Saturday, February 8, 2020

Review: The ScriptureNotes Web Application is a Powerful, Flexible, Study Tool


The Gospel Library app has some good marking and notation tools, but for a long time I’ve felt its search tools left a lot to be desired. My ipad had a scripture study app that had a pretty good search tool, but its note-taking features frustrated me.



Today I’m happy to tell you about a better scripture study tool. It’s called Scripturenotes. 




If you want to see this tool in action, you can go here [https://scripturenotes.com] to see a video example of it being used. When I watched it, I instantly could see its potential and how it could jumpstart my scripture study, which has been in a bit of a dull place lately.



It's very powerful.

  • I can do a search for a word or phrase in the scriptures, then can sort through the search results and eliminate results that aren’t applicable.
  • Then, I can create a collection of a curated set of search results, and then make notes on each verse and add different markings to those verses.
  • The application provides places to make summarizing statements about the whole collection and what was learned from it.
  • It allows me to bold, underline, highlight text, even create my own footnotes. [Can I just say how excited I am to be allowed to create my own footnotes?]
  • Another thing about this application that is amazing to me is that it seems like you can just start new search windows endlessly. You can go down a scripture research rabbit hole and follow it as far as you want and not have to worry about losing where you are with everything else.
  • And charts! You can add tables to a Master note and then populate it with verses to compare and contrast with each other!
  • You can put all kinds of other things in those Master notes: pictures, links, inspiring youtube videos! This makes it incredibly flexible.



The way that it can give room for each verse to have its own notes is another exciting thing. Just looking at that, I could see that if I’d had that in 2018 when I was doing the very first drafting of my Revelation Commentary (a project I’m working on revisions for, by the way,) I would probably have made a lot more progress right away.




I have another writing project on a scriptural topic that will probably have new life breathed into it because of this application! 



How is it on the internet? It depends on your connection. IF you have a fast connection, this should be pretty quick. If your connection is slower, it may go slower.



Can you save your notes that you make on this app? Yes. Creating a collection enables your notes to be saved in the application, and if you want to have a hard copy, you can print a collection of scriptures, along with the notes and markings you’ve made.



Now, with all of this, you may be wondering if there are any problems with this application. Would I change anything about it if I could? 

I have three little quibbles:

1)    It is hard to remember what some of the icons mean that are to the side of the verses. I kind of wish they had directions that appear when the mouse rolls over them. (However, this becomes less of an issue the more one uses the application.) [Edit: This issue has been fixed.]

2)    It would be nice if collection notes saved themselves automatically without having to push the Update button.

3)    Collection notes have a hard time handling large numbers of search results. It was choking over 300+ results, so I had to eliminate some of the search results before I could make a collection. It would be nice if they could just take whatever is thrown at them. [Edit: I've been told this cap is temporary and the current work-around is to make several collection notes and then sort search results into those various collection notes by using the 'drag-and-drop' button]

That being said, it seems like this application is really well-designed.



Now, how much does this application cost?



This is a subscription application, and use of the app costs $49.95/year. This works out to $4.16 per month, or about 14 cents a day. This powerful search tool is probably worth that because of how easy it will make it to drill down into search results and record thoughts and impressions about what you find.  Think of it this way: would you pay 14 cents a day for a tool if you knew that just 15 minutes using it would enable you to learn something new about the gospel?  Flecks of gold, people, flecks of gold…



All in all, this is a very powerful and flexible scripture study web application, and I highly recommend it.





Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a “sponsored post.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via something of value to write it. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”