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How Fast the Wikisphere Works

Reading about Justice Samuel Alito yesterday, the Post and the Times both linked to the Wikipedia biography of the nominee. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_A._Alito,_Jr.

It seems to be written in real time, with links to the White House statement, and newspaper commentaries, as well as good links back to his judgments and pre-judicial career.
What was really impressive was how fast this was current and running, a better site than any of the conventional papers and a tribute to web-based collaboration. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Canlii Find — Revisited

It seems that my initial bookmarklet Canlii Find won’t work in IE on Windows (but does in IE on a Mac — which is where I made it). I’ve done another version that should work on IE in the way that the original works in Firefox.

So here they are, renamed for clarity: Canlii Find (IE) and CANLII Find (FF)

Thanks for the feedback. Keep it coming with respect to the new one, too, please. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Microsoft Joins Digital Library Inititiaves

This is a link to an article on the Chronicle of Higher Education: “Microsoft, Joining Growing Digital-Library Effort, Will Pay for Scanning of 150,000 Books.

http://chronicle.com/temp/email.php?id=93ohnmza2fvcsjur1iqon9hkj8v1vbgu

Six of the participants are Canadian universities: Toronto, York, McMaster, Ottawa, Memorial, and UBC. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

“CANLII Find” Bookmarklet

I was a guest at a meeting of Toronto research lawyers today (see Ted Tjaden’s post below) and found it very interesting. Among other things, I got a couple of ideas from it for research tools that might be helpful, one of which is set out in this post.

I’m an academic and for me the commercial databases are free; so it always takes me a moment to remember that practitioners have to pay — correction: their clients have to pay — for these services. Moreover, I don’t think I properly appreciated how careful practitioners can be about whether . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Current Awareness Techniques for Legal Researchers

A question arose today among colleagues how best to stay “current” with law-related information without becoming overwhelmed.

Certainly, technology has a role to play but I also suspect there is no “one size fits all” solution for every person. For example, I find my information-seeking habits and needs now (as an academic law librarian) are quite different from when I was a practicing research lawyer. Set out below are some of the various techniques I have used, along with a list of some of the standard websites I would ordinarily visit on a regular basis. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Slaw Has PageRank!

The Google Toolbar PageRank (PR) has finally been updated, and Slaw has received a PR5! To see this for yourself, you must have the Google Toolbar installed, and have the PR bar indicator ‘checked off’ under ‘Options…’.

Google PR is updated on a continual basis, but the only glimpse we get into this algorithm factor is via the Toolbar. It’s also important to note that PR is only one of over a hundred estimated elements in how Google calculates the search results. In reality, it’s not a great indicator of how a website will rank in the SERPS (search engine . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Google’s RSS Reader

To read my RSS feeds I use a dedicated newsreader application, as opposed to a browser-based reader such as that in Firefox, or a reader offered up as a web application. I guess it's the old-fashioned part of me that likes to have a program under my control for each of my purposes. But one clear downside to this preference is that when I'm not at my computer I can't read my feeds.
Posted in: Miscellaneous

Palm and RIM Working Together

Palm, Inc. and Research in Motion, Inc (RIM) announced today they will be working together to bring Blackberry technology to Palm Treo smartphones. As the software applications gradually converge, the companies will therefore be competing primarily on hardware.

See the press release “Palm and Research In Motion Bring BlackBerry Connect to the Treo 650 Smartphone”:

Through RIM’s BlackBerry Connect licensing program, Palm will enable its Treo 650 and future Palm OS® based Treo smartphones with secure, push-based wireless email via BlackBerry Enterprise Server™. The solution will enable the following:

  • push-based email using BlackBerry Connect with Palm’s VersaMail® email client;
. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous