Technology Predictions for 2007

I was about to start a post on this, based on the online discussions which Law Practice Magazine and the CBA National are publishing, but I discovered that it had all been done for me, by our colleagues across the AtlanticThe thought of a Data Protection Commissioner as either Sting or Bono, boggles the mind. Block that metaphor!


  1. Good stuff from the SCL site. Still, we should also assemble some of our own thoughts here.

    In the legal context, 2007 figures to be a year of consolidation, not revolution. Lawyer blogs will continue to sprout, but we’re still probably 24+ months away from the legal world’s equivalent of Lifehacker or Boing Boing. More RSS cracks will appear in the information dam, but most lawyers won’t fully get it till 2008 or later, IE7 notwithstanding. Most lawyers will still view collaborative Web technology — really, all new technology — as a complicated tool, not a goes-without-saying element of practice. The consumer and client worlds will spend 2007 surging ahead of lawyers, who won’t feel the need to starting catching up for a while yet. It might be too late by then.

    On the consumer side, I only see one truly revolutionary thing going on right now. Before Christmas, everyone wanted to buy a PlayStation 3. Since Christmas, everyone I’ve talked to has been going on about the Wii. Using a TV remote as a golf club or light sabre is not just unprecedented; it also has shifted a lot of people’s paradigms about what their virtual leisure activities should feel like. More importantly, Boomers are going to want this even more than kids and gamers do. I don’t what the (horribly named) Wii has triggered, but it’s triggered something that we’re all going to notice, and soon.

  2. – The tech divide within law firms will get larger. Those lawyers priding themselves on their luddite status will fall further behind.

    – Personal digital concierge style services, or hand holding, will become more prominent. Think business coaching for technology.

    – I agree that RSS will make modest inroads. Advanced mixing & filtering will be ignored by everyone but the advanced user. That said, the general comprehension of the technology should pick up. Those that traditionally value ‘current awareness’ will become hooked, those that don’t, won’t.

    – Extranets will be seen as a dying technology. Secure collaborative workspaces & Deal Rooms will become more prominent, but the idea of exhaustively documenting firm-to-client relationships will come to an end.

    – At last, Enterprise Search will be talked about and implemented by forward thinking firms. These federated search products will go beyond the DMS, CRM & Accounting, and search both behind the firewall web content and public web content (produced by firm members).