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December 2006
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February 2007

Paralegal Article on Wikipedia...

...definitely needs improvement!

Of all the smart & experienced paralegals who read this blog, surely someone (or several someones), has the skills & knowledge to improve this article, right?

Find the current article here, history of additions & changes here, editing how-to here, editable page here, editing guidelines here, & info about all this Wikipedia stuff here.

Be sure to create a Wikipedia account & please let me know who decides to jump in!


"PBS Series Spotlights the Supreme Court's Past & Present"

History, drama, games, timelines, personalities...did I mention games? What's not to like?

"At the rare times the Supreme Court pops into the consciousness of the public, it is usually because of a vexing case or, more recently, a personnel change or two. Rarely is there a chance to step back and look at the Court's history or its evolving role in the life of the nation.

"PBS makes a vitally important effort to do just that in a four-part documentary, The Supreme Court, which begins airing this week. It is a must-see series that takes the viewer back to the pitifully weak early days of the Court, then all the way forward to its current incarnation as a center-of-the-universe powerhouse. It perfectly tees up the current air of anticipation over just how conservative the new Roberts Court is -- or will be, with another vacancy or two."

It airs January 31 & February 7, 2007 @ 9 pm EST. Be sure to check your local listings.


LegalTech NY: Combine in-house & outsourced e-discovery

The instant survey says....:

"The most common law firm preference for managing client e-discovery data is through a combination of in-house software and outsourced processing services, according to an instant survey of law firm attorneys, litigation support specialists and e-discovery specialists conducted yesterday by LexisNexis® Discovery Services during the opening sessions of LegalTech New York 2007, the largest legal technology event of the year.

"Forty eight percent of the survey participants reported their firms prefer the combined approach. The second most popular choice, expressed by 28 percent of those surveyed, was to manage e-discovery data with in-house software. Fourteen percent of the respondents said that they preferred outsourcing e-discovery data management to a vendor and 10 percent said they did not know."


"Time and Billing: Be Trigger-Happy"

I love how "trigger" reminders work:

"Does your current time and billing software help you manage your law firm's workflow? Does it identify key 'events' that trigger paperwork? If not, it may be time to upgrade.

[snip]

"By simply defining certain conditions, or rules that must be met -- such as the payment of an invoice, the generation of a specific type of document or even billable time that does not meet minimum amounts -- event software integrates with your time and billing program.

[snip]

"Once rules are established and thresholds are set, these systems are designed to be self-maintaining and will run transparently to automatically trigger notification alerts. Common events which can act as triggers in event-driven software include new clients, cash receipts over or under limits, vendor payments, new matters, unbilled time and/or cost write-offs, missing time, check processing, aged open vouchers, delinquent accounts receivable and hours-worked budgets on matters."

And here's a handy list of vendors from the article:

Cronacle, Redwood Software Inc., www.redwood.com.
Elite Extend, and Elite 3E Business Monitoring, Thomson Elite, www.elite.com.
Expert Notifications, Aderant, www.aderant.com.
EDA Suite, Oracle Corp., www.oracle.com.
MyJuris, Juris Inc., www.juris.net.
Omega Legal, Omega Legal Systems Inc., www.omegalegal.com.
Rainmaker Platinum Suite, Rainmaker Software Inc., www.rainmakerlegal.com.
RollCall and DTE, Advanced Productivity Software Inc., www.aps-soft.com.
TABS3, Software Technology, Inc., www.tabs3.com.


"27 Tips for Teleconferencing"

Wow, this is a remarkably smart list! Stuff I hadn't even thought about. (Links below are from the original post.):

"Whether you call them conference calls or telecons or excruciatingly dull time-wasters, multi-participant phone conversations are as important to most web workers [& paralegals] as email. If you can’t meet face to face or arrange video conferencing, the conference call is the next best thing. But just as with email and instant messaging, people don’t always agree on how to use them as effectively as possible as a tool for collaboration.

"Try these tips for your next telecon whether you’re the leader of the call or just a participant."

BTW, you can find more info about Web Worker Daily here...


"Unlocking Keywords to Ensure Effective E-Discovery"

This article explains some important details for effectively searching e-discovery:

"[M]isplaced confidence in the power of word searches can seriously hamper electronic data discovery. Perhaps because keyword searching works so well in the regimented realm of automated legal research, lawyers and judges embrace it in EDD with little thought given to its effectiveness as a tool for exploring less-structured information. Too bad, because the difference between keyword searches that get the goods and those that fail hinges on thoughtful preparation and precaution.

TEXT TRANSLATION

"Framing effective searches starts with understanding that most of what we think of as textual information isn't stored as text. Brilliant keywords won't turn up anything if the data searched isn't properly processed.

[snip]

"Lots of evidence we think of as textual isn't stored as text, including fax transmissions, .tiff or PDF documents, PowerPoint word art, CAD/CAM blueprints and Zip archives. For each, the search software must process the data to insure content is accessible as searchable text.

"Be certain the search tool you or your vendor employ can access and interpret all of the data that should be seen as text."


"Ginsburg Feels Isolated on Court"

Yeah, I get this. But do you think Harriet Myers would have made a difference?

"BOSTON -- U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said Friday that she dislikes being 'all alone on the court' nearly a year after the retirement of Sandra Day O'Connor.

"Ginsburg, who spoke to an assembly at Suffolk University Law School, said she sees more women in law school, arguing before the court and sitting as federal judges."


Law firm "American as apple pie"

As much as I like pie (really, who doesn't?), I did not realize there was an actual day to celebrate pies:

"FREDERICK -- Attorneys, law clerks and paralegals flowed in and out of Conklyn & Associates' law office Tuesday with little mention of court cases or settlements.

"A cheerier goal brought them to the West Patrick Street family law practice -- a pie party.

"For the past six years, Beth Conklyn and her staff have been carting in pies on Jan. 23 to celebrate National Pie Day.

[snip]

"Pie is doing its part in Frederick by providing legal professionals a chance to meet under more pleasant circumstances, Conklyn said.

"They come in with a smile and leave with a smile on pie day,' paralegal Mimi Bellanti said."

Oh, don't forget Great American Pie Month in February!


KMWorld: List of knowledge management vendors

If you're looking for vendors in the KM space, this magazine has compiled a thorough list:

"The KMWorld Buyers Guide is packed with leading vendors offering real solutions to knowledge management dilemmas that will help users gain and maintain control of their enterprise environment.

"There are two ways to access the information in this guide: you may select a vendor name..., linking directly to a detailed page containing information about the specific company, its products, solutions and contact information OR select one (or more) categories from the list on the right for a list of corresponding solution providers.

"Participants in this guide are all cross-indexed. To develop a customized list of solution providers corresponding to your search criteria, select one or more categories from the RESEARCH CENTERS or SOLUTIONS, then click the Search button."

For example, searching the 3 selections below returns 5 matching vendors:

Research Centers
Solutions


"Superior Legal Web Sites to Watch"

This article from our friends at Law Technology News offers a bunch of helpful law links:

"We delve into our browser's bookmarks this month, to review the recently launched Web sites of interest to individuals in the legal profession.

BLAWG SEARCH

"Several sites help you search the content of blogs, but offer no way to limit your search to law-related blogs.

"A new tool solves this search shortfall by indexing only the content of legal blogs.

"Called BlawgSearch, it is the creation of Tim Stanley and his team at the Web site design company Justia. (If Stanley's name sounds familiar, it's because he was cofounder of the original FindLaw).

It launched in November, with an index of some 600 blawgs, and as of this writing, has more than 1,000, with more being added regularly.

"The site includes a directory of blawgs arranged by categories and locations, as well as a directory of other blawg directories. The site's front page lists the most popular blawgs, highlights recent blawg posts and highlights a 'featured blawger.' Clouds display tags and search terms."

There's much, much more in the complete article....