Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Bing v. Google?

Wondering how Bing measures up against Google? Try a comparison search. Enter your search term or phrase, and retrieve side-by-side results. And what about Yahoo? BlindSearch, a site that calls itself a "search engine taste test," lets you compare results from all 3 search engines.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

How to Build Your Client Base

If you’ve just hung up your shingle and are looking for ways to find clients you might want to visit newlawyer.com. Potential clients can try an initial free phone consultation using “talk-now technology”. Lawyers who join now are promised free lifetime memberships. Check it out.

RECAP - Recapture the Law

Tired of paying for access to public records? Support government transparency. Support RECAP, a project of the Center for Information Technology Policy at Princeton University.

RECAP is a Firefox extension that works with PACER, the electronic public access system for the U.S. federal district and bankruptcy courts. With RECAP you can contribute any documents you access on PACER to a public archive. Documents added to the archive are available to the public - you and you and you - all of us - without charge.

Google Reader’s New “Panic Button”

Are you just back from a week at the Cape only to find a hundred million unread items in your Google Reader inbox? Don't panic - just select the drop-down menu on your "Mark all as read" item list and clean out the older items. The "Mark all as read" button now has a menu that lets you mark items as read if they're older than your specified time frame. A tip of the hat to Nick Bradbury who pioneered this "panic button" feature and made it available to Google Reader subscribers.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Law Prof: Outside Ownership Could Help BigLaw

An article in the ABA's Law News Now of 8/11/09 reports that University of Illinois law professor Larry Ribstein has posted a draft paper in which he suggests BigLaw firms should examine their traditional law firm model, and perhaps consider selling shares to outside owners. Judging from the comments posted after the article, this would to be a hard sell amongst US lawyers.

For more on non-traditional law firm structures, see Selling Law on an Open Market, another ABA article, which reports on Slater & Gordon, an Australian personal injury firm with 21 offices. In 2007 Slater & Gordon became the first publicly traded law firm in the world.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

SCOTUS "Super Stat Pack"

In the most recent term the Supreme Court reversed or vacated the lower court in 60 of 79* cases (75.9%) and affirmed in 16 (20.3%). Contrast this with figures from the previous term, when the Court reversed or vacated the lower court decision in 66% of cases and affirmed the lower court in 34% of cases.

Interested in more statistics about the Court workload - which courts those reversed cases came from, who voted with the majority and when, and more? Check out the "Super Stat Pack" on the SCOTUSblog for June 29, 2009.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Citations and Hyperlinking

The Judicial Conference of the United States has issued a series of suggested practices to assist federal courts in the use of Internet materials in opinions.

The guidelines include the suggestion that if a webpage is cited, judicial staff should download a copy of the sites page and file it as an attachment to the opinion. The attachment, like the opinion, would then be retrievable through PACER, the Public Access to Court Electronic Records system.