ipad pro apple pencil

Preaching With an iPad Pro: Theotek Podcast #046

What is the new Apple iPad Pro like for studying the Bible, preaching or teaching? Rick Mansfield (@thislamp and thislamp.com) got one this week and we asked him a lot of questions about using it. Watch or listen below to hear his thoughts.

Just a summary of Rick’s conclusions. First, he likes the side-by-side feature so that he can hold his Accordance Bible app next to Microsoft Word. This will help with both Bible study and preaching. The Keynote app and Word can sit on-screen at the same time. He uses the notes feature in Keynote, but after the podcast was over he tested and found out that you can run a Keynote presentation mirrored to an Apple TV and open Word in side-by-side mode.

ipad pro apple pencil

Second, he tested out the iPad keyboard and looks forward to getting one to use. He didn’t like the Logitech keyboard case as much because it seems harder to remove from the iPad Pro.

We talked about the Pencil, which is hard to come by until December. Wes tested it out at his local Apple Store and found that it was a great experience. They’ve done a good job of making it work well and feel more like writing on paper than older styli.

At the end of the podcast I shared some first impressions of using the Apple TV 4th generation. It’s a nice media device and the remote is both good and bad. Siri works great and AirPlay still works as well as before.

Accordance 11.1 Update with Dr. J: Theotek Podcast #045

Accordance users will recognize that Dr. J. isn’t a basketball player from Philadelphia, but the guy who taught them most of what they know about Accordance Bible Software. He joined us to show off the Accordance 11.1 update.

Some of the things in this update include:

  • Users can now more easily edit their User Notes and User Tools since the Edit Window got an overhaul
  • Import Bibles with Unicode and expanded canons as well as non-biblical texts
  • Syntax Tree and Graphical Constructs got an update
  • Interlinear support enhanced
  • Instant Details enhanced
  • Add custom icons to the Accordance Library
  • Link to content with the new URL (accord://) instead of http:// or ftp://
  • Gesture support for trackpads and touchscreens while using images, Atlas or Timeline
  • Print articles from the Table of Contents
  • Incorporate MT-LXX data in Analysis window and related graphics

accordance 11.1 update

Learn more about them at the Accordance blog which also links to a more detailed post about the new features listed above and more.

Verse3 a New iOS Bible App: Theotek Podcast #044

With the new iPad Pro coming out this month and iOS 9 supporting side-by-side windows of 2 apps, a tool like Verse3 makes a lot of sense. This simple Bible app that doesn’t use the same Bible display framework we’re used to. In fact it takes the focus and puts it on the person listening to a sermon or Bible study. The user can open multiple verses on the screen at a time and add their notes inline with those verses.

Here are a few of the benefits of Verse3 ($4.99 in the iTunes app store).

  • Fast and simple to use
  • Minimalistic design
  • Fuzzy search feature where you can search for love and it returns all forms of that word
  • Share your notes and verses in Dropbox as text files

What would you use Verse3 for? Collect a list of verses for a study. Keep one verse on-screen while the speaker or teacher refers to others. Add notes before or after a verse.

Take a look at the app in the screen shot slide show below.

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In addition to learning about Verse 3 we learned about Antoine’s trip to Australia for two interesting conferences related to church and Bible technology. He told us about an app from 5fish called Gospel in Every Language. Learn more at the 5fish website. The conference he attended can be found here.

logos 6.1 update

Logos 6 Speed: One Way to Always Pep Things Up

One complaint Logos 6 users often share with me is the speed of the system. So I want to give you one tip that will ALWAYS speed up Logos 6 and, with the right collection of specs in a computer, make it even fast. The tip: think carefully about what kind of internal storage you get in your computer. But first some background.

acer-e15

I review a lot of laptops. I worked on about five or six reviews during the summer/early fall for Notebooks.com. One of those systems was an Acer Aspire E 15 model E5-573G-56RG. Key specs included:

  • Intel Core i5 5200U (4th gen)
  • NVIDIA GeForce 940M with 4GB of dedicated VRAM
  • 8GB of DDR3L RAM

acer-e15-specs

That’s a pretty spiffy system. They’re the best specs of any of the systems I’ve tested over the last two months and they’re higher than my own Windows computers that I regularly use, a Surface Pro 3 and an older Lenovo ThinkPad T431s laptop. If you look at the list above you’ll notice one key spec I left off, the hard drive.

Most of the systems I’ve reviewed recently and my two personal computers have SSDs. That’s a solid state drive that doesn’t come with spinning platters where the data gets stored and the platters must spin to reach the bits. Think of a record player, if you know what one is. The hard drive uses a head the reads the bits on the spinning drive. With an SSD the bits get stored on fast flash memory and it’s very fast compared with the traditional hard drive.

The Acer Aspire E 15 had a 1000GB 5400rpm spinning hard drive instead of an SSD. That’s a lot of storage. My Surface Pro 3 only comes with 128GB and I can’t put everything on it. My Lenovo runs on a 500GB SSD that I put into the machine myself. I store all the programs I need but my video and picture files don’t fit. They’d fit fine on a 1TB drive, which is what I use to back them all up. It’s big and bulky, so I’d love an internal drive. However, a 1TB SSD costs $350 to $500. I will probably get one if they drop any more. I’m still not willing to fork over that much.

How to Speed Up Logos 5 with an SSD

logos 6.1 update

As I shared above, Logos runs great on all my computers. I never considered how important an SSD was until I installed it on this fast Acer machine. Logos 6 runs on it like an octagenarian sloth whose imbibed too much strong drink. Why? Logos needs a fast processor, lots of RAM plus a fast hard drive. The SSDs in all of my computers make up for the fact that some of them don’t run on fast processors. I tested Logos on an HP Stream 13, a computer with an Intel Celeron Processor and 4GB of memory. It struggled to run Logos because it took forever to index the large 18GB library I own. But once indexing quit in ran reasonably well. Logos 6 ran on the Acer slightly better than the Stream, but with a fast SSD it would have run circles around anything else I own.

I could only conclude that a fast SSD has to be the one thing that speeds up Logos 6 faster than any other spec in the machine.

The Samsung 850 Pro SSD is one of the best available but it costs more than most.
The Samsung 850 Pro SSD is one of the best available but it costs more than most.

Here’s the point: GET A FAST SSD TO RUN LOGOS 6!

There’s more to the equation than a fast SSD. My HP Stream 13 with a slow Celeron processor proves that. It’s also a problem because the SSD is only 32GB and a large library will gobble up nearly all your free space. Windows 10 plus Office and Logos left me with barely a GB of free space. That’s not enough because Windows uses the hard drive or SSD to cache the operating system and programs we’re running. The OS puts it into memory and when it gets full, it stores some of it in a cache file on the hard drive.

To understand that, imagine you’ve got a bottle of milk. You start pour it into a bowl of cereal, but the cereal and milk start to pour over the sides of the bowl. You don’t want to lose your milk or Captain Crunch so you quickly grab a plate to catch the overflow. In that analogy the milk is the Windows 10 and the Captain Crunch is Logos 6. The bowl is the 4GB of RAM your system says it has and the plate under the bowl is the cache file that temporarily stores the overflow.

I’ve run Logos on systems with 2GB, 4GB, 8GB and 16GB of memory. The 2GB system struggles to keep up, but the 4, 8 and 16 perform similarly while running Logos.

I’ve run Logos on Celeron, Intel Core iX, AMD systems. I’ve run it on systems with integrated graphics and dedicated graphics. None of those changed the speed of Logos as much as going from a spinning hard drive to a fast SSD.

How to Become an Expert Bible Software User: Theotek Podcast #043

Do you want to become an expert in your favorite Bible software program? We’ll give you suggestions on how to do that ranging from tutorials, help files and training sessions.

I just returned from a WORDseach Bible training conference a few days before this podcast. So it got me thinking, how can people become experts?

 

The best options for training includes:

  • Use the help files or menu item that comes in the program
  • Go to the company’s website to find tutorials, tips and training tools
  • Attend a training conference like I did with WORDsearch
  • Get help from friends
  • Use the software and familiarize yourself with the user-interface

logos desktop support training site

Those are just a few suggestions. Rick Mansfield, our team member and part of Accordance Bible Software, wrote a helpful blog post at the company’s website.