January Issue of Law Practice Today Now Available

I might be biased because I am an editor, but the January issue of the ABA’s Law Practice Today webzine is a good one.
A few highlights include Tom Mighell’s column on ABA TECHSHOW 2005 speakers who are also bloggers, Andy Adkins (Andy, when are we going to see a blog from you?)on case management software, Fred Faulkner on RSS, Desktop Search, and Collaboration Tools and the usual great collection of columns and articles on finance, management, marketing and technology.
My contributions are a reprint of my 2005 legal tech predictions article (thank you Law Practice magazine) and an article on avoiding disaster in your disaster recovery planning – a preview of my upcoming presentation on disaster recovery at ABA TECHSHOW 2005.
Law Practice Today is a great outlet for writers covering law practice management topics. If you have good articles, let us know about them and submit them for potential publication.

The Most Important Post I Read Today – January 27

From my friend Fred Faulkner:
It’s easy to forget that your friends might have brothers and sisters, sons and daughters in the military at risk around the world. It’s way too easy to forget that our armchair quarterbacking and political debating points may not seem quite so important to people who worry every single day about the safety of people they care deeply about. In part, I single out this post today because the first sentence, just a simple sentence, quoted below, hit me like a ton of bricks when I read it this morning.
Fred’s post reminded me of that and he also points to a fascinating way people are using technology to communicate and motivate our people in the military.
Fred says:
“As I have written before, my brother is over in Iraq fighting for this country. Rob told me about this Web site called Grouchy Media. It is run by a guy who couldn’t go and fight so he did the next best thing, publish motivational videos for the troops to download and watch.” Read the rest here.

Must-See Legal Technology – Recommind’s New MindServer Legal Matters & Expertise

One of the fun things about being me these days is that people keep calling me to show me their cool new products.
Yesterday, I was on the phone with Bob Tennant and Kathryn Rakow at Recommind getting a preview tour of their new MindServer Legal Matters & Expertise, an addition to the MindServer Legal product suite that also includes Enterprise Search. Matters & Expertise extends document search to include a firm’s attorneys, matters, deals, cases and documents associated with any topic.
Anyone who tells you that document and file management in many law firms are not disasters waiting to happen are just whistling in the dark. I’ve commented on this issue as I’ve wondered whether large firm document management systems are broken. I’ve also talked with corporate counsel and corporate execs who have told me that they are afraid to ask their law firms about the state of the electronic records. They really doubt that their law firms can produce anything like a “complete” file with all of their documents.
I’ve been impressed with what Recommind has been doing for a while. After they showed me a great demo a year or so ago, I was begging them for a “personal” version of the search tools. They’ve, probably wisely, decided that they had other business to do than create tools for me.
Here’s my reaction to MindServer Legal Matters & Expertise. It rocks. It took me only a few moments to see the power and simplicity of this tool. I realy like the way that the search tools focus on what is most important to practicing lawyers in their work. Recommind has clearly listened to lawyers’ needs.
I like the way they’ve expanded the search universe to include not just documents, but “back office” systems and even designated information repositories.
However, the breakthrough, at least for me, is the way the tool focuses on matters and expertise. It makes it easy to find out who in the firm has worked on certain types of cases or matters, who has experience with certain clients or types of clients and other information that it always frustrated me that I couldn’t get in my years in large firms.
Is it enough to get me back to a large firm? If I learned a firm was using the Recommind system, they’d get my attention.
Here’s what I liked best – you can see the benefits in just a few minutes of demo.
Recommind is exhibiting at LegalTech in New York next week, so you’ll get the chance to see MindServer Legal Matters & Expertise there. Even if you are not there, I suggest that you put this product on your must-review list for this year.
I don’t have any financial relationship with Recommind – I just like the people there and what they are doing.

See You at LegalTech New York?

I finally put an end to the Hamlet-like approach to LegalTech New York I’ve had over the last month and have decided to attend LegalTech this year. I’ll also be attending a meeting for the Corporate Legal Standard’s newly-created Law Department Benchmarking Standards Panel and Committees, of which I am a member.
My plan is pretty simple – to meet as many people and learn as much as I can about what is happening in legal technology as is possible in three days.
Marty “The Trademark Blog” Schwimmer called me today so we could set up something so we could meet in person for the first time. He expects to be available around 5:30-ish on Monday evening and we’re thinking about getting a group of blawggers together for dinner. Although “social coordinator” was at the bottom of the list when I worked with my career counselor, you can let me know if you want ot join us and I’ll try to make info about where to meet available. There seems to be quite a contingent of blawggers who will be there.
I’m trying not to put a lot of things on my calendar for LegalTech (especially since this is a last-minute decision) so I can circulate as much as possible. By all means, if you see me, please say hello.