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jfidel
02-09-2006, 06:08 PM
I always enjoyed the printed manual that was provided by BW. Is there even a manual on the CD that can be printed out? I did not see one installed on the HD.

Please advise.

Thanks,

John Fidel

Ben Spackman
02-09-2006, 06:15 PM
I haven't received the non-beta yet, but in the past a .pdf identical to the manual has been included somewhere in the program. I assume there is one again.

Joe Fleener
02-09-2006, 07:24 PM
Right now there is no PDF of the Online Help.

It is something that may be posted in the future.

MBushell
02-09-2006, 07:36 PM
There is no printed BW 7 manual. We polled a number of users before dropping it and the consensus was that very few people use it. The main reason for the decision was not money, but time. It took a lot of time to keep both the printed manual and online help up to date when the content was so different. We were never really able to do that well. The plan is to keep the online help (which has be completely redone) really up to date with every program change. With limited staff this seemed like the best approach. Of course we are open to input for later versions.

Mike

Joshua Luna
02-09-2006, 08:17 PM
Mike,

Has BibleWorks considered setting up a Wiki and allowing trusted users to add information to it? Wikis seem to be an excellent way to compile information, example, and to keep things up to date.

Just an idea (not exactly sure how a wiki would best work with BW, but always an option)

Columcille
02-09-2006, 08:42 PM
I liked the manual for BW 6 but I did notice occassions when the manual wasn't accurate after an update. I wasn't even aware of the online help, but I never looked. The idea of a wiki sounds great, wiki sites have probably given me more information on How To Do Stuff than anything else.

paterdr
03-17-2006, 11:02 AM
I've enjoy using the printed manual (since version 4, I think). For all the pleasure of using the computer for biblical research, I still long for hard copy when perusing the examples, etc. I hope that at some time in the future a revised printed user's guide can indeed be produced. A searchable and printable .pdf would be a good start.
Dan Pater
paterdr
paterdr@hotmail.com

Richard Henley
03-21-2006, 12:34 PM
There is no printed BW 7 manual. We polled a number of users before dropping it and the consensus was that very few people use it. The main reason for the decision was not money, but time. It took a lot of time to keep both the printed manual and online help up to date when the content was so different. We were never really able to do that well. The plan is to keep the online help (which has be completely redone) really up to date with every program change. With limited staff this seemed like the best approach. Of course we are open to input for later versions.

Mike

==============================================
Greetings,

It is understandable that printing and keeping a paper manual synchronized with BibleWork’s repairs and updates can be a challenging enterprise. Nevertheless, established methods to accomplish this do exist. In my occupation, documentation updates are a normal and necessary part of product support, without which, product sales and market share would be significantly reduced.

BibleWorks’ recent promise to keep the on-line help function current is commendable; a current help file though, should be an unquestioned and fundamental part of the product. Tutorials are a welcome addition, but neither on-line help, nor tutorials can substitute for a printed manual. In my opinion, it is irresponsible and counterproductive to not provide a printable and searchable comprehensive manual in file form, such as Adobe .pdf and/or Word .doc, which is kept current with BibleWorks 7 patches and distributed with program updates.

I have used BibleWorks since version 5. I upgraded and loaded version 7. However, as a result of not having a having a manual, I have not yet committed to version 7, and still have version 6 operational. Without a manual, even with on-line-help, I find I’m not able to effectively use version 7. On-line help is valuable, but only as an adjunct to printed text. I will keep version 7, since I now have it, and it incorporates a couple of useful features. Had I been aware that no manual would be available, it is uncertain whether I would have upgraded to version 7.

In contrast to previous versions, I have not recommended version 7 to anyone, in part due to lack of a manual (other reasons: BibleWorks 7 is incredibly slow to load; the value-to-price ratio is low – especially with no manual; BibleWorks practice of premature product release as a business practice; known problems and weaknesses that have gone uncorrected). It is revealing that, of the four individuals in my acquaintance who have earlier versions of BibleWorks, none have upgraded, or seem likely to do so. Each person’s decision was made on their own, and is traceable to BibleWorks policies, usability, function, value, and practices. If one of BibleWorks’ goals is long-term survival in the software market, these people need to be upgrading. BibleWorks needs to offer a total product package that makes a compelling argument for upgrades (or new purchase). One out of five is not a good upgrade ratio (although this ratio may or may not be typical). If BibleWorks continues in its present direction, version 7 will likely be the last version I routinely upgrade – I may upgrade, but future BibleWorks versions will have to make a far more compelling case for doing so than the current version.

I would like to see BibleWorks succeed. It’s basically a good product, some of its features and functions are noteworthy, and I’m sure the people at BibleWorks are making good-faith efforts to produce the best possible product. However, BibleWorks could benefit from a comprehensive review of how to best direct its energies to maximize product function and customer value.

Best Wishes

Joe Fleener
03-21-2006, 12:44 PM
==============================================
Greetings,

In my occupation, documentation updates are a normal and necessary part of product support, without which, product sales and market share would be significantly reduced.



That is not universal for software.

I remember is 1996 while a full-time Oracle DBA, Oracle stopped shipping printed manuals. You could still get them if you wanted, for the small price of something like $200.00.

In 2002, while still working as a full-time Oracle DBA (also in seminary at this time) most of my younger Oracle DBA co-workers had never even seen a printed Oracle manual.

I am not saying I didn't like or use the printed manual, in fact I did. I miss it. I have worked at creating a PDF and probably will finish that when I have time.

However, this is not a new trend...

Ruben Gomez
03-21-2006, 01:01 PM
However, this is not a new trend...

You're right. It is not a new trend, but it is a very unfortunate one, IMO.

Rubén Gómez

Ben Spackman
03-21-2006, 01:46 PM
In contrast to previous versions, I have not recommended version 7 to anyone, in part due to lack of a manual (other reasons: BibleWorks 7 is incredibly slow to load; the value-to-price ratio is low – especially with no manual; BibleWorks practice of premature product release as a business practice; known problems and weaknesses that have gone uncorrected). It is revealing that, of the four individuals in my acquaintance who have earlier versions of BibleWorks, none have upgraded, or seem likely to do so.

I think this is a grossly unfair characterization.

If you think BW 7 is slow, by all means, pick up and compare its main competitor. On my computer (P4 2.4, 7200 RPM hard-drive, 1.2 Gig RAM- no screaming demon by any measurement), BW loads in about 9 seconds. Its main competitor takes roughly 4x as long. Searches still blaze in BW, and since I only start it up once per day, I'd much rather have fast searches and "slow" startup than vice-versa.
I had no idea manuals were worth so much in terms of program value, especially when one has the capability to print one. If the help (both in the program and on-line) weren't so good, I could understand the complaint more. Have you avoided any other progrm upgrades because they had no printed manual?


BibleWorks practice of premature product release as a business practice; known problems and weaknesses that have gone uncorrected
As a user since BW 4 and a beta-tester on BW7, BW6, and BW5, this is utter garbage.

None of the "major bugs" that have come up since the release appeared during beta-testing. If they had, they would have been fixed. Bibleworks is without comparison the best company I have seen in terms of getting out a solid product, and then fixing any problems within days.

If you want to talk about bad business practice, let's compare Endnote (http://endnote.com/). Version 8 was incredibly buggy, and incompatible with Windows XP SP2. They fixed that, but instead of repairing the other bugs, quickly released Endnote v.9. $100 upgrade. It *still* has major problems. Endnote doesn't have a forum like this, and they don't respond to emails, in my experience.

I think it revealing that BW has been swamped with sales since the release. I have recommended it to people who have promptly upgraded, and will continue to do so.
I find my loyalty to the product growing to the point of defensiveness , and I think that says something about how good it is. :o

Adamsen
03-21-2006, 02:04 PM
There is no printed BW 7 manual. We polled a number of users before dropping it and the consensus was that very few people use it. The main reason for the decision was not money, but time. It took a lot of time to keep both the printed manual and online help up to date when the content was so different. We were never really able to do that well. The plan is to keep the online help (which has be completely redone) really up to date with every program change. With limited staff this seemed like the best approach. Of course we are open to input for later versions.

Mike

I think I was polled as well. Anyway, I have always been studying the manuals very closely. I was quite good at using WordPerfect for many years - I authored some macros that my colleagues still use. I also think that I am among those who know most about BW7 at the Lutheran School of Theology in Aarhus. I doubt that this would have been the case, had I not had the manual of version 3 through 6. In fact, I have several bible software programs, but the one thing I miss in all cases is the printed manual.

I must also say that I miss a BW7 manual very much. I need it for details and for the overview that a printed book gives.

Perhaps I did not read the commercials closely enough, but I was in fact quite surprised, yes, disappointed when I discovered that there was no manual.

I must admit that I think BW7 is a good upgrade. In my view, however, Bibleworks should not have dropped the manual, but instead made it even better. The study guides are good. However, BW is a program that demands that you understand the nature of the data, if you want to use it for serious work. It is just as important to be able to evaluate the data, its original sources etc., as it is to be able to operate the program itself. The former may be more difficult, however.

I know that my students do not use the manual as much as I would like them to, but I still think that a manual is important if you really want to master a program, not at least a program like Bibleworks.

Finally, I like the printed manual because it is much quicker to use than the videos. Help files are good for concrete information such as morphological codes (they should also be in the manual, of course), but, in my opinion, a printed manual is better.

In summary: I hope that the printed manual will be added as soon as possible.

Don't misunderstand me: I am a long-term BW user and I am happy about that, but I really miss the manual.

Georg

manthano
03-21-2006, 04:06 PM
I've created a PDF of the bw700.chm file. However, as I used a piece of shareware to do it (full version is $99 USD), it has a watermark on every page that says, "Created with unregistered version of x software." But if anyone would like that PDF, I'm willing to post it.

MBushell
03-21-2006, 05:06 PM
==============================================
I have used BibleWorks since version 5. I upgraded and loaded version 7. However, as a result of not having a having a manual, I have not yet committed to version 7, and still have version 6 operational. Without a manual, even with on-line-help, I find I’m not able to effectively use version 7. On-line help is valuable, but only as an adjunct to printed text. I will keep version 7, since I now have it, and it incorporates a couple of useful features. Had I been aware that no manual would be available, it is uncertain whether I would have upgraded to version 7.
......
In contrast to previous versions, I have not recommended version 7 to anyone, in part due to lack of a manual (other reasons: BibleWorks 7 is incredibly slow to load; the value-to-price ratio is low – especially with no manual; BibleWorks practice of premature product release as a business practice; known problems and weaknesses that have gone uncorrected). It is revealing that, of the four individuals in my acquaintance who have earlier versions of BibleWorks, none have upgraded, or seem likely to do so. Each person’s decision was made on their own, and is traceable to BibleWorks policies, usability, function, value, and practices. If one of BibleWorks’ goals is long-term survival in the software market, these people need to be upgrading. BibleWorks needs to offer a total product package that makes a compelling argument for upgrades (or new purchase). One out of five is not a good upgrade ratio (although this ratio may or may not be typical). If BibleWorks continues in its present direction, version 7 will likely be the last version I routinely upgrade – I may upgrade, but future BibleWorks versions will have to make a far more compelling case for doing so than the current version.



I have read comments from disgruntled users for some 15 years (that's how long we've been in business) and I have to admit that this is among the unkindest that I have heard posted on a public forum. Normally we would not respond, but I have to step in and respond to a few of these comments:

1. BibleWorks has the same load speed as BibleWorks 6. It is slow the first time it runs because it rebuilds some indices, but even then the load time is less that 15 seconds on my machine. After the first run it always starts in less that 5 seconds and I don't have a particularly fast machine. It starts much quicker than any major application on my computer, including all Microsoft Applications. If it starts slower on your machine you have some other issue that is not related to BibleWorks.

2. As for the value to price ratio, I wonder if Richard has bothered to look at what is new in the base package. Interested readers can check out what's new at http://www.bibleworks.com/content/new.html. And that web page doesn't really even begin to describe the new features in the program itself. It is mostly about databases. We have never released a program update in 15 years that we did not think was worth many times what people are asked to pay. If Richard is not convinced, that is fine for him. Frankly, we'd rather he returned the package. But we believe with most of our users that BibleWorks provides the best value of any program of its kind. Just pick two new base package items, the Tov-Polak Parallel LXX and the Works of Philo. These two items will cost you $200 as addons to other programs. We could have sold them as addons, but decided to absorb the royalties so more people could use them. We also include a set of diagrams of the Greek new Testament which we have commissioned at great cost and included for free. We could have sold them easily as addons for $100! And these are just drops in large bucket. I frankly am dumbfounded at Richard's suggestion that we won't stay in business unless we can provide better value than this. Nonsense. By God's Grace, this is shaping up to be our best year ever. Most people realize that BibleWorks is worth many times what it costs, and many times what we could get for it in an open market place. We have striven sacrificially to provide value. So I bristle at comments like this. They are not fair to us or to our users.

4. With regard to the comment about "known weaknesses and problems going uncorrected", and "premature releases", I have a lot more to say here than there is room for and certainly more than I would want to say in a public forum. If Richard had been a part of the beta program I don't think he would have said that. We had long alpha and beta programs, lasting several months. None of the major problems that surfaced on release of version 7 were caught in that testing, or they would have been fixed. BibleWorks is an incredibly complex program and it is simply impossible to catch everything. Typical Microsoft programs of similar complexity have as many beta testers as we have users! We cannot afford that but we do well with what we have. People need to realize that programs like this serve a niche market that is relatively small. Producing a professional quality program for a small market at a price that is affordable is not easy. I think we have done well all things considered, by the Grace of God. And I think we have a support team that is second to none and we actually fix bugs in real time. Richard's comments in this regard are incredibly unfair. I would not respond except for the fact that they hurt us as a company and our users who have spent their hard-earned cash to keep us working for them.

5. With regard to the manual: if Richard feels that the program is borderline useless without the manual, then he is better off without the program and we will cheerfully refund his money. The fact of the matter is that there is nothing that would have been in the manual that is not in the online help, with the wording and content changed to fit a different context. A huge amount of effort went into that online help system. I think it serves the program well. We will certainly reconsider this decision, but I have to tell you that strident comments like this make us a lot less likely to change. Reasoned suggestions from people who appreciate the program and realize how valuable a tool it is have a lot more weight.

We know that a lot of people who are considering becoming a BibleWorks user look over this forum before making a decision. If you are one of those people I would just recommend that you take a look at our web site at www.bibleworks.com (http://www.bibleworks.com) and read the comments of all the people on this forum, not just a few who have a bee in their bonnet. I have personally worked 15 hours a day for more than a decade to make this a worthwhile tool, and we have a small but very dedicated and professional staff to help our users make the most of the product. We do the best we can with what the Lord has given to us and only ask that we be treated charitably and fairly, and in kind promise to strive to treat our customers the same way. Try BibleWorks and if you don't like it just return it. If it's not for you we don't want your money. You have better things to do with it than buy a program that you don't need.

God bless,
Mike

MGVH
03-21-2006, 09:36 PM
I use PDFCreator. It's a great, reliable PDF "printer," and it is free under GNU GPL.
Get it HERE (http://sourceforge.net/project/showfiles.php?group_id=57796&package_id=53473&release_id=386526). Check the release notes, but you will probably want: PDFCreator-0_9_0_AFPLGhostscript.exe (http://prdownloads.sourceforge.net/pdfcreator/PDFCreator-0_9_0_AFPLGhostscript.exe?download)

Ken Neighoff
03-21-2006, 10:54 PM
For me the manual is not a real necessity. I have been using Bible Works since version 4. I used the manual only once or twice, for learning how to use the ASE and doing Command Line searches. I learned how to use the program by using it and reading the forms. With Version 6 & 7 I used the video tutorials.

Logos does not come with a printed manual either and there online help section is growing and in my opinion not as good as Bible Works.

Bible Works staff keep up the good work and may we always remember that your motto is "To the glory of God."

"In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all other things, charity." IMO a BW7 manual belongs in the later heading.

wezlo
03-22-2006, 07:23 AM
I've created a PDF of the bw700.chm file. However, as I used a piece of shareware to do it (full version is $99 USD), it has a watermark on every page that says, "Created with unregistered version of x software." But if anyone would like that PDF, I'm willing to post it.

What did you use to create this PDF?

wezlo
03-22-2006, 07:30 AM
I must admit that I think BW7 is a good upgrade. In my view, however, Bibleworks should not have dropped the manual, but instead made it even better. The study guides are good. However, BW is a program that demands that you understand the nature of the data, if you want to use it for serious work. It is just as important to be able to evaluate the data, its original sources etc., as it is to be able to operate the program itself. The former may be more difficult, however.

I think that one of the reasons folks are so upset about the lack of a manual is how different BW7 is from earlier incarnations. There's a new UI, a new editor, you can export unicode, the command line has moved (people are even having trouble finding it), the way that you install locked modules has changed, and there's what - 7 disks? The lack of a manual just heightened anxiety on some folks part.

I agree that no printed manual is a trend. Paper is expensive, and the way features have been added in BW during a revision's incarnation makes the printed manual quickly out of step with reality. Yet - it might have been a good idea to keep a printed manual for this particular version due to all the changes in the way the program operates. Once the core base of users got used to the new UI the next version could drop the manual because you'd have folks who know what's what...

Just a thought, the lack of a manual was a bit disappointing - but I've find most of the stuff I was looking for. Unicode export is a wonderful thing.

And here's a question. Why doesn't anyone see this as an opportunity to write a Book like "Getting Started With Bibleworks 7?" Maybe BW could publish/distribute something like this (and put the profit to developing my longed for native linux port...).

Dale A. Brueggemann
03-22-2006, 07:32 AM
Without a manual, even with on-line-help, I find I’m not able to effectively use version 7.


Like many others have noted, I would really appreciate a printed manual. I read mine cover-to-cover when I first got each new version, marked it with sticky tabs, and consulted it frequently when solving problems. I would like to do the same with version seven. I hope a manual will be forthcoming. However, I do find that I am still "able to effectively us version 7."


BibleWorks needs to offer a total product package that makes a compelling argument for upgrades (or new purchase).

Wow! Despite my wish for a printed manual, I have decided this is the most substantial upgrade BW has offered, not only in functionality, but in the texts included. To get the aligned MT-LXX for the base price! Yes, I agree with those who keep agitating for a printed manual, but BW 7 is grea-ea-ea-ea-tt!

And as for customer service--the best. I suppose BW 7 could be been beta-tested even more so that the wrinkles that we're all finding were ironed out before release; however, I'll glad watch for the minor "bugs" and enjoy using the new features rather than wait, and wait, and wait, and wait... until "perfection" arrives and they release. In this kind of package, I think the end-users make pretty good b-Beta testers after the development team and the a-Beta testers have worked it over. And the programmers have been utterly amazing at their timely and effective response to each new "bug" that the wider user base uncovers.

wezlo
03-22-2006, 07:39 AM
4. With regard to the comment about "known weaknesses and problems going uncorrected", and "premature releases", I have a lot more to say here than there is room for and certainly more than I would want to say in a public forum. If Richard had been a part of the beta program I don't think he would have said that. We had long alpha and beta programs, lasting several months. None of the major problems that surfaced on release of version 7 were caught in that testing, or they would have been fixed. BibleWorks is an incredibly complex program and it is simply impossible to catch everything. Typical Microsoft programs of similar complexity have as many beta testers as we have users! We cannot afford that but we do well with what we have. People need to realize that programs like this serve a niche market that is relatively small. Producing a professional quality program for a small market at a price that is affordable is not easy. I think we have done well all things considered, by the Grace of God. And I think we have a support team that is second to none and we actually fix bugs in real time. Richard's comments in this regard are incredibly unfair. I would not respond except for the fact that they hurt us as a company and our users who have spent their hard-earned cash to keep us working for them.
Michael, let me just say that one of the reasons I stick with BW is because I almost feel as though I were working with an opensource program. I can talk to the developers, there's a decent support community, and bugs actually get dealt with. It's the culture surrounding BW that keeps me with it as much as it is the excellent program. Coming from a Linux snob, that's quite a compliment.

One question. Have you guys ever thought of open-sourcing the BW engine under LGPL? All the modules would still need to be purchased, as is right - but the engine could be worked on by folks and perhaps even more bugs will get squashed at no cost to you.

Of course, folks can be dishonest (not CHRISTIANS???) and just upgrade the engine for free and import old modules so you'd loose some revenue. It's just a thought...

pingpongjedi
03-22-2006, 08:10 AM
I started with version 6, thought the manual was great, but then never used it. For both v6 and v7, the video tutorials were by far the most helpful, and I use the online help (which is also very good) for more detail. For things that I need repeatedly, such as search syntax, I have printed it out (all five or six pages), so I've not missed the printed manual in version 7 one iota.

As a developer myself, I understand both the importance of enduser documentation and the need to balance that importance with cost and accuracy. I would not want to maintain to lines of documentation for anything. Actually, I don't like maintaining any documentation. But I'm glad y'all do such a good job of it!

Greg Ward
03-22-2006, 08:39 AM
Though I have used previous version manuals, I have just scanned them cover to cover. Then I would use the index, sometimes with my own additions, to find what I need. I also save a few printed articles from the Topica day or this forum as extra information.
The program enhancements throughout a version are incredible. I keep my copy up to date. But I remember using a school, multi-user computer that just had the original version 6. I then appreciated how much had been added over the life of version 6. And none of those features were in the printed manual.

Perhaps a suggestion: A small fold sheet or a small booklet to alleviate the initial confusion. Even whole computers and software packages today come with no or very little manual. But most come with a basic sheet or booklet to calm the fears and jitters and help someone get started. I know most of this is covered in the initial videos and help upon first running the program. But a basic screen layout with lables, directions for a couple basic uses, and how to get to the training videos and help file may do it. (Your advertising brochure, reworked and simplified a little to look like a "getting started" booklet that would fit in the box.)

pingpongjedi
03-22-2006, 08:44 AM
It sort of does this. There's a sheet to help you get it installed (if you really need it), and the first screen to appear when you launch BW is a "Getting Started Screen" which takes you to the most important videos or help topics.

MBushell
03-22-2006, 10:17 AM
There are a lot of good ideas here and we'll discuss them internally. Lots of things are posible, including bringing the manual back. But do keep in mind that the printed manual would be the same as the online help, except that the bitmaps would be redone at higher resolution and the text would change to change, for example, hyperlinks to "see page so and so".

One thing that we would appreciate is suggestions on how we can make the online help more useful. I know a lot can be done in that regard.

Mike

Adelphos
03-22-2006, 11:17 AM
Lots of things are posible, including bringing the manual back. But do keep in mind that the printed manual would be the same as the online help

I haven't received a printed manual to a single major program in years. The whole mass of software develoment has moved to an electronic help format, and it's only going to increase, i.e., printed manuals are going to continue to go out of style until there's no such thing.

I would hate to see BW put more important issues on the back burner in order to produce a printed manual when printed manuals are a thing of the past.

If you want to improve the online help file, one area you might concentrate on is in the printing capabilities since this has been mentioned quite a bit.

Davka, for example, has a section under its help menu for "printed manual" wherein you can access its manual by chapters and print each one out. This is how Davka distributes its manual, by the way -- in its help file, not with a printed manual.

So perhaps BW could enhance the online help printing capabilities in some way, but investing time and money in a printed manual is something I would vote against. It isn't needed. It's a luxury that has seen it's day, and the online help is not only more than sufficient, it's smarter, smarter in time, smarter in money, smarter in functionality, since it keeps changing.

Dale A. Brueggemann
03-22-2006, 11:33 AM
If you want to improve the online help file, one area you might concentrate on is in the printing capabilities since this has been mentioned quite a bit. Davka, for example, has a section under its help menu for "printed manual" wherein you can access its manual by chapters and print each one out.

I think Scott's on to a useful solution here. It would satisfy me I think.

Alan Johnson
03-22-2006, 02:06 PM
I, too, was slightly disappointed not to find a printed manual with BW7. Reality is, though, I rarely used it with BW5 & BW6, favoring the online help and videos.

Speaking of the videos, what I really miss are the mouse click and typing sounds!:)

I'm enjoying getting to know BW7. It opens fast and is one of the most used programs on my computer. I couldn't imagine Bible study and sermon prep without it.

Alan

manthano
03-22-2006, 09:42 PM
What did you use to create this PDF?

I used the trial version of this program http://www.theta-software.com/chmtopdf.htm It's 99 EUR. I tried several such shareware programs but this one did the best job. It's still not perfect. Most of the internal hyperlinks don't work (the links from the top to a detail area in the page), but the table of contents works very well and you can search the text.

vr8ce
03-23-2006, 08:37 AM
I haven't received a printed manual to a single major program in years. The whole mass of software develoment has moved to an electronic help format, and it's only going to increase, i.e., printed manuals are going to continue to go out of style until there's no such thing.
The fact that something happens does not make that thing a good thing.


It isn't needed. It's a luxury that has seen it's day, and the online help is not only more than sufficient, it's smarter, smarter in time, smarter in money, smarter in functionality, since it keeps changing.
A number of few posts here would indicate otherwise. It isn't needed by you, but it is needed by others. As has been discussed here multiple times, on-line help and printed manuals serve two completely different needs, and one does not suffice for both.

Vince

vr8ce
03-23-2006, 08:56 AM
I have read comments from disgruntled users for some 15 years (that's how long we've been in business) and I have to admit that this is among the unkindest that I have heard posted on a public forum. And inaccurate to the point of misrepresentation of fact. There's certainly oodles (technical term) of value in the upgrade from a content perspective, and I don't know what "major" bugs everyone is talking about, but I've been happily using BW7 since it was released (after having used it "in production" for the entire beta cycle), with nary a hiccup.

And when there are bugs, any "major" ones (and many minor ones) are addressed within a day or two. Where else does that occur on Planet Earth?


We will certainly reconsider this decision, but I have to tell you that strident comments like this make us a lot less likely to change. Reasoned suggestions from people who appreciate the program and realize how valuable a tool it is have a lot more weight.
The latter should be true, the former should not. An unreasoned (and unreasonable) comment is still a comment, and with any attack (perceived or real) you should determine if anything's useful and throw out the rest, but you shouldn't throw out the whole thing just because it was an attack, on this or any other issue. God's messengers (not implying he was or wasn't) don't always have a calm, smooth voice. :)

Bibleworks as a company and a product are among the best in the business. On the PC, there is no competition, IMO. For all of BW's UI quirks, it is still a Shining Star next to it's competitors (any of them, and I've used them all). It is fast, both in startup and MUCH more importantly in use. The command line is a brilliant way to do quick searches (which I'd like to see become even more brilliant, but that's like the difference between Hawking and Einstein).

Most important, BW as a company has about the highest integrity I've found in business anywhere, not just in this industry. So, if you're reading about BW for the first time, read all of the threads here, not just that one comment. And don't look for the problems (all software has them, and that's the reason 99% of people post here in the first place), look for how fast the problems are resolved.

Vince

alcantley
03-23-2006, 09:18 AM
Cannot remember if I posted this previously in this thread or another. I would be satisfied with the online help if I could adjust the font size for viewing - especially UPWARD :).
Thanks Mike, for again considering our input.

Blessings,
Al Cantley

MBushell
03-23-2006, 10:16 AM
FYI, you can print out a chapter in the manual by right clicking on a chapter in the table of contents. You can print the whole thing out at once, but if there is a need for that we can enable it by moving the whole TOC down one level, so that there is only one base item in the contents. Not sure if that's a good idea though. Given the print ability, I am not sure what value a PDF has.

Dale A. Brueggemann
03-23-2006, 10:56 AM
FYI, you can print out a chapter in the manual by right clicking on a chapter in the table of contents. You can print the whole thing out at once. Actually, that doesn't work correctly. When I do that I get the following when asking to print the heading and everything under it:
/!\ An error has occurred in the script on this page.
Line: 128
Char: 1
Error: Object expected
Code: 0
URL: file//C:\ Documents and settings [...] ~hhD81.htm

Do you want to continue running scripts on this page?
[Yes] [No]

Adelphos
03-23-2006, 02:45 PM
A number of few posts here would indicate otherwise. It isn't needed by you, but it is needed by others.

You've confused the definition of "needed" with the definition of "desired"

The manual may be desired, but it's not needed.

pingpongjedi
03-23-2006, 05:07 PM
Actually, that doesn't work correctly. When I do that I get the following when asking to print the heading and everything under it:
/!\ An error has occurred in the script on this page.
Line: 128
Char: 1
Error: Object expected
Code: 0
URL: file//C:\ Documents and settings [...] ~hhD81.htm

Do you want to continue running scripts on this page?
[Yes] [No]



I get the same thing, but if I click "yes," it prints ok.

MrShep
03-23-2006, 09:46 PM
Cant we all just get along...?

I'm new to Bibleworks as of version 6 -yes I've upgraded to 7 - and I'm still finding it amazingly useful. (including the digital manual).

I will not blindly stand and defend "My program", "My superior qualifications", or any of the BibleWorks staff, however I pray that God bless the bibleworks staff and help them to continue building upon an already awesome tool for studying HIS word. Thank the Lord that we have this tool and the good folks who continue to develop it for us.

amen.

vr8ce
03-24-2006, 12:01 AM
You've confused the definition of "needed" with the definition of "desired". The manual may be desired, but it's not needed.
No, actually, I haven't.
v. require (something) because it is essential or very important rather than just desirable. (Oxford Concise, 10th ed.)

In my case, it is both essential and very important. For others here (from their posts, not trying to speak for anyone), it is one or the other. For others (including you, apparently), it is neither. However, the fact it is neither for some does not make it so for everyone.

jakemccarty
03-24-2006, 12:18 AM
You've confused the definition of "needed" with the definition of "desired"

The manual may be desired, but it's not needed.

No trolling please.

Adelphos
03-24-2006, 12:41 AM
In my case, it is both essential and very important.

I'm sure Mike has taken note of your desire, as well as the others, just as he did when he polled people about this matter.

Of course, if a printed manual was needed, BW would have included it, for BW would not ship a product that was missing something that was actually needed. But since the help file is the same as a printed manual, only more up to date, this supplies the need, if not the desire of some.

Naturally, if someone could give a good reason why they can't legitimately access the help file, then that would certainly be important, and would provide a greater motive for spending time and money producing a printed manual. However, if one can access the help file containing all the information -- and then some -- of the printed manual, that would make the printed manual less of a must.

I wouldn't cry if BW sent me a printed manual, but as I said before, I'm much more interested in the new modules and other enhancements to the actual software than I am for a printed manual, and I'd hate to see those projects delayed because of a printed manual that can already be found in the help file.

Finally, every dollar that BW spends in the development of this program is ultimately going to affect the users. As of now, BW absorbs a whole lot of royalty and other costs that they do not pass on to us. That is significant as far as I'm concerned. And very much appreciated.

Accordingly, I not only want to return the favor by helping BW avoid extra costs when I am capable of doing so, such as in the production of a printed manual that I don't have to have, but furthermore, I don't want to have to pay more for the program and its modules in the future because BW was forced to spend money on items that are not absolutely crucial to the program, at least not for the vast, vast majority of users, for I suspect that most users would not claim that a printed manual is crucial for their use of the program.

vr8ce
03-24-2006, 09:34 AM
But since the help file is the same as a printed manual, only more up to date, this supplies the need, if not the desire of some.
Scott, I'm glad you don't need a manual, but please stop asserting that your lack of need translates directly to others lack of need. As has been communicated by multiple people on this thread, a help file does not supply the same need as a printed manual.

BW now has more input than they had originally how users feel about the manual, and they can decide what to do. We all understand how the resource allocation process works, and for some of us, we would nonetheless like them to produce a printed manual.

Adelphos
03-24-2006, 10:50 AM
Scott, I'm glad you don't need a manual, but please stop asserting that your lack of need translates directly to others lack of need.

Vince, don't tell me what to assert or what not to assert. You can state your opinion any way you please. I will state mine the way I please, and if you don't like it, tough. Got it?

Adelphos
03-24-2006, 11:41 AM
Just for the sake of accuracy, it should be known that after rereading every post on this thread, I found ONE person who used the word need with regard to a printed manual, and that was not for himself, but for teaching his students. In other words, without parsing words, and taking the statements in context, he and every one else who posted on this thread was able to use version 7 without a printed manual.

Every other poster, including Dale, who said he read the printed manuals from cover to cover (you gotta be kidding :rolleyes: ), said he could use version 7 without the manual as long as the online help file was available.

If the printed manual appears, I'll be happy to applaud all the petitioners, for I will be one of the recipients of their petitions.

However, as I said before --

First, I wouldn't want a printed manual to interfere with other projects.

Second, I personally would like to save BW the time and expense as a token of appreciation for the costs that they absorb and do not pass on to us.

And third, I really wonder why BW is being singled out about a printed manual when every other major software publisher that I'm aware of does not ship printed manuals anymore. I really wonder why it's such a big issue with BW.

I don't have a printed manual for any of the major programs on my computer, including Davka, which is not only an exceptional program, but is very feature rich and therefore can be quite as complilcated as BW, such as customizable nikud, troph, etc.

Now, for those who want a manual and who haven't said so yet, by all means fire away.

I still vote no. :cool:

paterdr
03-26-2006, 05:28 PM
I've been looking online for a program that converts from chm to pdf. Here's a site for one that can do that:
http://www.theta-software.com/chmtopdf.htm

However, it is not a free product, and does not seem to maintain the hyperlinks in the main window, is time limited and stamps an "unregistered" notice on the odd pages. Otherwise it would probably be one way of producing a printable manual for those who want one.

I'm throwing this out for the sake of promoting a constructive approach to the exchange of opinions here (it's starting to heat up, it seems) and for hopefully obtaining better solutions.

Specifically, does anybody have a free program out there that a) can produce a useable pdf (links, no limitations)?

Dan Pater

MTan
03-30-2006, 09:10 AM
Hi Guys,

I think this topic has run its course. The development staff has noted the desire for a printed manual. If people are unable to print the HTML files, we can try to make the needed adjustments. Thank you for your input.

This thread is now closed.

Michael