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Local: 1:14 AM, July 9, 2002

Missionaries Conquer Ancient Foes With Cutting-Edge Technology

(ASSIST) -- In a growing trend toward mobility in ministry, many foreign and domestic missionaries are trading in their paper books for eBooks. With today's small laptops, missionaries bring hundreds or thousands of reference works to far-flung places using only their carry-on luggage. They don't have to pay high airfreight charges, the books don't get moldy or wet or stolen in transit and can be easily transported once on the ground. Missionaries stationed in remote locations can get new books almost instantly by unlocking them from CD or downloading them from the Internet.

Doug Higby of Wycliffe Bible Translators received timely assistance with his translation work in Mali, West Africa. By using a short-wave radio to download unlock codes he gained rapid access to an essential book, literally saving a trip to Timbuktu. Higby said of the book, "It helped me through that hard spot, and now the portion of Genesis on the life of Abraham is currently at the print shop."

What is more, powerful software such as Logos Bible Software Series X searches hundreds or even thousands of books in just seconds, providing better and quicker results than hunting through paper books for relevant information. It's like having a personal research assistant to search your entire library and open each book to the right page and paragraph. When it comes to digital books, missionaries are ahead of the technology curve...not lagging behind as some people might expect.

Missionaries using digital libraries avoid the age-old encumbrances associated with transporting a library: weight, bulk, import restrictions and the humidity of a tropical climate. Now with a laptop in the jungle, downloading access to new books via short-wave radio signal or Internet has become the norm and is a boon to missionaries' work and spiritual lives. For more information, visit