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Archive for May, 2007

Canadian Ice Service

On the very weak basis that if it’s to do with government then it’s related to law, I’m bringing the Canadian Ice Service to your attention, an agency I’d not heard of until I read about it in a recent BBC story about Ayles Ice Island, a collosal piece of our frozen north the size of Manhattan that’s been floating further and further away from its Ellesmere Island home since it calved two years ago. (Okay, an issue for legal research: what if the thing floated so far towards Greenland that it trespassed into what had been Danish waters? Could . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

The Post-Friday Fillip … on Tuesday: Fun With Wills

Having happily agreed to post a Friday Fillip for Simon Fodden, I unexpectedly and blithely extended my May vacation thereby dropping the proverbial ball! Sorry, Simon! Hence, this Tuesday Friday Fillip … Fun with Wills!

If you haven’t already come across the unusual will of Charles Vance Millar, a lawyer, who must have been a pretty funny guy, read this. His 1926 will opens with the clause:

“This Will is necessarily uncommon and capricious because I have no dependents or near relations and no duty rests upon me to leave any property at my death and what I

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

A Visit to Google Headquarters

There is an interesting article in the upcoming June issue of The Walrus by Ali Symons “A real-life Google query goes awry” giving some interesting personal observations on a visit to Googleplex, Google headquarters in the Silicon Valley. One thing I really appreciate about The Walrus online is that they have a “further reading” section that gives more information than what is contained in the published issue. The one for the Symons’ article gives some links that have a well, different, perspective in which to see Google. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous


CALL’s Wendy Reynolds has started a new blog for the knowledge management special interest group (I think that’s what SIG means), KM Librarians “A co-operative blog for members of the CALL KM SIG.”

Wendy says: “Interested in becoming a regular contributor? Get in touch with the SIG chairs Linda Matte and Wendy Reynolds, and we’ll hook you up.” . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Zoho Wiki

Slowly (not wiki wikiApparently meaning “quick” in Hawaiian.) wikis are making their way into legal lives, the clearest example perhaps being the new U.S. 7th Circuit Wiki that Agnese Caruso blogged about last week. If you’re thinking of getting your feet wet in the wiki-surf, you might consider Zoho’s new Wiki application.

Zoho has been adding new apps to its offerings at quite a rate, aiming to stay in the race with Google, Yahoo and all of the others competing for the online office suite market. I’ve found some of Zoho’s offerings to be simply adequate (their . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Harvard Presentation on “New Skills, New Learning” Report This Tuesday

I received this invitation from Gene Koo at Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society. Gene will be presenting the report “New Skills, New Learning” which Simon Chester summarized for us on April 9th. If you want to take part in the meeting, please RSVP as per the invitation below.

Dear Colleagues:

As you know, recently I conducted research into legal technology and education, examining how changing practice needs are affecting what, and how, law schools should teach. (Research was conducted in partnership with the LexisNexis Group). Many of you provided considerable help and insight during this

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

So How Many Commodore 64’s?

Okay, an exabyte (1152921504606846976 bytes) is 2 to the 60th power , or 1,024 petabytes. A petabyte is 1,024 terabytes; a terabyte is 1,024 gigabytes; and a gigabyte is 1,024 megabytes…

  • In 2006, 161 exabytes of digital information were created and copied, continuing an unprecedented period of information growth.
  • The 2006 digital universe was 161 billion gigabytes (161 exabytes) in size.
  • Studies forecast the amount of information created and copied in 2010 will surge more than six fold to 988 exabytes, a compound annual growth rate of 57%.
  • While nearly 70% of the digital universe will be generated by individuals
  • . . . [more]
    Posted in: Miscellaneous

    CLLG Report on CIL2007

    Just did a quick post over on the VLLB to say that Elda Figueira, recipient of the Calgary Law Library Group‘s 2007 Travel Grant, has blogged an exceptional report on this year’s Computers in Libraries (CIL) conference.

    See: 101 Things I Learned at the Conference, Some of Which I Report on Here.

    For those that haven’t visited, be sure to check out the Calgary group’s website. . . . [more]

    Posted in: Miscellaneous

    Words Fail Me

    A British judge admitted on Wednesday he was struggling to cope with basic terms like “Web site” in the trial of three men accused of inciting terrorism via the Internet.

    Judge Peter Openshaw broke into the questioning of a witness about a Web forum used by alleged Islamist radicals.

    “The trouble is I don’t understand the language. I don’t really understand what a Web site is,” . . . [more]

    Posted in: Miscellaneous

    7th Circuit Wiki

    From reading, I discovered that the 7th Circuit recently developed its own wiki. Its focus is to provide an online space where lawyers and judges can post information on practice and procedure in both the court of appeals and the district courts. As Carolyn Elefant writes on, its definitely a great resource for both experienced and newbie lawyers. . . . [more]

    Posted in: Miscellaneous

    PowerPoint and Shoot?

    Some bright folks at the University of Toronto’s Department of Computer Science Human-Computer Interaction Group spend their time thinking about how we get along with computers and make them do our bidding (ha ha). One interesting project involves a hand-held projector and a computer pen, enabling the user to project material onto any surface within a room and, in effect, park it there, such that this document is “located” on that tabletop and that graphic is lodged on the wall to the right, etc. “Shining” the projector gun on that tabletop reveals the document and sweeping the gun to the . . . [more]

    Posted in: Miscellaneous

    Podcast on Legal Research

    If you can’t make the Spring pilgrimage to Eagan, MN, let Eagan come to you.

    There’s a brand new podcast from the West-Thomson research specialists. It features West reference lawyers Ed Fisher, Katy Hauck and Andy O’Meara, who discuss how they approach the calls, e-mails and live chat messages they get every day. They also talk about why they became reference attorneys and offer advice for Westlaw customers in how to best use their help.

    And if you can’t manage the Podcast, do keep up with the free newsletters. . . . [more]

    Posted in: Miscellaneous