I’m a big fan of electronic books and use the Logos software program on a regular basis. I appreciate the ease of use and am glad I chose to concentrate of Logos because no one beats them for shear quantity of volumes printed. One of the downsides to e-books that I have noticed is that they are slow to update books with new editions and when they do update to new editions often the old ones are no longer available. For example Logos sells NASB95 but not NASB (1977). They sell the latest, third edition of Bauer’s lexicon (BDAG) but you can longer buy the second edition because Chicago University Press decided that having them both for sale would confuse the marketplace. In both cases they are entitled to do whatever they want but in the world of physical books I can always order a used copy online from countless places, not so in the world of e-books.
Another problem stems from economic reality and licensing concerns. If I want to buy John Bright’s classic, A History of Israel, Logos offers the third edition (1981). However, in 2000 a fourth edition was released, something which may never be seen for Logos. Another example is D. A. Carson’s New Testament Commentary Survey for which Logos offers the fifth edition as part of a collection. Less than a year later, in 2007, a sixth edition was published but there is no indication that Logos will be offering that.
A third problem relates to translations of classic works. For example, Logos offers John Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion. The Logos edition is the translation done by Henry Beveridge which is fine for casual reading but scholars need the edition translated by Ford Lewis Battles and edited by John T. McNeill. Unfortunately, this is published by Westminster John Knox Press which has decided to play in its own sandbox. I’m glad to see that Logos is producing the new translations of Josephus even if they are expensive beyond belief. I was also pleasantly surprised to see that one of my professors of long ago, Paul Spilsbury, is a translator for Judean Antiquities Books 8-10. Sorry Dr. Spilsbury, I still couldn’t convince myself to spend $380 on five volumes.