Monday, May 28, 2007

Beginning in beta

A few years ago, a member of my family made some comment about wanting to have chapters of the Book of Mormon emailed to him daily so that he would remember to keep up with his reading goals. This week, I am launching the beta for, a service which would help people who would like technology to help them stay consistent with the scripture reading goals. allows users to create custom podcast feeds of the scriptures. The user can create a specify the rate with which they want to progress through the scriptures, and a podcast feed will be created matching the specified rate. The user can then subscribe to the feed with their favorite podcast or newsfeed reading program, such as iTunes, MyYahoo, or Google Reader.

Chapters of scriptures are pushed out on the podcast feed as the specified rate. If the user selected to read 4 chapters a day, a new chapter will be pushed out every 6 hours. The user can choose to read new chapters throughout the day, or let them queue up to read all at once. If the user selected to finish a volume of scripture by a particular date, the rate that chapters are pushed out depends on the length of the scripture, as short chapters will be pushed out more rapidly than long chapters.

The podcast feeds include links to both the audio and text of the chapters, so even if you want to read the chapters, listen to the narration, or both, you can do just that. Please note however, that text and audio support depends on the feed/podcast program that you are using.

Right now, the only volume of scripture loaded into the system is The Book of Mormon. Soon, however, other volumes of scripture will be added, including The New Testament, The Doctrine and Covenants, and even LDS General Conference. I might get the Old Testament and other LDS Church resources added someday as well.

Not all code and services are perfect when they are first released. For the first couple of weeks, while this service is being tested, will be considered in Beta, meaning that it isn't quite a finished product. I invite you to try out and give me feedback about how you like it, or if you find any problems. While the service is in Beta, there will probably be regular changes, so I thank you for your ability to be flexible with any changes.