Cross Reference General Authorities ("Modern Scripture")

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Josiah-p40
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Cross Reference General Authorities ("Modern Scripture")

Postby Josiah-p40 » Thu Feb 21, 2008 10:57 pm

Having cross referencing in General Authority talks (General Conference, Devotionals, etc) with scriptures, topics, and other talks would greatly enhance my gospel study. Apply the model used in the current standard works - only to the words of the modern day prophets.

Before diving into the technical aspects of this, does the church have a reason why this hasn't been done? (Some policy or otherwise that prohibits others from undertaking such a project?)

In the event that this is not prohibited (and perhaps even encouraged), what technologies would you employ to make such a system? Who would create the references? Could video/audio be involved?

How can we modernize the process of cross referencing from the lessons that were learned when the standard works were undertaken?

Perhaps both user generated (think Wikipedia) and keyword driven (such as Google custom search, etc) could be used to drive the submissions.

Supposing a site were created to host these, at what point does "academic" study come into the results? Perhaps these could be applied in a Google Earth layers-like way?

Let me know what you think.

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jeffvand
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Postby jeffvand » Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:29 am

I think this is a great idea. I can't speak for church policy of course. :)

I do believe I saw some project like this at BYU some time, but I can't seem to find it online at this point. Anyone else seen that?

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Postby craiger » Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:39 am


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WelchTC
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Postby WelchTC » Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:47 am

You will never see the Church modify the scriptures (footnotes, etc.) to cross reference into other non-scripture source. However we do cross reference the other way as is evident by links into the scriptures from general authority talks that are posted online. Individuals can do as they wish to further enhance their study.

Tom

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Postby Josiah-p40 » Fri Feb 22, 2008 9:36 am

Thank you for the comments. The BYU site is a great resource, but it still uses only scriptures.

What I am primarily suggesting is that General Conference addresses be cross referenced with each other. For example, a quote or section on faith by Elder Bednar could be cross referenced with a quote on faith by President Faust, etc (whether from the same conference or a previous one). This could be done in-text, not unlike how cross reference notes are displayed in the scriptures - but amongst modern day prophets.

Conference issues of the Ensign/Liahona have a topical listing near the table of contents - so there is at least minimal work in this regard being done. But I haven't found anything that compiles those topical lists from different general conferences together - let alone cross reference quotes between speakers and conferences.

My goal is not to modify the scripture cross reference system, but to ask if there is such a system in place for general conference addresses.

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Postby dstovall-p40 » Fri Feb 22, 2008 11:46 am

Josiah wrote:Thank you for the comments. The BYU site is a great resource, but it still uses only scriptures.

What I am primarily suggesting is that General Conference addresses be cross referenced with each other. For example, a quote or section on faith by Elder Bednar could be cross referenced with a quote on faith by President Faust, etc (whether from the same conference or a previous one). This could be done in-text, not unlike how cross reference notes are displayed in the scriptures - but amongst modern day prophets.

Conference issues of the Ensign/Liahona have a topical listing near the table of contents - so there is at least minimal work in this regard being done. But I haven't found anything that compiles those topical lists from different general conferences together - let alone cross reference quotes between speakers and conferences.

My goal is not to modify the scripture cross reference system, but to ask if there is such a system in place for general conference addresses.


Josiah,

I can see the benefit of using this when building talks, but how do you envision this being done? For example a contextual cross reference - President Faust and Elder Bednar are both referring to the same aspect of faith or a simple cross reference both spoke of faith. The contextual cross reference seems like it would take a lot of work, but would be extremely helpful. The simple cross reference seems the quickest way to do this, but is helpful for more of a broad reference.

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Postby cannona-p40 » Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:00 pm

I had a similar idea a few months ago. It would be nice if there could be a way for users to generate links in and out of the scriptures to various other articles and talks on the Church sites. Each link could then be rated as either good or bad (or maybe somewhere in between) and the most popular links listed first, ETC.

Don't know how well it would work out, but it was an interesting thought.

Aaron

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Postby Josiah-p40 » Sat Feb 23, 2008 12:20 pm

dstovall:

Frankly, I am not sure of the best way to go about this. That is where the "power of the forum" will come in. Cross referencing General Conferences online would be a technology and gospel study effort. But I believe it would be a very rewarding one for users and contributors.

Using the standard works cross referencing system as a starting point, there are instances of a linking to individual scriptures (or a list of them), and also of linking to a topical guide or dictionary, etc. Not bound by the limitations of print, I wonder if we couldn't be more detailed in each entry. Perhaps display a topical guide entry for each cross reference with the most relevant reference on top?

At some point, we would have to determine how to break conference addresses into "verse" equivalents. I tend to want to be loose on that definition - because how many times do we use a sentence here and another there to make up a quote we use? (Think about how many times we see "..." in quoted portions of a talk.)

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Postby Josiah-p40 » Sat Feb 23, 2008 12:59 pm

Without overwhelming, General Conferences have more media to consider than text. How could audio and video be incorporated into this?
MIT has put together a great example of unifying search with video and text. The site displays keyword results with text AND a timeline of where those terms are mentioned in the video. Click on the play button that is highlighted in yellow and you are taken to the exact part of the video you wanted to see. As the video plays, the text is underlined below in a sort of sing-along fashion. Note that you can click on the text and it will reload the video to jump to that location. Very useful. (By the way, anyone with Microsoft OneNote 2007 can already do this with audio files - I use it to search audio of devotionals).

Now, take that ability to pinpoint the start and stop of a particular quote you want and give it a "Hulu" way of distributing. NBC's Hulu player allows users to CHOOSE A START AND STOP POINT in the video when they embed or share the video! Go to Hulu's blog,select a video, click through "Menu" in the bottom right corner and then "embed". Notice the timeline at the bottom of the screen that allows for the user to choose exactly where to start and stop the video they wish to share.

Combing the methods of MIT and Hulu would create a powerful way of scripture study and sharing the gospel online. As compelling as text is, there are times when being able to look the Prophet in the eye as he is speaking that creates a more powerful experience. Often, I find that there are elements of the testimony being born that are not so easily conveyed in text as in face-to-face contact.

As for sharing that experience, it is currently difficult to share General Conference addresses with others - especially from a blogging point of view - and especially if there is only a quote or two to share. I am excited that General Conference videohas recently been posted for download (great formats too). I am also encouraged by the Church's YouTube channelthat does allow embedding of the videos offered there. The video page at LDS.orgis also offering increasing more for download. Thank you for those - and nice work! I hope that the offerings will expand and that General Conference will soon be included and include past conferences.

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Postby SheffieldTR » Mon Feb 25, 2008 9:01 am

FYI, I received a large format (Coffee Table style, hard bound) copy of the Book of Mormon from my father. The cross referencing at the bottom of each page includes quotes from general conference addresses form general authorities, some dating back into the 1970's, at least that is as far as I have seen so far. No, this is not an answer to what is being talked about here but it is a great start that you can use today. Electronic versions would provide the ability to add the other mediums that have been talked about so far and would be great! I just thought I would let you know that there is something out there right now.

Troy


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