Canada’s online legal magazine.

Top Five Mistakes in Electronic Research

I’ve developed Top Five and Top Ten lists as part of the Boot Camp I teach, with my colleagues, to articling students at our law firm. While it started out in fun, I soon discovered that it was an effective teaching tool that students paid attention to (as opposed to anything else I said), and have spent time refining it recently. I thought I’d offer this one as my first post, (although it’s not very tech-y) and welcome comments.


1. Missed higher level of Court: This one’s a career-limiting move! Did . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Graphical Keycite on Westlaw

I was at a conference in San Antonio in July where Westlaw announced a new graphical interface for “shephardizing” US caselaw.

The dome url is

I talked to the Canadian rep who said this is under development in Canada, but not yet available. I reccomended that they consult with the legal research and academic communities on features, specifically on being able to note up foreign cases in Canadian courts, as this is now a significant aspect of Canadian legal research.

I urge Slawites to do the same.

I think graphical keycite is great, but I’d like to hear other . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Filtering Out Information by Delegation

A few months ago, in connection with a project to create a research “desktop” for the faculty and graduate students, I interviewed a number of my colleagues at Osgoode Hall Law School about how they do their research. I was particularly interested in how often and how well they used online databases, those to which the Osgoode library subscribes or the two commercial giants (which are free for academic use). I can’t say I was surprised by my informal findings, which can perhaps be best summarized by saying that faculty members use these databases far less than one might suppose . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

StatsCan Goes to Law School

Statistics Canada has just released the “Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP), Canada, 2000”. This is the Canadian effort to match the U.S. CIP, which was first developed in 1980. These classifications may have a variety of uses beyond that for the collection of statistics.

Law as a “field of study” is listed under “Academic and Occupationally-Specific Programs” and is identified, as are all fields of study, by a double digit, in this case 22. That field is further broken up into:

  • Non-Professional General Legal Studies (Undergraduate)
  • Law (First Professional Degree)
  • Legal Research and Advanced Professional Studies (Graduate Level)
  • Legal
. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

Out of the Jungle

Out of the Jungle: Thoughts on the present and future of legal information, legal research, and legal education is a new group blog founded by Jim Milles (Director of the Law Library at SUNY Buffalo), Billie Jo Kaufman, and Linda Ryan. It’s going to have an American focus, but as we are all facing more or less the same IT issues, I thought Slaw readers would like to know about this blog.

Jim Milles wrote a provocative article “Out of the Jungle” for the February 2005 issue of AALL Spectrum whereby he advocates that librarians focus more on . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Another Contender – Corporate Filing Services

On July 27th I spoke about the Competition Heating Up With Corporate Filing Services, and spoke only of LIVEDGAR from GSI and DisclosureNet from XP Innovations.

Eric Leduc has kindly pointed me to a third contender, Corporate Retriever from Micromedia ProQuest. Back in the pre-SEDAR days, Micromedia was THE company we went to for filings. They published the OSC Bulletin for the Ontario Securities Commission, and made corporate filings available in paper and microfiche formats.

I have not yet tried out Corporate Retriever, but would like to do so. I’m interested to hear from anyone who has already done . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

RSS Feeds for Alberta Legislation

As recently reported on the VLLB, the Alberta Queen’s Printer has announced RSS feeds for both their website and QP Source Professional.

Sheldon Staszko, Director of Alberta Queen’s Printer, made the announcement via the Calgary Law Libraries Group listserv on July 27th. Alberta’s QP is the first to deliver this type of service via RSS in Canada. How long until the rest of Canada follows suit, either Nationally or Provincially, is anyone’s guess. Regardless, this is a great first step and definitely one in the right direction. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Osler Goes Audio

Osler Hoskin Harcourt appeared to be the first major Canadian firm to employ RSS feeds from its website.  It has been using RSS to deliver newsletter articles from its various practice groups for the last several months.

Now Osler goes audio (their tagline, not mine) with podcasting from its website.  See:  Osler Reports .

Aimed at potential business clients, and discussing the latest trends in business, the first installment released this month runs about 7 minutes and discusses cross-border mergers and acquisitions.  Trends are identified using the experiences of their own clients as examples. 

Production value of the first podcast is very high, with . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Open Source and Beer

Since we are getting close to the dog days / silly season:

‘Free’ Danish beer makes a splash
By Clark Boyd
Technology correspondent

The Danes love their beer, but increasingly they are looking beyond the old Danish standby, Carlsberg, to quench their thirst.

The beer draws its inspiration from the open source movement
Students from the Information Technology University in Copenhagen is trying to help by releasing what they are calling the world’s first open source beer recipe.

It is called Vores Oel, or Our Beer, and the recipe is proving to be a worldwide hit.

The idea behind the . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous