Here are three powerful and creative ways that Accordance 10 allows you to search through its texts and resources. Add these three cool features to the four I highlighted earlier: analytics, the customizable toolbar, the magnify feature, and the one-volume IVP commentary and one-volume Eerdmans dictionary that come with the Starter Collection and higher.
1. Flex Search
Here is how Accordance’s site describes Flex Search, new in Accordance 10:
Flex Search is a new feature of Accordance 10 that finds variations of the words and phrases you search for. Specifically, Flex Search will find all inflected forms of verbs and all singular and plural forms of nouns. This mode also allows words to occur out of order or to have other words in between them.
If I wonder, for example, whether “Jesus wept” might have some other verses similar to it, I type in “jesus weep” in the search bar, make sure it’s set to “Flex Search,” then enter. You can see that in the results below, even though I searched with “weep,” Flex Search brought up results with any inflection of “to weep” (wept, weeping, weep). Just under the search bar is shown the statistic “18 flex hits.” Click on the image below or open in a new tab to view larger:
Order doesn’t matter here: “weep jesus” gives me the same results as “jesus weep.” You can even combine an Exact Search with a Flex Search by placing the term you want to search exactly in brackets. This is a good move for those of us who use Google frequently, where something like a Flex Search can happen somewhat intuitively.
This option is available only in the English versions–there is no Flex Search option for Hebrew or Greek texts, for example.
From the site again:
Accordance offers a highly efficient form of searching known as amplifying, which allows you to search for any word or phrase just by selecting it in the text you are reading and then clicking the Amplify icon in the toolbar. For example, if you are reading about the Ten Commandments in Exodus 34:28 you can amplify to a dictionary article on the topic by selecting the phrase “Ten Commandments” in the Bible text, clicking on the amplify icon in the toolbar, and then choosing the desired dictionary. You can also triple-click on any word to quickly amplify to your default dictionary or lexicon. This method of searching is much faster than opening a new module and manually typing in your search.
Using this feature has taken me a little bit of time to figure out, but now that I have I’m really enjoying it.
In Mark 1 below, I double-clicked on “wilderness” to highlight it and then went to the Amplify icon in the customizable toolbar up top:
Then a whole range of options is available to me. I can look up “wilderness” in English tools and find the definition in the Eerdmans dictionary. And the triple-click option is neat, too–by triple-clicking on a selected word, you look it up in your default dictionary or lexicon.
I can think of one possible way for a future update to improve the Amplify function (I know, I know! this one just came out). I was using Accordance with two Workspaces open: Accordance’s “NT Study” and my own “Hebrew Bible.” When I tried to look up an English word from the Hebrew Bible Workspace in the Eerdmans Dictionary, it moved me over to the NT Study Workspace where Eerdmans was already open. As a result I lost my initial place and had to go back to the “Hebrew Bible” Workspace.
There may be a good explanation for this and an easy way to prevent it from happening that I just don’t know about (if I find one out, I’ll post an update here). But it would have been nice to just have the Amplify search open the dictionary in my same Workspace. UPDATE: It’s an easy fix in the Preferences section. I just had to check “Confine amplify to the same workspace.”
Workspaces, by the way, are a great way to stay organized and working on multiple projects at the same time in Accordance.
3. Search All
The word “Trinity” does not appear in the Bible. But what if I want to see what biblical resources say about the Trinity, and where in the Bible they see the various interrelating persons of the Trinity? The “Search All” bar at the top right of Accordane allows the user to search all of Accordance’s resources by word (or even by Scripture reference). The screen shot below shows in the left sidebar the resources that returned a hit. You can see that Accordance gives me all the times “Trinity” appears in the NET Bible notes! That’s quite useful.
You can also use the “Search All” bar to access images.
There are a few more things I want to cover in my Accordance 10 review, but to those of you reading–are there any features you’d like me to comment on? Or questions you have about the program and its features, how it all works together? I’d be happy to try to take these up in future posts. Feel free to leave me a comment if so.
This series of reviews is made possible by my having received a review copy of Accordance 10, Original Languages Collection. I have not been asked or expected to provide a positive review–just an honest one. Part 1 of my review of Accordance 10 is here, and part 2 is here. UPDATE: Here is part 4, a review of the Original Languages Collection. UPDATE 2: Here is part 5, “Bells and Whistles.” UPDATE 3: part 6, “More Bells and Whistles.”