Product Review of The Totally Tanach iPad

November 29, 2010

As a person who travels for a total of well over a month each year, being able to access Seforim or other types of Jewish content while on an airplane or simply waiting in a terminal, is of vital importance. After all, I am a practicing Rabbi, who upon landing in a particular city, has been called upon to speak at functions ranging from an Engagement Party to a Brit Milah! And so, when the folks at Davka, provided me with the Totally Tanach iPad Application and asked me to test and review it, I was intrigued with the offer and agreed to download their latest iPad App. Overall, I found the Hebrew, English, and Rashi, text(s) to be beautifully crisp and clear. Frankly, the screenshot images of the Totally Tanach iPad App that appear here, do not do it justice! Moreover, I found the User Experience aspect of this Jewish App to be of the highest quality. Unfortunately, I have come across some Jewish related Apps that are not created in the highest of standards. In all honesty, as we are viewed as The People of The Book, I believe it behooves us to have digital content that further expresses our pride in contemporary times…and a great way to continue this legacy is by designing Apps with high esteem for the User. That said, when switching between simply the Hebrew text of the Tanach and the option to also view the commentary of Rashi, it does not always lead you to the precise verse in which one was learning. Additionally, I’d like to see in the next UPDATE of this App the ability to Highlight text and save your Highlights as well as add Notes to a particular verse.

All things considered, the one UPDATE that will make the Totally Tanach iPad App a “must have” for anyone from the layperson to scholar, is adding the commentary of Targum Onkelos.

As we all know there is an obligation to study Shnayim Mikrah V’Echad Targum each week (for a great class on this topic, check out this lecture from Rabbi Reuven Boshnack, JLIC Educator at Tanger Brooklyn College Hillel). It’s impossible for one to accomplish the seemingly basic weekly feat of Shnayim Mikrah V’Echad Targum without the Targum, the translation, of Targum Onkelos. Being that we are typically not carrying around a Chumash, let alone a Tanach 24/7, if the Totally Tanach iPad App came complete with Targum Onkelos, at least for the five books of the Torah, it would make this App really stand out in the increasingly growing crowd of Jewish iPhone and iPad Apps available to the consumer. Likewise, it would make it that make fulfilling Shnayim Mikrah V’Echad Targum that much more doable! All in all, I enjoy using this App and look forward to continuing to see high quality content Apps from Davka!

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