CrossWire News ain't that new!

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CrossWire News ain't that new!

David Haslam
Still wondering why the news page on our main website is so rarely updated?

CrossWire volunteers should care as much about 'brand image' and marketing as we do about programming.

Where do the eyes first gravitate to on any web-page? Top left corner, like we do for a printed page.
And what do they see? An item dated December 29, 2009. And we call this news? Gotta be kidding!

David
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Re: CrossWire News ain't that new!

Jaak Ristioja-2
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On 11.02.2012 23:07, David Haslam wrote:

> Still wondering why the news page on our main website is so rarely
> updated?
>
> CrossWire volunteers should care as much about 'brand image' and
> marketing as we do about programming.
>
> Where do the eyes first gravitate to on any web-page? Top left
> corner, like we do for a printed page. And what do they see? An
> item dated December 29, 2009. And we call this news? Gotta be
> kidding!

There's even one dating October 23, 2006. Twice I've written about
this issue in this mailing list wishing that they'd add news about new
BibleTime releases... but no avail. I guess they are not kidding. :(

God bless!
Jaak
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Re: CrossWire News ain't that new!

refdoc@gmx.net
On Sun, 2012-02-12 at 00:32 +0200, Jaak Ristioja wrote:
> Twice I've written about
> this issue in this mailing list wishing that they'd add news about new
> BibleTime releases... but no avail.

All frontend teams have/had a login into the news database. In Bibletime
this was IIRC Eeli.

I do update news occasionally as I see fit, sometimes for stuff which
should be done by others, but I see no reason why you e.g. should not
take on the responsibility for your application.

One reason why older news is now present is that I rewrote the display
engine for news, so that from each frontend is only shown the latest
piece of news. Otherwise we get drowned out by one frontend or another.

Peter

Peter


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Re: CrossWire News ain't that new!

Jaak Ristioja-2
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On 12.02.2012 02:06, Peter von Kaehne wrote:
> On Sun, 2012-02-12 at 00:32 +0200, Jaak Ristioja wrote:
>> Twice I've written about this issue in this mailing list wishing
>> that they'd add news about new BibleTime releases... but no
>> avail.
>
> All frontend teams have/had a login into the news database. In
> Bibletime this was IIRC Eeli.

Eeli has been away from BibleTime for more than a year. I didn't know
he was our contact.

> I do update news occasionally as I see fit, sometimes for stuff
> which should be done by others, but I see no reason why you e.g.
> should not take on the responsibility for your application.

Sure. However, we'd very much like that 2-3 people from our project
would get permissions to update news about BibleTime. Because it were
not good if the only person with access were MIA when needed. Please
let us know what we must do to get login access.

> One reason why older news is now present is that I rewrote the
> display engine for news, so that from each frontend is only shown
> the latest piece of news. Otherwise we get drowned out by one
> frontend or another.

Sounds reasonable.


God bless!
Jaak
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Re: CrossWire News ain't that new!

David Haslam
In reply to this post by refdoc@gmx.net
Although the lengthy detailed discussion in the mailing list about the footnote and reference markers has brought up the observation that some publishers have nearly walked away from SWORD because of such unresolved technical issues, I'm rather more inclined to believe that the real reason is that we are still so turned in on ourselves as a cummunity of programmers that we have given scant attention to the importance of:

1. Marketing
2. Brand image
3. Customer service and satisfaction
4. Communications
5. Quality

Having a website that gives the impression that nothing has been happening recently (the News page) just adds to this lamentable state of affairs.

It was recently brought to my attention that there was a Thai edition of The SWORD Project for Windows around several years ago (based v1.5), but that the publisher had dropped it in favour of other Bible software. I'd hazard a guess that they were totally unaware of the front-ends other than SPW.

It doesn't help that we generated confusion by using the name 'SWORD' for both a back-end and a front-end. It's had the effect that outside CrossWire, few people even know the difference. To a Bible translator or a potential publisher this distinction is quite below the radar.  To them it's all just software.

Whether we can recover lost ground with the society concerned is something I've taken the initiative about - by enlisting the support of a good contact who works with OMF in Thailand, someone who is keen to help. We need friends like that.

I've come to this field of operations (Bible software) after a 36 year career in manufacturing industry. I might not be the world class expert in the science of marketing products and services, but I've worked with people who are.

We are putting far too much weight on the "better mousetrap" model for much of what we do, vainly imagining that Waldo was right. In a highly competitive world, and a global market-place, having the best design is not enough. The VHS vs Betamax story should have told us that. Have we learned nothing from that saga?

David


PS.  For the fellow-pedants among us, I have already read this page:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Build_a_better_mousetrap,_and_the_world_will_beat_a_path_to_your_door
and have noted that the phrase was a misquotation of what Emerson actutally said.

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Re: CrossWire News ain't that new!

David Haslam
In reply to this post by refdoc@gmx.net
Peter,

Project members don't just need an account - they may also need help on the nitty gritty of implementing a news feed that works OK on our server.  How about adding a wiki page to describe exactly how to?

They may have considerable expertise on programming for each project in whatever language, but the way our news page actually works could be quite opaque even to them. That this is so might be yet another excuse for why there are so few news updates.

David
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Re: CrossWire News ain't that new!

refdoc@gmx.net
In reply to this post by Jaak Ristioja-2
On 12/02/12 21:08, Jaak Ristioja wrote:
> Eeli has been away from BibleTime for more than a year. I didn't know
> he was our contact.

I will email you privately to sort out the detail.

Peter

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Re: CrossWire News ain't that new!

Matěj Cepl
In reply to this post by Jaak Ristioja-2
On 11.2.2012 23:32, Jaak Ristioja wrote:
> There's even one dating October 23, 2006. Twice I've written about
> this issue in this mailing list wishing that they'd add news about
> new BibleTime releases... but no avail. I guess they are not kidding.
> :(

And that Android thing? If you want to find on
http://www.crosswire.org/sword/software/index.jsp about smartphone
front-ends, good luck! Try Google, it works way better.

Also, my current pet-peeve with most free software announcements. See
this one:

> BPBible 0.5.1 released Posted 7:21PM on Sunday, February 12, 2012 by
> Jon Morgan
>
> BPBible 0.5.1 has been released. This is principally a bug-fix
> release. It can be downloaded here.
>
> See here for more details of the changes included.

How can reader of the News page found what exactly BPBible is about?
Would putting it like "BPBible, sword front-end for <foo> containing
<some awesomeness>" be so horribly difficult for the announcement author?

Actually, when going to http://bpbible.com/, I learn that BPBible is
"Flexible Bible Study". Awesome! I have still no clue what the software
is about.

Does it run on Mac, iPhone, iPad, Android, my Linux box? Browsing a bit
on the site, it looks like a front-end for Windows (where of course
ignorance of the rest of the universe is assumed ;)), but who will even
go to that website?

Blessings,

Matěj

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Re: CrossWire News ain't that new!

Jonathan Morgan
Hi Matej,

On Mon, Feb 13, 2012 at 10:02 PM, Matej Cepl <[hidden email]> wrote:
On 11.2.2012 23:32, Jaak Ristioja wrote:
There's even one dating October 23, 2006. Twice I've written about
this issue in this mailing list wishing that they'd add news about
new BibleTime releases... but no avail. I guess they are not kidding.
:(

And that Android thing? If you want to find on
http://www.crosswire.org/sword/software/index.jsp about smartphone
front-ends, good luck! Try Google, it works way better.

Also, my current pet-peeve with most free software announcements. See this one:

BPBible 0.5.1 released Posted 7:21PM on Sunday, February 12, 2012 by
Jon Morgan

BPBible 0.5.1 has been released. This is principally a bug-fix
release. It can be downloaded here.

See here for more details of the changes included.

How can reader of the News page found what exactly BPBible is about? Would putting it like "BPBible, sword front-end for <foo> containing <some awesomeness>" be so horribly difficult for the announcement author?

Actually, when going to http://bpbible.com/, I learn that BPBible is "Flexible Bible Study". Awesome! I have still no clue what the software is about.

Does it run on Mac, iPhone, iPad, Android, my Linux box? Browsing a bit on the site, it looks like a front-end for Windows (where of course ignorance of the rest of the universe is assumed ;)), but who will even go to that website?

Fair comments.  The author would get bored of writing and reading such things over and over again, but of course the news articles are not written for the author.  The news is also principally written for the website, where in theory the information about what the software is should be plainly visible on other parts of the site.  This has not been updated for a while and may not be plainly visible anyway.  In an aggregation service like SWORD the information you suggest does make sense to include in the news.

I personally have never liked the catchphrase "Flexible Bible Study", but nor have I taken any trouble to find a better one.

Windows is the platform on which almost all development is done and on which almost all users work.  As a result, it is the best supported platform.
BPBible used to work on Linux and still theoretically could be made to work on Linux, though due to ongoing issues with distribution maintainers and XULRunner I don't know of any instances in the wild for a while.  Unfortunately, Wine is now probably the best supported option there, and I think I've heard mixed reports from users on how good it is for BPBible.
BPBible has been known to work natively on Mac OS X, and some development has even been done there.  However, we've never officially supported it (and I doubt the resulting product would be considered "Mac-like").

Hope that answers your questions.

Jon

Blessings,

Matěj


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