Initial Reaction to L8?

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This post has 74 Replies | 9 Followers

Posts 354
Batman | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, Oct 30 2018 12:25 AM

I prefer that this not be a bashing session. But, at the same time, I am curious what everyone's opinion is on the latest version. 

I'll start, but, in all honesty, I am not the best person to do a critique. 
 
So far, being a Logos Now/Connect, or whatever it's called this week subscriber, I was thrilled that for once I was not faced with the decision of having to pay or pass. 
Being a subscriber, I understand that I do not get the benefit of not paying and still having the feature sets. At the same time, however, the benefits to being a subscriber: extra books free, and mobile ed rentals. Give up some, but gain something else. In my case, the discount to the Bronze package was an exceptional value. Silver would be a great value, too, just a little more than I could afford this month. 

L8 looks a little more sleek on startup. But of course, that really is not a deal maker or breaker. I suppose the new look of the start page will be debated. I'm not thrilled with the look of the Home page. I do like the ability to pull the Library to the Home page.  I like how it seems to be more user friendly than in the past. But, in actuality, that will have to be proven to me, as I deal with it. 

At the moment, I am having issues with it "Not responding". HOPEFULLY this is a temporary issue that will be fixed relatively quickly. Once open, using the new "Go bar" does work in the blink of an eye fast. I went from Gen 3 to John 3 faster than I could turn my eyes from the "Go bar".  That was impressive. From page 1 to page 19 in Divine Healing instantly. 

I do like the tabs: Docs, Guides, Tools and esp the shortcuts. The help (triple dots to the right) is rather helpful. An "Explain this screen" feature, and ability to view online videos and help pages and the forum are highlights to this feature. The settings (gears icon) and "+" icon have me baffled at the moment, as to their purpose. 

Right now I am cautiously excited about L8. I'm cautiously excited, because every time I get excited, I quickly lose interest, because I find Logos to be more complicated than I care for it to be. Let's face it, it's  a shame that I can google a verse faster than my elaborate Bible software can get the verse. All this appears to be changing. With the extremely fast reaction to the "Go bar", I am thinking FINALLY the Bible software I have poured more money into than I care to admit. At the same time, I'm still a bit disappointed that I have the Not Responding lag, that does take it a while to get working. Is that my laptop? My internet connection? The overload at Logos/Faithlife servers, the software being new, needing fixing? I have no idea. Again, I am hoping it is temporary, and will be worked out and soon. 

Bottom Line:
If you are fortunate enough to get a deep discount or set of discounts, great! I notice some issues are being reported. I suspect those will be fixed as quickly as possible.  Logos is not cheap. But, it is intensive software, that if one is not bogged down and discouraged by it's complexities, can be an awesome tool. And as far as that part goes, it seems they have done a lot to uncomplicate things. 
Right now, I am giving this an 85 of 100, but suspect once that pesky "Not responding" issue gets resolved, and I find myself getting excited and actually using the software, that will be raised to 90 or even higher. 

Now, for some thoughts from people who have actually been successful at using past versions to share their thoughts on 8; and those of you who might be using 8 as their first version. I personally am very interested in what others think. So, thank you. 


UPDATE:
I have discovered earlier this morning that Logos has included an excessive number of ads, that have previously had the ability to block. After spending too much time with a chat support rep, it was explained that at this time they are not able to be disabled. 
After playing with the software some more, I am liking it. So, my previous rating would jump to 90. Unfortunately, I am one who finds ads inside my Bible to be disgusting, and outrageous. As a result, that 90 is being dropped to 65, until we are able to remove them. 
Jesus was not a happy camper with the greedy action outside and inside the temple. And I follow that here, in the Bible. I take it as very offensive. I implore Bob to do the right thing, once again, and leave the ads to the daily and hourly emails. Where they belong. I really want this to be the version that shines. A few tweaks, and the ability to eradicate the ads will raise the score to 90, and maybe near perfect. A first for me, for Logos. 
So, still great job. But, wow, the number of ads is just disgusting. (Of course, 1 is bad enough, but  so many is even more sickening). 

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 12:53 AM

I am disappointed that the unfinished features - lectionaries, saints, and daily devotional - hit the liturgical church users considerable more than the others. The same is true of Workflows where dates and multiple passages are not supported.

That being said, the Notes and the Workflows when completed will meet the needs of liturgical churches - things I've fought for, for 4 or 5 major releases. I can finally say with a straight face that Logos/Verbum has moved beyond thinking primarily of what can a computer do well to thinking about what do humans need in support of their Bible study activities. And the integration makes it easy to slowly teach people what some of the tools can do for them.  In that sense I am genuinely excited about this release.

I also firmly believe that the changes to the library, Bible browser, and the search templates (which at the moment are so underpopulated as to be a step backward) are huge steps in making Logos accessible to the average user.

Now I just have to make sure Logos gets its priorities right over the next few releases Wink

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

Posts 354
Batman | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 1:07 AM

Thank you. You've used this for years. You've also seen my complaints over the years. Some justified, some, justified to me only. Some maybe not justified at all. You have tried to help me get excited about Logos, but underpowered computers, internet, and too extensive of a program that would only be underwhelming has greatly hampered my desire to use the program.
With the few issues that may be already working themselves out, once again, I am getting excited. So, yes, I have to agree and affirm that this is (hopefully) a step forward for us average users. 

I'm glad they are listening to you, and that you are constantly offering suggestions. If it weren't for you, and several others, people like me would be constantly frustrated; with no end in sight. At least this early look at 8, I can see things finally beginning to looking good for us. 
Thanks MJ, and thanks for your comments. 

MJ. Smith:

I am disappointed that the unfinished features - lectionaries, saints, and daily devotional - hit the liturgical church users considerable more than the others. The same is true of Workflows where dates and multiple passages are not supported.

That being said, the Notes and the Workflows when completed will meet the needs of liturgical churches - things I've fought for, for 4 or 5 major released. I can finally say with a straight face that Logos/Verbum has moved beyond thinking primarily of what can a computer do well to thinking about what do humans need in support of their Bible study activities. And the integration makes it easy to slowly teach people what some of the tools can do for them.  In that sense I am genuinely excited about this release.

I also firmly believe that the changes to the library, Bible browser, and the search templates (which at the moment are so underpopulated as to be a step backward) are huge steps in making Logos accessible to the average user.

Now I just have to make sure Logos gets its priorities right over the next few releases Wink

Posts 999
Mike Pettit | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 1:28 AM

Logos 8 is definitely a positive development.

The old notes system was almost impossible to use effectively and the choices that you had to make about palates and files were well beyond anyone but an expert. The new system appears to just work. Notes are central to why Logos is a good idea and it is finally fit for purpose.

One thing that I am less keen on was the effort (to quote the intro video) to have a clean fresh interface, I am all for clean but fresh smacks of change for changes sake.

Logos has also never really made its connect subscriptions work. The subscription is actually good value but the whole point of having an evolving interface has been lost due to the marketing necessiity of surprising everyone with new features. The lack of visibility of the subscriptions on the website suggests that Logos does not really know where to go with them.

Posts 354
Batman | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 1:39 AM

I think I used Notes a couple times. But, nah, why use it, when I can make my own notes much easier, and access them so much easier elsewhere on the computer. 
I agree with you on change for change sake to just change something so you can change. Maybe this is somewhat true here, but, so far I am happy with the direction of some of these changes. Quicker and hopefully easier. I am mixed on the look tho. The homepage or dashboard not so much. The library, I like better (but is there really much of a change?) 

And I think you might be right on your assessment on the subscriptions. 

Thanks for your input. Maybe I'm not so far off after all. Big SmileStick out tongue

Mike Pettit:

Logos 8 is definitely a positive development.

The old notes system was almost impossible to use effectively and the choices that you had to make about palates and files were well beyond anyone but an expert. The new system appears to just work. Notes are central to why Logos is a good idea and it is finally fit for purpose.

One thing that I am less keen on was the effort (to quote the intro video) to have a clean fresh interface, I am all for clean but fresh smacks of change for changes sake.

Logos has also never really made its connect subscriptions work. The subscription is actually good value but the whole point of having an evolving interface has been lost due to the marketing necessiity of surprising everyone with new features. The lack of visibility of the subscriptions on the website suggests that Logos does not really know where to go with them.

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Dave Hooton | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 1:57 AM

Mike Pettit:
The lack of visibility of the subscriptions on the website suggests that Logos does not really know where to go with them.

Or Faithlife don't want to push subscription as much with Logos 8?

Dave
===

Windows & Android

Posts 1001
John Goodman | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 2:09 AM

So far I'm very pleased and see a lot of potential.

I think the web app is coming of age though I wish for 4 columns and a full page library view... with 7000 resources that little box is useless.

The desktop app feels significantly faster.

Notes became useful!

There is a lot in here which I think will help beginners and that is very important but not so much for those of us who know the software well or have established study habits.

גַּם־חֹשֶׁךְ֮ לֹֽא־יַחְשִׁ֪יךְ מִ֫מֶּ֥ךָ וְ֭לַיְלָה כַּיּ֣וֹם יָאִ֑יר כַּ֝חֲשֵׁיכָ֗ה כָּאוֹרָֽה

Posts 2078
GaoLu | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 2:26 AM

MJ. Smith:
Logos/Verbum has moved beyond thinking primarily of what can a computer do well to thinking about what do humans need in support of their Bible study activities. And the integration makes it easy to slowly teach people what some of the tools can do for them.

Yes

Posts 1928
Donovan R. Palmer | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 2:37 AM

MJ. Smith:
I am disappointed that the unfinished features - lectionaries, saints, and daily devotional - hit the liturgical church users considerable more than the others. The same is true of Workflows where dates and multiple passages are not supported.

Could not agree more!!!  This was one of the things I was really hoping for in this version! Our time will come, I hope... Big Smile

However, a huge shout out on increase of speed. I'll come back after 20 hours of use to say something about stability, but in contrast to some reports on this forum, I have not have to do a force quit on Logos yet.  This has improved over the years, particularly since the rodeo that Logos 4 was, so I am cautiously optimistic that the quality control in coding has continued to mature. To me this is the most important thing.  Well done Logos. 

As far as features goes:

Homepage - I could take it or leave it.  I think the tiles look a bit clunky for a dashboard (compare to Tableau or Qlik), but that's really not important. I think the idea of having a dashboard in Bible software could be really developed though.  Nice concept.

Workflows - these are cool. Whether I will use them or not, I have not decided, but definitely a good handrail on the stairs to help people move beyond the baffled state that sometimes occur when you don't know where to start with Logos.

Canvas, Documents and Notes - Definitely has evolved and will be useful to help one want to keep all their Biblical research in the Logos ecosystem.  I can certainly see this causing me to put more of my work here.

Library Tool - Yes, yes, yes... keep developing this! Yes

Theology Guide - I like this initially and could see myself using it.  Tools that help tap into all the resources that you have, are really useful.

Important Words - An interesting addition to the passage guide. Starting to blur into the purpose of the exegetical guide, but certainly being able to wrap back to commentaries is helpful.

Important Passages - Another potentially very useful tool.  Tools to reduce work to harvest in Logos are very useful!

Search Template - kind of like workflows, don't know if I will use this much or not, but certainly good to see this added to assist in using the software.

As far as the bundles this go round, nothing earth shattering for me in terms of value. Part of this is simply because my library has grown to the point I am becoming more selective and now the bundles seem to present me a lot of public domain works.  I think what I would like to see at times like this is 'niche products' like the 'Confessional Documents' collection be added to bundles. OK, I am probably a minority that is at the stage where I am looking to fill gaps with good deals on feature expansion datasets.

But all in all, this seems like a very solid release particularly if my impression on speed and stability rings true with time.  Software that 'just works', is wonderful to use.

Also, on the back office or company execution part, yesterday on the website I was wondering if there would be a stampede that would grind the website down, but it seem to perform well and the roll out on this from a distance seemed very well done.  The launch video coverage was a nice touch.

So all in all, love to see the liturgical support grow... but very pleased with what I see.

Posts 1113
Sean | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 3:59 AM

I've not upgraded yet.

I was rather disappointed with L7--it really wasn't much of an upgrade over 6. I thought L8 would take the same incremental approach, so I was fairly indifferent about its imminent arrival.

What I've seen of 8 so far exceeds my expectations. It looks like FL has really taken to heart a lot of requests users made for improved workflow and UI. As a theologian, I'm cautiously optimistic about the Theology Guide tool. And I'm ecstatic about the reports of improvement in performance.

Like I said, I haven't upgraded yet. I had my doubts about doing so; at this point, though, it looks like I'll be (somewhat) gladly spending a fair bit more than I had initially planned. Though perhaps I'll wait until 8.1 rolls out before doing so...

Posts 809
Cynthia in Florida | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 4:14 AM

MJ. Smith:

I can finally say with a straight face that Logos/Verbum has moved beyond thinking primarily of what can a computer do well to thinking about what do humans need in support of their Bible study activities. And the integration makes it easy to slowly teach people what some of the tools can do for them.  In that sense I am genuinely excited about this release.

I have long thought (and said) that Logos is a Bible study tool that does nothing to teach the user how to study the Bible.  Like MJ, I believe this release is a step in correcting that, and I too am very excited.

I started with Logos 4 (I think), and to be honest, I found 6 frustrating and as for L7...well I almost quit.  I thought everything about L7 was designed without one thought of the average user, and I am an very simple, average user.  However, with version 8, I see the attempts to make the program more intuitive and user friendly.  Is it perfect? Of course not, but I'm encouraged that it's at least a step in the right direction.  If version 8 was more of version 7, I would have been done with spending another penny and cut my losses.  However, I truly believe, for the first time in years, that I can recommend L8 to individuals, and with just a little push, they could be using the program out the gate! 

For a Bible study teacher of a large women's class, I'm constantly asked where I get "all this information from," and even though I told them, I sent them over to another free software program if they were looking to get their feet wet. Now,  I honestly feel I can recommend the program because , at the very least, they could get started with workflows.  Further, the search feature, which I understand for the power users feels "unusable and incomplete" is heaven for the likes of us who know nothing about typing out a search with all those funky data operators { = + AND OR WITHIN < > } blah blah blah.  I see the search templates as sufficient to get "the little guy" started but has potential to grow for the above average user.

I am hopeful, and as someone who almost lost all hope that I could ever find this program anything less than frustrating, hope is good.  It's very, very good!

Cynthia

Romans 8:28-38

Posts 336
PJ | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 4:37 AM

L8 is Gr8! - Easy to use for both seasoned and unseasoned user. Although I comment on some tools, I truly love this new approach!

The Home-screen is functional. I miss the quick and easy way to choose your preferred Bible, but the prioritization approach makes more sense. Some users like myself sometimes switch between several preferred bibles depending on the approach and reason for study.

I expected L8 to have more in hyperlink capabilities. I thought for instance you would be able to link a Prayer-lists Notes or Answer to a Workflow as it is a natural relationship or even look them up in Notes? When you add a Note to a long Passage it puts an icon at each verse and clutters the screen with colored icons. But, overall the new Notes system is exceptionally easy to work with.

The ability to create Custom Workflows, the new Notes and the Canvas are great and practical additions. For the first time it is possible to accomplish most tasks in Logos itself. I've read every Expository Sermon Preparation book I could find and tried to master it using Logos Guides and Searches - Thanks to Logos all those books are now migrated into a workflow and easy to accomplish.

The Canvas is eye candy. I can almost taste Scriptures as I stare at this beautiful interface. Just one problem. You can't import images from Media. I draw concepts on a Tablet and would like to be able to link my creative hand to L8's Canvas.

Thanks for this awesome upgrade!

Posts 611
Dave Thawley | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 6:11 AM

My personal opinion is that L8 is fantastic overall. I think Faithlife have a lot of work still to do in finishing off features but I'm guessing that with such a step change in the program we could have everything finished before a release in 2019 or something a big step up from L7 with faithlife "to do" list they are working though. I am very happy they have released what they have when they have. It is such a step up from L7 as it is. The work flows are going to be great to use and I am already using the canvas :-) 

Posts 151
Dave L | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 6:14 AM

I'm thrilled to say the least. I really like the search templates and speed, especially with my new SSDD.SmileSmileSmile

Posts 29
Dennis Phelps | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 7:08 AM

The "Explore" section of the Home Page seems clunky and a massive promotional billboard rather than a "USA Today" newspaper design. In L7 the user could determine the inclusion of such content on the Home Page. Until this option for the user to edit/manage the Home Page Logos-promo content, the Home Page seems to have lost significant functionality appropriate for each individual user, reflecting their particular interests, skills, and patterns. For the time being, I guess I will simply skip the Home Page content.

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Graham Criddle | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 7:18 AM

Dennis Phelps:
The "Explore" section of the Home Page seems clunky and a massive promotional billboard rather than a "USA Today" newspaper design

Most of what I see in the Explore section at the moment are videos explaining how to use some of the Logos 8 features or cards allowing you so start workflows. As such it seems reasonable - and helpful - to me.

Are you seeing something different? Or is it those you would rather not see?

Posts 228
Graham Owen | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 7:19 AM

Positive 

Speed 

New features look promising 

Negative 

Disregard for user experience of existing users 

Posts 1
Johnny Faust | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 7:27 AM

I was hoping when searching notes the hits within the note would be highlighted. Been waiting for years.

Posts 1145
Myke Harbuck | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 7:37 AM

John Goodman:

So far I'm very pleased and see a lot of potential.

Me too! :-)

John Goodman:

I think the web app is coming of age though I wish for 4 columns and a full page library view... with 7000 resources that little box is useless.

Did you know you can right click on the Library button and "Open in Panel," which will give you a much larger view?

Did you mean 4 columns for the home page? If so, that is now possible. As for 4 columns in layouts, that's not.

Myke Harbuck
Lead Pastor, www.ByronCity.Church
Adjunct Professor, Georgia Military College
Mac OS 10.13.6 High Sierra, Mid 2015 iMac, 2.5GHz i7, 32 gbRAM, 1tbSSD

Posts 1001
John Goodman | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 30 2018 7:43 AM

Myke Harbuck:

Did you know you can right click on the Library button and "Open in Panel," which will give you a much larger view?

You just made my day! Thanks!

With columns I was thinking to have 4 panels open side by side. On the desktop app I have guide, bible, commentary, info.

גַּם־חֹשֶׁךְ֮ לֹֽא־יַחְשִׁ֪יךְ מִ֫מֶּ֥ךָ וְ֭לַיְלָה כַּיּ֣וֹם יָאִ֑יר כַּ֝חֲשֵׁיכָ֗ה כָּאוֹרָֽה

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