Joined: 27 Apr 2003 Posts: 2 Location: Live in Clarkston work in Detroit, MI
Posted: Sun Apr 27, 2003 9:32 am Post subject: Who has what and how are you using it?
Good afternoon all, I am not a Attorney nor do I play one on TV, however I do manage the networking group for a decent size FIRM and have some questions for you. I just rec'd a demo unit from a vendor and am beginning to look into how tablets can be beneficial in our environment.
It seems that from what I have seen people love the tablets because of the ability to take handwritten notes and saving and archiving them. While this is a most excellent function for the tablet I of course am concerned not only with that wonderful feature but in how/if it is being integrated with the rest of your systems.
Following is a short list of our configuration;
- Novell NetWare (5.1 & 6) and Microsoft (NT 4.0 & 2k) infrastructure with eDirectory being our primary directory
- Migrating from GroupWise to Exchange 2000/Outlook XP(major project)
- DOCS Open document managment system
- RightFAX fax solution
- Interaction CRM
- Summation case managment
- DeltaView redlining
- DTE time entry
- Office 97
- HotDocs document assembly
- iCreate templates and styles
- Working on deploying 802.11b in 3 offices.
- Roaming user profiles
- Desktops and Laptops are still Win 98
What other wonderful uses have you found for your tablets?
Has your FIRM integrated these devices as an option for you along with desktops and laptops?
A lot of techie questions but if you're reading this you've probably got an idea of what I'm talking about.
Thank you for any assistance that you can provide.
Posted: Sat May 17, 2003 6:39 pm Post subject: Limited use
I have been using my tc1k for a few weeks. I have not begun to scratch the surface for using it... but, I have found some unique uses for it. Perhaps, the most important benefit is the ability to write on text. That is, I have loaded statute sections, briefs, and other written documents onto the computer. Then, imported them into Windows Journal. From there, I am able to make notes on the text, circle sections, highlight sections. My notes are on the documents can then be saved in the file (both hard copy and electronic). Extremely helpful.
The other day, I received a cross claim from a co-defendant. I scanned the document into the system (all mail and pleadings are scanned at the office), dumped a copy to the TC1k. From there, I imported it into Windows Journal. I then simply wrote out the responses to each paragraph onto the document it self and e-mailed it to my paralegal who then drafted the reply.
Admittedly, I could have simply hand written the document and given to my paralegal when I got back to the office, but the fact was is that it was an electronic version and therefore my work would not be lost (the philosphy behind scannig in everything as well).
The other day I really had a chance to use windows journal. I received a new file from a client. I then simply made digital ink notes of the file along with follow up inquires for the client and to do's for me. I was truly impressed in that it was able to recognize my handwriting - I was able to search my handwritten text for specific words and... IT WORKED!
Also, while not a tablet only feature, the wireless connection (when it works) has been very helpful (research on the couch at home or at the kitchen table).
Before buying this unit, I looked at other Tablet PCs and the traditional notebooks (more power and faster for about the same price). Other than some frustrating experiences with the home wireless connectivity, I am glad I got this unit. I can only see my uses of it expanding. _________________ Monte
Posted: Thu Aug 28, 2003 5:14 am Post subject: Tablet PC Uses in a Law Firm
As a 15 year law firm IT professional I've found that the biggest obstacle to new technology is the lawyer, not the technology. One of the hats a Tech Director wears is to evaluate new technology. My first impression of the Tablet PC was that it had "lawyer" written all over it, but it took alot of talking to get 4 attorneys to agree to a pilot project. The attorneys used the Compaq TC1000 as a laptop/notepad substitute - not as a replacement for their desktop computers. I used the TC1000 as my workstation and then later the Toshiba Protege. The group was excited about the technology, especially over the Journal software, but didn't think the technology was ready for wide-scale implementation. They wanted to re-visit it in a year. Ideally, they wanted to use the Tablet as a substitute for a legal pad and a computer, and be able to roam wirelessly in the office. They weren't happy with the battery life, but their expectations weren't realistic on that point - you can't roam for 10 hours on one battery. I think we could have taken this further as many of there issues were training related, but no one wanted to work on the project further after one month. It was still a valuable learning experience.
Our office uses much of the software mentioned in the first post: Docs Open, CRM, Office, etc., but we are an NT/2000 network. The Compaq fell down on processing speed: it uses a non-Intel CPU. The more apps I added, the slower it got. By the time I added DM5 I was frustrated with the performance. It would take 2 minutes just to open an application, but once the app was open, the speed was for the most part OK. At that point, I switched to the Toshiba Protege with it's Intel CPU. Screaming fast, it handled all our office applications, but had two other drawbacks: no docking station and the screen didn't completely detach from the keyboard. I found that I didn't go mobile with it (i.e., carry it with me to meetings, etc.) because it was too much trouble to unhook all the peripherals and it was like carrying a laptop with you. Our pilot project was done in March-April, 2003. Maybe Toshiba has a docking station by now, but all my attorneys said they would not carrying the Toshiba with them because it was too big. The good news is that Compaq is suppose to be releasing a TC1000 with an Intel CPU. It was slated for this summer, so it may already be out (I haven't followed up.)
I'm sold on the Tablet as a multi-functional business tool and bought the TC1000 for my home personal computer. I love the design and haven't used the attached keyboard since I bought it. Per the recommendation of my HP rep, I bumped the memory up to 512K (the ones we used before had 256K) and installed a new BIOS update that improved performance. It runs everything I need (Office, Quicken, Outlook) at acceptable speeds. The wireless ability is wonderful. I mean, if you're going to answer email at 9:00pm (and you are) you might as well do it in your backyard while sipping a glass of wine. Why be chained to your desk? I bought the docking station (be prepared for sticker shock on that one, but you have to get it) and transition between mobile and docked with relative ease. The battery lasts 2-3 hours, but I never got much more than that from my laptop. The docketing station includes an extra power cord, so it's easy to plug in and keep working when the battery runs low. I'd also suggest you buy an extra stylus pen because it's the only device the screen will recognize and it's easy to lose. (No, I haven't done that yet, but I've misplaced it a few times.)
As you work with this technology you will find more and more uses for it. But you have to be prepared to put in alittle effort, something that most lawyers are unwilling to do as it impacts billable time. In my opinion the time is well spent and will pay off down the road. My next step is to add a biometric card and wireless Internet card, so I can logon using my fingerprint and access my email/Internet while I'm killing time at the airport. I've been replying to email at the airport via my cellphone for over a year, but the Tablet is easier to use with a better display. I hope this info is helpful and I'd be happy to answer any questions.
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