Dear Logos for the general user you've got it ass-backwards teaching understanding before use

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Posted: Fri, Dec 4 2020 3:46 PM

Yes, I checked to two dictionaries to be certain ass-backwards is not considered vulgar.

Faithlife, you got it right when you ran blog series HiDef Mondays and Sense of the Day. You introduced the user to the tagging values. But for the average user, much of the tagging is equally meaningless unless they are shown (a) what it is and (b) what it means when reading the scripture. By "means" I mean how does it help the user understand the text - not just a mouse-over definition to parrot back. Faithlife should take another look at training not focusing on the mechanics but on the why as the blogs listed above did. And I suggest that for much of that one should take tips from language arts education  and foreign language education. Teach what something (e.g. Sentence Type) is, how to assign the classification, and how to use that information. Currently FL starts at "How to search for the information" and "How to read a popup definition".

  • Run a tip of the day entry that is on (a) a single piece of data i.e. a single value (b) shows examples of what that value tells one about the text and (c) gives a way to find other examples to try it for yourself. You could use the home page, the Program Assistant, or the blog to house this. Some repetition is a good thing ... as users learn, more additional items will make sense.
  • Emphasize the Information Panel as where one sees and applies the values of FL tagging ... an improved version that contains all tagging and divides "other references" into smaller, meaningful units. For the non-seminary educated user this means a default Bible layout of Bible-Information Panel-Factbook.
  • At least for all elements that span text (i.e. Section, Label...) provide filters that one can rotate through so one sees where the change in genre, change in speaker, break in sentence etc. fall in text - the Information Panel fails to show boundaries. (Note one way to do it would be click on entry in Information Panel to activate filter)
  • Integrate the clause data - grammatical roles, semantic roles, case frames - into the Informational Panel ,Context Menu, and Bible Browser. Especially since the closely related verbal classes are already there, this is a gaping hole. Note the grammatical roles are something most users are already familiar with and can make use of immediately..
  • To the extent possible, have the Lookup  Function appear on all FL tagging in the Context Menu. This will require some reworking of documentation.
  • Consider interactives as the primary means for the user of  observing and learning what distinctions the various attribute values make. This means adding in a number of interactives for existing datasets. And yes, there are a few dataset for which interactives are not needed.
  • Consider making training videos of teachers teaching the data rather than the tool e.g. videos on Speech Acts - criteria for inclusion, meaning of the attributes. Think of it as an instructor for a high-school senior language arts class not as a software instructor's class.

The point is, Faithlife has built it's brand on its tagging - which is very powerful. Most of that tagging is foreign to the average high-school graduate but well within what they can easily be taught to understand. Without that understanding Logos seems expensive, daunting, and unlearnably complex.. Some users learn easily on their own but many need assistance. If FL saw the education of the user as part of its core mission, it could greatly enhance user satisfaction and referrals to new customers.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 56
1Cor10:31 | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Dec 6 2020 6:46 AM

MJ: If FL saw the education of the user as part of its core mission, it could greatly enhance user satisfaction and referrals to new customers.

 

I agree with MJ’s punchline given above. I think if they educate the user, it will be a win-win. Customers will buy more and the profit $ per customer will go up.

 

I also think that people at the top are very smart. Thus, I am sure they’ve debated whether to include “education” as part of its mission. They decided that it doesn’t increase firm value at this point in time.

 

 I’ll give my 2c to convince them otherwise. If it is a new viewpoint that they’ve not heard before, then smart people will take it into account in their decision. So here it is…

 

Logos software is intimidating and costly (in terms of time) to learn about for an average user who isn’t seminary educated. This is well-known. What may not be well known is that Logos might be intimidating even for people whom God has wired to learn independently. For example, (i) I have a Ph.D. in Finance, (ii) do research for a living and that skill is easily transferrable to Biblical research as long as I know the jargon and the tools, and (iii) work with software (to do the data analysis) that is mostly self-taught using manuals. Still, I struggle mightily with Logos. (Yes, you are free to dismiss me as someone who is overconfident in their God-given abilities.)

 

I’ve been with Logos for about 2 years and, through the Forums, I’ve heard about LearnLogos and I’ve now decided to get formal training in Logos soon. But why send customers elsewhere to look for training. LearnLogos is about $100-$150 for training on all the features AND doing Bible study. I’m a financial economist so I don’t believe anything is free except God’s love, so I am not asking for free training. But here is my suggestion to Faithlife. With each package (Starter, Bronze, Silver, Gold), include a thorough set of organized training videos as part of the package that can capitalize on the resources available in the package. The price of the package will go up marginally, but people will appreciate the fact that you are not letting them swim in deep waters without any help. If you want to expand your user base to regular Joes like me who like Biblical research, and you want these regular Joes to spend boatloads of money on your products and not stop with the Starter or Bronze package, then show them how they can benefit by upgrading. One way to think of the cost of adding training videos to the packages is to think of it as Marketing/Advertising cost. I feel that the benefits to the firm will far outweigh the costs. Hence, it is a win for customers and a win for Faithlife.

 

I’m sure I can add more, but I need to get back to doing research.

NDD

Posts 351
Lonnie Spencer | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Dec 6 2020 7:38 AM

Great point M.J.!

As I was reading in one of my books last week, what difference does it make if you can do text comparison with a bunch of English bibles if you don't know what to do with that information?

Posts 1849
Robert M. Warren | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Dec 6 2020 11:04 AM

MJ. Smith:
Yes, I checked to two dictionaries to be certain ass-backwards is not considered vulgar.

For all these decades I thought 'bass-ackwards' was a minced oath. Surprise

Win 10 | Android 9 | Fire OS 5

Posts 102
tjebme | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Dec 6 2020 11:14 AM

Agree that improved education from FL would translate into improved customer satisfaction.

Posts 75
Ralph Wood | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 7 2020 6:55 PM

Wow!  Talk about providence!  I am a layman who teaches an adult Bible study class and I have been seeking Logos application training (vs. mechanics) for some time.  Moments ago I stumbled upon this post while searching on "layouts" and "layouts strategy" with exactly what you (MJ) are highlighting here in mind.  (You happened to use the word "layout" in a different context which led this post to showing up in my search results).  I am a subscriber to Morris Proctor's Training Library and I absolutely love his work -- but would love it even more if he had training that basically allowed me to look over his shoulder while he used various Logos features to put together a Sunday School lesson.

So...let me give a big AMEN to this idea!!! 

Posts 3047
Doc B | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 7 2020 7:14 PM

I've been saying variations of this for years, just not nearly so eloquently or with as much detail.  Glad to see it posted by someone to whom FL may listen. Because, to quote J. C. Fogerty, I ain't no fortunate son.

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 186
TWBeining | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 7 2020 7:31 PM

Doc B:
Because, to quote J. C. Fogerty, I ain't no fortunate son.

Right on Doc! I am in line right behind you.

Tim

Posts 186
TWBeining | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 7 2020 7:35 PM

YesYes MJ 

Posts 204
Martin Hall | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 7 2020 7:39 PM
I would heartily welcome more training in this area. I have a fairly decent library & am a Connect subscriber, and sometimes I get lost in all of the info that comes my way when preparing sermons & small group studies. I specifically cater to teaching those that struggle with addiction and my focus for their recovery is to nudge them toward Bible Study. I believe in this so much, that I provide them with Logos Bible Software, free through a Faithlife Equip subscription, to give them every opportunity to fall in love with Scripture and learn who God really is for themselves. I would love for Logos to offer more than just their basic training videos. Tagging for me, at this point is beyond my comprehension, and I see it mentioned here all the time.
Posts 290
MWW | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 7 2020 8:46 PM

Martin Hall:
I specifically cater to teaching those that struggle with addiction

Have you ever thought of starting a Logos users group? 😜 I am sure there are more than a few here in the forums who are addicted and a Logos addiction can be costly. There are probably a number of Logos user spouses who would welcome an intervention.

Posts 96
Darrell Tan | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Dec 7 2020 11:38 PM

Here's my 2c. I use Logos Basic. Not going to buy any package. They don't represent value to me. I buy resources. I don't have the motivation to learn the complexities because I'm not spending hours in Logos every week and will likely forget before long. In fact, I usually use the mobile app. 

So I don't know who a 'general user' is - perhaps I'm below that - but I wouldn't be a Logos user/customer if there weren't a free basic version.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 8 2020 12:13 AM

Darrell Tan:
So I don't know who a 'general user'

I don't either -- but the adult that I target for Bible student is high school educated. Beyond that they range from those who have just begun to take their faith seriously to those who have read extensively and attended many religious education/faith formation/spiritual growth events or series. They also are not uniform is social class or country of origin ... which they would be in many parishes but not in the parishes in which I have experience.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 204
Martin Hall | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 8 2020 5:32 AM

MWW:

Martin Hall:
I specifically cater to teaching those that struggle with addiction

Have you ever thought of starting a Logos users group? 😜 I am sure there are more than a few here in the forums who are addicted and a Logos addiction can be costly. There are probably a number of Logos user spouses who would welcome an intervention.

Haha, my wife has advised me that I need to go back to Teen Challenge for my Logos addiction. 

Posts 11433
DMB | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 8 2020 5:50 AM

I've watched this thread from its inception. I'm quite ambivalent. FL has millions of videos. They turned the usual help file into a  fairly decent manual. And the Logos wiki is really impressive ... I appreciate Dave and KSFJ in recent years.

But MJ kept talking about a 'Bible Browser' so I googled that, after DuckDuck was at a loss. Google found a couple references. I then tried Logos search ... not much better. I assume BB is a major L9 creation.  Later, I did find more pages, but as to what its value might be for me, can't really tell.

Last week, out of curiousity I scanned down the L9 page ... it was a series of random features, thumbnails, and some more in depth after a click-thru. I've never understood FL's reluctance to group by expected use, or maybe Marketing doesn't know.

Personally, I've evolved to a 'Darrell' level (above). I'm quite competent regarding the subjects treated in Logos features ... but don't need to waste time on trying to find the Logos features or what they might benefit ... quicker to just use my other Bible platforms.

I think the horse has already left the barn.

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

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Graham Criddle | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 8 2020 5:57 AM

Denise:
I assume BB is a major L9 creation.  Later, I did find more pages, but as to what its value might be for me, can't really tell.

Bible Browser was introduced - via Logos Now - in 2016 as per https://community.logos.com/forums/t/129323.aspx 

An outline of its features is provided at https://support.logos.com/hc/en-us/articles/360016187991-Bible-Browser 

Posts 11433
DMB | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 8 2020 6:20 AM

Graham Criddle:
Bible Browser was introduced - via Logos Now - in 2016

Yep ... I knew, writing that, there'd be a reply. As it turns out, my L7 has it listed! Sort of reinforces my point, right?

After you mentioned it, I went to Logos.com to again scan the features ... L9 was gone! Lots of books. (Yes, dig into the little hamburger).

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

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Graham Criddle | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 8 2020 6:41 AM

Denise:
Sort of reinforces my point, right?

I'm not quite sure what your point is!

Denise:
After you mentioned it, I went to Logos.com to again scan the features ... L9 was gone!

I still see the features outlined at https://www.logos.com/features 

Posts 11433
DMB | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 8 2020 7:02 AM

Graham Criddle:
I'm not quite sure what your point is!

Sort of illustrates the problem. If you regularly deal in a software, you probably know it. It's obvious. If it's more an addition to 'real life', you depend on the software to be organized, fairly obvious to this and that, etc. 

In the instances above, a decent user (me) didn't realize a feature was in their software ... instead, using google without too much success. A review of the features available (FL Marketing) was simply a random this and that. And I still don't know what BB would be good for ... I now remember Fr. Devin asked for access to the underlying query ... that fell flat (at the time).

And this morning's Logos.com ...you'd never guess FL does software ... or last week sold 'books'. they just assume people 'know'.

Now, regarding the horse, I don't expect change. In 2022, there'll be a series of mysterious forum feature pages, a long list of features in package descriptions, some videos, and of course, new packages (with complaints about FL demanding more money).

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

Posts 236
Reid A Ferguson | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 8 2020 7:22 AM

OK - so put me in the "dumb" column. When I see it is called "Logos Bible Software" - I assume software is a big part of what is going on. Then, if I go to the web site, it is readily apparent that the software is designed to comprehensively consolidate that Bible Study Software with a library of electronic resources. At this point, as with any software, I assume a learning curve. Yes, the Logos curve is steep. The more comprehensive the software, the more I'll have to take the time to educate myself. Every discipline requires learning the conventions, nomenclature - etc. Just think "hermeneutics". Did any of us even know what it meant before we came to be serious students of the Word? Vocab is just basic to any study of any kind. I have no college. I am not a seminary grad. But that you have to take the time to learn how to use such a massive tool well simply makes sense. Not everything can be immediately obvious or intuitive if we are going to have the extraordinary advantages that this mammoth thing called Logos gives. Yes, a number of my pastoral friends find it somewhat overwhelming too. Which is why I looked at all the videos I could, and then went to camp Logos. Yes, it will mean serious effort and serious commitment. And yes, it is worth every moment. Don't be thrown. Jump in. Take a little time. It WILL pay off very quickly. The Bible itself will not yield up its riches with cursory readings and a failure to try and master it not only book by book, but as a whole. And I know nothing that can help you more in that pursuit than the astounding tool called Logos.     

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