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Buying a Condo? Law Library Now a Selling Feature

Slaw readers with the recollection of Funes the Memorious may recall a posting about a hotel in Chandigarh which advertised a law library as one of its guest features.

Today’s Costar news bulletin features the sale of a floor of a building at 36 W. 44th St. in the Grand Central District, which features tenant-controlled HVAC in most suites, a law library, and a restored entrance, lobby and elevator cabs. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Paterva’s Evolution

A company called Paterva (which might be South African) is offering Evolution, a search engine that focuses on people and organizations (and associated data such as phone numbers, email addresses etc.), purporting to reveal connections between people that are significant. It seems aimed at security firms, investigators and the like (opening tagline: “Your new enemy is virtual”). There’s a web-based search tool that you can try, and a Java-based tool to download that’s in beta but that offers to display relationships graphically (screenshot).

I haven’t tried the download but I have searched for myself on the browser-based . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Small Arms Survey 2007 – Americans Own Most of the Guns

This week, the Geneva-based Graduate Institute of International Studies released its Small Arms Survey 2007.

The Survey is supported by the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, and receives contributions from the governments of Belgium, Canada, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.

The survey covers issues such as firearms production, international small arms transfers, international transfer control initiatives, the impact of urbanization on armed violence, and the economics of small arms.

According to this year’s report:

  • U.S. citizens own 270 million of the world’s 875 million known firearms. This comes out to 90 guns for every
  • . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

New Article on Limitations Law by David Cheifetz

I see that SLAW contributor David Cheifetz has an interesting article in the most recent edition (2007, 33 Ad.v Q. at 46) of The Advocates’ Quarterly called “For Whom The Bell Tolled: An Examination Of Some Consequences Of HSBC Securities v. Davies, Ward & Beck And The Repeal of The Ontario Negligence Act, s. 8.” Looks interesting. Now if only Canada Law Book would create a digital version of that journal (and of the Canadian Business Law Journal), I wouldn’t need to walk down to our library and hunt for the print copy (it wasn’t on the shelf . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Challenges of (Combined) KM and Library Services in a Law Firm

I am currently struggling with a challenge (but it is a good one).

The challenge is in having to combine Knowledge Management duties with Library Services duties in a law firm setting. In many (if not most) firms, the positions are split and separate. For now, I am (in theory) divided 50% between each function. A colleague with a financial background put his understanding of the situation in these terms: KM is all about harnessing the “internal” information (getting and organizing law-related information that is in lawyers’ heads and in their documents) whereas Library Services is all about the “external” . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Thinking Like a Lawyer

It’s been a hectic year (my excuse for a lack of SLAW posts). As I gear up for a really busy fall at my new firm, I’m rather amazed that after 29 years in law firms, the debate between the browsers and the searchers has still not received the level of visibility that I think it deserves.

The issue is very important to the many law firms who are now involved in portal and enterprise search projects. At last week’s ILTA Conference in Orlando, there was certainly evidence of the continuing interest in enterprise search – Microsoft’s SharePoint Search continues . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

The Need to Digitize Historical Canadian Legislation

The recent posting on SLAW about Carl Malmud’s “maverick” actions of shaming the U.S. government by himself publishing American case law on the Internet got me thinking.

Can we in Canada not shame our governments into digitizing the historical versions of federal and provincial legislation in a manner similar to that done in Alberta through the Alberta Heritage Digitization Project (AHDP)?

Perhaps this will be a topic to be discussed at the 8th International Conference of Law Via the Internet conference in Montreal in October.

If not, treat this post as a rallying cry.

Surely it would only be . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

When Bad News Follows You

There was a really interesting article in the NY Times on Sunday about the consequences of information floating around forever in cyberspace. Apparently the Times’ aggressive search engine optimization techniques are resulting in old, negative, and sometimes erroneous articles about people surfacing in search results.

Many of these people have requested that the articles be removed from the archive – which, for obvious reasons, is not an ideal solution. The Public Editor doesn’t have any solutions of his own, but offers a number of questions and a few intriguing suggestions, such as an archive programmed to “forget” less important information . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Any Podcast Listeners Out There?

Last week’s discussion on reading digital books had me thinking about another way of getting them into your head – having someone read them to you. Every week I get an e-mail from the Economist telling me their audio edition is now available online. I can download the parts that interest me (or the whole thing if I’m ambitious) and have them read to me in a soothing BBC accent.

And yet, even though it’s so easy, I never do. The idea of podcasts has always appealed to me, but somehow I never get around to listening them. They’re one . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Welcome David Whelan to the Great Library, to Slaw and to Canada

While the Law Society and Great Library websites are unusually silent on the topic, the American library blogosphere is proudly proclaiming that David Whelan has been appointed Manager of Legal Information for the Law Society of Upper Canada Pause to note that Great Librarian was a wonderful and hallowed title – why would it have been abandoned?
He has written High Octane Internet Legal Research, recently published by the Ohio State Bar Association, 2007 and is obviously dynamic and talented.
From a Slaw perspective his most interesting accomplishment is his work as Director of the American Bar Association’s Legal . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Truscott Decision Released

In one of the longest decisions in the Court’s history, the Court has closed the book on the case of R. v. Truscott:

we have concluded that, while it cannot be said that no jury acting judicially could reasonably convict, we are satisfied that if a new trial were possible, an acquittal would clearly be the more likely result. Having regard to the highly unusual circumstances of this Reference, we have determined that the most appropriate remedy is to enter an acquittal.

Accordingly, in the words of s. 696.3(3)(ii) of the Criminal Code, the appeal is allowed, the conviction

. . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous