Today is my blog's birthday. One year ago, I embarked on a mission to test the idea that a LH free blog was possible. As I look back on the past year, I am happy to report that it was a success. One of the positive outgrowths of maintaining this blog was the constant feeling for the need to be creative, to post on interesting topics that will either help the reader or engage their intellect. I feel success in this endeavor.
One topic that has been visited frequently on this blog is the concept of the "YouTube Generation". When I was younger, going to musical concerts and watching television was something that was experienced infrequently in my household. I never watched Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan lecture on national television, never saw the Megama Duo perform their hit song "Zaidy", and never saw super-human feats performed outside of the circus. Yet nowadays, all this and a whole lot more are available by a simple click of the mouse. The lesson we must learn from this is how valuable our time is, now that so much content is available.
My first post discussed how technology had enlightened us as to how some time-honored traditional beliefs are being strengthened. In the era before computers, it was unimaginable as to how all of our actions will be recorded for posterity, to be watched and judged after our time on this earth is up. We could not understand how Moshiach's arrival could be viewed world-wide simultaneously. Yet for the new generation, these concepts are as simple as pie, perhaps heralding his arrival.
Another topic we discussed was the power of the bloggers. Ironically enough, some abused individuals now have a voice, a cheap way of making themselves heard, but unfortunately some are using that voice to abuse others.
I've posted many times regarding the wonderful Hebrewbooks.org website. Several years ago one individual set out to save some Seforim from obscurity, and has parlayed his idea that all Seforim should be freely available to the public into a 43,000 and growing daily virtual library. My hat is off to him and his sponsors.
We've discussed the future of learning, how technology has made huge advances and how it will ease future study habits. Having all Seforim available literally on one's virtual Shtender will allow more time for study and let time invested in finding the source material.
We've discussed harnessing the power of the blog as a cheap alternative to expensive school/camp info-lines. We've discussed using small placards (akin to the Do Not Call Registry) to ward off unwanted solicitations during Davening. At this point I'd like to expand that idea to supporting a new initiative to have drivers affix an anti-flyer decal on their automobiles to prevent unwanted advertisements being placed on their windshields.
I am proud of my commenters and my failed attempt to rejuvenate the Jewish Observer. I am proud of my 11,000 plus hits, my "Alphabet Series" and my over 100 posts. I am gratified to see that other blogs have sprouted up which also strive to be LH free. Wishing a worthwhile year of Jblogging to all my readers.