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Book of Mormon in JSON

Scriptures in JSON

I’ve released a JSON version of the Book of Mormon. Also available on GitHub.

Note: there’s an existing JSON version at the Mormon Documentation Project, but it has some unnecessary content (database IDs, duplicate info, etc.) and isn’t structured hierarchically. I did however use the MDP SQLite file to extract the text for this, then added additional content (title page, the book/chapter headings that were in the original text, testimonies) and made the changes from the 2013 edition.

Anyway, enjoy. I plan to do the same thing with the other volumes in the standard works. I’m also planning an expanded version of the Book of Mormon with extra metadata (people and places mentioned in each verse, author of the verse, etc.).

Scriptures in Word

At someone’s request, I recently put together Microsoft Word editions of the LDS standard works, for use as study aids. (The person who requested it is using Word to highlight, annotate, and add footnotes/endnotes.) Verse numbers are included.

Process (for the curious)

I downloaded an SQLite version of the scriptures and wrote a Python script to extract the text in the right order, with markers for the headings. I then copied and pasted the whole thing into Word.

In Word, I did some wildcard-based find-and-replacing to remove the heading markers and apply the appropriate styles, and then I added a hanging indent so the verse numbers are less obtrusive.

Book of Mormon reader’s edition WIP

I’m currently retypesetting the print edition of my Book of Mormon reader’s edition. The 2006 edition was one of the first books I ever typeset, and my skills then were, well, limited. (Because now they are unlimited. I jest.)

Here’s a glimpse at 3 Nephi 5 (which is normally 3 Nephi 11, but in this edition I use the chapter breaks from the first edition of the Book of Mormon):


I’m using Arno 11/14 for the body text, and the paperback will be available at cost via CreateSpace. The good news with the move to CreateSpace is that the book will only cost around $9 instead of the $18 it is at Lulu. (And I should add that I make no profit on these, nor do I want to.)

I will also be typesetting a matching, combined reader’s edition of the D&C and Pearl of Great Price. And after that, I’ll be doing a study edition of the D&C and Pearl of Great Price, as a companion piece to the Book of Mormon study edition.

Book of Mormon study edition: Lulu

Just a quick note: I’ve finished retypesetting the study edition of the Book of Mormon, and you can now get it on Lulu for $20.45 plus shipping (at cost with one penny profit to make it trackable). The PDF—which is 448 pages now, down from the original 538—is also available for free download.

Disclaimer: I haven’t ordered one myself, so it’s possible that something may be wonky. (Explanation of disclaimer: I don’t quite trust Lulu’s system for uploading and printing covers. It’s possible that the text on the cover might not be quite centered. But the body of the book should be just fine.)

Book of Mormon study edition

Book of Mormon: Study Edition

It’s taken me two years to stop procrastinating this project, but I’m pleased to (finally) announce that my study edition of the Book of Mormon is done and available for free download as PDF.

The goal with this edition was to make something you can print out and write on, with large outside margins and somewhat generous line spacing so there’s plenty of room for notes. I’ve also pulled the verse numbers out to the side and faded them out a little so they’re less distracting.

I originally planned to release a Lulu edition as well, but it’s a bit of a hassle, so I’m just releasing the PDF. If someone wants to put this up on Lulu, though, they’re welcome to. (By “Lulu edition,” I mean a print-on-demand, bound copy you can order online, rather than printing the PDF out yourself or at a copy shop.)

Update: I’ve decided to do a Lulu edition after all. It’s going to take some retypesetting to get the book to fit within Lulu’s coil-binding page limit, but I’ll post again when it’s ready.

Also, I’ve decided I don’t care about (typographic) widows or orphans. Maybe I should, but they don’t bother me when reading, and the aesthetic benefit gained by removing them is minimal at best (to my eye). So yes, this PDF is a orphanage. And I’m okay with that.

General Conference scripture references

At the request of one of my Twitter friends, I’ve thrown together a quick script to go through the conference transcripts (available as of today) and make a list of all the scriptures cited.

If a talk shows up more than once for a given passage, that’s because the talk cites that passage more than once.

Yes, does this, but it takes some time for new transcripts to get added to their index. This is a stopgap solution for the interim.

The code (a Python script) is available on GitHub as usual.

New 2013 edition of LDS scriptures

As many of you already know, yesterday morning the Church announced a new 2013 edition of the LDS scriptures. Nothing exceedingly groundbreaking — no new or changed doctrine, for example — but still exciting, at least to scripture nerds like me (especially since it’s been over thirty years since the last major edition came out).

First, some links:

Here’s a quick overview of the changes I found interesting (keep in mind that I’m a typesetting/editing geek and so most of what I find interesting is dreadfully dull to ordinary folk):

  • Standardized formatting on title pages across the standard works.
  • In the Book of Mormon, they’re now using roman text for anything that was on the original plates and italics for the extracanonical additions (like the chapter headings). It’s a small change, but it’s nice, since some people don’t realize that most of the book headings are part of the original and not a later addition.
  • Standardization of things like “house of Israel” and “firstborn” in the Book of Mormon.
  • “Rereward” in the Bible is now “rearward” (so hurray, it now no longer looks like “re-reward”).
  • The introduction of the Book of Mormon now says “a record of God’s dealings with ancient inhabitants of the Americas” (not “the ancient inhabitants”), to provide clarity and greater accuracy. Also, “they are the principal ancestors” is now “they are among the ancestors,” again for clarity and greater accuracy. Which is great.
  • There are a few new paragraphs in the D&C introduction adding interesting historical information.
  • The D&C 13 heading no longer mentions the banks of the Susquehanna River as being the site of the restoration of the Aaronic Priesthood. That section heading explanations page has the details.
  • The first three verses of D&C 89 (the Word of Wisdom) are no longer attributed to Joseph Smith but are part of the revelation itself.
  • D&C 135 is no longer attributed to John Taylor.
  • The Harmony of the Gospels (in the study guide section) now uses a portrait layout instead of a landscape layout. Finally.
  • Larger typeface on the JST section at the back.
  • New JST entries and footnotes. I haven’t checked them out yet, but I’m looking forward to it.

The 2013 edition is already available at and in Gospel Library, and the print edition will come out in August. And yes, of course I’ll be getting the print edition.

I’ve gotten some questions as to whether I’ll be updating my reader’s editions with these changes. You know, I haven’t decided — mostly because I’m not sure whether the changes are covered by copyright or not. The study guides are, of course, as are the chapter headings, but I don’t include those in my editions (mine are based on pre-1923 editions so that I’m positive it’s public domain). We’ll see.

Book of Mormon study edition preview

Update: I’ve finished and released this. Sorry it took so long.

This isn’t done yet, but it’s coming along nicely:

It’s a study edition of the Book of Mormon, with extra large outside margins and more line spacing so there’s plenty of room for taking notes. I’ve also moved the verse numbers out of the way so the text stands on its own.

When I finish it, I’ll release a free PDF on here as usual and make a paperback perfect bound hard copy available on Lulu at cost. (It’ll probably be around $20 plus shipping. I asked my local copy shop how much it’d cost to print and bind this — around 580 pages — and they said $60 for the printing costs alone, so it looks like Lulu is going to be much, much cheaper.)