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Archive for ‘Technology’

Interconnected Devices and Products Liability

We have occasionally discussed on this site (as recently as this week…) the implications of interconnected devices and the Internet of Things.

Here is an article that asks “should cyber-security vulnerabilities really be treated the same as design defects under traditional products liability law?”

The specific context is an infusion pump system that the Federal Drug Administration in the US thought was insecure and sent a warning about – a warning that sounded like a ‘defective product’ warning. The article raises a number of concerns about thinking about a security defect like another defect, including many complications about who . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology: Internet, ulc_ecomm_list

The Medium Is the Message

In “Legal Practice and Legal Delivery: An Important Distinction”, Mark Cohen argues that technology has transformed the delivery of legal services but not the practice of law. He defines delivery as “how services are rendered” and practice as “what lawyers do and how they do it”.

The delivery of legal services is a play with many actors…The days of law firms having a stranglehold over legal delivery have given way to the rise of in-house lawyers and departments, legal service companies, and technology companies “productizing” tasks that were once delivered as services. Again, it is not legal practice that

. . . [more]
Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Technology, Technology: Internet

Vendor Quiz: Lexbox

Vendor Quiz is a periodic feature here at Slaw in which we ask a legal marketplace supplier a series of substantive questions about their product or service. Our goal is to provide insight and guidance to Slaw readers who might be considering a purchase, and who would benefit from practical information with which they can make a more informed choice. Vendor Quiz is an advertorial service, with each post sponsored by the featured vendor.

Lexbox is a free Google Chrome extension that helps you organize and monitor your online legal research.

  1. What does “getting organized” with your online legal research
. . . [more]
Posted in: Vendor Quiz

Augmenting the Practice of Law

In a response to comments in my last blog post about IBM Watson I mentioned a presentation that Kyla Moran gave at the last American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) conference. The presentation was called, “Contestant, Doctor, Lawyer, Chef: IBM Watson Moving from Jeopardy to the Legal Landscape,” and if you’re an AALL member you can watch the recording if you click that link.

For non-AALL members Jean P. O’Grady, Director of Research & Knowledge Services, at DLA Piper in Washington D.C., reports on this session in the recent AALL Spectrum: “Hand in Hand with . . . [more]

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

Better Options for Interprovincial Motions to Change Support

When families split apart, they don’t always stick around in the same province. Sometimes that gives rise to challenge circumstances for resolving proceedings or updating support orders.

Justice Pazaratz examined a interprovincial motion to change support in Chree v. Chree. The judge, who is now known for his writing style, started with the following:


  1. There’s an old saying: “Two Heads Are Better Than One”.
  1. But not when it comes to trial judges.

  1. Two judges. Each hearing different parts of the case. On different dates, many months apart. Having to make decisions on the same case.
  1. It
. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology

Happy Back to the Future Day

In the 1989 movie, Back to the Future Part II they time traveled to October 21, 2015. (The move was produced by Neil Canton – no relation as far as I know.)

Articles abound today comparing the 2015 depicted in the movie to today’s world. While we don’t have flying cars, and hoverboards have not proceeded beyond some proof of concept demos, drones and flatscreens and a few other things are here.

Another prediction that didn’t come true is the quip that the justice system works swiftly in the future now that they’ve abolished all lawyers.

Wearable tech was . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Tracking Supreme Court of Canada Cases

I’m sure many of you keep track of cases pending before the Supreme Court of Canada. What is your preferred method for doing so? I had been hoping to find an RSS feed (or something similar) on the SCC docket page. I suppose I could use a website tracking tool to track the particular docket page that I am interested in. But I was hoping there would be a nice easy-to-use tool already set up for me to do that! I tried QuickLaw and came up with a somewhat clunky work-around (I set up a scheduled search for the SCCA . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Technology: Internet

Does Microsoft Have Its Mojo Back?

Microsoft announced new products last week, including the Surface Pro 4 tablet, and its first ever laptop – the Surface Book hybrid. Tech press reviews have been very positive. We ordered a Surface Pro 4 the day of the announcement, which is going to replace my desktop and tablet.

Windows 10 has been very well received. Microsoft has been touting its enterprise security features. Our IT Manager is impressed with the potential of its productivity improvements over Windows 8.1.

Microsoft is also transitioning its products into the cloud and into subscription models – which is where we are all headed. . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

From LegaltechTO BYOD Risk Management Strategies and Pitfalls

One of the many excellent presentations that I attended at Legaltech TO on September 24 focused on a couple of ways to deal with BYOD in legal. Steve Heck, Regional CIO at Microsoft Canada offered the ‘make everything securely accessible from any device’ option. Eugene Cipparone, Director, Professional Support at Goodmans LLP offered that firm’s strategy which I will sum up here as ‘educate and enable’.

Both of these perspectives have value. On one hand, mobile devices are only used to access what is secured by two factor authentication on the web. Because the content resides and can be used . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Technology

Restoring Previous Versions of Files in Windows

I don’t usually write “how-to” posts, but I wasn’t aware of this restore feature in Windows and thought others might find it useful. Last week I accidentally saved a file and ended up replacing another file in the process. This can easily happen when you click on ‘Save’ instead of ‘Save As’ for example. In my case I was exporting a file from a software application and saving it to a directory on our network drive.

Normally the file is exported and then saved over a template or place-holder file. Usually not a problem: easy to do and maintains consistent . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

Can Skype Be Used for Testimony in Court?

The Indian Supreme Court is to deal with a challenge to evidence of the complainant in a rape case that was taken by Skype. The complainant is Irish and is now in Ireland, and does not want to return to India for the trial.

The accused submits that the quality of the recording is not good enough to admit the evidence.

Does anything about the use of Skype in this case, or in general, make you uncomfortable?

Can there be a firm rule about the admissibility of private (or quasi-public) systems of video evidence, or should it depend on the . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Technology, ulc_ecomm_list

4 Tech/geek Events From Yesterday

Yesterday was a busy day in the tech/geek world.

Edward Snowden got a twitter account yesterday. His profile includes “I used to work for the government. Now I work for the public.” As I write this he has just under a million followers. At least he has a sense of humour – the only twitter account he follows is the NSA.

Tesla announced the long awaited Model X SUV, complete with falcon wing doors and a “bioweapon defense mode” button on the air filtration system.

Google announced new updated phones, the release of their new Marshmallow OS, . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology