BibleWorks 8 Overall Evaluation

I have recent versions of both BibleWorks 8 and Logos on my laptop as well as an older version of Accordance.  Of these three programs, my two favorites are BibleWorks 8 and Accordance, though I cannot speak to soundly on Accordance for reasons I’ll make clear below.  I realize that a significant amount of this has to do with the type of work that I do with the software.  For instance, I do a lot searching in Hebrew and Greek text and find this much easier with both BibleWorks 8 and Accordance.  In particular, the collocation module within BibleWorks has the potential for making aspects of my research 100 times easier, though I will wait a bit to talk more about it. (I spoke with the folks form BibleWorks at SBL about a potential application of the module.  Depending on the outcome of that conversation and some follow-up I may write a good bit more about that in the future).

To be fair, one advantage for Logos is that they appear to have a lot more resources available than I have seen with the other packages.  And, for someone whose interests extend into a lot of different areas beyond Biblical languages this does seem to be a plus.  There are a couple resources in particular that I use and am pretty tied to with Logos, including the works of my supervising professor – The Lexham Hebrew-English Interlinear and A Biblical Hebrew Reference Grammar.  This will keep me opening up Logos from time to time.  But, when it comes to using Logos on a day-to-day basis, I do not like the interface.

I probably cannot offer a fair assessment of Accordance; I have a very old version.   I originally used BibleWorks and then switched to Accordance when I switched to a Mac.  I bought a core bundle with Accordance, but never found myself in a financial position where I could add modules (that I really wanted) to it.  So, I let it languish.  I think the version I am running now is (gasp) 5.7.  But, in interest of being fair, I don’t think that anyone should take my views of Accordance too seriously.  You will have to look into that for yourself.

Finally, that brings me to BibleWorks 8, which has become my software of choice.  I like opening the program and having a bit of Greek and Hebrew hit me as soon as I open it up.  I like the collocation module in the form that it is in now, and if some advancements are made to it, I will almost certainly prostrate myself before it every morning … just kidding ;-).  I think the module has significant potential for research in vocabulary as well as lexicography.  As an Apple user, once I have learned a lot of the shortcuts in BibleWorks it has expanded my use of the program significantly, though the interface did take a little getting use to after using Accordance for a few years.

In addition to taking a little while for me to get accustomed to the interface (which was aided greatly by spending some time with Jim Barr at SBL), I think the downside of BibleWorks is that the user is somewhat limited in the number and types of modules that can be added to the program.  It works great for me as my interests are primarily in the areas of languages and linguistics.  However, if your interests lie in a lot of different areas and you will want to add a lot of different modules to your software, you will likely want to look at either Logos or Accordance.  But, if your interests, like mine, are more related to Biblical languages, I believe BibleWorks is a great option.

This will not be my final look at BibleWorks 8, but after a couple of weeks with the program I thought it would be good to give an overall evaluation in light of the other software that I have available to me.

Also check out my posts on BibleWorks on my Mac:

BibleWorks 8 Functionality on My Mac

Updating BibleWorks 8 on My Mac