Feedback on Bible format

I’ve been working on the reformatted version of the Bible. The main text contains the Joseph Smith Translation / Inspired Version text, but uses the King James Version verse numbers to keep it useful for looking up references.

Where text has been added in the JST, the words are denoted with a dotted underline. Where text has been changed from the KJV, the JST words have a solid underline and the KJV words are shown in the margin.

I want to standardize on the formatting now before I get too far. It takes a long time to go back after the fact and update formatting. I’d like to get some feedback on this format for showing both versions, scriptural quotations, and other formatting styles. Please take a look and use the comments to let me know what you think.

8 thoughts on “Feedback on Bible format

  1. I absolutely love the solid and dotted lines to differentiate added text vs. changed text, what a fantastic idea.

    I prefer one large column for the main text rather than three or two columns which looks to busy and for me it requires more effort to read.

    I prefer having any notes and documentation in the right side margin rather than the left side margin since we read from left to right and since the primary focus will usually be on the main text.

    The less indentation of words in the main text formatting the better in my opinion.

    I think it is the third sample that would be my favorite, although any of the single column formats would work just fine

    This looks like an overwhelming project. I sure appreciate what you are doing!!!

    1. I agree on the preference for a single column. I used the triple columns to try to show the genealogy a bit better without taking up a page and half.

      Whether to put the notes on the right side of all pages is something I have debated all along. If they are on the right margin, you have to write your notes in towards the binding on half the pages, which can be tough for right-handed people. Sticking them on the outside margin makes it easier to write notes, but visually has drawbacks. I can go either way on this one, so I’d like to hear some feedback and determine the general consensus.

  2. I like the genealogy is in three columns so that I can know that that’s a genealogy and not get lost in reading the paragraph.

    I also like how you have it separated out by topic or what’s happening in the narrative.

    The question that I have in the whole entire compilation of the ones you’ve done thus far, what’s the biggest insight or take away that you can say you have gained from this process?

    1. Thanks for the feedback.

      My biggest insight is how incredible the word of God is. You can read it for years and just skim the surface, reading stories and thinking that is everything. But there is such a complex interrelated message that isn’t visible unless you start searching. As you invest the time in searching, it then becomes hard not to see all the underlying messages. That is the real power of the scriptures, and sadly many people who read the scriptures never realize what’s really there. While the formatting may help some of that come out, just reading the new format like a novel isn’t going to change much. Which is why I put a lot of space for notes and cross-references…that can make a big difference!

  3. First of all, I extremely pleased with the reformatted editions you have already completed. They have been and will continue to be a wonderful and powerful addition to my study.

    Can you clarify for me which margin the current format you are following puts the notes and references? Are the notes all the inside or outside margin?

    I have mixed thoughts regarding where the notes and references could be. I understand Watchers approach and preference for notations to be on the right and see the benefit of the points he makes. My preference, however, is for all the notes and references to be located in the inside (spine) margin. This is because I prefer to make my personal notes within the outer margin and the notations (especially the more heavily notated/revised portions) take up more space.

    1. In the current publish versions the outside margins are 2″ and are used for both the margin notes and space for taking notes. The inside margins are 1″ (you could make a few small notes but the margins are mostly there for visual layout purposes).

      One of my long-term goals is to allow people to customize the layout themselves…a truly personal set of scriptures. Microsoft Word doesn’t support that well today, and the applications that do are quite expensive. I want to keep it in Word format while I’m making changes. In a few years when all the changes are done hopefully there will be inexpensive software that can give us the customization options to make everyone happy.

  4. Thanks for the scripturetoolbox link…Sadly I’m mostly done with the Bible…that would have made things a lot easier for me!

    Someone else sent me a link to scripturenotes about a week ago. I viewed the video and read the info on the site, but haven’t had time to actually take it for a spin. It’s on the to-do list.

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