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The Holy Scriptures
A CD-ROM Bible

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The Holy Scriptures: CD-ROM Bible
Windows Version 2.2.1, Mac Version 2.0.1
A CD-ROM for Windows and Macintosh
From Davka Corporation

Reviewed by Rochelle Caviness - July 1, 2004

CD-ROM Bible

The CD-ROM Bible included in this collection contains the entire text of the Tanach (Old Testament), in Hebrew, and accompanied by a English translation. Rashi's commentaries on the Chumash (the Torah, i.e., the First Five Books of the Bible) are also included. You can access the Bible directly off of the CD, or you can install it onto your hard drive. Once you open the CD-ROM Bible, you have the option of reading the text in Hebrew or English, as well as reading Rashi's commentaries on the Chumash (Hebrew Only). By default the Hebrew text of the Bible is vowleized, and includes trop (cantillation accents). Rashi's commentaries are presented in standard Hebrew font, not in Rashi script. By default, all the menus in the interface are in English, but they can be switched to Hebrew if desired. However, the appearance of the text that you are reading is fully customizable. You can change the Font, Size, Style and Color, including viewing Rashi's commentaries in Rashi script, and with or without nikud (vowels). To customize the text, all you have to do is go to the format menu located at the top of the screen and click on the relative command. It is very quick and easy to get just the look you want, and which is most comfortable for you to read on the computer screen.

The text of the Bible is accessed via an interface called the Judaic Classic Library II. This interface allows you to specify and open the individual book you wish to read or study. On this CD, the books of the Bible are organized into three sections, Torah, Prophets, and Scriptures. Using this interface, the text is fully searchable. In addition you can print, or copy and paste to another program, any portion of the text you wish. Simply highlight the desired text, then go to the file menu and select print, if you want to print the text. If you want to copy the highlighted text, simply go to edit menu, select copy and then open the program that you want to paste the text into, and use that program's paste command.

This program is extremely easy to use, and learning how to use the search function will take only a mater of minutes. When you open a book, such as the English translation of Genesis, the text opens in its own window. You can at the same time, open as many books as you want, as each time you open a book it opens into its own window. You cannot however, open two versions of the same book at the same time. There is an easy work around of this situation; if you want to see two parts of the same book, at the same time, the program allows you to divide an open window into panes. In each separate pane, you can view different sections within the same book. What all this means is that you can have the Hebrew text, the English translation, and Rashi's commentaries all open at the same time. You can also open other books as well. There appears to be no limit, other than your computer's memory, to the number of books that you can open at once. Being able to open as many books at once, as you want, is a wonderful study tool. It allows you to easy compare the Hebrew and English texts, as well as various books - all at the same time. This allows you to easily navigate through the entire Bible without having to juggle multiple copies, or flip back and forth through sections.

A detailed user manual, in PDF format, that explains all the functions of this CD-ROM Bible can be found on the program's CD. (The manual is not installed to your hard drive when you install the Bible program.) Its ease to navigate and use, makes this version of the Bible exceptionally useful for students of all ages and for individuals searching for Biblical texts to copy to newsletters, essays, papers, letters, and other documents. It is also an ideal program for anyone wishing to read the Bible for the first, or seventh hundred time.

This program can be purchased individually, or as part of the Treasure Chest of Jewish Knowledge.

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