The Geek In Review – Episode 18 is ready just in time for your Thanksgiving travel enjoyment. Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes or Google (or where ever you listen to your podcasts) so that you automatically get the latest episodes. Comments can be sent to @glambert or @gebauerm. Also, if you like our new theme music, check out Jerry David DeCicca’s new album on Spotify, or iTunes,

Nicholas Alexiou, Director of LL.M and Alumni Advising at Vanderbilt University Law School joins us for an in-depth discussion of what law schools are teaching students in the three years they have them. In an environment where students only care about things which are on the final, or on the bar exam, should professional development programs be required or affect GPA’s? While 1Ls and 2Ls get lots of attention from the professional development course, 3Ls are left to their own devices. Greg thinks there is room for improvement with 3Ls professional development from the law schools, law firms, and vendors.

Marlene points out an MIT answer to “What is AI?” Sometimes a complicated concept can be explained on a napkin with a flowchart. This explanation is so simple, even Marlene’s Mom can understand it. Now, if MIT would come up with a flowchart to explain to Greg’s Mom what it is he actually does with a law degree and a masters degree in Library Science.  Continue Reading E18 – Nicholas Alexiou – Professional Development Needs for Law Students

Having recently attended a conference on law firm innovation, I came to the realization that Blockchain has lost its pre-eminent place in the legal BS stratosphere. This is a sad day. Blockchain had a good life and provided tons of opportunities for people to opine on how ‘everything’ will change because of it. I recall one especially insightful article on emerging crypto-toilet paper offerings. Too bad we will never know the warm comfort of crypto-paper making a pass around the seventh planet.

Moving right along – we now will enjoy six to nine months of “innovation” articles, seminars, conferences, white papers, case studies and booze-induced discussions.

Oh sweet pessimism. Continue Reading Law Firm Innovation – The Newest BS Phrase

No.

I hate it when an article title present a question and then draws out the answer until you are over half-way through the material. So I started with the answer on this post.

Of course you could have guessed that answer pretty easily. But as I have been thinking about this issue lately, another dimension to this question came to mind.

Turning the way-back machine to 1999 – I was involved in a start-up as part of the Dot.Com boom (and bust). We had a technology that provided Enforceable Online Transactions. We calculated that there were 50 billion transactions every hour, or something like that, on the planet. And we only had to capture a fraction of that to get rich. Sadly – that was not the result. But at the time many people would ask me if I was afraid to take the risk of having a job like that. Start ups are a risky place to be. I could lose my job at any time. Continue Reading Is Your Job Safe?

Over the past month I have given about a dozen talks in large conference settings with hundred of people, or at smaller intimate partner/ counsel lunches, or for people spanning the globe via webinar. The discussions have ranged in content and theme but all were legal industry favourites including:

  • the state of the legal industry 10 years out from the great recession of 2018;
  • the seat change from Baby Boomers to Millennials in firms, and what that means for the way work is done, how people are motivated and what success looks like;
  • competitive intelligence – what is means in and for the legal industry right now;
  • personal branding for lawyers and non lawyers and why it matters; and
  • emerging legal technology tools, adoption techniques, use cases and efficiency plays;

Continue Reading You Spin Me Right Round…

Sometimes when you drop by Greg’s office, he will ask if you’ll sit down for an interview for the Geek In Review Podcast. This week, Scott Mozarsky, Managing Directory for North American at Vannin Capital fell into that trap, and even Marlene jumped in on Skype and joined the conversation. Scott was the former President of Bloomberg Law and has been in the legal media industry for decades. During the discussion, Mazarsky talks about how the Knowledge Management skills found in law firms can be applied to some of the same analytics and processes found in Litigation Finance. He also walks us through how Litigation Finance is changing, and that a lot of business is being driven by the needs of large law firms… not just plaintiff work.

In the segment that Marlene and Greg are now calling Information Inspiration, Greg discusses how, even after multiple years of security training, it took a episode of the Reply All podcast to finally scare him straight and up his security game. Hackers are no joke, and using strong passwords, encryption, and password managers are a must in today’s scary… scary world.

Continue Reading Podcast Episode 17 – Scott Mozarsky on Litigation Financing and Its Ties to Knowledge Management

On this episode of The Geek In Review, we talk with the new Executive Director of the American Association of Law Libraries, Vani Ungapen. Vani discusses her initiation into AALL and having to learn all of the different acronyms that Law Librarians like to use.

Greg was inducted into the College of Law Practice Management as a Fellow. While at the CoLPM meeting, former Harvard Law School President, Martha Minnow discussed her mission as the Vice-Chair of the Legal Services Corporation, and the need to help those who cannot afford legal services to not fall through the cracks.

To dovetail with Martha Minnow’s topic, check out the work that is going on with The Bail Project, which created a rotating bail fund to help those who are sitting in jail, primarily because they cannot post bail. Greg ponders if there is something that legal associations could do to support these types of projects in support of access to justice issues.

Marlene went to the latest Ark Group KM meeting (apparently there was a Fortnight dance involved?) While she was there, she asked Vivian Liu-Somers, Ron Friedmann, Phil Rosenthal, Phil Bryce, and Meredith Williams-Range about how does Knowledge Management impact innovation.

Perhaps the most exciting change this week is that we have new music from Jerry David DeCicca. Jerry is a well-known Americana musician and former lead singer of The Black Swans. There is a law library link in this music in that AALL member, Eve Searls, sings back up, and plays keyboard and Wurlitzer on Jerry’s latest album, Burning DaylightWe are very excited that Jerry is letting us use his fabulous music on the Podcast. Check out his Spotify, and iTunes channels.

If you have comments or suggestions, please tweet us at @gebauerm or @glambert.

 

I’ve gotten a bit of grief from friends and colleagues for starting a series of blog posts on lessons I learned from my time as a musician and composer that I now use every day in my capacity as a legal technologist, then building to the announcement that I’m starting my own consulting company, and then immediately dropping off the face of the earth again.  I will come back to that series shortly, I promise, but as you can imagine I’ve been all consumed with the new company for the last few months.

As I write this, I am sitting on a train from New York to Boston to attend the College of Law Practice Management Futures Conference, where I and Geek #1 will be inducted as fellows.  Toby and Casey are already fellows, so we’re quickly approaching Phase 2 of 3 Geeks World Domination, (ed. – First rule of 3GWD: We don’t talk about 3GWD, Ryan!) but my 4-hour train journey gives me a bit of time to reflect, regroup, and rewrite.

The interesting thing about starting a company in the midst of a series of posts about lessons from a past life, is that it makes me think a lot about how I’ll use the lessons I’m learning today in my future endeavors. Here are a few lessons I’ve learned in recent weeks that I’m planning to keep in mind as I go forward.

1) Approach new opportunities as if you know nothing. Continue Reading Lessons for a Future Life

Brandi Hester, Applications Development Manager for Hunton Andrews Kurth, discusses how the modern Applications Development team focuses less on actually developing applications from scratch to providing a services, security, access, and connecting the dots on all that data. She walks us through the plethora of “AAS” (as a service) options which law firm IT departments use, and she talks about “Shadow IT” groups found in law firm departments and practice areas. Brandi also shares some great insights on being a woman in a field that historically has favored men in app dev roles.

 

Continue Reading Podcast Episode 15 – Brandi Hester and the Modern Role of a Legal Applications Developer

On this episode we will talk with Jeff Marple, Director of Innovation, Corporate Legal at Liberty Mutual Insurance company. Plus, we have our monthly update on government action in legal information from AALL’s Director of Government Relations, Emily Feltren. So, it’s an action packed episode, so grab a drink of your choice and settle in for a good one.

 

15:13 – Jeff Marple, Director of Innovation, within Corporate Legal at Liberty Mutual discusses what it is like to be the innovations guru within a large corporate legal environment. The key is incremental change, lots of communications, having the customer in the room, and publicly executing poor performing processes or projects in the town square.

 

07:22 – Emily Feltren, Director of Government Relations at American Association of Law Libraries (AALL), gives us her monthly update on happenings in the legal information field in regards to government actions. AALL submitted an amici curiae brief in the recent PACER class action, National Veterans Legal Services Program et al v. United States of America, which is currently on appeal. AALL made the points that PACER Fees Harm Patron Access And Legal Research Instruction and that PACER Fees Impede Law Libraries’ Responsibility To Preserve Legal Materials.

There are a number of bills at the federal level focusing on opening up access to PACER. Is free access to PACER on the horizon? Seem that there are a number of politicians looking to do just that.  Continue Reading Podcast Episode 14 – Jeff Marple and the Art of Incremental Change; Plus “Free PACER”?

On the latest episode of The Geek In Review:

Laurent Wiesel, Founder and CEO of Justly, talks with us about leaving his BigLaw partnership to create a startup focused on litigation analytics. Wiesel discusses how he saw that there was a growing gap between what clients were asking on issues of pricing and process, and what law firms were able to deliver. Greg (@glambert) talks about his ability to post an actual written blog post this week about who is the customer.

Legal Startup CEO, Laurent Wiesel

Continue Reading Podcast Ep. 13 – Litigation Analytics with Laurent Wiesel of Justly