Library Side Bar - Collections

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This post has 13 Replies | 2 Followers

Posts 18
John Bass | Forum Activity | Posted: Fri, Sep 20 2019 11:21 PM

I have built my collections to give me the quickest access to resources I use all the time.  The Library sidebar organizes the collections by the number of volumes in the collection instead of the order listed in collections.  Is there a way to alter the order displayed in the sidebar?

Posts 1998
Forum MVP
Reuben Helmuth | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Sep 21 2019 1:24 AM

Sorry, but there's currently no way to change the display order. Many have asked for alphabetical display. I think it would be best to have a toggle to choose between alphabetical and count, similar to the Bible Browser.

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Forum MVP
Levi Durfey | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Sep 21 2019 7:23 AM

As Reuben said, it's not possible to change the order. You can, however, use the filter to your advantage.

You can see that I prefixed my important search collections with "SR." You could preface the ones that you use all the time with something like "FAV" or whatever. Typing three letters in the filter box is faster than scrolling through the long list. And it's tons faster than the old days of searching through paper books!

 

Posts 3187
Whyndell Grizzard | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Sep 21 2019 10:34 AM

I would like to see the ability to add collections to the "favorite" bar, being able to add and remove them would be very helpful and time saving for me.

Posts 208
Matt Hamrick | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Sep 21 2019 3:27 PM

I tested it and you can add collections to your favorites. My author collections will end up there.

Posts 18
John Bass | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Oct 2 2019 11:55 PM

To "whom-ever" the tech person is that is playing with fixing the collections ordering in the library sidebar .... THANK YOU!  

I know it isn't fixed yet but my collections sidebar popped back and forth from the way it has been ... to alphabetical order.  Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

Please keep it up ... we are watching and anxiously awaiting this fix!!!   Tell your boss you deserve a pay increase!!!

John

Posts 2085
LogosEmployee

John Bass:

To "whom-ever" the tech person is that is playing with fixing the collections ordering in the library sidebar .... THANK YOU!  

I know it isn't fixed yet but my collections sidebar popped back and forth from the way it has been ... to alphabetical order.  Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

I'm sorry to disappoint you, but I don't want to think that any work is currently being done on this feature. This is functioning the way it has since collections were added to the sidebar, and is working as intended. For some period of time after the application starts up, and after changes are made to the resource metadata (information about the resource used when searching your library), the application takes some time to calculate exactly which resources are in each collection. During this period of time, it's not possible to calculate the count for each collection, and not possible to determine which collections match your other selected facets. So, all the collections are displayed in alphabetical order without a count. As soon as it finishes determining which resources are in each collection, the view resets so that only the appropriate ones are displayed, and displays them in order of how many matching resources are in each collection.

While providing the ability to sort the items in the sidebar alphabetically is a nice idea, we don't have any plans to work on such a feature in the near term.

Posts 18
John Bass | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Oct 3 2019 3:12 PM

Thanks for your response Andrew.  I am disappointed.  Maybe you can help me understand the value of the "collections" section of the Library sidebar.  As I understand it, collections is a means by which we can reduce the book volume in order to search our library more effectively.  The Library sidebar is, I assume - since it is called filters, for the same purpose -- to narrow our books we are looking through.  What is the value of a collections filter that sorts by the most books first?  From my perspective, It defeats the purpose of the tool.  I have a lot of collections to allow me to quickly focus my search.  In the library pane, they are basically useless because I could search the library almost as fast as scrolling through the "more" button until I reach my key collections.    If there is a significant reason for collections to be ordered the way it is, I would appreciate knowing why.  Maybe I am missing something that can be of great value to me.   I look forward to hearing from you.  Thanks in advance for your time.  

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I can't speak definitively as to the reasons for the design. I will say that there's never enough time to implement everything. The original design considered the capability to switch the facet order between alphabetical and by count. Sadly, that feature did not make it in.

Generally it's a much better experience to type some text in the filter box to rapidly filter down the list of facets to what you want (click the magnifying glass button just to the right of the Filter label at the top of the list of facets). Endlessly clicking more to find your way to the collection that starts with "Z" is just as terrible an experience as endlessly clicking more until you find what you are looking for in a non-alphabetical list.

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Forum MVP
Reuben Helmuth | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Oct 5 2019 12:31 AM

Andrew Batishko (Faithlife):
Generally it's a much better experience to type some text in the filter box to rapidly filter down the list of facets to what you want

I agree, but it would be massively better yet, if we could tab the focus between the main find bar and the filters find bar. Opening the library automatically places the focus in the main find bar (which is great). If we could hit tab once to start typing in the filters find bar, that would be awesome.

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Jack Caviness | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Oct 5 2019 5:59 AM

Reuben Helmuth:
Opening the library automatically places the focus in the main find bar (which is great). If we could hit tab once to start typing in the filters find bar, that would be awesome.

Superb suggestion Reuben

Posts 5025
DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Oct 6 2019 9:36 PM

Andrew Batishko (Faithlife):

I can't speak definitively as to the reasons for the design. I will say that there's never enough time to implement everything. The original design considered the capability to switch the facet order between alphabetical and by count. Sadly, that feature did not make it in.

And sadly FL settles for the ‘we didn’t have time excuse‘. They try to change far too many things, often things that didn’t need changing instead of focusing on a small number of things and doing them well. My grandfather always said if something is worth doing, it’s worth doing it well. Today that view of life has sadly been lost and it’s all about looking busy, being seen to change things. It doesn’t matter if what you start never gets finished, just a long as you started something new.

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Jack Caviness | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Oct 7 2019 5:34 AM

DIsciple II:

Andrew Batishko (Faithlife):

I can't speak definitively as to the reasons for the design. I will say that there's never enough time to implement everything. The original design considered the capability to switch the facet order between alphabetical and by count. Sadly, that feature did not make it in.

And sadly FL settles for the ‘we didn’t have time excuse‘. They try to change far too many things, often things that didn’t need changing instead of focusing on a small number of things and doing them well. My grandfather always said if something is worth doing, it’s worth doing it well. Today that view of life has sadly been lost and it’s all about looking busy, being seen to change things. It doesn’t matter if what you start never gets finished, just a long as you started something new.

Unfortunately, this is all too true.

Posts 26532
Forum MVP
MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Oct 7 2019 3:55 PM

Jack Caviness:

DIsciple II:

And sadly FL settles for the ‘we didn’t have time excuse‘. They try to change far too many things, often things that didn’t need changing instead of focusing on a small number of things and doing them well. My grandfather always said if something is worth doing, it’s worth doing it well. Today that view of life has sadly been lost and it’s all about looking busy, being seen to change things. It doesn’t matter if what you start never gets finished, just a long as you started something new.

Unfortunately, this is all too true.

Let me inject another bit of reality. We, as users, don't demand accuracy and precision. We ask sloppy questions and receive sloppy answers and feel we've engaged in meaningful study. We are impressed by new features without understanding the data or its use. We ask FL to make changes to facilitate our personal interface preferences without considering if we could adjust our patterns, how the change affects others, and what other work will be delayed. We don't report the errors we find in data or missing data or even typos because it's not worth the time. Certainly, few users fall in all of the categories ... but most of us come close enough to belonging in one or more of the categories to be a bit embarrassing.

However, in the case of documentation when we, as users, got our act together to raise a united voice, we started getting documentation of the new data. Faithlife has slowed progress on the older data - something we should start complaining about. On updating resources, esp. metadata, and updating datasets Faithlife has employees who are engaged and moving a steady stream of updates out. Yes, the flow could be faster but we will always be impatient.

So where are the current problems?

  • documentation that is missing or that is not immediately visible or that does not contain the minute information required for academic work - real academic not what one graduate referred to as "advanced Sunday School".
    • Recent example: the original language text used for interlinears/reverse interlinears which has changed over time changing the meaning of the results.
  • features that do not cover the entire ecumenical canon that claim to do so. Recent example: 
    • incomplete LXX coverage in Biblical Events (additions to Esther or Daniel). Why the ecumenical canon of the NRSV? because it is becoming more common in mainline Protestant churches, its main market, and generally covers Catholics and Eastern Orthodox. Or statistics skewed by lack of LXX Hebrew coding: 
      Rick Brannan (Faithlife):
      Faithlife have not tagged the Hebrew canon portions of the LXX with person/place/thing (BK) data, when you search you're searching the person/place/thing analysis of the Hebrew text that is aligned to the LXX.
  • features that consistently fail but have not been quickly fixed.
    • Current example: morphology charts
  • great features that are difficult to use or lack vital functions for use:
    • Concordance which has no n-tuple function to find "multiword" lexical units, which is what I've primarily used concordance software for;
    • Semantic roles & case frames where my primary use has been to identify the case frame of a verb and the entities filling the roles in the frame. I have to go through the Exegetical Guide to get to what should be a context menu item
    • Workflows: placement of notes, lack of support for lectionary date or multiple passages . . .
    • Reading lists in the courses tool: samples with a few problems but no way to create more
  • inconsistencies in implementation
    • e.g. the addition of datasets without a corresponding viewer in the interactives think parables. This omits the Hadley/Unger style overview of the data which is necessary to become familiar with and learn to use the data.
  • features previously present but removed from application:
    • the ability to add new entries in community tagging e.g.adding the named people in Jubilees that are not in Genesis (or not in BK because they are unnamed) OR add the rabbi names for tagging the Talmud so one can trace the thought or a particular rabbi - lost when Google deprecated Freebase;
    • user built timelines from L3 which FL considers a hack with users sharing files rather than a feature.
    • the genre coding, source criticism coding from AFAT that was readily available in many Bibles before AFAT was replaced in the reserve interlinears
  • lack of vision  features that are implemented in a manner that makes them less useful than they could be:
    • e.g. providing  the glossaries for the various datasets as vocabulary card sets to help the users learn the vocabulary necessary to make sense out of the data shown
    • allowing users to add additional outline information as FL preloaded the least detailed (and to me, least useful) outlines
    • combining the ordo and the lectionary into a single file greatly increasing the work required to add years which resulted in the Eastern Orthodox/Catholic Byzantine lectionaries to become unusable.

So what to do - especially if an academic or student needing precision?

  • When you find an error in data or a bug in the software, report it.
  • When you find documentation missing or lacking the detail you need for academic use, report it.
  • When using a feature and you need some functionality that is not present, suggest it. Faithlife needs feedback - provide it.

One thing we do know: Faithlife does respond to feedback from its users. Give them feedback - not speculation, not whining but real, consistent feedback. Find others who share your concerns and try to refine your feedback and add a bit of clout to it. You can start by adding to my groupings and examples ... not by bashing FL but by providing feedback.

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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