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View Full Version : Hate the BW8 layout, and can't change it!



rmclaughlin
02-06-2009, 04:22 PM
I've been using BW since 3.5 and I have always had my text and analysis on the left and my command line and search results on the right. I can't find a way to make this happen in BW8. Plus, I can't find a way to put my command line below the search results. I'm extremely unhappy about this! :mad:

I use BW *every day.* This completely changes the way I personally interface with the data. My habits of use I have drilled into my head over the past 11 years. Why take away this option? :eek: I have been SO frustrated by this! I'm giving myself headaches because I am constantly looking at the wrong part of the screen, and then having to reorient myself. :( BW used to be the first reference I checked, but now avoid it like the plague.

Plus, customer support has never returned my phone calls or emails. :mad: My loyalty is wavering. And where my loyalty goes, my department's budget is soon to follow.

MBushell
02-06-2009, 08:40 PM
Over the years we have constantly tried to improve the user interface. The problem that we have run into from day one is that any changes whatsoever are going to be opposed by some people. We were faced with permanently freezing the interface and never making any improvements - or attempting improvements and hoping people would give the changes an honest try before jumping ship. For a long time when we made interface changes we tried to provide options to revert back to previous configurations. At a certain point this just became impossible to support. Any modifications had implications for an endless array of different configurations. We felt that changes were needed because people tend to have more screen real estate. The old two column configuration made sense when a lot of people had 800x600 displays. Those have almost completely disappeared now. We believe that the three column layout is more intuitive and makes a better use of screen real estate. Of course some people will disagree. I hope that you will take the time to let the new interface get broken in before you give up on us.

I apologize for the tardy tech support. No small company like us can keep sufficient permanent staff to handle the work load during a release. We have to keep the number of people on board that are necessary to handle the normal flow of business during the 90% of the time when there are no workload surges. They are getting caught up but there are limits to what they can do. We don't encourage overtime because we want people home with their families. But they are working as hard as they can to get caught up on e-mails. Please hang with us a bit longer. Of course if you want to return BW8 and/or take your budget with your organization with you, you can have the usual no-questions-asked refund. We really don't want a single penny from anyone who doesn't think we are worth it.

God bless,
Mike

Don Johnson
02-08-2009, 12:20 AM
We felt that changes were needed because people tend to have more screen real estate. The old two column configuration made sense when a lot of people had 800x600 displays. Those have almost completely disappeared now. We believe that the three column layout is more intuitive and makes a better use of screen real estate. Of course some people will disagree. I hope that you will take the time to let the new interface get broken in before you give up on us.

mike,

I am not quite as disappointed in the changes, but I'd like to point out why I like a two column look with the search on the right.

First, as I said in an earlier post, the eye, according to advertising people I have talked to, goes naturally to the upper left of a page. I think this is true of a window on a computer also. So I would rather be looking first at the text I am studying.

But probably more important to me, as I have been working with Version 8, is that I mostly use BW on my laptop, 15 inch screen. I have Word open on the left (I print out on 8.5 x 5.5 for sermons) and BW on the right. This allows me to look back and forth quite easily while studying.

In version 8, I have found that even with the analysis window under the browse window and a two column setup, the new interface just doesn't work as well.

So... I have gone to running BW maximized and just doing the alt-tab thing back and forth to Word. Not quite as good, but it works.

I actually haven't even installed BW 8 on my desktop yet...

All in all, I like some of the new features quite well, but on this interface thing just wanted to point out that some of us use more screen real estate for more stuff... not just for one program.

ingosorke
02-08-2009, 07:57 AM
And I thought I was the only one . . .

The layout of a program here is less about dynamic workflow (which could be assumed to be left to right) than static result display. In that sense, the slogan "Focus on the Text" was realized more naturally with the Browse Window on the left and the Command Line on the right.

That would be interesting to actually measure: eye pausation and movement based on display layout . . .

Difficult children we are, aren't we. :)

Ingo

MBushell
02-09-2009, 10:29 AM
And I thought I was the only one . . .

The layout of a program here is less about dynamic workflow (which could be assumed to be left to right) than static result display. In that sense, the slogan "Focus on the Text" was realized more naturally with the Browse Window on the left and the Command Line on the right.

That would be interesting to actually measure: eye pausation and movement based on display layout . . .

Difficult children we are, aren't we. :)

Ingo
The three column layout was actually suggested by someone else in the company. I resisted it for a long time, for the very reasons cited here. But I later came to see that I was wrong. With the facelift on the former Analysis Window (with more tabs and more functionality) two columns simply doesn't allow enough room for the new features to work well. The change had to be made and I actually like it a lot now. I know that people don't like change. In a busy schedule, the less unnecessary change the better. But we felt these changes were necessary given the new features and the space that they require for acceptable functonality. I am truly sorry that some people don't like the changes, but there is no going back at this point. We couldn't even if we wanted to. I will be interested to see what people think in a few months.

pocketscholar
02-09-2009, 03:10 PM
mike,

All in all, I like some of the new features quite well, but on this interface thing just wanted to point out that some of us use more screen real estate for more stuff... not just for one program.

Don,

I would seriously consider investing in a second monitor. It makes working with two applications really nice.

Jamie

rmclaughlin
02-09-2009, 04:10 PM
Mike,

First, I'm not complaining about the number of columns or the real estate. I am complaining about the inflexibility of the relative position of the columns, and the inflexibility of the stacking order of the fields in the search/results column.

Second, I appreciate that BW experiences heavier customer service demands when you release new products. However, when BW doesn't acknowledge emails and phone calls it has received, it can be very frustrating for users. It has been weeks since I first contacted customer support, and I have still never heard a single word from them -- even if only to tell me that they were behind and would get to it eventually.

I am disappointed that BW no longer offers the features I have come to rely on and to expect. I hope that BW will restore this functionality in future releases. Incidentally, if you are tallying votes for which features to include, please count mine 12 times (that's how many licenses I have).

ingosorke
02-09-2009, 06:45 PM
Thanks for your response, Mike; I'm giving it a try. Hang in there, things will calm down. :)

Don Johnson
02-10-2009, 12:12 AM
Don,

I would seriously consider investing in a second monitor. It makes working with two applications really nice.

Jamie

True enough, but not too practical on my laptop!!

I think I could adjust to the change better if the search window had been hard-wired to the right hand side!

SCSaunders
02-10-2009, 05:07 AM
The three column layout .... I resisted it for a long time, for the very reasons cited here. But I later came to see that I was wrong the light. My dilemma: I don't like change, but I love improving. I can't improve without making change. I don't see this as a "lesser of two evils," but a conflict of "two irreconcilable goods."

I didn't like the new layout initially because I don't like "forced" change, but I'm conflicted. I'm a "tweaker." I love to - at least attempt to - improve. So in the prior version, being able to switch back and forth, "tweaking" back and forth, I came to like the 3 column view. For me at least, it became an improvement. We've even celebrated a few anniversaries together, reminiscing about how our courtship didn't start out all that smooth. My feeling in the beginning was, you may have a great personality, but I've got work to do. Sunday comes every three days.

Anyways, my .02 cents, which in today's economy means I owe everyone who read my post a "Grand Slam" breakfast at Denny's.

spitzerpl
02-10-2009, 09:30 AM
...Would it be possible to put in an option to turn off the search column? That would solve it for me....

Why not just shrink it? Grab the column divide and drag it all the way to the left. Is that what you are looking for?

Of course, I would love to have the option in the browse window of having a "show Full Reference" box that would allow you to type in the full reference to go to rather then selecting the reference through drop-down boxes. Entering it into the search box is suitable but not intuitive to me. I'd rather select the reference in the same window it will be displayed in.

Mark Eddy
02-10-2009, 10:52 PM
I was one who begged to keep the browse window on the left for BW7 (The majority wanted to drop it back then, but they yielded to the minority), so I understand your feelings. But after about a month of using BW8 I got used to the "new" setup, and I find that I don't miss the old one at all. I suggest just giving it time.
Or, you could always open a secondary browse window and drag it to the left of the screen. That won't put the search window to the right, but if you make the secondary browse window a bit shorter, you can have the command line on top of it, and still have your browse window on the left.
Mark Eddy

MGVH
02-10-2009, 11:28 PM
I started with BW5 and was happy with the layout. BW7 took some getting used to, but I have now become very happy with it. I think of it in terms of:
Find (search) > Read (browse) > Study (analysis). That seems to be a logical progression of work for me.
I also use Logos, and I have, in fact, set up my Logos workspace to match the BW layout! (more (http://bibleandtech.blogspot.com/2007/05/logos-greek-nt-workspace.html))

waynesteury
02-11-2009, 07:40 AM
You can put the analysis window under the Browse window(Tools/Options/General/Search window -/CHECK "put analysis window -"

This makes 2 columns and gives more space for the windows. :)

Petzi
02-11-2009, 10:08 AM
I am no programmer, but would it be really such a huge effort to make the search column switchable to the right? At least, over versions it obviously was not. (?)

Of course you cannot (and should probably not) make it right for everyone, but the old versions really were more flexible at this point, and this seems actually like a step backwards. (Well, imho) :( .

Peter

linuxglen
02-11-2009, 10:49 AM
Don,

I would seriously consider investing in a second monitor. It makes working with two applications really nice.

Jamie

I was thinking the same thing . I use dual monitors with BW5 and it makes a great program even better ! On a personal note I never have been able to understand why some not all put so much money in a computer system then fudge on the monitor or monitors . The very thing we use the most !

Don Johnson
02-12-2009, 11:41 AM
I was thinking the same thing . I use dual monitors with BW5 and it makes a great program even better ! On a personal note I never have been able to understand why some not all put so much money in a computer system then fudge on the monitor or monitors . The very thing we use the most !

Well, I am STILL not going to lug around an extra monitor with my LAPTOP.

FWIW

hometownhutch
02-12-2009, 03:30 PM
It may help some of the issues to open a parallel window with the version that you want. You can even add the analysis window below the parallel window.

The BibleWorks staff shared a nice tip that you can use the parallel window for one version to increase screen display.

p niv would open the parallel window with just the niv, etc.

I know that this doesn't completely solve the issues, but perhaps it will help some. I know this trick helps me out quite a bit.

Grace and Peace,
David

rmclaughlin
02-23-2009, 11:31 AM
Thanks, David. That's sort of a helpful tip. The analysis frame in the parallel window is extremely wimpy, from what I can tell. Also, the parallel window doesn't update when you click on search results. However, it does seem to update when you type in a reference.