Love all the new resources...but

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Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 12:12 PM

David L Bailey:
I don't know what steps are needed or how Logos implements the resource linking for new works, but I would think it is a bit complex.  First, we have to define what we mean by "new resources" and "old resources."  By "old" and "new" do we mean the year when these resources were written?  Or, the year Logos digitally published them?  A resource that Logos makes available for purchase today may be one that was originally penned 100 years ago.  Would I expect such a resource to link to my resources that were published in print 20 years ago?

We're not talking about adding hyperlinks the way a Wikipedia article might have, which would direct you to another page about that topic. We're talking about actual citations of another work that were embedded in one work. A footnote or a parenthetical reference within the text. And yes, of course in the print versions these would never have been citations of books that would be published later, only books that had been published previously. But in many cases, Logos brings out in digital format a resource that is older in print after it has already produced digital versions of resources that cite that older resource. If I later buy the original source that some commentary I already owned was referring to and would like to go look up the quote in context, I'd want to be able to click on the citation in my commentary and jump to the appropriate spot in the original source. This will be particularly true of journal articles and ancient texts. The Talmuds which are currently under development will be a huge benefit to have links become live for. But unless someone goes back through and retags all the old resources which had references to the Talmuds, this isn't going to happen. I do recall a Logos employee writing a post about how they do anticipate doing the work for the Talmuds in particular; this is one of the selling points that made the Talmud such an attractive resource to buy and why it soared through the 100% mark so quickly. So I do hope they keep their promise.

They probably decide on which other resources to add links to/from based on the number of customers who own them. But I do recall some disappointment being expressed over some recent new resources that were published with dead links to existing resources in Logos format. That seems very wrong to me. The reason given was that they didn't want to delay shipment any longer to get the tagging done, but the problem is, once it's out the door, the motivation to do the tagging goes down exponentially.

I also seem to recall they were looking into ways of making tagging a more automated process, but it's extremely tricky because different authors will use different abbreviations for commonly known works, and they'd have to anticipate all of those possiblities ahead of time to properly automate it. It still would take a human being reading through every book to look for all the possible variants. So automation wouldn't save a huge amount of time. They'e also said that crowdsourcing isn't really an option for this kind of work. However I think they could be more creative and open to this possibility. It is solveable. For example, a user could propose a link by creating it within their own library using a tool Logos could provide. It would not be released to the public until it got 5 votes from other users saying "yes, this link is correct." Users could peruse the list of proposed user-generated link additions every week or so looking for ones to vote for. There would be a way within Logos to bring up this list (it could be downloaded from the server on demand) without it actually yet affecting the resources in your Library that the links were between. Logos is already crowdsourcing a lot of their QA with the beta test program, so it seems to me they could crowdsource a bit of their QA for tagging in this way, too.

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David Bailey | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 12:32 PM

Rosie Perera:
But in many cases, Logos brings out in digital format a resource that is older in print after it has already produced digital versions of resources that cite that older resource.

I understand now.

Rosie Perera:
It still would take a human being reading through every book to look for all the possible variants.

If I recall, researchers have used software to analyze ancient languages. I can only imagine (with total ignorance on how this would work) software can help identify expected and unexpected abbreviations?

The great challenge is to help Logos make its software reach its full potential, within time and budget constraints.

Add: I understand what is meant by "links" - I was being rhetorical and reflective.

Posts 1374
nicky crane | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 1:10 PM

Richard DeRuiter:

BillS:
Not here. But maybe there could be something similar to the "report a typo" function--"Report a Link"  that'd allow us to establish the link in our resources, but also send it (or at least report it) to Logos for potential inclusion for everyone. If the function to establish a link between resources will exist in the PBB, maybe it could be adapted for this "Report a Link" function.

I always use the Report a Typo function for these (as well as for links that point to the wrong place). Then in the "Note" section I point out the lack of hyperlink to the correct resource.

The more of these they get, the more they'll know which ones we think need the most attention.

So do ICool

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 1:17 PM

Mark Barnes:
But the answer to (1) seems to be an unspoken "no", except in very limited circumstances.

I'm not sure this is established. With a good coding structure they can code the links for resources not yet available through Logos. And the explanation for the current limitations on the topic search is that the recoding is not done. The real question in my mind is what will be done regarding third part and discontinued items.

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

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DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 1:30 PM

MJ. Smith:
The real question in my mind is what will be done regarding third part and discontinued items.

I believe on the newsgroups this was raised by Logos as a reason for links not being there and typos not being corrected - it was outside of their control.

Yet when L4 was released these were amongst the resources that required updating to work with L4 and the updating was done so is it really outside of their control ? Will these resources be corrected ?

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DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 1:30 PM

MJ. Smith:
The real question in my mind is what will be done regarding third part and discontinued items.

I believe on the newsgroups this was raised by Logos as a reason for links not being there and typos not being corrected - it was outside of their control.

Yet when L4 was released these were amongst the resources that required updating to work with L4 and the updating was done so is it really outside of their control ? Will these resources be corrected ?

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DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 1:32 PM

Kevin A. Purcell:

Isn't the reason why having the public domain books in Logos costs them money for reasons like this? They spend extra time making sure this kind of thing is taken care of. At least that is the argument. But if it is not actually happening it takes away the argument and makes me wonder again, why are public domain books so expensive in Logos when they are free in other applications?

This is a fair question Kevin. On the one hand we say Logos costs extra because of all the great tagging but on the other hand we say oh yea the links aren't all there because its too much work and too complicated for Logos to do them all.

 

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Mark Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 2:25 PM

I'd like all links to all Logos resources from all Logos resources to work. I am guessing this is unrealistic. It is disappointing when a new release does not support earlier releases. (I can understand the reverse.)

Perhaps the good folks at Logos could tell us what resources are being scheduled for updates and they might even solicit input on which ones we'd most like to see get taken care of.

I imagine part of the trouble is knowing which of Logos' 11,000 resources contain links to the new work that need to be made active. Then, in some cases, perhaps a hundred or more volumes would need to be updated with thousands of references for the addition of just one new resource. That's daunting, and think of the downloading after this is done. Somehow major works need to get this treatment. Deciding which ones are the major ones may be the problem.

 

Pastor, North Park Baptist Church

Bridgeport, CT USA

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BillS | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 2:44 PM

Mark Barnes:
Will old books link to new resources? That is, when a new book is issued, is it normal policy for an employee to search for references to that books in other resources, and add links to it?

Mark Barnes:
the answer to (1) seems to be an unspoken "no", except in very limited circumstances. If so, that's a real shame, and one that diminishes the value of Logos. My concern is that if this work isn't done when resources are released, it will never be done. If it's too much work now, it's not going to get any easier with the passage of time.

This point is valid & on target.  

That's why if there is a real solution out there, it'll probably have to involve harnessing user energy to add those links (so we can use them; I suspect we'll always have more energy for doing that) AND reducing their workload (allowing us to add the links for them)... ergo some way ala PBB to allow us to add the link + share the link with them, so they can give it back to us in an updated resource at some point in the future.

Mark Barnes:

BillS:
Why am I posting? I'm a little concerned at the tone of the posts, given that Logos is really caught in a conflicting needs from users.

I'm not sure that's entirely fair.

No real disagreement with you... SmileTo me, it just looked like we starting to criticize Logos for something that we (though a different part of our group) would then turn around & criticize them for if they did add the links & sent them down the network pipeline to us--no matter when they sent it down the network pipeline .

 

Grace & Peace,
Bill


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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 2:49 PM

Mark A. Smith:
I imagine part of the trouble is knowing which of Logos' 11,000 resources contain links to the new work that need to be made active.

I would suggest that a good coding structure and a simple not-found process makes "making the links active" a non-event. It is the equivalent of adding a new resource in your library "activating" the links to that resource which has already been tagged.

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

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Friedrich | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 3:01 PM

With the exception of Rosie "I own more Logos books than Bob Pritchett himself" Perera (Stick out tongue), My guess is there are many people who never will have all the money to buy all the Logos material they want.  Perhaps Logos could exchange tagging labor for Logos resources.


I know if I got even $2,000 dollars worth of Logos books as payment, that would not take away any dollars I plan to spend out of my own pocket.  It would only serve to give me that many more resources, and make me very, very happy.  Use the Logos Army to tag them suckers.  Cool

 

I like Apples.  Especially Honeycrisp.

Posts 19124
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 3:11 PM

Dan DeVilder:

Perhaps Logos could exchange tagging labor for Logos resources.

I'm sure there are lots of us who would be willing to do some tagging in exchange for Logos resources, but they'd probably have to hire a manager (wrangler) just to herd us cats, and someone else to clean all our litter boxes. Wink

Posts 5505
DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 3:17 PM

Rosie Perera:

Dan DeVilder:

Perhaps Logos could exchange tagging labor for Logos resources.

I'm sure there are lots of us who would be willing to do some tagging in exchange for Logos resources, but they'd probably have to hire a manager (wrangler) just to herd us cats, and someone else to clean all our litter boxes. Wink

As much as my hand is up and would love to see that happen I think they have tried collaborative editing projects in the past and it hasn't worked.  At the end of the day they need to have someone go back and check all the work... if the didn't I guess we could then complain about our own mistakes in linking to wrong resource or wrong page or reference....Confused

 

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Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 3:34 PM

Mark A. Smith:
I imagine part of the trouble is knowing which of Logos' 11,000 resources contain links to the new work that need to be made active.

Yes, but we don't expect them to winkle out every possible link. We do want them to try. If I can run a search (for example) for Stott NEAR "message of Ephesians" that returns 24 books in my library. Opening up each book in turn takes a few minutes. Then searching that book for possible references to a shorter version of that resource takes another few minutes (in the ICC commentary on Ephesians, for example, Stott's commentary is referred to only as Stott, 267-75. In that case I'd need to search ICC for all occurrences of Stott (there are 11 of them). In other resources (such as Boice on Ephesians) I could just search footnotes (35 more results). Across my entire library there are probably around 150 possible links, which suggests maybe 250-300 across all of Logos' resources. To be conscientious you'd have to check the following footnotes for ibid.'s too, which adds on a little more time.

I appreciate that Logos' book editing software is entirely separate from it's search engine which means edits are not quite as straightforward as reporting typos, for example. I'm also aware that editing 50 or so books, and adding a total of 250-300 links isn't an afternoon's work, but it's probably only a week's work.

Clearly for a very few other resources it's going to be a lot more (the Talmud is an obvious example), but for the majority it's going to be a lot less, and for some (particularly new books) it's going to be none at all.

When you consider all the scanning, proof-reading and tagging that is already involved in producing a title, I'm not at all convinced that it would add much in percentage terms to either time or cost to do this extra week's work.

PS: For those not clear about the work involved in bringing a title to press, these links may help. That's why I'm suggesting a week or two's additional work wouldn't add much in percentage terms:

Posts 1206
Ward Walker | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 3:37 PM

Rosie Perera:

... They'e also said that crowdsourcing isn't really an option for this kind of work. However I think they could be more creative and open to this possibility. It is solveable. For example, a user could propose a link by creating it within their own library using a tool Logos could provide. It would not be released to the public until it got 5 votes from other users saying "yes, this link is correct." Users could peruse the list of proposed user-generated link additions every week or so looking for ones to vote for. There would be a way within Logos to bring up this list (it could be downloaded from the server on demand) without it actually yet affecting the resources in your Library that the links were between. Logos is already crowdsourcing a lot of their QA with the beta test program, so it seems to me they could crowdsource a bit of their QA for tagging in this way, too.

It sounds like a wicked problem due to non-linear scaling.  Someform of crowdsourcing is the only likely sol'n--other than status quo.

That said, in a year a year or two I'd be willing to work for Logos as their CLO (Chief Link Officer) and whack away at them for a slightly nominal fee Wink

Posts 13413
Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 3:43 PM

Andrew McKenzie:
As much as my hand is up and would love to see that happen I think they have tried collaborative editing projects in the past and it hasn't worked.  At the end of the day they need to have someone go back and check all the work

I'm not convinced by this. With the right tools, crowd-sourcing is an ideal way to develop electronic texts. Imagine (for example) that the PBB software was extended so that users could work on new texts. We could request certain sections to proof-read, or add links to, etc. Each section would be given to multiple users, and where all users agree the software assume the document is correct. Where users disagree, it's given to more people until either (a) a consensus is reached, or (b) an employee intervenes. Users who contribute a certain amount of work, receive the completed book for free.

I'm not suggesting I'd want all my texts done this way, but particularly for PD stuff it would be ideal. After all, it's the way ancestry.com are digitising millions of documents (some of them hand-written!). With enough users, the model works. We're not as big as Ancestry, but it's going to be far more edifying and relevant proof-reading Barnes' Notes than it would be transcribing millions of records in the hope that one might be of your ancestor.

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DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 3:56 PM

Mark Barnes:
With the right tools, crowd-sourcing is an ideal way to develop electronic texts.

Personally I would be comfortable with this for PD....just thinking along the lines of Logos model as it stands rather than what I would like it to be, and in particular the links we are talking about. in and to resources like BDAG, M&M, Anchor etc..... but more than happy for them to prove me wrong on the PD stuff

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Mark Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 4:27 PM

Mark Barnes:
When you consider all the scanning, proof-reading and tagging that is already involved in producing a title, I'm not at all convinced that it would add much in percentage terms to either time or cost to do this extra week's work.

If that is the case then why isn't it being done already? I realize this doesn't fix older resources that suddenly get opportunities for tagging with a new resources, but it should take care of all new ones with existing resources to link to. If that isn't being done (as reported), it should be.

Pastor, North Park Baptist Church

Bridgeport, CT USA

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DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Sep 14 2010 4:34 PM

Is it time for Logos speaks ?  .... they're the only ones that can truly answer our concerns about whether we are getting what we are told we are paying for or not and why there are apparently so many missing links in newly released resources.

 

Posts 13413
Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Sep 15 2010 12:51 AM

Mark A. Smith:

Mark Barnes:
When you consider all the scanning, proof-reading and tagging that is already involved in producing a title, I'm not at all convinced that it would add much in percentage terms to either time or cost to do this extra week's work.

If that is the case then why isn't it being done already? I realize this doesn't fix older resources that suddenly get opportunities for tagging with a new resources, but it should take care of all new ones with existing resources to link to. If that isn't being done (as reported), it should be.

I have a theory that the new resources that are particularly problematic are the ones not published (and therefore possibly not produced) by Logos, such as the Theological Journals and IVP offerings. As for the old resources I simply think that Logos have a list of 500 things they'd like to do, but only the time and money to do 200 of them, and this job didn't make the cut (just like the incredibly simple job of correcting bibliographic errors doesn't seem to make the cut). But it's only a theory, and as Andrew says an official response is the only way to know for certain.

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