Canada’s online legal magazine.

Is the Textbook Dead?

In a comment to a posting over at Out of the Jungle, I made this bold assertion about Canadian legal textbooks:

I fear the textbook’s life in Canada may be coming to its end. The publishers, notably West’s sister company Thomson Carswell, have now started publishing new editions of our prime authority texts in loose leaf format. My feeling is this dilutes the authority of the publication since we can no longer fix in place a specific text; it is difficult to quote to something if it is in constant flux. As well, fewer and fewer new key texts

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

How Do You Keep Up?

Today I participated in TALL‘s annual visit to the Faculty of Information Studies at the University of Toronto to talk with students about membership in the Association (and in CALL while we were at it), a potential career in law librarianship, and how to get their foot in the door for first jobs.

After the session, one of the students asked a couple of us how we keep up to date with legal research; what tools we use for current awareness. I had to laugh, since this has changed dramatically for me. I used to read every advertisement and . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

They’re Sitting. No, They Aren’t. Yes, They Are.

I’m having a difficult time keeping up with the House of Commons and the Senate. Are they sitting or not? Last I heard, the House of Commons is again sitting, but the Senate isn’t because there are no Bills for them to deal with just yet from the House.

In my quest to determine the state of things, I had a look at the updated Parliamentary webpages. If you haven’t seen them since the Spring, I encourage you to have a look. A lot is going on there, and I like what I see:

  • They have pulled some of
. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

Knowledge Management Economics & Realization Rates

I’ve been having some fun recently over at the VLLB.

Last Monday I posted ‘Legal KM Economics & Realization Rates (Some Questions…)‘. Joy London of Excited Utterances was nice enough to pick it up and re-publish my post. Then the responses started coming in, and boy did they come in!

First up, David Maister was kind enough to send me a nice written response, which you can read here. For those not familiar with David, he’s one of the most respected professional service consultants around. If it had stopped there, I would have been pretty happy. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Twenty-First Century Encyclopedias

Word comes that the advertisements that we’ve been seeing in the law reports for the various national incarnations of Halsbury’s Laws (Australia, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Singapore, South Africa, New Zealand) presage an announcement of Halsbury’s Laws of Canada.

Halsbury’s has always had an odd relationship to Canada. Students find it extraordinary that the Canadian Converter volumes track back to the third edition (the green one) which is now between forty and fifty years old.

Halsbury’s has said before that it wanted to improve this situation.

Those of us who have been doing this for a while recall that Bud . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Canada’s First Library Robot Serves Up Books at UBC

Check out UBC’s full press release.

“The ASRS is linked to the Library’s online catalogue. After Library staff or users request an item, the robotic cranes identify and retrieve the correct steel bin, matching the location of the bin to the requested bar code. The automated cranes deliver bins to a sorting station where staff retrieve and relay requested items to the circulation desk. The entire process takes about two minutes . “


“The ASRS stores 30 per cent of the collections previously housed in the Main Library, much of which was in locked storage. With the capacity

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

Creative Commons

Michael Geist, professor of law at University of Ottawa, and editor of the BNA’s daily Internet Law News, has today pioneered a new approach to legal publishing in Canada. He has edited a major collection of essays on the future of copyright reform in Canada. And he convinced Jeff Miller at Irwin Law to release the book, In the Public Interest, under a Creative Commons license, which means that Chapters can be downloaded for personal use, free of charge. And Michael has given the royalties to Creative Commons.

Check out this Irwin Law page for a glimpse at how . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

By the Week

I’ve put a link on the right menu to a section called “By The Week.” It goes to a page where you can find “This Week’s Links” since I’ve been doing that and as well an image of the website’s front page as of Friday of any given week. This may be mere self-reflection for Slaw, but I think it will be interesting some time from now to be able to look back and actually see the posts we made in a particular week and to have access to the various links referred to in the posts and comments. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous