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Tips & Software for formatting modules

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#1 ErikJon


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Posted 02 January 2017 - 04:58 PM

Hello, friends.


I am a very new member to the eSword community, having used Online Bible for my needs for many years, and finally deciding to move up to something better. I almost shelled out some big money for Logos, until I discovered eSword and TheWord, through the help of a very interesting website that compares many bible-study programs at once (located here http://www.fostertri...lesoftware.html).


For three years now, I have been using both eSword and TheWord. I like eSword, as it is simpler to use, has a larger user base, has material that is unavailable for TheWord, and has material that is cheaper than the TheWord counterpart. Add to that the blessing of having people like Mr.Josh Bond in the background, to help us, guide us, and provide more material than anyone could every wish for, and you've got yourself a wonderful combination. I have been using TheWord for lots of other tasks, but I still like both programs.


At any rate, I used to work in the printing industry as a typesetter (in the same town where Josh used to live), and I think my work in that field taught me a few things about typography that can be very useful when applied to formatting modules for eSword; things that can make the modules more legible, more versatile, easier on the eyes, and easier to use in general. I was hoping to find an online article with all those tips already provided, but there does not seem to be one, so, even though I was not the expert on the subject, myself, I took the liberty of creating an article myself. I asked Josh's permission to post some information about it here, and he conceded.


My interest is mainly along the lines of external factors, such as formatting, and the preparation of the raw text before beginning to convert it into any module, such as how to search-and-replace certain undesired typographical anomalies, how to remove superfluous spaces and excessive indentation, so that your module windows require less scrolling and less manipulation, just to read them.


(By the way, I am still on a quest for the perfect search-and-replace program--such as one that would allow me to use regular expressions and ordinary search queries in the same field, or such as one that would allow me to replace all Roman numerals with Arabic--but, in the meantime, I just use several combinations of programs to accomplish some of these things. (Feel free to share your own discoveries)


I wrote an article months ago, entitled "Tips & Software for creating, formatting, converting modules," which addresses all of these factors that came to mind at the time. The first version was written to share with people who create modules for TheWord, but the next version will be directed toward eSword users specifically, when I have a little more time, God willing. In the meantime, as most of it relates to typography and formatting, and not to any program in particular, I think that all of you module creators will find something useful to take into consideration, among the list of thirty-nine tips. I do not pretend to be an expert, but only share some of the ideas that have made the process easier for me.


The first half of the article is dedicated to formatting tips (including some tips that Josh Bond and Dr. Dave Thomason had shared with me), while the second is dedicated to programs that can be used to prepare the raw text (including programs that Josh recommended).

(At the risk of being redundant, I am including this thread in two categories: one for those looking for "module creation tools", and one for those looking for "tips for module creation", as the article includes both in one.)


I could only include the information that I had at the time, based partly on the few suggestions that i was given, so if you wish to help build the list, please chime in, and I will give credit by name to every contributor.


Until I have time to prepare the full eSword version, take a look at what I wrote for the TheWord crowd, in the meantime.


Here is the link to the article:  http://forum.theword....php?f=4&t=6817


Blessings be upon you all, and above all, upon Rick Meyers and Josh Bond, for their tireless work and tremendous generosity to the Body of Christ.


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