If you are an attorney or other professional who is interested in learning more about how to use Macs in your office, you should check out the Macs In Law Offices (MILO) discussion group. Recent topics discussed on MILO include hardware and software options and ways to most effectively implement them into our practices. Grant Griffiths and I began MILO six months ago to provide a forum where open discussions were encouraged, which unfortunately does not happen in all groups. If you are interested in visiting MILO, there is a button on the right side of this blog that will take you there.
Last week, TechnoLawyer published BlawgWorld 2007, a remarkable collection of 77 essays from some of the most influential blawgs. I am honored to have two of my blogs, The Mac Lawyer and The South Carolina Family Law Blog, featured in this e-book. BlawgWorld 2007 also includes the 2007 TechnoLawyer Problem/Solution Guide offers a new way for law firms to find answers to management and technology questions. This outstanding e-book is now available for immediate download, and I urge you to click HERE (or the graphic at right) to obtain your free copy today.
Apple has opened its Apple Outlet, which was formerly known as the "Special Deals" section of its online Apple Store. This site is the place to shop for certified and refurbished Apple products at discounted prices. Apple tests and certifies all refurbished products, and they all include a 1-year warranty. I have bought products from the Apple Outlet before, and I have always been well satisfied with their products.
The Apple Outlet is organized into the following sections:
- Refurbished Mac :: Shop Apple-certified Mac desktops and notebooks at once-in-a-lifetime prices.
- Clearance Items :: Get discount prices on new, unopened products from Apple and other manufacturers.
- Big Deals :: See special offers, promotions, and other great deals available for a limited time only.
- Refurbished iPod :: Find deals on the Apple-certified iPod, iPod nano, or iPod shuffle you’ve always wanted.
The two most popular and useful Mac web browsers are Safari and Firefox. You most likely use one or both of these programs on a regular basis. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a comprehensive list of shortcuts for them? You’re in luck… Click HERE
to download the "Browser Cheat Sheet" and save yourself a good bit of time.
There is a new resource available for those interested in "Mac websites with quality content, writing and design." Claire Rottenberg has created the Quality Mac Websites blog to review Mac websites that meet the following criteria:
- accurate and useful information
- original and unique content
- frequent updates of content
- good quality writing, free of grammatical errors
- no distracting commercial ads
Her blog has the following five categories at present:
- Blog :: Sites that are primarily blogs
- Established site :: Sites that are already familiar to many Mac users
- Specialized site :: Sites that center around one particular topic
- Teen Mac user site :: Sites that are operated by teenagers
- User group site :: Mac user group websites
From the look of the first several posts, Ms. Rottenberg’s site is off to a great start, and you may want to add her feed to your newsreader to follow it in the coming months.
Confession: I am a Mac dork. I would say "Mac geek", but the term "geek" implies a little more tech-savvy than I bring to the table. Dork it is.
I’ve been using a Mac for my home stuff, more or less consistently since I was a freshman in college in [date redacted]. I’ve also started using my Mac for work since going into business for myself. It does very well for most of the stuff I use, with one glaring exception: the office suite.
For word processing and spreadsheets, I’ve been stuck between a rock and a hard place: either suffer through the ridiculous and hateable Appleworks, or pay Bill Gates a princely sum to buy MS Office 1995 For Mac. I’m optimistic about Google Docs and Spreadsheets, but the Web 2.0 interface is not quite slick enough yet to become my primary office software.
Like I said, stuck. Until yesterday.
Yesterday I opened my local newspaper (yes, I am one of the 11 people in the U.S. who still subscribes to a print newspaper) and read the technology column which featured an article on a software program called OpenOffice. OpenOffice is a free software program that works on Windows, Linux or Mac, and looks and feels like Microsoft Office. Check it out here. It has everything I want: the look and feel of Microsoft Office without sliding Bill Gates any farther up the Forbes list.
So, I promptly sent an email to my favorite legal-technology blogger to update him on this breaking news. Rick politely emailed back to say, uh yeah, he’s blogged about OpenOffice since, like, last year. (Stupid newspaper breaking year-old stories.) But if I wanted to write a guest post for those of us slightly more challenged by the innovation adoption curve, I could go right ahead.
Voila. I have just downloaded OpenOffice and the early returns are promising. If you, like me, missed out on the early adopter (or even early majority, perhaps) phase of checking this out, here’s your chance to get in before the late majority and my personal favorite part of the innovation adoption curve, the laggards.
And if you are a Mac dork enthusiast, here’s a chance to throw off the MS Office yoke and get past the fact that Steve Jobs doesn’t care if you ever need to make a spreadsheet.
Enjoy! Erik Mazzone
Apple is offering a free online seminar titled "New to the Mac and Compatibility with Windows". Apple describes this seminar as follows
The Mac is the best tool
for both the office and the home, making it the ideal computer for a
business. If you’re one of the many businesspeople who is contemplating
a move from another computer to the Mac, watch this online seminar to
pick up useful tips and valuable information to help you make the
transition seamless. Kenny Lee, from Apple’s Small Business Marketing
group, and Travis Fears from the Apple Store San Francisco present and
demo specific content for new Mac business users.
The seminar runs approximately 27 minutes, and it consists of two parts:
- Part One: New to the Mac :: Useful tips for starting out on and customizing the Mac, including shortcuts and quick keystroke/mouse commands. Recommended for small business users who are new to the Mac, or contemplating a Mac for the first time.
- Part Two: Compatibility with Windows :: Connecting your Mac to existing workgroups and other office computers.
Reviews and demos how to share files, share printers and even instant
message with video between Apple and other computers. Recommended for small business users with a typical office workgroup scenario, who are
interested in sharing/interfacing with other users with different
computers and peripherals.
You can get more information and/or view this free, on-demand seminar by clicking HERE.
I posted this article recently at my South Carolina Family Lawyer blog, and I thought that my readers here might find it helpful as well:
“A picture is worth a thousand words.” There are many opportunities for family law attorneys to use graphs in presenting their cases at trial. For instance, graphs can be used to illustrate the nights that a child has spent with each parent, various asset/debt distributions, or even income earned over a given period of time.
The National Center for Eduction Statistics offers Create A Graph, a Web 2.0 graph program available for free. This program allows you to create 2-D, 3-D, or drop-shadow graphs in pie, bar, line, and area formats. Better yet, you are able to easily export your graphs to *.pdf, *.jpg , or other image formats. If you are interested in creating helpful demonstrative evidence for free, be sure to visit this NCES site and give it a try.
If you are like me, you try to avoid typing documents from scratch if possible. I see no need to waste time “reinventing the wheel” if there is a template I can work from and modify as needed. With that in mind, I have just learned that there are over 250 free MS Office templates available on Microsoft’s website.
While not law office specific, these templates include many that are useful to attorneys, including:
- Financial Analysis Worksheets
- Application for Employment
- Balance Sheets and Ledgers
- Bylaws, Policies, and Rules
- Various Calculators
- Flowcharts and Family Trees
- Note / Message Forms
- Survey Forms
- Various Announcements
Legal information powerhouse, Justia, has introduced BlawgSearch, a combination legal blog search engine and directory. The directory is organized by category/topic, state, and country. I am pleased to have both of my blogs, The Mac Lawyer and South Carolina Family Law Blog, included in their directory. If you are interested in an effective legal blog search engine or a directory, check out BlawgSearch.