Yeshiva University Students Combine Technological Innovation and Torah Study

In the 21st century, web technology is a given. Want to know when the next train’s arriving? Look it up on your smart phone. Curious about a science term in a news article? Google it. But what if these same innovations could help you search the text of the Mishnah or pull up a range of opinions on any subject in Jewish law?

Atara Siegel

Stern College junior Atara Siegel is serving as a research assistant for the Digital Mishnah Project.

At Yeshiva University, two students are fusing that forward-thinking and technological fluency with their passion for Judaic studies.

Atara Siegel, a junior at Stern College for Women, is compiling different manuscripts of the Mishnah—found everywhere from the Cairo Genizah to the Vatican—as a research assistant for the Digital Mishnah Project, which seeks to create an online resource for study and comparison of Mishnaic manuscripts throughout history. “Sometimes the variations in the text don’t mean anything. Sometimes they can change the meaning of the Mishnah drastically—like a comment might be attributed to a totally different person,” said Siegel. “Having the different manuscripts side by side is a way of trying to figure out what the most accurate text is.” Read the rest of this entry…