Helping parents, teachers, and students of many faiths pursue Biblical wisdom.

September 7, 1995
"Programs teach Hebrew, Jewish history"
Jewish Computing Review
Written by Scott Sidel

...Bringing Torah to the people is the aim of the Torah La-Am Library. This CD-ROM make Torah learning and midrash accessible to any person, regardless of age or skill. Written initially by Larry Hurwitz, a cancer specialist in Milwaukee, who put his career on hold to battle his own cancer and write the Torah La-Am collection.

The result, put onto CD-ROM, is a work that encompasses over 10,000 pieces of midrashic legend, stories, quotes, and more. This CD-ROM allows you to grab a bite of Torah wisdom from literally dozens of angles. You can follow the weekly portion linearly through the year or you can explore the Torah by categories such as people, places, or values, and issues. If your learning style is less linear you can instead explore the Torah by midrash and stories related to the text. Or you may work better with concepts, such as exploring the value of life, of education, or why we have enemies. However you choose to learn, Torah La-Am lets you explore in the method that suits you best.

Hurwitz freely updates many of the older rabbinic commentaries into contemporary vernacular, which sometimes works and sometimes doesn't. The style of writing can at times be a bit simplistic and the study questions seem to be written mostly for the young. The easygoing language in no way takes away from the firm foundation of Torah learning and values that are contained within.

The program shoots for simplicity in its interface, retaining a Macintosh hypercard look and feel for both its PC and Mac versions. Using the program is as easy as clicking a mouse and flipping through a stack or index cards. At $850, parents may lobby for their schools to purchase a copy first, but if you have to come up with a dinner drush (a short Torah-based speech) you might be glad to pay any price...!