Wednesday, November 14, 2007

WORDsearch 8 released

Though it is not yet posted on their own site, is promoting the new version 8 of WORDsearch. You can check out the list of enhancements. It's not really designed for academic/scholarly use (Greek/Hebrew only have limited resources). It is no doubt helpful, especially with its combination of translations and linked resources, but I continue to wonder just how much real good a lot of these software packages actually provide when they bundle so many old, public domain resources. I suspect that because these resources are basically free for them to include, it is attractive to beef up the library with this stuff.
Easton's Bible Dictionary is from 1897, the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (ISBE) was first published in 1915, and the ubiquitous Matthew Henry's Commentary was written in 1708-1710.
No doubt Matthew Henry was state of the art in the early 18th century, but I wonder if many readers who find that text online or in these software packages realize how old and outdated it is. Sure, there are still some valid observations that can be learned from these texts, but they really need to be checked against the new discoveries of the last 300 years!

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