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Origami – Has the Future Arrived?

Blogs have been abuzz for the last few weeks with one of the worse kept secrets in the technology business — the new Microsoft Origami mini-note computer. Launched at CeBIT Technology Conference in Germany, March 9th, this sub notebook computer creates a newly named category of computers — Ultra-Mobile Personal Computers (UMPCs). [See the Microsoft site for official details] By the way, didn’t anyone tell them this doesn’t conform to the need for a Three Letter Acronym or TLA?

Anyway, heres the skinny on this new device. eWeek reports that:

“The new devices are expected to weigh in at

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

Writely Purchased by Google

The application we used to collaboratively put together the Rothstein Pages, Writely, has now been acquired by Google. Am I disappointed? Sure–is there any web-based application I use that Google doesn’t wind up purchasing? Am I surprised? No, not really. While Writely isn’t (yet) perfect, it is a fabulous tool and I have been using it for a wide range of projects, both individually and collaboratively.

Now, all I need is to develop a great little app that Google will quickly snap up…. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Future for Lawyers

On March 6, the Society of Computers & Law (UK) hosted an event at the Royal Society in London to hear a lecture by Professor Richard Suskind on the way in w hich legal services will develop over the next 10 years. Susskind is an independent advisor to government and the private sector on IT, lectures internationally, is a columnist for the Times and has written and edited several books on It and the Law.

To extract from the SCL email, he posited a world changed by exponential increase in processing power and where commoditisation is an inescapable part of . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

PDAs for Law Students

Today’s law students have keener eyesight than fogies, but I had to wonder about an experiment being conducted at the University of Melbourne. Students are using hand-held computers in a trial to evaluate the effect of mobile technologies on student learning.

Today’s students, the article claims, “combine work with study, they have competing demands on their time, they are multi-tasking by nature, and they have been dealing with technology since they were born – they shop on-line, research on-line, date online and expect to study on-line.”

“As part of a trial of mobile learning technologies, the students were given

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

Swearing in and Welcome Ceremony for Justice Rothstein Scheduled

From the Supreme Court news releases:

Ottawa – March 8, 2006 – The Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, Chief Justice of Canada, announced today that The Honourable Marshall Rothstein will be sworn in as a justice of the Supreme Court of Canada on Thursday, March 9, 2006 at a private ceremony. The official welcome ceremony for Justice Rothstein will take place at 10:00 a.m., on Monday, April 10, 2006, in the Main Courtroom of the Supreme Court of Canada. On this occasion, it is expected that there will be remarks by Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin, and representatives of the Government of

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

National Law Library of Canada?

Further to Simon’s post yesterday on this topic, the Canadian Association of Law Libraries passed a resolution sometime ago recommending the appointment of a National Law Librarian. In recommendation # 8 in my recent LLM thesis (available online on SLAW at, I supported this recommendation in the following terms:

As mentioned in Recommendation #1 above, the Access to Information Review Task Force has recommended “a co-ordinated government-wide strategy be developed to address the crisis in information management” including “partnerships among the agencies with primary responsibility for information management” such as the National Library and other government institutions.

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Posted in: Miscellaneous

The Day of Destruction

10.10 March 8, Great Library, Law Society of Upper Canada, Osgoode hall, Toronto

Slit. Rip. Toss.

The sound of buckram leather bindings being sliced from the American collection in the Great Library. Dust settling in the big bins where the paper is going off for recycling at a few dollars a ton. Workmen with exacto knives attack the old West Law Reports.

What’s happening? The Great Library is embarked on its biggest discard operation. American caselaw is going the way of all flesh. Why should libraries squeezed for space keep the books, which no-one wants? It’s all on Westlaw . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous