New Prepub Request - Logos for Linux

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This post has 56 Replies | 5 Followers

Posts 118
David J. Ring, Jr. | Forum Activity | Posted: Thu, Oct 15 2009 8:01 AM

Pre-pub request.

To settle the question of if it would be profitable to produce a copy of Libronix for the Linux  / Unix operating system - even if it is a console type program, I would like to ask Mr. Bob P. if he would consider placing "Logos for Linux / Unix" on the pre-pub list for "Gathering Interest" and if sufficient interest is expressed, produce it - even if users have to subsidize the program by paying for it.

Many small netbook computers run Linux like a racehorse - very fast - and I believe in the near future that there may well be an increase in users of this operating system.

I'd like to suggest - perhaps as a beginning - to produce a stripped down version of Libronix - simply one that worked  both in console and X server modes (or just console if need  be) which would open up our books and search.  Similar to Logos 2.0.

Perhaps the Pre-Pub would be aimed at the small linux netbooks and include the a Bible that is available in many languages.  Such would be invaluable to missionaries who are involved with the OLPC http://laptop.org/en/  program.

In any event, such a listing for a pre-pub would give solid evidence to Logos management if this project would be worthwhile for them to harness their precious resources of manpower, equipment and time to this end..

Sincerely,

DJJ Ring, Jr.

Green Harbor, MA

USA

 

Posts 1723
LogosEmployee
Bob Pritchett | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Oct 15 2009 9:34 AM

That's a great idea, and I'd do it if I thought there was even remotely enough interest.

But I've got a few facts that make it clear this is not yet profitable.

A) I know how much we sell to Windows users. I know how much we sell to Mac users. I know the relative market share of those platforms on the desktop, and my sales breakdown follows the industry stats. Plugging the Linux market share into this indicates Linux sales of...well, not nearly enough. And while Mac users have a reputation for spending MORE on software than Windows users, Linux users have a reputation for being Linux users because they don't like to pay for software at all. (Yeah, I know, it's because Windows is bad code, Microsoft is evil, and Apple is too cool / expensive / pretty / whatever. (Actually, why don't Linux users just become Mac users? It's Unix, there's no Bill Gates...  :-) ))

B) I know how many lines of code we have. I know how many lines of code a programmer can port / write / debug in a day. I know what a programmer costs per day (!). I know we've never had any pre-pub, of any book or product, return enough to cover this cost.

C) The pre-pub already exists. At:

http://www.codeweavers.com/compatibility/browse/name/?app_id=321

you will find a pledging system for getting Logos Bible Software running under CrossOver. It's got 19 pledges at $1,793.90, and I'm pretty sure that I represent at least $500 of that. Get the pledges over $250,000 and we'll believe there's a viable market. And so will Codeweavers. You'll probably get it fast. :-)

D) I know we're going to let people access (most of) their Logos content via the web in the future. Linux users (and BeOS users!) will be supported here for no more investment then we'll need to support Windows and Mac, and this seems like the most cost effective solution. I'm sorry it's not ready yet.

-- Bob

 

Posts 38
jcc | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Oct 15 2009 11:49 AM
Item D is really good to hear. It will allow access through all kinds of mobile devices that are getting more popular. Will it enable offline mode if I want to access my books without connecting to the internet through the browser interface if I have the book file and license file off-line?
Posts 8666
TCBlack | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Oct 15 2009 1:06 PM

I'm just going to mark this post as a favorite.  Thanks Bob.

As you've stated elsewhere, WINE/Codeweavers is an option and one that I've been working at for some time - with too little result.

Hmm Sarcasm is my love language. Obviously I love you. 

Posts 118
David J. Ring, Jr. | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Oct 15 2009 1:45 PM

Bob,

Put a Logos "Pre-Pub" up for Linux version - I bet you will get a much different response.

If I'm wrong - you've wasted not much time and even less money.

I think a DOS type of program would be nice - but I guess the old Logos 2.0 version wouldn't work with the newer books - if it would it would enable lots of those little Linux netbooks to work like the eePC and MSI Wind.

Why not, Bob, put up a pre-pub - if your old Logos 2.0 code was written in some sort of language that can be recompiled easily to Linux (there are lots of compilers out there - python, C, C++, perl, ruby, etc.

If it works and you make even enough money to pay for the work it will open up a new market - the missionaries will want ALL the nice books and the parishioners would want a few books.

Then again, if the interest is few, you haven't invested more than a few electrons on your web page.

If it really kicks off, and you can make it pay - those people are happy, and it probably will open up a new market.  I'm sure if you sold 50,000 copies of one book and the Linux software you'd be happy - not to mention the public relations bonus of being THE company who opened up the small Linux netbooks that are to be distributed in the 3rd world.

It sounds like a good solution.

WINE is good but it is a large program - a native program with cut down features with low memory requirements would be the way to go in my opinion.

Why not ask your head of programming if the old Logos 2.0 program can be ported or re-compiled.  If it can, then some of the early Logos books can be used.

Maybe also you might have "how much would you be willing to pay for this" option to see if that would make it profitable.

Give it a try - it doesn't have to be the bells and whistles of Libronix - it can just be good old Logos 2.0 which was very fast even on Windows 3.0.

And if it doesn't get much attention - you'll have a perfect link to show us - "Hey, too few wanted it" - but untested waters may prove to be a different depth than you or I think.

Of course, I'm hoping for deep waters - but it may very well turn out to be the 1% your research says.  I can eat humble pie - if I bring  enough ketchup and soy sauce!

 

Best

 

David

Anonymous | | Replied: Thu, Oct 15 2009 2:27 PM

Please forgive a newbie. While I support for a Linux port and since the windows version has (apparent) problems, could an alternative be to run the Mac version through PearPC or equivalent in the meantime?

Posts 211
Steven Yu | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Oct 15 2009 4:48 PM

Actually I quite like the idea of have a Linux Engine listed as a pre-pub, even most of the people in Linux are aware of WINE and Codeweaver project, but Logos is the company behind it, and should be the central point for all discussion in regards to the future of libronix engine.

"And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free", John 8:32.
"你們必定認識真理,真理必定使你們自由", 約翰福音 8:3.

Posts 2268
Mark | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Oct 15 2009 6:18 PM

I have always been interested in Libronix on Linux and I did not know of the WINE and Codeweaver project.  Just to let you know.  I like the idea of putting it up for pre pub to see who (like me) is in the woodwork that would support it.

However, according to Bob, the future lies with cloud computing and this is what he said in his point D.  Therefore, it should not matter in the future. 

What does matter for most of us is that we have invested thousands already in having the resources OFFLINE and those resources we would like to keep and not see our investment going up in smoke (or in the clouds).  If we choose to stop investing and keep what we have, will there always be support for what we already own offlline?

Bob, I did appreciate your response very much.

Mark

Posts 401
Timothy Ha | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 4:21 AM

If Logos 4 will be built on .Net, then Mono may help it run in Linux.

JesusChrist.ru - Russian Christian Portal, with free Bible software; Timh.ru - blog

Posts 308
James W Bennett | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 5:29 AM

DavidJRingJr:

To settle the question of if it would be profitable to produce a copy of Libronix for the Linux  / Unix operating system - even if it is a console type program, I would like to ask Mr. Bob P. if he would consider placing "Logos for Linux / Unix" on the pre-pub list for "Gathering Interest" and if sufficient interest is expressed, produce it - even if users have to subsidize the program by paying for it.

 

Unfortunately there is a problem with making a pre-pub for a Linux version of Libronix. Pre-pub is set to gather monetary interest in a product and let Logos know when there is enough potential capital to make the project viable. Logos does not charge for the Libronix software. They only charge for the books. Thus even having 1000 people say they are interested in having a Linux version of Libronix means $0 calculable revenue for Logos. They would have to know what those users wanted to purchase. And many of those users probably already have many of the books they want.

With that said, Bob's reference to the Codeweaver site is probably the best way that Logos could offer the community the possibility of a Linux version of Libronix.

---

James W Bennett

http://syriac.tara-lu.com/

Posts 118
David J. Ring, Jr. | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 5:57 AM

The pre-pub could include the KJV and Strong's numbers modules.

I'd pay $150 for a copy of a Linux version of this program.

I'd contribute $250 if LOGOS would buy one of the small OLPC laptops - and include a copy of the Linux LOGOS program and send it to a missionary in need of such who is working in the field.  In fact, I'd give $150 plus the cost of the small Linux laptop plus airmail to the missionary - that would be better.

For years missionaries have wished for such.  The small netbooks that are being released are very efficient - and can be powered by a combination of a solar panel and their internal battery for hours.

The Zip-It Internet device has great potential - it is $50 or less.  See http://hunterdavis.com/archives/201#more-201

Using Codeweaver or WINE means that larger laptops have to be used.

If some of the programmers who wrote the Logos 2.0 code are still around, they might be able to port their work to Linux - these small machines could use that size program - and the Logos 2.0 code was very very fast and small - no bloat.

No one will ever know unless such a proposal is hoisted up the flagpole.

Put a price of $150 up there - make a X-Windows version of the code and a console version (even if simpler) of the code.  Blind people often like console programs because they don't have to play "Pin the Mouse on the Window" by blindly moving the mouse around.  With a console program (think DOS programs like WordPerfect) the commands are all key strokes. - and screen readers can read console - and do so with very little memory use.


Of course, if you're talking about a full-blown Linux desktop like Gnome (which is excellent) - their handicapped extensions managed by Orca will read and magnify everything very well.

Bob, try it - put $150 for the price - or even $200.  How many will it take to justify development? 1,000 or 2,000 - that would be $400,000 at the higher numbers - I'm guessing that the work could be done and profitably (which is a good thing).  Without profit, you cannot make the trip to market and we all suffer the loss.

Maybe a few more books could be added for that price - or a "gift" certificate could be included for some books.  It sure would be nice to have.

I'm guessing that while Linux might have an overall market share of 1%, in this particular market, it may well be significantly more - or there might be hundreds of users who would make the leap to Linux if everything they needed was available there.

Linux has Firefox, OpenOffice which is Microsoft Office compatable, GIMP which is like Photoshop, Inkscape like Illustrator - plus there are many ARTISTIC programs in Linux which do NOT have an equal in Windows or MAC - I was amazed when I learned this.

Plus Linux still has a console - and as I said blind users and computers with low horsepower just love the console.

Why not run it up the flagpole?  I don't want you to do it if you cannot make a profit - that would be suicidal - but perhaps the market is larger than you might expect because you are dealing with a niche within a niche.

As I said - I'd pay twice the price if you could give the program to a missionary organization - that would double your money flow - perhaps put that as a sub option - and if it is checked it means "twice the number of copies sold".

It doesn't cost much to put it up on pre-pub - and the idea does have its supporters.  Perhaps a missionary organization will say "I'll buy 2,000 if they will run on a small Linux laptop" - who knows!

Be well,

David

Posts 1956
Donovan R. Palmer | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 7:40 AM

DavidJRingJr:

It doesn't cost much to put it up on pre-pub - and the idea does have its supporters.  Perhaps a missionary organization will say "I'll buy 2,000 if they will run on a small Linux laptop" - who knows!

Trouble is knowing whether or not there would be enough income to justify supporting it long term, with further development and maintenance releases. If the user base is small that it doesn't buy books (which is reportedly where Logos makes its real money), there won't be enough of a revenue stream to keep it going.

Anyhow, I think the CrossWeavers thing is a brilliant way to explore this.

 

Posts 598
Bobby Terhune | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 8:24 AM

David,

Perhaps it would be more profitable to take your request to the different missionary boards that support the efforts of the missionaries you have a burden for. Getting a number of organizations together to suppport development could be a powerful thing.  

Posts 118
David J. Ring, Jr. | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 9:38 AM

I'm sure that Bob Pritchett is still reading this thread - since he responded earlier. 

Since Mr. Pritchett  is the President of LOGOS, he could put up a "Pre-Pub" for Logos - perhaps a "basic" edition including some books.

I'm sure - since he is an excellent businessman - mulling this over and perhaps gathering information about this.

I'd love for him and his devoted colleagues at LOGOS to find that this would be profitable for them..

He's listed pre-pubs that he never thought would publish - but because of the interest, they did publish.

He's also listed pre-pubs that he really wanted to publish and they did NOT publish.  One that I really wanted was about the values and customs of Biblical civilization - a very interesting book - that was too big to "just publish" - but unfortunately never gathered sufficient interest - it was a large book and one that would have required a huge amount of work.

As for searching out missionary organizations and asking them to beat the bushes - they've done so already and they're using what is available.  Xiphos - formerly Gnome Sword, and others.  Not to slight Xiphos (disclaimer I worked on this project) which is very good, it is not what LOGOS is - nor is it even what LOGOS 2.0 was, nor does it have access to other e-books.

Libronix finds itself today at a crossroads - Google has just announced that  Google's online service Google Editions  http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5jBk6at86CXPNhbwPQZT99rTLVvuQ which will support Digital Rights Media (DRM) as well as plain old non-copyright books.  They polan on having 1.5 million books available by next year.

Authors, software makers, artists all work very hard to create a good product that is enjoyed by many.  If they can't make money at it, they will have to abandon their chosen vocation - which is a shame.  God gave us talents, we should use them, we should if we chose use them to earn our livelihood.  Jesus was a carpenter; the apostles, fishermen, tax collectors, etc.   I am happy and proud that the men and women at LOGOS are using the gifts that God gave them to earn their living and to give us products we can use in our daily work and lives.

My opinion is that development (if any) of a Linux minimal version - a console version that will work in console or in a window - will be a good choice.  I think it might take too  much work to change code just so CodeWeavers or WINE will work with it since WINE and CodeWeavers constantly evolves - and a program that worked on an earlier version of WINE (which stands for:  WINE Is Not an Emulator - runs MS Windows apps on Linux).

If the product costs more than about $150, then it would be more cost efficient for Linux users (but not the small horsepower computer device users) to just buy Windows and do a "dual boot" - it just seems wasteful to buy Windows 7 to run LOGOS / Libronix. 

I'd rather give that $150 to LOGOS than to Microsoft - not because I dislike Microsoft, but it is LOGOS I want to use, not Windows.  I have no programs other than Logos that I need Windows for.

If LOGOS comes out with a small program that runs on Google Editions reader, I'll buy one.  If they come out with a Linux program - I'll buy that.

I've already ordered Windows 7 - and I have a 30 GB partition made on my hard drive - just to install Logos - seems wasteful to me - that's a lot of space just for an operating system.  (I found out later, I probably should have ordered the 32 bit version as it needed a bit less space).  I'll have 10 GB left over for books.

Be well,

David


Posts 38
jcc | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 11:20 AM
How about releasing just a module or specs can decrypt the book files if people have licenses available and let the linux community build their own interface around that with their open source mentality. I know personally I wouldn't have the time to devote to that project (maybe except just a reader). After all, you are giving the libronix engine away for free anyway, if the interest are out there, then let the community develop the linux version for you.
Posts 274
Daniel Lee | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 11:30 AM

This is not going to be acceptable to the publishers and other sources from whom Logos is licensing the books, nor to Logos as an organization.  DRM is not ideal for the consumer since it limits on what what devices and how a file, document, or module can be used; however, since digital information doesn't work like a regular book, they have to have some mechanism to restrict copying, or trust in people to be honest.  People aren't honest, so some mechanism has to stay in place.  Publishing specs for the module or how to decrypt the files would allow anyone with enough skill to bypass the copying restrictions, and human nature being what it is, why pay for something when you can get it for free?  This is not good business for Logos, nor is it reasonable.  Giving away the engine for Windows is not the same thing as giving people a means for decrypting all the book files; Logos makes money from the books, and taking away their ability to do so means all of us lose out.

Posts 505
Michael Kares | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 12:03 PM

Has anyone tried running Logos 2.0 under WINE?  It just might work.  Problem would be solved

 

Blessings,

Michael Kares

Posts 118
David J. Ring, Jr. | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Oct 16 2009 8:59 PM

Hello Michael,

I've tried Logos 2.0 under WINE - I forget the file that causes all the problems - it is an executive that is chainloaded from logos.exe - black-something comes to mind - I don't have the program in front of me.

I wonder if some sort of BOOK-SAFE can be made - but since LOGOS gives the books updates for free, I'd hate to see someone fool the BOOK-SAFE into giving permission to the reader without payment.

It certainly can be done in some way - we have to be sure that authors, coders, managers, illustrators continue to be able to learn their living.  Without their gifts, we would have no beautiful books.

Some sort of BOOK-SAFE in which the reader requests to read a book.  The BOOK-SAFE would have to query the license key, and send access to the reader.  This part of the program would have to remain closed code because without such security, LOGOS or other publishers would be unable to provide high quality books, and pay the authors and illustrators.

But once the reader has access to the book, I don't see any problem with it being Open Source.  In fact, LOGOS probably should head up the project to make sure that it has 100% compatability with the BOOK-SAFE.  The reader could be used to access free ASCII and pdf files.

I think it would be to LOGOS's benefit to make the BOOK-SAFE compatable with other publisher's selected security - and they could license the BOOK-SAFE to those publishers - but LOGOS because it is involved with this program would show the other publishers that Libronix system would integrate their books into a Library that could be searched and work together. 

I think the time is near when LOGOS will have to decide to do something like this - because the Google Reader will be a challenge simply because of the number of books that it will be able to read. 

I think Google is planning to buy into a world-wide network - probably on the cellular frequencies - where the book can be bought by the user and downloaded immediately.  LOGOS could do that also - and that's what it needs to do to complete with Cloud technologies.

However in some places in the world, there are missionaries without cell phone coverage - deep into the jungle!

One of the surprising things about the world-wide cellular network is that in remote areas, it has surpassed the traditional wired network with wooden poles and miles of copper.  In densely populated areas, the converse is true:   The areas are being strung with fiber optic cable - and the bandwidth is tremendous - but the cost is terrific.  But if they can get everyone to subscribe to the fiber optic, they will amortize their costs.  It is a good gamble for the telephone companies who already own the backbone of the Internet - now they've got the local area covered.

Also if LOGOS was involved in the open source group - they could find some very talented coders - and they could HIRE them.  Of course, they'd have to do a psychological screening of them to ensure that they don't quit and then break the code publically.  That would be terrible.

But you're right - there is a lot of talent out there - but it is very important to make sure that the books are secure - there are different ways of doing this which I wouldn't discuss on a public forum, but you're right it can be done - and it would make a very interesting project that I'm sure would be mutually beneficial to Libronix, in fact it may very well be the life preserver that they need to stay competitive in the publishing business that is just about to experience a radical change similar to the change from hot type to cold type (from hot forged metal lead slugs to computer generated material and computer driven printing presses).

Be well,

DR

David J. Ring, Jr.

Founding Partner

Phoenix Advanced Technologies

=30=

Posts 119
Ross Durham | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 20 2009 12:35 PM

What is the time frame for D)?  This obviously allow us be OS agnostic and we'll all be happy.  Is Libronix 4.0 first, then D)?  Libronix is really the only reason I'm not always on some variety of Unix; money is the main reason I am not on Mac. 

Posts 118
David J. Ring, Jr. | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Oct 27 2009 11:24 PM

There are some fabulous programs on Linux - and contrary to what some think, some are quite costly.

Take for example: http://www.supernec.com/price.htm

Which costs between $6,000 and $1200 depending on features.

They've managed to produce license codes on Linux which are machine dependent and can be used on only one machine.

I have the inexpensive version - but I've already paid much more for Logos - so the question isn't one about money, although I feel that for some reason - and the lack of even putting a Linux Package of Books on pre-pub is related to a concern for money - I can think of nothing that explain the failure to try.

Somethings I don't need to investigate in order to know they're a bad idea - like plunging 200 feet down off a building, but there are some things which are safe to try to gather information.

There would be NO commitment on the part of the publisher for just putting a $200 Libronix / Linux Collection up on Pre-Pub.

Bob (he that must be obeyed at Logos) was reading this thread, I can't see why he won't try - he would only be out the cost of email and web space and whatever administrative costs there might be in collecting pre-pub interest --

After all, there have been some surprises before?

Bob, would you try?

Thanks,

David

 

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