Tech-i-ya 4.1 Reply

by Adrian A. Durlester

Adrian DurlesterWe’re back with another year of columns discussing technology in Jewish Education, This year we’re trying something different: highlighting just one resource each time.

It’s really hard to single out just one online resource (and truth be told, I’m going to cheat.) There are a number of sites and online resources out there that pack a lot of different material into one place–sites like MyJewishLearning.com, Judaism.com, the Jewish Virtual Library, and many more–and among those it’s difficult to choose just one to present. I’ll try anyway.

Connect My answer this first time is a bit of a cheat because it’s not so much a single site but both a collection of sites, and a collection of links to hundreds of other online resources, all put together by one person: Jacob Richman, an internet and social media consultant from Brooklyn (who also has a passion for, among other things, Jewish education) living in Maale Adumim, Israel.

The Directory of Jacob Richman’s Web Sites is a listing of all the sites that Jacob has created and maintains. One of the most useful is one of the web’s best collection of links to sites of Jewish interest, gathered on his Jewish Hotsite’s pages. The links are conveniently broken down into useful categories. Within those categories you’ll sometimes find more treasures troves. For example, if you drill down to the various Jewish holiday sites, you’ll find they are updated each year with links to all the videos and music files related to the holiday that he was able to find online.

But collection of links are not all. Jacob has created sites to facilitate learning Hebrew, Jewish games and trivia, and more (with both resources he has created as well as links to other resources fond online,) He also has a YouTube channel, and has made many useful videos, on topics ranging from making aliyah, Jewish holidays, Jerusalem, Israel, and so much more. Jacob has been at this since 1996 and for as long as I can remember I found his contribution to the Jewish presence on the internet truly useful.

If things sometimes get overwhelming, take a break by following one of Jacob’s link to funny Jewish videos, jokes, and other forms of humor.

There are plenty of other gateway sites to online Jewish resources, but in all my years of internet use, Jacob Richman’s sites are the ones that seem to have received the most loving care and attention from their creator. They’re not pretty websites–Jacob long ago decided to give content the priority.

What’s your favorite “go to” gateway of Jewish links, or related set of resources from a single source? Share them with us and we’ll highlight them in a future column.

By the way, have you joined the conversation yet on the JEDLAB group on Facebook? It’s the hottest place among Jewish edcuators these days. Come join over 1700 others from across the Jewish spectrum (day schools, synagogue schools, informal ed., camps, central agencies, administrators, teachers, parents, philanthropists, liberal, traditional, and more) in discussing the present and future of Jewish education.

Talk back to me! You can reach me at: e-mail yoeitzdrian@durlester.com. Twitter: @migdalorguy. I also blog and tweet as @yoeitzdrian and @havanashira. On Google+ I’m +AdrianDurlester.

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