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Posted by jonmmorgan at Feb 15, 2010 4:49:48 AM
Re: cross-comparing parallel Bible tool idea
It's certainly an interesting idea, and you look like you have thought it out. I have entered it in the BPBible issue tracker as a reminder to myself with comments, though as it's marked Wish List it is really not going to happen anytime soon and may well never happen (http://code.google.com/p/bpbible/issues/detail?id=122).

A few comments:
1. I'm not sure how well this layout would work if any of the lines of text had to be wrapped, since it relies on comparing lines above and below. A lot of people, including me, would only have verse comparison taking up a small part of the screen, and so this would happen frequently.

2. I'm not sure how well any version comparison works if the texts are not from a reasonably similar textual tradition. I imagine for example that RSV and ESV would work quite well (as the AV and RV work in the traditional Interlinear Bible). ESV to KJV would probably work OK too. Once you have very few similar words to link it is unlikely to be very helpful (reading the full text of verses stacked as in Xiphos would be more helpful). I'm not sure how well the NET would compare with the ESV, for example, and as for comparing the Message with almost anything else it's not even worth thinking about.

3. The file you link to appears to have disappeared. Is this intentional?

4. Another possibly relevant suggestion is to to borrow the style of the 26 Version New Testament, which does it on a phrase by phrase basis and selects readings from a few versions that it thinks gives the most significant variations. This is not as complete as actually comparing all 26 versions, but it is probably easier to read and more useful as well. However, I'm not sure how well you could determine significant variations of wording in software, so I suspect such a thing would have to be done by hand (and it would probably have considerable copyright implications and require lots of publisher permission if you chose to include copyrighted versions in the comparison).