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iPad for Law? How About iPad for Fun!

Although I was going to blog at some point on using the iPad for legal work (e.g., including the useful tip to use the “two finger swipe technique” to properly scroll pages when using the Safari browser on iPad when searching Westlaw or Lexis – see video here for the technique, which works), the reality is that the iPad has been for me an entertainment device.

While I was successfully able to use the iPad in place of a laptop on a recent 1-week business/pleasure trip (with the business-side of things largely being checking email, taking notes and doing some . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended, Technology

The on-Line Ontario Reports

The electronic format of the Ontario Reports is the worst of both the print and electronic worlds; it is dreadful. I cannot read the “two-page” format as the print is too small and, if I go to the single-page format with the type at a size I can actually read, I can’t go from the bottom of one page to the top of the next. My effort to contact the electronic publisher, not LexisNexis, to get its help was ignored.

As I have mentioned before on Slaw, we now desperately need some real effort to be made to deal with . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing

Law Society of BC Model Anton Piller Order

The Law Society of BC has issued a Notice to Profession asking for comments on a proposed model Anton Piller order. A copy of their draft proposed 19-page model order is here in PDF (and I hope to review it shortly).

As stated in their draft documentation:

This Model Order is prepared in response to comments of the Supreme Court of Canada in Canadian Bearings Ltd. et al. v. Celanese Canada Inc. et al, 2006 SCC 36, which endorsed the development of model civil search and seizure Orders (a.k.a “Anton Piller” Orders) in Canadian jurisdictions. This draft is intended

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Practice of Law

Are We There Yet?

As Windows 7 and Office 2010 sweep across the land, along with a plethora of interesting new hardware devices like iPads and netbooks, the urge to upgrade is striking a great many attorneys. I can hardly walk into a room without somebody sidling up to me and asking “So….should I upgrade?”

The answer is always the same: “Maybe.”

“Maybe?” they respond, with that unsatisfied look in their eyes. They’re surprised. I’m a technologist. I’m supposed to always be pushing them to the bleeding edge, chuckling softly that they only have 4GB of RAM, suggesting that they could get a 3rd . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology

Lee, Lifeson and Peart of Rush as Perfect Professionals

What does it mean to be a professional? There are no doubt many thoughtful articles written by those of us in the legal sector that address this question, but I’m going to refer you to a movie about a rock band for the answer.

Rush – Beyond the Lighted Stage premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in April and was released last week for home consumption. Directed by Sam Dunn and Scot McFayden, it tells a story about the 40-year and counting careers of bassist Geddy Lee, guitarist Alex Lifeson and drummer and lyricist Neil Peart – together, Canadian rock . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

Law Librarian Conversations Podcast at AALL 2010

If you are attending the upcoming American Association of Law Libraries conference in Denver, you are invited to drop by the CALI booth on Sunday afternoon from 2 to 3 p.m. for a “meet and greet” session with hosts and panelists of the Law Librarian Conversations podcast. Hosts Richard Leiter, Marcia Dority Baker and Roger Skalbeck will be there along with a pack of panelists to meet you.

You are also welcome to attend the recording of the special AALL 2010 episode of LawLibCon on Tuesday, July 13th at 2 pm in the CALI booth at the conference. Richard . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Richard Susskind and Legal Publishing

Richard Susskind has been far and away the most interesting speaker I’ve heard this year. He’s been travelling around the world delivering his message of coming change for the legal profession. He spoke at a recent CLEBC course and at the BC Court of Appeal 100th anniversary course.

For those of you who haven’t yet had the Susskind experience, he predicts that the legal profession is undergoing profound changes as corporate clients are under increasing pressure to cut costs, and as private clients cannot afford the bespoke services provided by lawyers. He anticipates that over the next ten years, the . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Publishing

Refined Searches in Google Scholar

If you use Google Scholar at all, you may be pleased to know that it’s now possible to refine certain searches. In a particular kind of search you want to know how a judgment or article has been received: this you can get by clicking on the “cited by [n]” link that will appear beneath each item in your search results. The happy ability to refine comes from Google’s addition of a switch to let you search within the articles or judgments that cited your initial work. Thus, to use a pedestrian example, Google Scholar returns 789 results for a . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Twitter and the Book of Kells: A Speculation

On May 12, 2010, I attended the San Francisco manifestation of Carl Malamud’s road show on legal information. Carl has criss-crossed the United States putting on programs about government information in general, and legal information in particular. The San Francisco/ Berkeley version of the program included luminaries from the world of information, law, librarians and information cowboys. If you want to see my bit, here is a link.

Questions like, “How can we organize a movement to determine exactly what types of information states already make available digitally?” sat side by side with questions like, “Can I get Twitter . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

Accounting Standards in Transition

Standards in the accounting and auditing industries are undergoing a number of changes. The CICA (Chartered Accountants of Canada) has a web page Canadian Standards in Transition pulling together the standards–both Canadian and international–that are currently in transition. Here is a very brief run-down:

  • International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRSs) – for publicly accountable enterprises (PAEs) and government business enterprises (GBEs); optional for private enterprises and others. IFRSs are issued by the International Accounting Standard Board (IASB).
  • Accounting Standards for Private Enterprises – “give Canadian businesses the ability to choose to adopt new ‘made in Canada’ standards or International Financial Reporting
. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

The Remedy for eDiscovery Angst – Backup Tapes

The major concerns surrounding eDiscovery are typically cost, time and reliability. How to get a accurate collection of relevant data within the court appointed time window without breaking the bank. The solution is actually what some mistakenly think is the thorn of all eDiscovery projects. Backups tapes have traditionally been synonymous with the undue burden argument; time consuming, painful and expense to discover. However direct indexing technology make this argument mute. Not only is tape discovery quick and affordable, tapes also contain an unspoiled, point in time copy of all the data in question.

IT teams capture corporate data from . . . [more]

Posted in: e-Discovery

A Piece of Canadian Legal History

I happened to be in St. Thomas, Ontario, recently, and was taken on a tour of the old cemetery, which dates back to the founding of the town in about 1810. One of the residents, so to speak, of that graveyard is Hugh Richardson, the judge who presided over the trial of Louis Riel and pronounced the death sentence.

His gravestone was “cleaned” inexpertly some years ago and is now covered with lichen, making the inscription difficult to read, as you’ll see from the photograph to the left (click on it to enlarge it somewhat). I’ve taken another photograph from . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous