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Archive for ‘Technology’

Goodbye QPLegalEze; Welcome Open Law

April launched an exciting development for BC legal researchers and for the open law and open data movements. QP LegalEze, the BC Queen’s Printer’s deep and highly functional subscription service for current and some historical legislative information, is no more. Or, more accurately, it is by subscription no more.

All of its content and functionality now is available through BC Laws, the free site also offered by the Queen’s Printer:

BC Laws has been upgraded to provide enhanced searching and more content including historical legislation and related publications such as BC Gazette, full text Orders-in-Council, and Tables of Legislative

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Posted in: Justice Issues, Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology

Is Wearable Tech Dead?

Nike just announced that it is exiting its FuelBand fitness tracker business.

Another article claims that “it’s only a matter of time until [Google Glass] joins devices such as the Zune, the Kin, the PlayBook, and the Xoom in tech hell.”

Despite musings that wearable tech is dead and dying, these are just growing pains.

Wearable devices are still in an early bleeding edge phase where manufacturers and users are trying to figure out what works, what users want, what users find creepy, and what users are willing to pay for.

Take Google Glass, for instance. I have no doubt . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Record Store Day: Searching for Artefacts

It was Record Store Day on Saturday and I did my part to support record stores. This year, thanks to my friend Dave C., I was flipping through bins of records at BJ’s Records and Nostalgia up in Barrie. This activity brings back many happy memories of my once annual pilgrimage to Sam the Record Man every Boxing Day. I absolutely love the physical process of search and discovery, finding a new or unknown album that sparks an inspiration to try looking down a new path.

I like vinyl records too and not just because of the perceived quality . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet

When I Stopped Vomiting, I Learned to Hate Teraview

Technology, particularly legal technology is supposed to make the delivery of legal services more convenient. However, sometimes lawyers get in the way and muck things up. Teraview is a perfect example.

Back in the day, anyone could walk into the local registry office and register any document they wanted. Since the mid-1980s registration documents were not witnessed, nor were signatures checked. The system was one of openness and accessibility.

Then along came Teraview – which allowed registration from anywhere in Canada via the internet. A seemingly great idea that would make real estate transactions faster and smoother. However, everyone forgot . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Solving the High Cost of the “Review” Stage of Electronic Discovery

This article provides more details on the following comment that I posted (April 10th) to Dan Pinnington’s article of April 8th, “Ontario Judge Strongly Pushes for Greater Use of Technology in Courts and Orders E-Trial”:

My Comment, excerpted:
Make the preparation work of a lawyer making production comparable to that of an accountant. The client doesn’t give the accountant 100,000+ records and say, ‘here, you make up our financial records and then do the audit.’ The litigation lawyer should be able to work the same way, by combining the searching and reviewing into one act.

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Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology, Technology: Office Technology

The Semantic Web Is Made of People

The presentations from last year’s Semantic Web in Libraries (SWIB13) held in Hamburg, Germany, were posted a few months ago. Lots of great stuff relating to linked data, metadata, classification mapping and ontologies, including a few case study reports (e.g. Europeana updates).

I recommend to you Dorothea Salo’s presentation, “Soylent SemWeb Is People! Bringing People to Linked Data.” * Drawing on a rather stretched analogy to the Charleton Heston movie Solyent Green she explores this question:

“… how do we best invite people — including skeptical people, reluctant people, less-technical people, people committed to different data structures

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Posted in: Technology: Internet

The New Canadian Digital Privacy Act (Bill S-4)

The government of Canada has introduced a bill to amend PIPEDA on privacy matters. The bill appears to be largely the same as Bill C-29 from 2010. It imposes a duty on organizations that have custody of personal information to disclose to the Privacy Commissioner and to affected individuals the fact of any breach of security affecting that personal information, if the breach creates a ‘significant risk of serious harm’ to the individual. Both terms (significant risk and serious harm are defined, or at least given more flavour, in the bill.)

(7) For the purpose of this section, “significant

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Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, ulc_ecomm_list

Secure Communications by Mandated Design?

In Europe, the concern about the NSA and the “five eyes” countries is becoming more and more serious.

One of the more unusual proposals is to legislate against products that are insecure by design. A group loosely associated with the EU Pirate Parties and the Free Software Foundation proposes:

legislation to upgrade all communication among private citizens to provide necessary technical measures for maintaining an adequate implementation of the Secrecy of Correspondence required by most constitutions and human right charters. The law shall include ways to ensure its correct implementation and a transition path from the existing unencrypted systems

In . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Are You Vulnerable to Heartbleed?

A serious flaw has been discovered in OpenSSL - the browser encryption standard used by an estimated two-thirds of the servers on the internet. This flaw has been there for a couple of years, and allows hackers to read data stored in memory. That gives hackers access to anything in memory, including security keys, user names and passwords, emails and documents. More detail is on Gigaom and Schneier on Security.

An update to OpenSSL fixes the flaw. Anyone who has a website should ask their service provider if it affects their site, and have it updated immediately.

And for . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Ontario Judge Strongly Pushes for Greater Use of Technology in Courts and Orders E-Trial

In a case conference decision in the matter Bank of Montreal v Faibish, 2014 ONSC 2178 (CanLII), Justice David M. Brown expressed “profound frustration” at the failure of lawyers and judges to make greater use of technology while conducting litigation. He went as far as ordering an e-trial on the matter, over the expressed desire of some counsel to do an electronic and paper-based trial.
This is one of the strongest statements a judge has made with respect to the need for greater use of technology in the court system. No doubt, it will generate considerable discussion. The relevant . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Technology

Stop Using Windows XP and Office 2003 on or Before April 8, 2014

Microsoft will no longer be supporting Windows XP SP3 (Service Pack 3) and Office 2003 (SP3) as of April 8, 2014. After this date, there will be no new security updates, non-security hotfixes, support or online technical content updates from Microsoft for these products. Your computer will still operate, but if you continue to use Windows XP or Office 2003, you will become more vulnerable to security risks and malware infections. Undoubtedly, cyber criminals will target computers that are still using these programs.

For this reason, you should immediately start planning to migrate to more current versions of Windows and . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

The Selfie Defense: Using Instagram for Good

We usually hear about the attempted use of social media by the opposite side to discredit a party. But what about the use of social media to bolster a defence in anticipation of litigation?

Andrew Jarvis, a Pennsylvania architect, was concerned the Department of Revenue would audit him and ask him to pay additional taxes once he opened up an office in New York, where he spent a considerable amount of time.

The State changed the domicile requirements in 2012. They conduct residency audits because residents are subject to tax on worldwide income, whereas non-residents are only taxed for the . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet