9/30/08

Have You Fed Your Creativity Lately?? It looks a little thin to me....

We here at the Geeklawblog discuss a lot on the topics of Knowledge Management, Marketing, Research and Competitive Intelligence.  On the surface, these ideas tend to mean the “repackaging of existing data into usable information for the benefit of those in our firm.”  In other words, we attempt to create a way to make our “results” greater than the sum of our “parts”.

But, when I started thinking about it, perhaps the key word in the previous sentence isn’t “results” or “parts”, but rather it is the word “create.”  To me, it is the creativity part of my job that most inspires me.  Being able to look at a problem and come up with a unique solution, and implementing that solution makes me want to come in to work much more than the paycheck at the end of the week.  And, I’m guessing, that for those of you that have jobs that ask you to be creative, you also value that creative reward more than the financial reward.

I watched a talk by Sir Ken Robinson where he discusses creativity, and how something so important tends to be discounted in our educational system.  My absolute favorite portion of the talk was when Robinson defines creativity:

  • Creativity  - “The process of having original ideas that have value.”

Simple, but inspiring for those of us lucky enough who are asked to be creative in our day-to-day functions. 

When we look around at our peers, which ones stand out to you?   Is it the KM director that has installed and supports a dozen applications?  Or, is it that one KM person that created a way to use applications in a unique way, thus creating something of value??  Is it the librarian that billed 2000 hours of research work, thus making money for the firm?  Or, is it the librarian that created a system to monitor what the competition was doing, and made sure that the lawyers in the firm got that information in their hands in order to be better prepared and to make proactive decisions?  

You get the idea….  All four of these samples are “valuable”, but the creative samples are “original ideas” that not only provide value, they also generate a competitive advantage that can spur additional value on down the line.  Take a look and see if your creative side needs a little nourishment.

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9/29/08

YouTube-Pulitzer contest

CBS and YouTube are petitioning the folks at Pulitzer to create a prize for video news. . . . maybe I will be able to get that Pulitzer that I've always dreamed about . . . YouTube Partners With Pulitzer Center For Contest By Doug Caverly - Mon, 09/08/2008 - 2:52pm. Poor video quality, the pointlessness of many clips, and the fact that the site isn't profitable have all kept YouTube from earning much respect. But a new contest called Project: Report may go a ways towards changing that. The contest is being backed by Sony VAIO and Intel, so the prizes are sure to create some excitement. More important is YouTube's partnership with the Pulitzer Center, which lends quite a bit of authority to any matter and leads to Project: Report's journalistic focus. "[N]on-professional, aspiring journalists" are being encouraged "to tell stories that might not otherwise be covered by traditional media." In the first of three rounds, participants should "profile someone in your community, in three minutes or less, highlighting a story you think deserves to be heard by a wide audience," according to a post on theYouTube Blog. Then, following the October 5th end of the submission period, judges will narrow the field to 10 finalists, and more information about the second and third rounds should be released. The overall winner will get grants, gear, and the opportunity to work with the Pulitzer Center on an international reporting project. Project: Report won't turn YouTube into some beacon of truth overnight, and to be honest, such a beacon probably wouldn't be half as popular. YouTube's at least demonstrating a sort of ability to be mature, though, and taken in conjunction with all of its recent political coverage, this development may be part of a trend.

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More LinkedIn in InterAction

Tomorrow, version 5.6 of InterAction will be released. On Friday, I was able to preview a demo of one of its new features. 5.6 has an optional LinkedIn function set. The default on installation has this turned off, but a simple admin effort will turn it on. Once enabled, the function set takes the contact names and company names in InterAction and runs them against LinkedIn's list. Matches are then given a LinkedIn icon which allows users to see their LinkedIn connections with the contact. The first time you click a LinkedIn icon, you are asked to allow access. This is a one-time effort which is reversible from the LinkedIn account management menu. Once access is granted, LinkedIn then provides you connection lines with the contact record. In the demo, I saw the LexisNexis reps connections to me (3rd level) and how he could connect through his own connections to contact me. This is just the LinkedIn functions we're used to. The LinkedIn icon will also show in an Outlook view, if you have the Web client and open a contact through the InterAction access button. In talking with the rep, LexisNexis is planning further integrations, like co-mingling InterAction "Who Knows Whom" with the LinkedIn connections. They are looking for ideas on how to expand these functions, so feel free to contact them. As previously posted here, this new tool-set appears to be moving LinkedIn into a higher value category. LinkedIn is interesting and has potential, but now we're actually seeing some of this potential in action.

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9/26/08

Google In Quotes

A nifty tool for reporters, writers and news junkies, Google is cooking up a new tool that lets you compare quotes on people of interest on a variety of topics. Right now, you are limited to 20 political figures in the U.S. Edition (other people of interested are selected for Canada, UK, and India). They have some popular issues already defined but you can also run a search on any topic you choose. It pulls the quote, cites the sources and gives a link. There is also a "spin" feature which randomly selects other results on your search.

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IT Props

As my esteemed colleague has commented on some Ike IT frustrations, I feel compelled to comment on some Ike IT stars. My firm's IT group road out the storm and kept our systems up and running. As the 'main' office for our firm, all of our critical systems reside here in Houston. Of course we have an off-site backup, as all firms should. Even though our building sustained some damage, our systems never went down. IT staff was on-site and at our backup location monitoring things and making sure we stayed live. The result, I never stopped getting emails (and working) and we had critical infrastructure available for lawyers and staff that needed it. Kudos to our IT group!

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9/25/08

Heller Ehrman - Dissolving.... Who's Next??

The writing was on the wall for this one.  Heller Ehrman is going to dissolve on Friday.  Legal Times posted it, and additional information was published by Cal Law.
Some of the background information is found on the Heller Highwater blog.
There are RUMORS, that Thacher Proffitt and Seyfarth Shaw are looking to merge with someone to prevent the same fate.  

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Copyrighted Governmental Works.... Why???

First off, I'm going to let you know that I am very biased on this topic, and believe that it is the goverment's express duty to make its laws known to the people they affect.  So, when I was at the Oklahoma Supreme Court, and managing the court's public website, OSCN, we made every effort to make whatever writings came out of the court available online.
But, there are a number of governments, from local to state, that attempt to put a copyright on any and all of their publications, and use that as leverage to either sell access to the information via their own publications or through publishers like Westlaw and Lexis.  Oregon just recently backed off of their attempt to sue for copyright protection once there was a public outcry against them.  My good friend Bonnie Shucha, up in Wisconsin, blogged about that case back in July.
I read today on CNET that Carl Malamud is trying to take on any government that he can by copying their published works and making it available on public.resource.org.  Great idea, but pretty hard for one man to do.  But, I do like how he is putting the web to use by also hosting the Pacer Recycling website where you can upload your old Pacer documents to his site, and others can then use them rather than going back to Pacer.
Getting governments to contribute to the public domain shouldn't be a difficult task, but it can be.  Even when I was at OSCN, we offered the free use of our database to house the court decisions and statutes of other states.  We only had one state to take us up on the offer (good ol' Wyoming!!)  We even helped digitize some of their older cases and put the whole thing in Universal Citation System format, so that the big boys at the major legal publishers didn't try to sue for the pagination rights.  I was truly surprised when other courts didn't take us up on the offer to house their cases.  There were actually a couple of them (who shall remain nameless Western Mountainous States) that were actually pretty hostile to the idea because they thought it would cut a revenue source for them.  
I wish Carl the best of luck, and will be watching to see if he finally gets under the governments' or publishers' skin and they sue him for copyright enfringment.

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9/24/08

IT Chic - Bluetooth Watches for Women

This looks like a very hip, highly functional cool new tool that I would seriously consider owning. Depends upon how it looks, 'tho . . . Sony Ericsson Announces Bluetooth Watches For Women London, UK – 24th of September, 2008 – Convenient, good looking and distinctive, the Bluetooth ™ MBW-200 range of Bluetooth™ watches is an expansion of the highly successful Bluetooth ™ MBW-150 range. With three different sophisticated designs to match your personality, be the first among your friends to control your phone with your watch. Missed an important call or SMS because you couldn’t hear or find your phone at the bottom of your handbag? With the MBW-200 this is now a thing of the past. Using innovative Bluetooth™ technology, the watch displays the caller ID and vibrates as your phone is ringing or when you receive an SMS. Reject or mute the call with a button on the watch or use the Bluetooth™ headset or mobile phone to answer the call and start chatting. “The MBW-200 series is the next step in the development of Bluetooth™ wireless technology.” said Karmen Mandic, Product Business Manager, at Sony Ericsson. “Now women can buy a Bluetooth™ watch that gives them both wireless functionality and an opportunity to express their personal taste. We’re all looking for products that make our lives more convenient. With a glance at your watch you can see who is calling, what the time is and with a push of a button you can change your music or use it as a music remote control when your phone is on the other side of the room– all in one stylish device.” Designed in partnership with watch industry leader Fossil and the Bluetooth™ knowhow of Sony Ericsson, the MBW-200 series comes in three distinct designs; Sparkling Allure, Contemporary Elegance and Evening Classic. The Bluetooth™ Watch Collection features scratch resistant mineral crystal glass with an anti-glare coating for optimum readability and glow. The discreet, yet stylish and clear monochrome OLED display is invisible when not in use and clearly visible on a bright day so that you can see who is calling or which track is playing with ease. Can’t decide which stylish Bluetooth™ Watch is for you? Sony Ericsson has teamed up with three leading female tennis players to show how each MBW-200 watch has a distinct personality to match anyone’s personal style and fashion tastes. The Sparkling Allure Edition, as modelled by 19-year-old Slovakian Dominika Cibulkova, is glamorous, yet strong and sporty – created for the ultimate young and funky fashionista. With its on trend white leather strap and display with crystal décor stones, this stylish number is perfect for making a fashion statement while being practical and convenient. The Contemporary Elegance Edition, as modelled by 18-year-old Danish ‘Princess of Tennis’ Caroline Wozniacki, is perfect for the young professional who wants to stay focussed on the job at the same time as staying connected. Enjoy the benefits of the stainless steel watch with its efficient call handling and make a dazzling impression wherever you are. The Evening Classic Edition, adorning 19-year-old Hungarian superstar Agnes Szavay, has a classic yet casual profile. The stylish leather strap and discreet black face can be worn in any environment, whether at home, in the office or on a weekend away. For those who are always on the move the vibration alert of an SMS, or out of phone range, means that never again will you miss an important message. Bluetooth™ Watch MBW-200 collection features:Bringing together contemporary design and cutting edge Bluetooth™ technology Reject or mute call through the watch Vibrates on new SMS/MMS - and an out of range warning – when 10 m away from your phone Discreet yet clear caller ID - OLED display Play, pause, stop or skip a track on your phone’s music player Quartz movements for exact time keeping – both digital and analogue Auto pairing™ - easier to connect the watch to your phone Water resistant up to 3 ATM Allergy safe stainless steel Mineral crystal scratch resistant face with antiglare coating The MBW-200 range is available in selected markets in Q4. Sony Ericsson will also expand the MBW-150 range with yet another design. The MBW-150 Classic is a sporty edition with a brown leather strap and white face that will be available early next year in selected markets. The Sony Ericsson MBW-200 at a glance MBW-200Time indicator Analogue Digital from mobile phone Discreet call handling Caller ID in display Reject/mute call through watch Change volume Music player control Play, pause, stop, next track skip Change volume SMS/MMS message alert Vibrates on new SMS/MMS Out of range warningVibration alert at 10m from phone Standby time Battery indicator Bluetooth functionality for up to 7 days Analogue time keeping for up to 7 days SpecificationsIn-Box: Bluetooth™ Watch Charging clip Standard charger CST-60 User guide Exclusive box 3 different variants
Evening Classic Black dial with crystal décor Black detail on crown Black leather bracelet Stainless steel clasp Stainless steel case 60g weight
Contemporary Elegance Display with crystal décor stone Red minute hand Pattern detail on dial Brushed stainless steel bracelet Double security clasp with stainless steel folding blade Stainless steel case 60g weight
Sparkling Allure Rose gold rim with crystal décor stones Rose gold hands with white fill Mother of pearl look ‘carbon fiber’ texture display White crocodile leather bracelet Chrome finish polish on case Rose gold clasp Weight 60g Size: 37.3 x 39.6 x 14 mmAvailability and versionsAvailable in selected markets from early Q4 2008.

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iCyte is 20/20 - Finding, Storing, Tagging and Saving Your Research

While at the AALL annual meeting, I met Stephen Foley, the Chief Tech Officer of a new company called iCyte.   iCyte is beta testing its product which is designed to help the researcher better compile the information he or she gathers on the web, and to house copies of the original version of the web pages where the information was gathered.  I remember using a similar product like this years ago (pre-1999 because I was still working at Oklahoma City University's School of Law at the time.)  But for the life of me, I cannot remember what the product was called (if you remember it, please tell me!!)  That product, however, only allowed you to save the information locally.  With iCyte, it actually stores the information on the iCyte server, allowing you to access the saved information from any computer with an Internet connection.
Here is what the service includes:
  • a browser plug in - the software to be installed on your personal computer (“Client”); and
  • access to and storage of annotations on an iCyte server (“Server”); and
  • The Client enables you to annotate relevant portions of web-based documents (including web pages and PDF documents). The annotations and the web-based document are then saved as part of a project on the Server (“Annotations”), allowing extraction, publication, sorting, searching and editing at a later date
And there are some service options available as well.
  • Public - a Public setting will allow other users and members of the public to view and access (but not edit) all of your Annotations in that project.
  • Private - a Private setting will allow only those users who have been explicitly been given privileges by you to access, view and/or edit (as specified by you) your Annotations in that project.
  • Enterprise (for users subject to an Enterprise End User Licence Agreement) - an Enterprise setting will allow only those users who are a part of your enterprise to access, view and/or edit (as specified by you) any of your Annotations in that project.
If you are like me, you tend to research by doing the following:
  1. Find the information you need online using your web browser (I'm still testing Chrome and liking it...)
  2. Copy the information to a MS Word document
  3. Analyze the information and then reformat it in the standard research format.
  4. Proof, proof, and re-proof.
  5. Hand it over to the requester (reluctantly, because you just know there was something else out there but you didn't have enough time to find it because the associate waited until the last minute to ask for your assistance.....  oh, I'm getting off topic ... )
The value of a product like iCyte allows you to work in the same manner, but the copying and pasting is much better because you can now save your research process online, keep a copy of the original web page, and use tags to mark-up the data so you can better review the information at a later time.
I'm looking forward to testing this to see if it really matches my expectations.  I'm not sure if the beta test is open to everyone, but if you're interested, you should contact Stephen and ask to be included in the beta testing.

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9/23/08

Protecting Knowledge

In a week and a day, Nevada steps up with a new law requiring encryption of electronically transmitted personal information. NRS 597.970 Restrictions on transfer of personal information through electronic transmission. [Effective October 1, 2008.]

1. A business in this State shall not transfer any personal information of a customer through an electronic transmission other than a facsimile to a person outside of the secure system of the business unless the business uses encryption to ensure the security of electronic transmission. Leaving the discussion of the technical and legal aspects of this new law to others, I find this new law refreshing in a number of ways. Lawyers and regulators love to ramble about protecting clients' knowledge but balked when it comes to actually imposing defined methods and duties. Where state bars and courts soft-peddle the duty, the State of Nevada has taken a much stronger stance. More importantly, this new law recognizes the unsecure nature of the Internet and looks at knowledge (personal information in this case) as an asset to be protected. I like this angle. We talk about KM but do not usually recognize that the "M" is management and good management means good protection. I predict the Nevada law will see various challenges in the near future, but welcome dialogue on this vital KM issue.

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9/21/08

WAP 'n KM

My co-blogger Greg has already posted a great list of DR lessons, so I thought I would add a thought of my own. My DR/KM recommendation is for an organization, instead of individuals. For the duration of Ike and his aftermath, I have lived electronically on my BlackBerry. I tried not to complain too much, since I at least had access to information. But it became very apparent not many resources are well-tuned for mobile access. I know my other co-blogger Lisa may take issue with this comment as she goes to great lengths to format websites for mobile viewing. Even though they are viewable, they are not very WAP friendly, as navigation and browsing are tedious. And beyond web sites, I could have benefited from mobile access to systems and information. Although I was able to limp along and BS my way through many tasks, I wasn't able to really live on my BB. For KM, I think we need to look ahead and move more purposely in a WAP direction. What good is knowledge if it's not accessible when I need it most?

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9/19/08

Disaster Recovery -- What I Learned From Ike

The good news is that all of the geeks are alive and well after Ike.  The great news is that one of us got to actually go on a vacation and left the other two to pick up the virtual limbs left on our blog.
Here are just some quick things I learned from Ike:
  1. If you are not directly effected by a disaster, you truly don't know the frustration that occurs with trying to do the simplest of tasks.
  2. If your IT department is in another city, they will attempt to 'test' your system during the crisis, and forget that you need access to your communication tools.  (Like taking down email access over the weekend to 'test' a new product.)
  3. If the power comes on across the street, you will learn to despise your neighbors (most of whom you've never met before.)  It also means that it will be days before the electric company gets around to restoring power to your home!
  4. Your neighbor, that you thought was the dumbest one on the block, is the only one smart enough to have bought a generator in advance of the storm.  
  5. You have a lot of really nice people in your neighborhood.
  6. You have an old lady in your neighborhood that you've never met before, but she still yells at everyone to get off her lawn (even though you're removing all of the branches from it.)
  7. It is good to have family.
  8. It is good to have friends.
  9. You learn that by acting locally, you affect so many, and it can make a difference on a regional scale.
  10. Text Messaging (SMS) is great, but not fail-proof.
  11. My Amazon Kindle was a surprising resource with its basic web service.
  12. Twitter was nice to let my friends know how I was fairing.
  13. My power inverter that I bought for my car (so the kids could watch movies on trips) is a great tool to power a few items (like a fan and other low-powered things.)
  14. Pool water can help refill the toilet tank!!
  15. Next time there is a hurricane coming this way, I'm buying ice four-days in advance!!
  16. I'm a lucky guy to have friends, family and neighbors that helped keep me sane through it all!
  17. There are still other friends and neighbors that are out there that need a little help to keep sane through it all.
  18. It is good to be home!

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9/11/08

I Like Ike... Well, Not Really... But, I Get To Twitter Away The Weekend!

In case you didn't know this, all the geeks on this Blog are based out of beautiful warm and sunny Houston, Texas (oh, okay....  hot and humid Houston - but it is still beautiful!)  And, unless you've been under a rock, we have a little hurricane coming down on us in the next couple of days.
This brings me to the "geeky" part of the posting.  How does one stay in contact with others during these type of natural disasters??  When California had its earthquake a couple of months ago, the cell phones went out, but the land line phones stayed operational.  That just kind of goes against what I thought would happen.  And, because I'm all geeky, I don't have a land line at my house, so I'm assuming that the cell phone towers will be the first thing to fail during the storm.
So, how does one communicate with no land line and no cell phone service??  According to Ernie the Attorney, the answer is "Twitter."  
I thought I'd try this out during Gustav, but that storm went east of us.  But, it looks like we're dead on for a nice little bout of rain and wind with Mr. Ike, so I'll get to put Twitter to the test.
If you have nothing else to do, or you have some sick morbid sense of humor and want to follow the situation through IKE, you can follow my "Twittering"!!  

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9/10/08

MicroSoft Has a Commercial about Nothing . .

There was a lot of hulla-baloo today about MicroSoft's latest attempt to recapture the market after Apple achieved wide appeal with its PC v Mac ads.

Following the theme of the famed Seinfold show, Jerry Seinfeld's presence assures that this commercial is about nothing.

Lots of critics that it was unfunny. Not I. A giggle did escape . . .

A thanks to my proverbial right-hand woman, Whitney Palmer, for spotting this story. More thoughts on the commercial can be read here:

http://www.mentalfloss.com/blogs/archives/18257

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9/9/08

The Magic of Advertising

A devotee of Mad Men, I found this recent article on the Psychology Today blog fascinating. Discussing perceived value and branding, it sells us on the value of ideas.

http://blogs.psychologytoday.com/blog/brainstorm/200807/advertising-is-magic

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9/8/08

Link Steroids -- Gimme the Juice!

Search Engine Optimization is a constant game of cat and mouse between the Search Engine companies and the webmasters of the world.  Seems like last week, one of the biggies on the webmaster side got caught by the biggie on the search engine side, and in the process, I learned a new industry phrase called "link juicing."  Now, I'm sad to say that all of those first page links out there may need to have an *asterisk* placed beside them.
The story goes like this:
1.  Findlaw, due to its being owned by Thomson Reuters, and being a highly visited web site, gets a special ranking by Google, and in turn, Google promotes links found on Findlaw to a higher ranking (thus pushing some law firms higher on the results page than others.)
2.  Seems that Google asks for those websites like Findlaw to tag any advertised links as such, and the ranking for these links will get downgraded and will keep the "true" links at the higher ranking.
3.  Findlaw allegedly was selling "high-octane" links on its site to law firms and others promoting the links as a way to increase traffic to the firms' sites at the tune of $2,000 a month.
4.  Loose lips (emails) at Findlaw's sales team, sent out an email that promoted this in a way that caught the attention of Google.
5.  Google then lowered Findlaw's ranking in its PageRank.
6.  Findlaw apologized, tagged the links as "paid links" and Google then returned Findlaw's higher PageRank value.
7.  whew...
8.  Now, I'm sure there are going to be some law firms lining up for a refund.
Legal Technology Blog is adding information on this story as it comes out.
I'm assuming that the Search Engine Optimization team at Thomson Reuters is going back to the drawing board and determining how they can leverage their highly ranked websites like Findlaw against the search engines out there in order to sell those links again.  If Google and other search engines are finding ways to test for  "link juicing," then I'm sure the webmasters are out there finding the next method to work around the testing.  

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9/6/08

Legal KM Blog Review

At the ILTA conference I was introduced to 3 different legal KM blogs of note. They are: Caselines has a Litigation KM angle to it (but not e-discovery - which is good). I saw David Hobbie present on Litigation KM - which is his thing at Goodwin Proctor. Good presentation showing great KM implementation. Nice KM blog to watch. KM Space, which is the blog of Doug Cornelius. I also saw Doug present, then noticed him in a number of sessions with his laptop open. He was blogging live from the sessions. Cool stuff and nicely thought-out posts. LawyerKM is the last one. This blog included live ILTA posts as well, but the author shows as anonymous (with a little effort you can find his name). Being at a large firm, I can understand that approach. In any event, another well-written legal KM blog to follow.

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9/5/08

Muffin Tops and Fertility

Rachel Beckman, a staff writer for the Washington Post, writes a hysterical commentary on Facebook advertising: Facebook Ads Target Where It Hurts

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9/3/08

Convergence is the Word

Although this time convergence is not in-house counsel cutting its number of outside firms, its software providers cutting the number of platforms they work on. One example is the partnership announced at the ILTA conference between Interwoven and Lexis. The two are combining their products into one offering Lexis is calling "Lexis Search Advantage." This combines the intelligence of Total Search with the enterprise search power of IUS. As Doug Stansfield noted in their announcement meeting, this creates a unique combination of Work Product Retrieval with Enterprise Search. IUS allows you to search multiple data sources, then Search Advantage applies its legal value-add of marking up the results with case citations and Shepardizations. On its own, this combination is interesting. But it is also reflective of the industry moving towards converged platforms and systems. Large firms especially these days struggle with supporting too many platforms and search engines. So this trend is welcome relief. After seeing more demos than one person should in the span of four days, I can see this trend taking shape in many corners of the market. Both Interwoven and Lexis separately talked about taking all of their products and moving them towards "unified platforms." This effort will not happen overnight, but the path is clear. I suppose now it will just become a race among the various vendors. Being last in this game will probably be quite expensive.

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9/2/08

More on LinkedIn and Lexis

After not seeing much value in the Martindale-Hubbell - LinkedIn deal and after waiting (and not alone) to see more value come from social networking, I admit Lexis may be on to something. What many of us have been waiting to see is some definable business value to come from social networking. There is some value in building up your network, but leveraging those connections into a business proposition has much greater value. LexisNexis owns the InterAction CRM software, having purchased Interface Software. They announced at the ILTA conference that the next release of InterAction (Version 5.6 SP1) will include LinkedIn functionality. Contacts within InterAction can include LinkedIn icons which will pull in the LinkedIn tools, focused on how you and those you know are connected to the contacts. This adds the power of social networks directly into a CRM application. This new connection between InterAction and LinkedIn equals business value. Some firms will be challenged by this value. Social Networks are not universally valued by firms, as they can threaten IT and data security. And they challenge the dogmatic hoarding of contacts by many lawyers. Whatever a firm's point-of-view, overlooking tools that bring value to your firm and clients is not good business.

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9/1/08

Google Chrome (Browser) Released Early

Of course, being a geek, I have to love the fact that Google releases a comic book to explain its new browser. Google Chrome, Google's new Internet Browser, is set for an early release tomorrow, due to the fact that some within Google leaked the information out a little earlier than planned.
From the comic book, and the blog release, it sounds like they are promising the same type of performance that IE 8.0 Beta is also promising. Tab functions that are "independant" (so if one crashes, it doesn't bring down the entire browser); more powerful JavaScript engine; make it work on all operating systems (you know those other than Windows!); and the ultimate promise of faster and cleaner regardless of your operating system.
Now I get to try out IE 8.0 and Google Chrome and test them side-by-side!
NOTE:  I downloaded Chrome today, and so far, it is pretty tasty!!  The only thing I don't like so far is how it handles MS Outlook's Webmail.  The folders are not displayed like they are in IE, and it is not very good to get from folder to folder very easily.  
However, it is very fast, and I love the tabs feature and the way it previews the nine most visited sites on a new tab.  There are also a few plug-ins (i.e., FLASH) that you'll need to get for Chrome to work right on most sites, but the downloads are quick and no reboot is necessary (unlike some browsers....)
I also thought it was funny that one of the Google Beta products called "Lively" will not work at all in Chrome.  You'd think they'd make their own products work right out of the box!

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