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“assume” oh goodness you have no idea.

I live in the Brooklyn Hasidic neighborhood. A couple weeks ago, one of the gentlemen flagged me down on a Friday night. He needed me, a complete stranger, to come into his home at 11pm, go down to the basement, and push the "open" button on his dryer so his wife could retrieve clean towels for their (many) children.

Operating a machine of any kind, to the extent of pushing a button, constitutes work in their culture. There’s a whole wikipedia page about the ongoing controversy over whether it’s okay to use light switches during Shabbat or not. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electricity_on_Shabbat

(they thanked me with a slice of cake, which was nice)

Great anecdote! He just needs some sort of Rube Goldberg device to do it for him.

There's the whole Shabbat Technology industry - finding Kosher ways of using modern conveniences in accordance with the Sabbath laws.[1] For example, these folks make a bunch of devices: http://www.zomet.org.il/eng/

[1] I'm reminded of the non-electric tools the Amish adapt and use. http://www.npr.org/sections/money/2013/02/22/172626089/insid...

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