New Idea for a Base Package!

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Posted: Fri, Mar 28 2014 2:32 PM

With all the new base packages floating around now, I am finding myself left out. That, in itself, doesn't really surprise me. I don't adhere to any pre-packaged view of Scripture, whether old or recent. What I do adhere to is the Bible. This may sound a little odd, but I would like to suggest the creation of a "Bible Study" base package.

That may sound a little cheeky, but let me explain what I am getting at. There are elements of the SDA and Anglican packages that cause them to be attractive to me for two reasons: 1) they have great value (which is probably my most pressing concern--I have to get the most for my money), and 2) they include resources that I consider potentially useful. But these base package "coins" have two sides. On the other side, both of these have MASSIVE amounts of stuff that I have absolutely no interest in. I have no doubt the folks in those streams are tickled with this "in-house" material, but it is valueless to me.

The kinds of things I would like to see in a base package are tons of language resources, tons of "OT" and "NT" resources, tons of Judaism and Intertestamental resources (incl. so-called "second temple" stuff), tons of commentaries, and tons of "process" resources, i.e. exegesis and hermeneutics resources, and tons of ancient historical resources (contemporary and modern authorship, up to about 200-300CE). In fact, if I was going to give a name to this kind of package, other than Bible Studies base package, I might call it an Exegesis base package.

Before going into what I don't want in a base package, a quick statement about the first base packages in Logos (L2 to L5) prior to Verbum making its debut. As far back as I can remember with Logos, its base packages have had scads and reams and loads of stuff that has absolutely no value or utility for me, and is nothing but dead wood as far as I am concerned. I wouldn't be surprised if 1/3 to 1/2 of what I have in my Library is stuff I wouldn't read even if I had a million years to spend. In my view, that is a significant hit to my value quotient.

So then, things I don't want to have in a base package are devotionals, ministerial resources, preaching resources, "in-house" creedal statements, "church" history after 200-300CE, missiology, church vs. world diatribes, ecumenicalism, evangelistic how-tos, hymnology, biographies, and I 'm sure I'm leaving out other stuff besides. Historically, many of the same folks produced resources that were part of both my "do want" and "don't want" lists. Generally, if it is about the Bible and what it says or means, then "yes". If it has pretty much anything to do with "how to apply", and personal or communal practice, or the like, then "no". Those are the areas where misunderstandings in the "yes" pile bloom into errors of increasing irrelevancy.

As attractive as Anglican Diamond is with ICC in it, I could easily jettison 2/5 to 1/2 of what's in it and not bat an eyelash of concern...maybe even more. Which just leaves me wishing I could fill in with stuff that actually means something to me. And that, after all, is what these base packages are all about...getting people stuff that they will actually use. I have tons of stuff in my Wish List, quite a bit of which would make for decent base package material. I actually thought about suggesting a David Paul base package, but that seemed a little too narrow to generate sufficient interest (even though a DP base package would totally rock!). Stick out tongue

Also, I'm not saying all of what I have assigned to my "no" pile is of no value to me whatsoever. I just don't want it injected willy-nilly into my library, because I already have more than enough as it is. Besides, I can always pick up the odd outlier on occasion if I feel the need.

Would anyone else like a historical, BOOK-focused, "what does it say, what does it mean, in the original languages" kind of base package that isn't saddled with churchianity trappings and social ornamentation? Am I alone in this?

Confused

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Mike Pettit | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 2:42 PM

That would be the Reformed base package then.

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 2:45 PM

Not even close. Talk about Dullsville...

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Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 2:45 PM

A base package that focussed on commentaries/lexicons, and ditched most monographs would be very popular amongst preachers, I think.

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 2:54 PM

Yes, that is on track with my thinking, up to a point. However, many resources that are considered monographs are actually tightly-focused commentaries on a particular topic in the Bible. I am interested in those kinds of resources as well. The kinds of things I could do without are huge sections of the stuff so popular in March Madness: John MacArthur, John Piper, A. W. Tozer, Oswald Chambers, and especially Max Lucado. In other words, stuff where you can read for page after page and not encounter a Scripture reference or a non-English word.

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Alan Macgregor | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 4:26 PM

David Paul:
I would like to suggest the creation of a "Bible Study" base package.

David,

Having read your description of your ideal base package, I think I would call it a Biblical Studies base package. It would have an emphasis on textual, language and exegetical resources with added scholarly journals (e.g. Semeia). Its target would be biblical exegetes who have some facility with the original languages, many of whom would also be preachers/teachers.

I would like that sort of package. It is actually the kind of resource library that I was building towards, albeit slowly, in the Logos 2 and Libronix days, before I acquired OLL, then Gold in Libronix. It would include from the base collections resource types:

  • Ancient Texts and Morphologies
  • Bible Commentaries (Academic/Scholarly - e.g. WBC, ICC, AYB, Hermeneia)
  • Biblical Studies
  • English Bibles
  • Exegesis and Interpretation
  • Patristics
  • Original Language Grammars and Tools
  • Original Language Lexicons

It wouldn't have the rest of the resource types usually found in base collections.

Every blessing

Alan

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 4:44 PM

Alan, YES...journals! I completely overlooked those, but they are exactly the kinds of resources I would want. When I say overlooked, I could have tripped over them, since they are one of my main resource folders in my library. Essay collections, too!

Posts 10523
Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 4:55 PM

David, you're descibing my library (and probably yours too).  I've spent maybe $15K though I'd suspect $10-12K subtracting out my Asherah and Anat volumes.  Probably your package could let the purchaser optionally pick their commentary sets to match their message, etc.

Of course Logos would not reap the big bucks on century old re-treads. People would loose their jobs. The real estate market in downtown Bellingham would crater (along with the 9 story building architect's practice).  Is this something any of us can really stomach?

"I didn't know God made honky tonk angels."

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 6:08 PM

Alan Macgregor:

It would include from the base collections resource types:

  • Ancient Texts and Morphologies
  • Bible Commentaries (Academic/Scholarly - e.g. WBC, ICC, AYB, Hermeneia)
  • Biblical Studies
  • English Bibles
  • Exegesis and Interpretation
  • Patristics
  • Original Language Grammars and Tools
  • Original Language Lexicons

Sounds like you're describing the Orthodox base packages (with a few extra commentaries) Stick out tongue

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

Posts 472
Nick Steffen | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 7:26 PM

MJ. Smith:
Sounds like you're describing the Orthodox base packages (with a few extra commentaries) Stick out tongue

And here I was going to say the Anabaptist base package. Smile

I'm also looking forward to the Jewish base package (presumably all of the above along with Rashi and Rambam, Sifra and Sifre, and the Rabbah among others). Though to be honest, I'll be happy if they simply kept updating the bundles. 

Posts 90
Steve Nicholson | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 9:15 PM

Count me in for a Biblical Studies Base Package!

Posts 525
Kent | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Mar 28 2014 11:27 PM

David Paul:
So then, things I don't want to have in a base package are devotionals, ministerial resources, preaching resources, "in-house" creedal statements, "church" history after 200-300CE, missiology, church vs. world diatribes, ecumenicalism, evangelistic how-tos, hymnology, biographies, and I 'm sure I'm leaving out other stuff besides. Historically, many of the same folks produced resources that were part of both my "do want" and "don't want" lists. Generally, if it is about the Bible and what it says or means, then "yes". If it has pretty much anything to do with "how to apply", and personal or communal practice, or the like, then "no". Those are the areas where misunderstandings in the "yes" pile bloom into errors of increasing irrelevancy.

You do not want ministerial resources, preaching resources, or church history (scholarly resources)...

I am of a different mind- these are exactly what I want in a base package.

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 29 2014 6:14 AM

Might I suggest Portfolio then...it has a trainload of such things.

That said, I have often wondered at the decision to include tons of ministerial and preaching and counseling resources in the top-end package that Logos offers, things not offered in any other package. That, to my way of thinking is bizarre. What could possibly motivate that decision??

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tom | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 29 2014 6:24 AM

David Paul:
have MASSIVE amounts of stuff that I have absolutely no interest in
I completely agree.  When a person posts 'What package should I buy?", I always respond with something like, 'purchase what you are going to use.'

I purchased L3's OL, and I have not upgraded my package.  What I have done is to purchase items that I would use, created PB's, and use notes as an electronic file cabinet to store items that I think I will use at a later time.

As a Lutheran, I even find that the Lutheran packages full of items that I will not use/want.

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tom | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 29 2014 6:25 AM

Mark Barnes:

A base package that focussed on commentaries/lexicons, and ditched most monographs would be very popular amongst preachers, I think.

Yes

Posts 4809
David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 29 2014 6:53 AM

tom:

David Paul:
have MASSIVE amounts of stuff that I have absolutely no interest in
I completely agree.  When a person posts 'What package should I buy?", I always respond with something like, 'purchase what you are going to use.'

I purchased L3's OL, and I have not upgraded my package.  What I have done is to purchase items that I would use, created PB's, and use notes as an electronic file cabinet to store items that I think I will use at a later time.

As a Lutheran, I even find that the Lutheran packages full of items that I will not use/want.

I have an ambivalent take on this. First, I really would prefer not having tons of dead wood on my hard drive and library. It does nothing but increase download times and indexing times, for no benefit whatsoever. It simply isn't true to say "it doesn't hurt" to have it. On the other hand, I bought Portfolio because it gave me things I wanted at the best value I could get them at. On that point, L4 was a decision I made after about 5-10 seconds of looking at what it contained. The decision to get L5 Portfolio was a week-long, agonizing ordeal, because the value line was so blurry it was practically a toss-up. At the time, I lamented the fact that Portfolio, the flagship product of Logos, was so beleaguered with fluff and junk that it was not the same kind of slam dunk decision as L4's Portfolio had been. It simply shouldn't be.

That's what I am looking for in a Biblical Studies base package...a package without fluff, or at least as little as possible.

That said, I think that to get the things I wanted and currently have, Portfolio was the best economical way to get them--even though getting it meant I had to swallow a few horse pills of (for my purposes) junk. I just wish I could have traded out fluff, even at 3:1 or 4:1, for things I could get utility from. 

Posts 10523
Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 29 2014 7:02 AM

I like your idea (so, my old Libronix OL).  But I still don't think it's by accident there's no such puppy at Logos.  Read the copy on a typical package.  I'm not even sure they could write copy for the dream package.

"I didn't know God made honky tonk angels."

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Mark Barnes | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 29 2014 8:18 AM

tom:
As a Lutheran, I even find that the Lutheran packages full of items that I will not use/want.

That will be true of all base packages everywhere. Often, for me, the attraction in the base package is a very few high-ticket items that are included. The rest is just a bonus. I'll probably never use much of it, but I've found over time that there have been several occasions where I've followed a rabbit trail and ended up at a very helpful resource that came with a base package years ago that I had never really used before.

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Rich DeRuiter | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 29 2014 8:33 AM

David Paul:
That said, I have often wondered at the decision to include tons of ministerial and preaching and counseling resources in the top-end package that Logos offers, things not offered in any other package. That, to my way of thinking is bizarre. What could possibly motivate that decision??

Logos primary customer base for new and continued purchases are pastors. Does that explain it?

I think you could expect that such a Biblical Studies base package would be more expensive per book than other packages. These resources are more expensive to buy and more expensive for Logos to tag and keep up to date with its own technological advances.

Logos had something similar in the Original Languages pack (for Libronix), but it didn't sell very well and was dropped when L4 came along (going by memory here, so...). Given that, I suspect that a Biblical Studies pack would be appeal to niche market, and not sell well. This tends to disincentivize publishers from providing the kinds of discounts we see in other base packages, and would be a factor in likely making such a pack even more expensive per resource than other packs.

Having said all that, given Logos' recent string of niche base package releases (Reformed, SDA, Orthodox, Catholic, etc.), I don't see a reason that this would not be possible--even if it would market to a different sort of niche.

BTW, as long as you're asking, it might be helpful to suggest a trio of base packages here: an Old Testament Biblical Studies pack, a New Testament Biblical Studies pack, and a Full Canon Biblical Studies pack (we'll let MJ and Bob slug out what 'full canon' means). To make it more interesting, we could also include a Septuagint Biblical Studies Pack, and the separate the Old Testament Biblical Studies pack into a Hebrew only version and a combined (with the LXX) version. 

All just my humble opinion, of course. But such packs would certainly get close scrutiny from me, if not a purchase in one or more of these areas.

 Help links: WIKI;  Logos 6 FAQ. (Phil. 2:14, NIV)

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Whyndell Grizzard | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 29 2014 8:34 AM

David Paul:

tom:

David Paul:
have MASSIVE amounts of stuff that I have absolutely no interest in
I completely agree.  When a person posts 'What package should I buy?", I always respond with something like, 'purchase what you are going to use.'

I purchased L3's OL, and I have not upgraded my package.  What I have done is to purchase items that I would use, created PB's, and use notes as an electronic file cabinet to store items that I think I will use at a later time.

As a Lutheran, I even find that the Lutheran packages full of items that I will not use/want.

I have an ambivalent take on this. First, I really would prefer not having tons of dead wood on my hard drive and library. It does nothing but increase download times and indexing times, for no benefit whatsoever. It simply isn't true to say "it doesn't hurt" to have it. On the other hand, I bought Portfolio because it gave me things I wanted at the best value I could get them at. On that point, L4 was a decision I made after about 5-10 seconds of looking at what it contained. The decision to get L5 Portfolio was a week-long, agonizing ordeal, because the value line was so blurry it was practically a toss-up. At the time, I lamented the fact that Portfolio, the flagship product of Logos, was so beleaguered with fluff and junk that it was not the same kind of slam dunk decision as L4's Portfolio had been. It simply shouldn't be.

That's what I am looking for in a Biblical Studies base package...a package without fluff, or at least as little as possible.

That said, I think that to get the things I wanted and currently have, Portfolio was the best economical way to get them--even though getting it meant I had to swallow a few horse pills of (for my purposes) junk. I just wish I could have traded out fluff, even at 3:1 or 4:1, for things I could get utility from. 

David I agree- nothing like being "forced" to buy stuff you will never use to get what you want- the next upgrade Logos does will definitely have one less customer other than a basic update. 

If it was not so tedious I would delete or at least block all the "junk books"- I know I have books I have and will never even open up.

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