Questions about how Judaism interacts with technological innovations.

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How to enter an apartment that has to enter a code to through call box on shabbat? [on hold]

Let's say that the front door to my apartment has electronic lock. However, according to most rabbis, it is forbidden to use electricity on Shabbat and Yom Tov. As a tenant, one is not permitted to ...
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0answers
22 views

Is one allowed to use a nasal filter or gas mask on Shabbat or Yom Tov?

These are products that are used to protect from chemicals/pollen/dust allergy or pet hair. A water filter I see would be mussar if the water is basically clean as was already asked here: Using water ...
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0answers
38 views

Can one carry a GPS operated timed device across a time zone on Shabbat?

I read somewhere, that if you set a timer before Shabbat, you are not allowed to adjust the timer or clock on Shabbat to reset the time that something goes on. So, let's say that you live in ...
0
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1answer
66 views

Solar Power on Shabbos

What's the deal with using solar power on Shabbos? Cooking is permitted, but what of the following cases: 1) Heating water (Dud-Shemesh style) 2) Solar-powered watches 3) Solar-powered toys What ...
1
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1answer
46 views

T-Fal Thermo Spot Heat Indicator Cookware on Yom Tov & Shabbos

T-Fal has a cookware set known as "T-Fal Thermo Spot Heat Indicator Cookware". These pots have a special technology which indicates when the pan is ready for use. May one use such a pot on Yom Tov to ...
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2answers
60 views

Surrogate mother

If a fetus has been formed in a mother and then deposited in a surrogate mother, who is considered the mother? In other words, does the mother's 'seed' make her the mother? The story of Yosef and ...
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0answers
39 views

Halchic problems of improper use of “Recall” email

MS Outlook (and, perhaps, other emails) have a feature that allows you to recall a message. In Outlook, though, the recall feature is not guaranteed to work. What happens is that Outlook sends the ...
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1answer
40 views

When 2 witnesses are required to verify something, can one or both of them witness this using Skype?

Examples of when you need 2 witnesses testifying an event: groom's "purchase" / acceptance of the terms of the ketuvah witnessing kiddushin (groom giving bride a ring) If two witnesses watch this ...
8
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1answer
118 views

Binding answers for Halachic questions

I recall learning that one is not allowed to "venue shop" by asking a series of rabbis for a practical halachic ruling and following the opinion you like. I was taught that one should ask and be bound ...
6
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3answers
77 views

Remote control lighting of stove?

In our home, the non-Jewish housekeeper has strict instructions that only a member of the family is permitted to turn on the stove or oven before she cooks. Not being a rabbi, my understanding is ...
6
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1answer
67 views

Automated Cooking Machine Programmed

I realize in most situations to have a factory line be "cooked by a Jew" an observant Jew would have to turn the oven on, stove on, or something along those lines. This morning I saw this article ...
2
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1answer
78 views

Is a library book with an embedded RFID tag a problem on Shabbos?

RFID tags have very many uses in identifying different objects via radio waves. Recently, libraries have started using them to help keep track of books. I would imagine that the tags, in themselves, ...
13
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4answers
474 views

Typing on Chol Hamoed

Is typing allowed on Chol Hamoed? Does it make a difference if whatever is typed will be printed afterwards?
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0answers
59 views

Can a smartphone count as a sefer for stacking purposes?

Considering that, these days, you can have quite a bit of Torah on cellphones (indeed, on my iPhone I have all of Tanach, Siddur, Halachic works, Jastrow dictionary, etc.), is it possible to make an ...
2
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0answers
58 views

What technology did King Solomon have?

I'm looking for sourced statements of modern technology possessed by King Solomon. So far I have seen: An answer here quotes the idea that King Solomon had a flying carpet of sorts. The Ben ...
0
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1answer
172 views

May I let my web browser save my browsing session during Chol Hamoed?

To save electricity, I like to shut down my computer every night. First, I quit my Web browser. My Web browser is set up so that, when I quit, it automatically saves my session: a list of open tabs ...
5
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1answer
62 views

Computer hacking in halacha

This question regarding legal complexity versus simplicity in modern law got me talking about the relatively simple structure of Jewish tort law. It also had me wondering: What sort of categorization ...
0
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1answer
32 views

Would hydroponically grown beans be considered kitniyot?

As I understand it, beans were included as kitniyot because they grew in the ground next to wheat. However, if you grew the beans hydroponically, would they still be classified as kitniyot?
7
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3answers
257 views

Is Listening to a Torah Tape considered Talmud Torah?

It says in the Baal HaTanya's Hilchos Talmud Torah that one fulfills his obligation to learn Torah only if he says the words. Moreover, a Chavrusa fulfills his obligation only because Shomeya Keoneh. ...
4
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1answer
103 views

What Have Modern Posqim said about Nuclear Weapons?

I'm looking to find teshuvot from modern posqim that discuss the permissability of possessing and using nuclear weapons.
4
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2answers
220 views

Can you use electricity on Yom Tov

Yom Tov is slightly different than Shabbat. For example, on Shabbat one cannot cook, but one can cook on Yom Tov provided that it is from an existing flame. My question is this... Let's say I have ...
2
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0answers
44 views

Is it permissible to bring back extinct species?

Is it allowed according to halacha to bring back extinct species? The technology is on its way, and i have seen some discussion in non-Jewish contexts about the ethics of it, and how we might be ...
7
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1answer
213 views

Can One Ride in a Self-Driving Car on Shabbat

Self-Driving Cars are cars that are driven by computers. Assuming you set your destination before Shabbat (or can otherwise direct it without performing any Melacha), can one ride in such a car on ...
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0answers
125 views

Is using Siri a problem of Kol Isha?

As i say in this Purim Torah answer, we can't use smartphones because "The vaad found out that Siri's not a guy". (From the song Hang Up the Payphone by A.K.A Pella.) However, that inspired a ...
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1answer
59 views

Would humans with kosher-signs be kosher?

If I genetically engineer a human to have split feet and to have a second stomach so they can chew their cud, can I eat them?
2
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0answers
39 views

Is one allowed to carry an object through an opposite force on Shabbos?

Say one had a strong magnetic force attached to his shoe in a way that was not considered carrying. Would he be able to point his shoe in a Reshus Harabim and move something with opposite magnetic ...
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0answers
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Why do the laws of kevod seforim apply to physical seforim but not digital?

I may have some trouble asking this question. I understand that the laws of kavod seforim (respecting holy texts; i.e., not bringing a book of Torah into the bathroom) do not apply to tapes, etc. ...
18
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6answers
2k views

Is using a Kindle on Shabbat permitted?

A Kindle is an e-book reader that uses "e-ink" rather than an LCD screen. It has physical controls to turn pages. (This question is not about the newer ones with touch screens.) If left unused it ...
4
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3answers
570 views

Looking for daf yomi app recommendations

Are there any good daf yomi apps? I saw the video for the artscroll app but it doesn't seem to be out yet. Any recommendations?
5
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6answers
424 views

Jewish Android Apps [closed]

Does anyone have a suggestion of any useful Jewish Android Apps currently available?
3
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2answers
218 views

Sources on the Halachic status of creating three parent child

See here for the background. The basic idea is that the DNA is taken from the mother and father, but rather than traditional IVF, the nucleus is implanted in a donor egg. So there is no male donor ...
4
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2answers
106 views

What does an olive press look like?

Mishna, Maasros 1:7:: הַשֶּׁמֶן, מִשֶּׁיֵּרֵד לָעוּקָה. אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁיָּרַד, נוֹטֵל מִן הֶעָקָל וּמִבֵּין הַמָּמָל וּמִבֵּין הַפַּצִּים, וְנוֹתֵן לַחֲמִטָּה וְלַתַּמְחוּי, אֲבָל לֹא יִתֵּן ...
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1answer
317 views

Does the principle of Hadash Asur Min Hatorah apply to technological new things?

According to the Hatam Sofer, does this principle apply to technological novelties? This principle means that "New Is Forbidden By The Torah".
5
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2answers
80 views

Recommendation for a digital Torah codex for software developers

Could someone recommend a source for a machine-readable Hebrew with English Torah codex that may be used in software development projects? By "machine readable," I mean of a format that may be ...
22
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4answers
837 views

Does artificial meat grown in a petri dish have the halachic status of meat?

Scientists are developing means of growing artificial meat in a petri dish. Does such 'meat' have the halachic status of meat? Source: ...
13
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1answer
173 views

Milk-free cheese: Is it kosher? Parve?

So according to this article, scientists have created cheese by inserting DNA blueprints into a yeast. Essentially, the milk proteins are being created outside of any animal, through genetic ...
3
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1answer
25 views

Would there be any maaser derabbanan on hydroponically grown plants?

Related: What bracha should be made on hydroponics/aeroponics? This question was originally mentioned by Rabbi Eliyahu Fink in his Daf Yomi shiur (Shabbat 128). He was talking about tevel d'rabanan ...
11
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2answers
126 views

Smart thermostat on Shabbos - what should one do?

I read an article recently regarding a person who went to a hotel and realized after Shabbos began that all the rooms were controlled by smart thermostats. A smart thermostat detects when one is in ...
3
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1answer
91 views

What bracha should be made on hydroponics/aeroponics?

Hydroponics is a method of growing food (mainly vegetables) with their roots in water, not soil. Aeroponics is when it is grown in air, with the roots being sprayed. What bracha should be made on ...
29
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3answers
1k views

May one use a computer script or robot to do something specifically on Shabbos/Yom Tov?

May one run a program or machine that will operate on Shabbos, either by setting a timer to activate once Shabbos has started, or by leaving it running continually? What if the action is one that is ...
2
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2answers
100 views

Measurements for the Bais HaMikdash — can we do it with a computer?

Since everything is computerized now, when the Bais HaMikdash is rebuilt, will we use the computer to rebuild? I.E., the measurements for the offerings, the entire rebuilding, etc.?
5
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1answer
52 views

Using an electric hand dryer after netilas yadayim

Is there any issue with using an electric hand dryer to dry your hands after netilas yadayim either for a seudah or to remove ruach rah?
0
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1answer
148 views

Can an 'AGA' oven be koshered?

Can an 'AGA oven' be koshered? Here are Wikipedia and video explanations of what an AGA oven is. Here's an excerpt from the Wikipedia page: The AGA cooker is a heat storage stove and cooker, ...
8
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2answers
116 views

plastic utensil absorption and kashering

Does a plastic utensil swallow up taste and excrete it out like metal,or is it like glass. Also can plastic be kashered if it became treif? What are the sources that discuss this?
18
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3answers
1k views

What halachic issues are involved in turning off a mobile phone while praying the quiet Amidah?

A person realises during his quiet Amidah, that he has not turned off his mobile phone. He is worried lest it ring while he is praying. On the other hand, turning it off will interfere with his ...
3
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3answers
98 views

Electric Menorah

Are electric menorahs good for lighting on Chanukah? To remove some of the more obvious issues, let's assume that: It runs on batteries It's an incandescent bulb There are separate physical ...
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2answers
231 views

Why can't we drink wine that was made by a non Jew but by machine

Why can't we drink wine that was made by a non-Jew but was made from beginning to end by machine? Needless to say that according to the Gemara that it is only yayin nesech if the non Jew makes an ...
8
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3answers
320 views

Watching TV on weekdays (not on shabbat)

Is it generally allowed to watch TV at my home (I am male and living alone)? I wrote "generally," meaning watching on a regular weekday (i.e. not Shabbat or Holiday) and just watching normal programs, ...
4
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1answer
385 views

Is one permitted to watch tv or movies with immodest women?

Is a man permitted to watch tv or movies that feature immodestly dressed women? Assuming one will not have improper thoughts, is it prohibited to look at an immodestly dressed woman on a screen? Are ...
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0answers
35 views

Search program for seforim in Chrome OS

A friend of mine is using a Chromebook. While we're trying to figure out other solutions for him, I'm trying to figure out what we can do in Chrome OS. One thing he'd like to do is use a program like ...