WORDsearch 9 On the Way, Bible Explorer for Mac Now Available

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted here, and I apologize for that. For those that subscribe to my profile on Facebook, you know that we’re in the process of moving, and it’s been hectic, although it’ll pay off once we move into our beautiful new house in North Georgia. In addition, WeatherBug has created a new blog at backyard.weatherbug.com, and I’m one of the admins as well as I help with the web development of it, so I’ve been devoting much of my online time there. I’ve rounded up some more info though, so I hope to blog a little more often here than I have been, especially since I’ll be starting seminary this fall and hope to post some info on that down the road. Well, enough about me, onto my blog entry…

WORDsearch has a new version of their popular Bible software up their sleeve, obviously known as WORDsearch 9. They haven’t mentioned any new features or unveiled any details as of yet, only the mention of it in their conference newsletter stating that WORDsearch 9 will be discussed there, as well as attendees will get a free upgrade to version 9. Here’s the details of the newsletter I received:

Dear Nathan,

Join us for the 2009 WORDsearch Conference and take your Bible study to a higher level with the new WORDsearch 9. Check out our conference website where you can see all the details and register online.

Here’s what you’ll get from this fun and rewarding event:

Hands-on classroom training with segments for beginners and experienced users
Task-oriented how-to sections on searching, verse studies, topical studies, library management, copy and paste and much more

In-depth tours of new and unexplored features and functions

Advanced tips and techniques

Follow along on your laptop at your pace with skilled teachers Steven Ward and Richard Perry

Meet the developers and support staff; share your wish list for future features and books
Get free books and a free upgrade to WORDsearch 9 loaded on your laptop
Get teaching handouts, cheat sheets and memory joggers
Hear keynote addresses by author/preachers Rod Mattoon and Donald Cantrell
This is our sixth annual conference and, like WORDsearch 9, this one is shaping up to be the best yet. Each year we see new faces as well as many users who keep coming back for the fellowship and fun. View the video comments of Pastor Ronnie Gibbs, who has been coming since year 1.

We know times are leaner this year, so we’ve kept the registration cost to only $150 each. Your spouse can come free and join as much of the training as desired. Lodging and air travel to Austin are affordable and convenient. Bring several church staff so you can take back shared expertise that will make you all more effective.

We have the conference in Austin just blocks from our offices so all of our staff can play some role in hosting you and getting to know you. Come experience our Austin hospitality and learn new computer skills that will help you preach and teach to change lives.

You can register online at www.wordsearchbible.com/Conference, or call us at 800-888-9898 9a-10p M-F or 10a-5p Saturday, central time. I hope to see you there, it’ll be a blessing for us both.

Personally I knew it was coming before this was sent out. I was browsing around CBD’s website recently and stumbled upon the preorder page for it. So I had a feeling WORDsearch 9 was coming (to say the least). I haven’t got in on the preorder as I have with Windows 7 and Mac OS X Snow Leopard since I’m holding off to see how good WORDsearch 9 is going to be before jumping on it. While each upgrade has had some nice few features, they’ve also given and taken with each release, and WORDsearch 8 is still missing some key features that made WORDsearch 5 a success. In WORDsearch 8, it seemed as if they played catchup to Logos a bit more instead of bringing over the missing WORDsearch 5 features by adding things such as the Cross Ref Browser and improved Biblical language searching. While I appreciate that they’re getting these features into WORDsearch, I’m hoping in version 9 they slack off on playing catchup to Logos a bit and instead catchup on the missing functionality that’s made their software a hit for years. Only time will tell, but many of us do have our eyes on WORDsearch 9, that’s for sure.

Speaking of Logos catchups, it seems as if they’ve implemented a pre-buy program very similar to Logos prepub. Again, they’ve found something of Logos’ that worked and worked well, and WORDsearch has finally begun implementing it. For those buying new books from them, this should save a nice chunk of money when ordering, although when browsing the available books I’m shocked it’s taken so long to get resources such as the TDNT, something I’ve used in Logos for years. Another catchup there, but definitely a good one.

In addition, Mac users wishing to use a free Bible software app before trying WORDsearch on their Mac can now download Bible Explorer 4 for Mac at bible-explorer.com. Just like WORDsearch, it’s essentially running the PC version under an implementation of WINE/CrossOver/X11, meaning that you’ll get all of the features, just in an interface that’s not as intuitive as something built on Cocoa. In addition, it’s difficult to try to share books between apps, something that can be done easily on the PC version. I tried WORDsearch for Mac, but I switched to running the PC version under Fusion on my Mac since I ran into issues with the whole X11 version. I found the PC version just as fast under Fusion, plus without the headache. It works great under Unity mode. So if you simply don’t want to go with Windows on your Mac, WORDsearch and Bible Explorer for Mac will work for you, but if you’re running Windows anyway through Parallels or Fusion, then you’ll probably find it simpler to stick with the PC version.

WORDsearch has some new tools and programs out for customers, and I am eager to see what they’ll have for us when WORDsearch 9 is out. I’m hoping it’s something truly amazing that will be well worth upgrading.