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Archive for ‘Technology: Office Technology’

Patently Absurd

The past couple of weeks have offered an amazing ringside view of an unusually public and acrimonious debate over software patents.

First, This American Life aired When Patents Attack, a fantastic expose of Intellectual Ventures, a patent holding company owned by Microsoft’s one-time CTO Nathan Myhrvold. The episode leads listeners to the seemingly inevitable conclusion that companies like Intellectual Ventures are at the root of all that’s wrong with the US patent system. It’s a must-listen for anyone involved in, or merely interested in, intellectual property law.

Then, last week, after losing out on a huge bidding war for . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

iPad Apps Suggested by ABA Panel

Here’s the promised post on the iPad apps recommended, or mentioned warmly, by Tom Mighell and Nerino Petro during the ABA session on Thursday that discussed the use of tablet computers in the practice of law. Some of the those identified as “free” also have a beefed up version offered for sale. As I’m sure you’ll understand, there are literally thousands upon thousands of iOS apps now, and it was only possible for the panel to discuss a very few in the time allotted. And, as I’m sure you’ll also understand, all kudos goes to the two expert panelists and . . . [more]

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

Why Lawyers Should Upgrade to OS X Lion

If you’re a Mac-using lawyer, Apple’s recently released OS X Lion has a new feature that single-handedly makes the upgrade worth the $29 price of admission.

FileVault 2 enables whole-disk encryption for OS X Lion computers with just a few clicks of the mouse. Whole disk encryption ensures the contents of your drive are only readable when you provide a valid username / password combination to the operating system. This means your entire computer’s hard drive will be encrypted, and thus unreadable, should it fall into the wrong hands.

I consider whole disk encryption a best practice for all lawyers, . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Responses to ABA, North Carolina Proposals RE: Cloud Computing

Back in May I wrote about two sets of proposals that may impact the adoption of cloud computing technology among lawyers.

The first set of proposals comes from the ABA Commission on Ethics 20/20, which has issued an initial set of draft proposals addressing lawyers’ confidentiality-related obligations when using technology. The second set of proposals comes from the North Carolina State Bar in the form of in Proposed 2011 Formal Ethics Opinion 6 – Subscribing to Software as a Service While Fulfilling the Duties of Confidentiality and Preservation of Client Property.

Last week the comment periods for both proposals . . . [more]

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

Is Google+ Social Networking’s New Black?

Google’s new black navigation bar is the first outward-facing component of a massive social networking project the company’s been working on for over a year: Google+. I’ve been using Google+ during its “field test” (what we’d normally call a beta I think, but Google has forever ruined the public’s expectations of a beta), and I’ve come away impressed. It may be the first social networking tool I use, and enjoy using, on a daily basis.

While I have a personal Facebook and Twitter account, I find I rarely use them. Yes, Facebook’s endless privacy follies have given me cold . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Email Charter

TED Curator Chris Anderson suggests that we help curb the proliferation of emails by subscribing to a Charter that he and fellow TEDer Jane Wulf have devised. He argues that in some sense we have all joined spammers in contributing to the modern “tragedy of the Commons” that our summed-up bad behaviours have produced. You’ll get a much better idea of what he means by reading the actual Charter, set out below. (It’s available as plain text and as a PDF, also, in case you want to pass it around the office — not by email.) . . . [more]

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

New Outlook Software

Outlook 2010, I love you, I think. Yesterday I attended an internal training class that introduced me to Outlook 2010. This is one of the beginning steps (from the user perspective) of a renovation, evolution, revamp, revision of our firms desktop software. From the perspective of our IT department, this is the mid-point in a long line of projects that will culminate in current Office Suite software for our firm’s users.

Since other Slawyers may be going down (moving up?) this particular software update road, I am sharing a couple of my Outlook 2010 experiences. Note that we jumped from . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

Dropbox Drops the Ball

Last week I asked if Apple’s forthcoming iCloud service spells doom for Dropbox. My conclusion was no, iCloud does not pose a critical threat to Dropbox, but this week I’m worried about a new threat to Dropbox’s viability: Dropbox themselves.

Yesterday Dropbox disclosed a “bug” they’d introduced that allowed users to log into any Dropbox account using an arbitrary password. That is, if you have a Dropbox account, all a potential hacker would have to know was your e-mail address, and he would have unfettered access to your entire Dropbox.

Although the impact of the bug on users was . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

My iPad Experience – Part 2

I’ve had an iPad for about a month now. I remain convinced that the tablet format is a game changer. There are pros and cons and fans and detractors for various devices. In the long run it will be interesting to see how the market shakes out. There is of course the iPad, various Android devices (the Samsung Galaxy 10.1 just coming out now is highly anticipated), and the Blackberry Playbook. And don’t count out Microsoft. They will be late to the game, but their Windows 8 concept may gain some traction.

I’ll give some examples of how I have . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

What Does iCloud Mean for Dropbox?

Last week Apple released iCloud, a new cloud-based service for syncing documents, calendars, e-mails, photos, music and more across your desktop, laptop, iPad, and iPhone.

iCloud represents one of the most important and risky strategic shifts Apple has ever taken. Prior to iCloud, Apple’s “digital hub” strategy promoted the PC as your central data store, with the various “spokes” of the digital hub – your iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, etc. – synchronizing with your PC. With iCloud, the PC has been, in Jobs’ words, “demoted” to just another device – with the cloud taking its place.

The shift . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Cloud Integration for iPhone, iPad and the Post-PC Era

At today’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC), Apple’s Steve Jobs announced a new set of cloud services, dubbed iCloud, that will integrate with iOS-based devices, such as the iPad and iPhone, and Mac OS X. The new services will bring tight cloud-based data synchronization to Apple’s desktop, laptop and mobile device lineup.

iCloud will allow you to store all of your documents, calendars, emails, photos, and more in the cloud, and will automatically synchronize this data to all of your devices. Additionally, iCloud will make your music available across all your devices.

Backup services will also be incorporated into iCloud. . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Clouding the Issue

This week’s Lawyer’s Weekly features an article by Luis Milan titled Experts Warn Cloud Computing Still Risky. The article cites recent data breaches at Sony Corp. and Epsilon Data Management as a catalyst for concern around cloud computing, and goes on to cite several experts on the potential privacy implications of these data breaches.

The only problem? Neither data breach, as the article’s title implies, has anything to do with cloud computing.

The Sony data breach, where personal information for millions of its Playstation Network users was compromised, was not the result of Sony’s cloud computing infrastructure being . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology