08 June 2011

RFE: BeST 3.x Standard Version : E-Sword

BeST is a great tool.

Currently, two open resource types can not be created using BeST.
  • Harmony Modules
  • Topical Files
I _think_ that they are on Ben's to do list. I'm not aware any issues that mitigate against tools that can create these resources.

The following resource types  are officially closed, but the specifications have been publicly distributed:
  • Bookmark
  • Map/Graphic files;
  • Verse Lists
User created Map resources tend to destabilize e-Sword, and as such, keeping that format closed makes sense.

Bookmark is a verse list with the filename of bookmark.lst.  The major issue with a  tool that imports this resource type, is that it is supposed to be a closed format.

The following resource types are closed:
  • Bible Reading plans
  • Localization
  • Markup
  • Prayer Requests
  • Scripture Memory Verse
  • Sermon Illustration
  • Study Notes
  • Verse Analysis
Both the Localization and Sermon Illustration component were created for a specific resource.  There is no legitimate reason for a tool to create this resource type.

I'm not sure what the virtue of a user created verse analysis resource would be, especially since only one --- common.anl  --- can be used by e-Sword

Inasmuch as BeST can create Commentaries, the ability to create Study Notes is redundant/irrelevant.

Bible Reading Plans, Markup, Prayer Requests, and  Scripture Memory Verse, are closed. As a general rule, these (as well as Verse List ) are usually created by an individual for their personal use.   I am aware of exceptions for all five ( New_Christian_Bible_Reading_Plan.brp, Rainbow_Bible.ovl, Praying_the_Psalms.prl, The_Roman_Road.mem, and Elohist.lst, respectively).

Whilst it wouldn't be useful for me, adding the ability to import USFM would enhance the usability of BeST by various organizations. Whether or not the programming required to add that functionality, can be justified by the limited number of users of USFM, is a question I do not know the answer to --- especially since there are tools that convert USFM to OSIS.
This was originally posted to my blog at e-sword-uses.org on 16 November 2009.

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