Last week Nicole Garton Jones, a BC-based lawyer and fellow Slaw contributor, provided some thought-provoking commentary on the position of the Law Society of British Columbia on the topic of Virtual Law Firms, as discussed in the latest edition of the organization's Bencher's Bulletin. In the bulletin, and subsequent response to Ms. Garton-Jones' post, the LSBC identifies several key concerns relating to cloud computing for BC-based law firms, namely:
Archive for ‘Technology: Office Technology’
Earlier today I tweeted about a great article on the New York Times tech blog What to Do If Hackers Steal Your Online Accounts.
In hindsight, I think the advice in the article is very practical and relevant to just about everyone, thus making it worth sharing via a SLAW post with a far wider audience than just those that follow me on Twitter.
Over the years I have received more than few panicked calls from lawyers that have had their email accounts hacked, and more recently, from a lawyer that lost control of his Facebook page. Email and . . . [more]
Last week when I wrote about Students and the New Personal Learning Environments, the topic of students now contacting experts directly came up. One major component of students' Personal Learning Environment (PLE) is the Personal Learning Network (PLN).
The new social networking tools allow students to more easily find, connect and interact with experts and other students from around the world learning about the same topics. Educator Wendy Drexler, who presented last week's video, wrote and produced this Common Craft-inspired video a year earlier (December 2008):
Asking others about what they know and looking for expertise within our . . . [more]
Given that lawyers are heavy users of Blackberrys, most Slaw readers will already know that RIM just announced the Playbook tablet, which is an iPad competitor.
RIM has taken an interesting approach. It is designed for business users, and as a companion device that will tether to a Blackberry. Indeed, its promo hits heavily on features that the iPad has been criticized for lacking – such as a forward facing camera, and usb. It may very well be a compelling choice for Blackberry users.
While it was just announced, it is not available until early 2011. I suspect it was . . . [more]
This is a short endorsement of the iAnnotate application for the iPad, produced by Aji and available on iTunes for $9.99.
I used to maintain piles of case law on a bookshelf, working my way though cases one highlighter at a time. I bought an iPad to rid myself of the enviro-guilt borne by my case law habit and was also happy to get rid of highlighters – my suits, shirts, linen, pets and kids too-often marked with indelible pink, green and yellow. The iPad, however, was a less than perfect replacement until I installed iAnnotate about a week ago. . . . [more]
According to the Official Google Blog:
Second, today we demonstrated new mobile editing capabilities for Google Docs on the Android platform and the iPad. In the next few weeks, co-workers around the world will soon be able to co-edit files simultaneously from an even wider array of devices.
This is good news for iPad owners who will no longer need to buy an app to edit Google Docs. (Not to mention making a number of iPad-owning SLAW contributors very happy.) . . . [more]
Hat tip to Susannah Tredwell (@hannasus) for retweeting:
Google Docs now supports web fonts – we've added 6 new fonts to documents & more are on the way http://bit.ly/b9XLvC
The article starts out with: "Documents without font choices are like photographs without colors. Just as shades of color can add depth to a picture, smart font choices give your text another dimension."
This is just the beginning for font additions to Google Docs.
A question for Slaw readers: Does this font addition create enough of an incentive to start using Google Docs if you aren't using it now? . . . [more]
Over the last decade cloud computing vendors have invested heavily in making Software-as-a-Service secure as possible. Daily security audits, SSL-based encryption, and SAS 70 Type-II-certified data centers are now the norm, rather than the exception, and data stored in the cloud is now privileged to receive some of the best security technology can afford.
However, as with any security framework, cloud computing security is only as good as its weakest link, and in many circumstances the weakest link is the password used to access a web-based application. Passwords are often easier to guess than users think, and are all too . . . [more]
Monterey College of Law in California is partnering with BARBRI, a law exam review/prep provider, to bring iPads to students in their first year law program this season. Students in their law school program tend to be older (average age 38), and the iPad is meant to help them better keep up with readings and study for bar exams.
"Many of our law students work the equivalent of three jobs. Between law school, work, and family, it is a constant challenge for them to set aside enough time during the
. . . [more]
Yesterday the Twitter was awash with messages about this revolutionary new Gmail Priority Inbox. The beta version just arrived in my email, and have to say that I am already in love with it. Essentially what it does is bring new, unopened, important messages to the top, then lists those messages that are "starred" (which I have flagged with a star), and then lists everything else. It learns which are important messages over time depending on which are opened and which are responded to. In other words, its accuracy gets better over time.
This entertaining little video explains it . . . [more]
I saw an intriguing tweet from Westlaw today:
Why am I intrigued?
File formats for downloads from free and fee services may seem innocuous, but every change has an effect. For instance, when Queen's Printers in some jurisdictions changed their format (from HTML to PDF) for publicly available legislation, CanLII had to come up with new collection practices as PDF formats made point in time comparison with existing HTML files 'difficult'. That is a grand scale example of a file format issue.
A smaller scale example would be rewriting user materials to . . . [more]
The International Legal Technology Association has its annual conference ILTA 2010 just around the corner. This association and its conference includes some of the leading law firms in North America and looks at not only technology but also records management, information management, knowledge management, social media and related areas. This year's theme is "Strategic unity"
a concept that resonates the need for law firms and law departments to unite their technology with the practice of law. These disciplines must come together as never before in order to survive and thrive in the future. Conference sessions will be developed around this concept,
. . . [more]