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Wednesday, December, 8

Opening Night

Panel I:

Intelligence and Artificial Intelligence - A Dialogue

Professor Joseph Jacobson (MIT)

What is Artificial Intelligence?

Abstract to follow


Rabbi Sholom D. Lipskar (CYS College)

What is Intelligence?


Abstract to follow

Thursday Morning, December 9

Panel II:

How It All Works: The Internet, Big Data, Algorithms, Social Media

Dr. Samuel S. Lighthouse (IBM)

Topic to be announced

Abstract to follow


Professor Henry Abramson (Touro)

Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Wisdom: Postmodernism and the Digital Age

Were it confined to the academy, the corrosive philosophy known as Postmodernism would have little impact on the daily lives of most Americans today. With the rapidly accelerating digital revolution, however, the real-life translations of Postmodernist fantasies are increasingly dominating our everyday discourse, from politics to culture, careening away from assumptions that were widely accepted to be as authoritative as the law of gravity and taking us far into uncharted spaces where we, as a species, have never gone. On a technological level, we are confronted with a landscape of endless possibility, figuring out how to effect some major, life-altering change before we know why we should do it—or more importantly, before we know why we should not do it.

Nothing is more stark than the gap that has opened up between intelligence on the one hand, and wisdom on the other. The former used to be associated with the capability of amassing a large body of information and retrieving it as well. Speed was also of value: we used terms like “swift” or “quick-witted” to describe such people. In many ways, this function of the human mind, valued for millennia, has been replaced by computers. Although artificial, they are certainly intelligent in this limited sense, and far more so than people.

On the other hand, wisdom has never been associated with speed. On the contrary: the wise person deliberates, meditates, and responds after only exhausting not only the information that is available, but the information that might be derived from intuitive analysis. Wisdom is more about the weeding out of extraneous information than the hoarding of irrelevant data. And unlike intelligence, wisdom is becoming rarer and rarer in our times.

This lecture will discuss the implications that digital technologies such as artificial intelligence have for our postmodern society.

Henry Abramson serves as a Dean of Touro College in Brooklyn, New York. A native of northern Ontario, Canada, he earned his PhD in History from the University of Toronto for a dissertation on the Jews of Ukraine in the early 20th century, later published by Harvard. He is the author of several books on Jewish History and Thought, and his online lectures at henryabramson.com have been viewed over five million times. He is the content creator of the Jewish History in Daf Yomi podcast for the All Daf app of the Orthodox Union, a seven-year project producing short videos on the history of each page of the Babylonian Talmud. He is currently working on a three-volume history of the Jewish people for Koren Publishers in Jerusalem.

Franklin Zemel, Esq. (Cyberprivacy Attorney) 

Open Source Social Engineering

Abstract to follow

Rabbi Dov Schochet (CYS College)

Privacy in Torah, Chazal, and Kabbalah

Abstract to follow

Thursday Night, December 9

Panel III:

New Dangers

Rabbi Prof. Avraham Steinberg, MD (Shaare Zedek)

The New Media and Neurological Impact


In my presentation I shall define the term "new media".
I shall discuss the general Jewish attitude toward the new media.
I shall discuss the pros and cons of the new media.
I shall discuss the negative impact on the brain of inappropriate use of the new media. 
I shall discuss some neurological consequences and their etiologies.


Rabbi Prof. Avraham Steinberg, MD - A Short Bio

Associate Clinical Professor of Medical Ethics, Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical School, Jerusalem

 Author of The Encyclopedia of Jewish Medical Ethics – 7 volumes in Hebrew (2 editions) and 3 volumes in English (translation by Dr. Fred Rosner)

 Author of Ha'Refuah Ka'Halakha – 6 volumes in Hebrew.

 Director, Medical Ethics Unit, Shaare Zedek Medical Center, Jerusalem

 Chairman, Institutional Review Board (IRB – 'Helsinky Committee'), Shaare Zedek Medical Center, Jerusalem

 Director, Yad Harav Herzog Institutions & Head of Editorial Board, The Talmudic Encycloepdia & Editor-in-Chief, The Talmudic Micropedia

 Chairman, National Committee for Inspection on Mohalim, The Chief Rabbinate of Israel & The ministry of Health

 Chairman, National Committee in accordance with the Dying Patient Act – 2005

 Member of various Israeli national committees and councils concerning issues in medical ethics and in medicine and law:

Summary of Publications and Presentations:

•    Books and public reports (author, editor) – 46 (in 73 volumes)
•    Articles and Chapters in scientific journals and books – 310
•    Tutor for doctoral theses – 12
•    Presentations in national and international conferences and symposia – 280
•    Over 4500 expert witness opinions in court cases in pediatric neurology and medical ethics

Summary of Prizes and Awards:

•    ISRAEL PRIZE, 1999

•    Gerta Schwartz Prize, The Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical School, 1975
•    Abramowitz-Zeitlin Prize, 1976
•    Rabbi Kook Prize, The Municipality of Tel Aviv-Jaffa, 1990
•    Katz Prize, Kneset, 1990
•    The Annual Prize of the Department for Medicine and Halakhah, The Religious Council of Jerusalem, 1991
•    Einhorn Prize, The Municipality of Tel Aviv-Jaffa, 1995
•    The Minister of Health Prize, 2019

•    Honorary Doctorate, Bar-Ilan University, 2008

•    Worthy Citizen of Jerusalem (Yakir Yerushalayim), 2020

Dr. Norman Goldwasser (Horizons)

Psychological Impact: Addiction & Trauma

Abstract to follow

Rabbi Pinchas Taylor (Chabad-Plantation)

The Internet's Impact on our Dreams


One of the most curious topics pondered since time immemorial and across all culture lines is the nature, purpose, and interpretation of dreams. The average person spends twenty-five years of his life sleeping, six years of which are spent dreaming. The meanings of dreams have been explored since time immemorial. They have been examined philosophically, psychologically, neurologically, and spiritually by many faith traditions. They have creative value, precognitive possibilities, and can even shed light on areas of needed self-development. Dreams can on rare occasions be a conduit to channeling the spiritual worlds or serve as a means of reprocessing mundane events of the day. The internet and modern technology have bombarded us with constant stimuli in a way unfathomable by previous generations. The mundane events of our day are no longer confined to people and situations that we have physically interacted with, but instead, are also open to the numerous articles, pictures, and videos that we have been bombarded with throughout the day. This discussion seeks to explore an overview of secular discussion on dreams, and the spectrum of how dreams have been discussed throughout Torah literature. Through grasping the foundations of dream significance, it will become evident the outcomes that the internet and social media age has had on the quality of our dreams.

Rabbi Pinchas Taylor is a south Florida native and a graduate of the Rabbinical College of America. He has initiated outreach projects in Alaska, California, Florida, Hawaii, and overseas in Russia and Greece. Currently, Rabbi Taylor is the Director of Adult Education and Outreach at the Chabad of Plantation and has an online following in the tens of the thousands. In addition, Rabbi Taylor is a best-selling author and lecturer, and has spoken across the globe in a wide variety of venues. He hosts a weekly session for locals in addiction recovery, serves as a hospice chaplain for Broward County, and teaches Jewish Thought at the Chaya Aydel Seminary. In addition, Rabbi Taylor has been called the “Celebrity Life Coach” for his work with actors, athletes, and other public figures and runs a spiritual coaching program with over 400 hundred active members. Rabbi Taylor is a certified cognitive behavioral therapy practitioner, a certified clinical trauma specialist, and a member of the American Counseling Association and the Association for Conflict Resolution.

Shabbos Day, Saturday, December 11


Speakers & abstracts for follow

Motzei Shabbos, Saturday Night, December 11

Panel IV:

The Promise

Dr. Margarita Quihuis (Stanford Persuasion Inst.)

Topic to be announced

Abstract to follow

Rabbi Motti Seligson (Chabad.org)

Topic to be announced

Abstract to follow

Dr. Menachem Feuer (Adaleg IT)

Topic to be announced

Abstract to follow

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