need, but disagree on the fix. I think Logos should provide the appropriate descriptions of books at the book/volume level not simply at the series level. 

I agree with you,  James. Logos should provide those descriptions. I worry what might happen if descriptions were open to public input. Spammers could fill the website with all types of spam.

Logos 7 Collectors Edition

Posts 1112
EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 5 2016 12:31 PM

Matthew C Jones:

James Taylor:

I see the need, but disagree on the fix. I think Logos should provide the appropriate descriptions of books at the book/volume level not simply at the series level. 

I agree with you,  James. Logos should provide those descriptions. I worry what might happen if descriptions were open to public input. Spammers could fill the website with all types of spam.

These may not be mutually exclusive requests. Faithlife could provide better standard descriptions at the book level, and still provide a private, user-editable field for personal use.

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