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A Boston Law Firm's Favorite Cloud Services Plus 56 More Must-Reads

By Kathryn Hughes | Monday, July 6, 2015

Coming today to BlawgWorld: Our editorial team has selected and linked to 57 articles from the past week worthy of your attention. Below you'll find a sample article from each section of today's issue, including our BlawgWorld Pick of the Week.

9 Things Lawyers Need to Know About Slack

Four Ways to Boost Your Gmail Productivity

The Best Smartphones (July 2015)

Your Online Subscriptions Calculator

Congratulations to Nicole Black of Above the Law on winning our BlawgWorld Pick of the Week award: A Boston Law Firm's Favorite Cloud Services

How to Receive BlawgWorld
Our newsletters provide the most comprehensive coverage of both legal technology and mainstream technology of interest to the legal profession (e.g., monitors, smartphones, scanners, the iPad, and more). But not the only coverage. BlawgWorld enables you to stay on top of all the noteworthy legal and mainstream technology articles (and podcasts and videos) published elsewhere without having to hire a research assistant. Even when you're busy, you won't want to miss each issue's Pick of the Week. Please subscribe now.

Topics: BlawgWorld Newsletter | Business Productivity/Word Processing | Collaboration/Knowledge Management | Coming Attractions | Email/Messaging/Telephony | Laptops/Smartphones/Tablets | Online/Cloud

Pathagoras On Cloud: Read Our Exclusive Report

By Neil J. Squillante | Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers cloud document assembly software with a built-in word processor designed for automating legal documents (see article below), an online marketing service for lawyers willing to review contracts for a flat fee, a secure portal for sharing documents with clients, and a legal dictionary app for iPad and iPhone. Don't miss the next issue.

CLOUD DOCUMENT ASSEMBLY WITHOUT PROGRAMMING

Like all technologies, document assembly has become accessible to law firms of all sizes thanks to advancements in computer power and software design. However, document assembly software has lagged behind other types of legal software in the migration to the cloud because of the complex setup typically required not to mention the need for a word processor.

Pathagoras On Cloud … in One Sentence

Launched this week, ISPV's Pathagoras On Cloud is a cloud document automation system.

The Killer Feature

Pathagoras On Cloud features a browser-based word processor designed for document automation. It runs in desktop and mobile web browsers, including Android, iPad, Mac, and Windows.

You can either create documents from scratch or upload templates in Word format. Either way, you can store an unlimited number of templates and documents in your account using a traditional folder system. You can sync your Pathagoras On Cloud folders with folders on your desktop computer (Windows available now, Mac soon).

"We listened, and have finally made our 'plain text' approach to document automation available to a larger audience," ISPV Founder and Chief Programmer Roy Lasris tells us. "With the launch of Pathagoras On Cloud, anyone anywhere from any device can create transactional and other documents for their clients. Like Pathagoras 'on Earth,' Pathagoras On Cloud doesn't require any programming skills."

Other Notable Features

The core tools of Pathagoras On Cloud consist of Variables and Conditional Text. Variables substitute client-specific data throughout a document (e.g., client name). Conditional Text ranges from words, phrases, and clauses to whole paragraphs that you choose to include or omit. You create Variables by enclosing your own descriptive text in brackets, while you create Conditional Text by enclosing text within curly braces. Hence, the billing of Pathagoras On Cloud as using plain keyboard characters with which legal professionals are already familiar.

The Instant Database in Pathagoras On Cloud stores all the data required by your documents. Customizable fields enable you to enter anything you'll need in a document.

Unique to Pathagoras On Cloud according to Lasris is live testing -- editing and reviewing occur in the same environment. This obviates having to process your document periodically to ensure the desired output. Instead, you can preview your document as you draft with changes instantly displayed.

When you complete a document, you can download, store, and email it in Word, PDF, or plain text formats.

What Else Should You Know?

If you use the desktop version of Pathagoras, you can transfer your templates and instant database records to Pathagoras On Cloud to minimize setup. Pathagoras On Cloud costs $30 per month for the first user and $10 per month for each additional user. Discounts exist for volume purchases and also for Pathagoras desktop users. You can try Pathagoras On Cloud free for 30 days. Learn more about Pathagoras On Cloud.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Automation/Document Assembly/Macros | Online/Cloud | TL NewsWire

Nitro Pro+ 10: Read Our Exclusive Report

By Neil J. Squillante | Friday, June 12, 2015

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers PDF software with a cloud component for electronic signatures and collaboration (see article below), a daily journal for iOS and OS X, a contact management app for Gmail, and social media marketing software for law firms. Don't miss the next issue.

PDF SOFTWARE WITH CLOUD COLLABORATION

Getting documents signed by your clients and others seems archaic compared to technology advancements in other areas. Because most people have a computer connected the Internet, you can obtain signatures more efficiently than the print-scan-email technique that remains dominant by dint of (bad) habit. Ideally, such a service should integrate with your PDF software.

Nitro Pro+ 10 … in One Sentence

Launching this week, Nitro Pro+ 10 is PDF software with a cloud component for electronic signatures, collaboration, and storage.

The Killer Feature

Nitro Pro+ 10 integrates with the company's Nitro Cloud service, which includes electronic signatures. Starting on your desktop, you use Nitro Pro+ to convert the document into PDF format. Then you "send" it to the signatory by entering their email address. Nitro Pro+ uploads it to Nitro Cloud, and emails a secure link to the signatory. The signatory clicks the link, logs in, and electronically signs the document. Nitro Cloud provides an audit trail, and notifies you of signed documents ready for download.

Nitro Cloud also offers storage for your documents as well as annotation tools that work within a web browser so that you can collaborate on PDF documents with anyone. Nitro Pro+ also integrates with Dropbox, OneDrive, and Google Drive. You can save documents directly to these services from the File menu.

Other Notable Features

The new version of Nitro Pro+ runs 40% faster than the previous version, and features improved optical character recognition. New tools enable you to clean up and straighten low-quality scans for the best possible output.

Batch processing now exists for virtually every function in Nitro Pro+. For example, you can convert, password protect, print, etc. multiple files simultaneously, including entire folders.

Nitro Pro+ now supports the creation of PDF portfolios, which enable you to combine documents of any file type into a single PDF file. The documents in the portfolio remain in their native format. You can use this tool to archive email from a case in native Outlook format, provide a client with all the documents from their matter, etc.

You'll find all the "Pro" level features you would expect in PDF software, including the ability to convert more 300 file types into PDF format, integration with the toolbar in Microsoft Office, and tools for merging, splitting, stamping, editing, annotating, commenting, and adding your own secure signature. The company guarantees that Nitro Pro+ creates 100% industry-standard PDF and PDF/A documents that anyone can view on virtually any device.

What Else Should You Know?

Nitro Pro+ costs $7.99 per month, significantly less than Acrobat DC. If you don't need Nitro Cloud (electronic signatures, online collaboration, and online storage) and/or you don't want a subscription, you can buy a traditional license of Nitro Pro for $159.99. Nitro Pro+ runs on Windows Vista and later. Learn more about Nitro Pro+ 10.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Business Productivity/Word Processing | Online/Cloud | TL NewsWire

Cost Recovery Policies; The Two Clouds; Judgment Calculations; WordPerfect Paragraph Numbering

By Kathryn Hughes | Thursday, May 14, 2015

Today's issue of TL Answers contains these articles:

David Hudgens, Our Cost Recovery Policies

Dennis Dimka, The Two Clouds: Everything Versus Backups

Lee Herman, How to Calculate Amounts Due on Judgments

Steve Buchwalter, Paragraph Numbering in WordPerfect

Don't miss this issue — or any future issues.

How to Receive TL Answers
Do you believe in the wisdom of crowds? In TL Answers, TechnoLawyer members answer legal technology and practice management questions submitted by their peers. This newsletter's popularity stems from the relevance of the questions and answers to virtually everyone in the legal profession. The TL Answers newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Accounting/Billing/Time Capture | Backup/Media/Storage | Business Productivity/Word Processing | Coming Attractions | Copiers/Scanners/Printers | Online/Cloud | TL Answers

LegalWorks: Read Our Exclusive Report

By Neil J. Squillante | Thursday, April 9, 2015

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers a cloud document management system that integrates with Microsoft Outlook for email capture (see article below), a utility for organizing your desktop, a SharePoint add-on for creating customized notifications, and an app to feed your need for more apps. Don't miss the next issue.

A NEW OUTLOOK ON DOCUMENT MANAGEMENT

Document management seems more like an aspiration in many law firms rather than a reality. In particular, email has become an important if not the most important document type. Some law firms just resign themselves to email being in a silo, whereas others engage in a lot of manual labor to save relevant email messages and attachments in client/matter folders on a file server alongside related documents. Law firms clearly need a better solution.

LegalWorks … in One Sentence

Uptime Legal's LegalWorks is a cloud document management system that includes email via integration with Outlook.

The Killer Feature

Regardless of whether you use Office locally or virtually, the LegalWorks Outlook add-on brings email into the document management fold. Once installed, the add-on displays your LegalWorks matters in a pane on the right side of Outlook. When you drag and drop email messages into a folder, they remain in Outlook but also become available in LegalWorks — including any attachments.

The Outlook add-on also synchronizes your Outlook calendars with the firm-wide calendar in LegalWorks. Later when using LegalWorks you'll find all the email and calendar events related to a client and matter alongside other related data such as documents, notes, and tasks.

"LegalWorks was developed to fill the void expressed by our law firm clients, Uptime Legal CEO Dennis Dimka tells us. "The Outlook add-in helps legal professionals keep all of their documents, including email, in organized client and matter folders."

Other Notable Features

Because of its modern HTML5 underpinnings, LegalWorks runs within any desktop or mobile browser. Also, it functions like desktop software. For example you need not download Microsoft Word and other documents before working on them. Instead, just locate a document in LegalWorks, open it, work on it, save your changes, and close it when finished (you can create new versions too).

Other features include firm-wide contact and task management, and hosted Microsoft Exchange. LegalWorks resides in data centers in the United States that have earned SAS 70 and the newer SSAE 16 certifications for availability, redundancy, and security.

What Else Should You Know?

LegalWorks costs $59 per user per month. Uptime Legal sets up and migrates your documents, contacts, and matters to LegalWorks for a fixed fee. You can mirror your existing folder system or start fresh. Learn more about LegalWorks.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Document Management | Email/Messaging/Telephony | Online/Cloud | TL NewsWire

Review of CosmoLex Plus Google's April Update

By Kathryn Hughes | Friday, April 3, 2015

Coming today to SmallLaw: CosmoLex has a bold mission — a single login for law firms that covers their accounting, billing, and practice management needs. New Jersey lawyer Ed Zohn spent six months evaluating CosmoLex, including some undercover work. The result is this comprehensive review that covers installation, user experience, bang for the buck, and of course major features such as the Dashboard, Calendar and Event Tracking, Billing and Collection, and Trust Management. Also, don't miss the SmallLaw Pick of the Week to learn how to prepare for Google's "Mobilegeddon."

How to Receive SmallLaw
Small firm, big dreams. Written by practicing lawyers who manage successful small firms and legal technology and practice management experts who have achieved rock star status, SmallLaw provides practical advice on management, marketing, and technology issues in small law firms, as well as comprehensive legal product reviews with accompanying TechnoScore ratings. SmallLaw also ensures that you won't miss anything published elsewhere by linking to helpful articles (and podcasts and videos) about solo practices and small law firms. The SmallLaw newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Accounting/Billing/Time Capture | Coming Attractions | Online/Cloud | Practice Management/Calendars | SmallLaw

Uptime Practice: Read Our Exclusive Report

By Neil J. Squillante | Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers a private cloud service designed for law firms on which you can run any desktop software (see article below), a gadget of sorts for voir dire, a Bluetooth iPad stylus, and a hybrid Windows tablet. Don't miss the next issue.

TAKE YOUR DESKTOP SOFTWARE TO THE CLOUD

Servers are selling like hotcakes — but not to law firms. With the growth of the cloud, data centers can't get enough of them. Meanwhile, law firms don't want to manage servers anymore. There's no joy in it, just headaches and heartache. Fortunately, you can run your favorite desktop applications in the cloud nowadays. Because of ethical considerations, you need to choose your provider carefully.

Uptime Practice … in One Sentence

Uptime Legal's Uptime Practice is a private cloud designed specifically for law firms on which you can run any Windows or Mac client/server and desktop software.

The Killer Feature

Uptime Legal coined the term "Law Practice as a Service" or LPaaS to refer to its service. This terms underscores two differentiators vis-a-vis other hosting options.

First, Uptime Legal uses multiple data centers, all of which reside in the United States. Second, while Uptime Practice accommodates any software, the company has expertise with popular legal-specific products such as Amicus Attorney, Needles, PCLaw, PracticeMaster, ProLaw, Tabs3, Time Matters, and WorldDox.

"Uptime Practice is designed exclusively for law firms to ensure business continuity, practice efficiency, and reduce out-of-pocket costs," Uptime Legal CEO Dennis Dimka tells us. "Eliminating the burden of acquiring, maintaining, monitoring, and replacing hardware while retaining the software needed to run their law firm helps legal professionals provide better service to their clients."

Other Notable Features

Uptime Practice works on any desktop or mobile computer, including Mac, Windows PC, iPad, iPhone, and Android tablets and smartphones. After you login, your virtual desktop becomes indistinguishable from your local desktop.

Uptime Practice integrates with your existing printers and scanners. Both attached and network devices appear within your virtual desktop as if your software were running locally. This means you can scan to a local or virtual folder, local or virtual desktop, and email.

You won't need to bring everything with you. Uptime Practice includes the current version of Microsoft Office and Microsoft Exchange for your email with unlimited calendars, storage, and technical support. Uptime Practice also includes Uptime Lync, a secure instant messaging system based on Skype for Business. This trio of Microsoft products eliminates the hassle of buying a license or navigating Microsoft's Office 365 offerings.

What Else Should You Know?

Uptime Practice costs $189 per user per month for 3-5 users, $149 per user per month for 6-14 users, and $129 per user per month for 15 or more users. Learn more about Uptime Practice.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Networking/Operating Systems | Online/Cloud | Practice Management/Calendars | TL NewsWire

Word Formatting Secret; Review of Digits; Private Cloud; Online Abuse; Hillary Clinton and Email Security

By Kathryn Hughes | Monday, March 30, 2015

Today's issue of TL Serendipity contains these articles:

Steve Long, The Secret To Formatting In Microsoft Word

Phyllis Dubrow, Review: Digits (iPad Calculator)

Chris Raesz, My "Private Cloud" Versus The Public Cloud

Nick Lockett, The Right To Not Be Abused Online

Don't miss this issue — or any future issues.

How to Receive TL Serendipity
Our most serendipitous offering (hence its name), TL Serendipity consists of contributions by TechnoLawyer members who have important information to share. You'll no doubt enjoy it because of its mix of interesting topics and genuinely useful knowledge, including brutally honest product reviews and informative how-tos. The TL Serendipity newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Business Productivity/Word Processing | Coming Attractions | Email/Messaging/Telephony | Laptops/Smartphones/Tablets | Online/Cloud | Privacy/Security | Technology Industry/Legal Profession | TL Serendipity | Utilities

EstateExec: Read Our Exclusive Report

By Neil J. Squillante | Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers a cloud application for estate settlements that all concerned can access (see article below), an iOS email app that intelligently processes your messages, another iOS email app that transforms email messages into tasks, and an enterprise-grade replacement for Dropbox with mobile apps. Don't miss the next issue.

FACILITATING ESTATE SETTLEMENTS VIA THE CLOUD

While death causes grief, it can also provide a financial cushion. Accordingly, anything that gets between beneficiaries and their inheritance becomes a problem — including probate lawyers like you. The key to contentment (and referrals) lies in keeping all concerned informed about the estate.

EstateExec … in One Sentence

Launched recently, EstateExec is a cloud application for tracking, calculating, and sharing information about trust and estate settlements, including assets, debts, expenses, and distributions.

The Killer Feature

Once you set up an estate, you can grant online access to clients, executors, beneficiaries, other lawyers, etc. You can choose limited read-only access or full administrator access. This empowers clients to obtain status updates when they want without needing to reach out to your office. Those with full access can update information such as assets they sell.

"EstateExec applies the latest cloud-based technology to the estate settlement process," EstateExec Board Member Dan Stickel tells us. "This results in an easy and affordable way to simplify the estate and trust settlement process while providing enhanced client services at the same time."

Other Notable Features

The developers of EstateExec set out to make estate and trust settlement "easier by simplifying the process even for old hands with battle-tested spreadsheet templates," says Stickel. EstateExec's central repository tracks all estate assets, debts, expenses, etc. This not only documents each transaction for record-keeping purposes, but also tracks what's left for distribution in the estate — including funds of sold assets.

Thus, if you sell Uncle Jimmy's Apple Watch Edition because that jokester left it equally to two beneficiaries, EstateExec will track the sale and the eventual distribution of the funds from the sale. Distribution planning tools can mark assets for future distribution, and then mark them complete when finalized.

You'll spend most of your time in the Assets table, which functions like a spreadsheet. It lists all assets by type, value, distribution status, and more. "It's like Quicken, but geared towards estate settlement rather than household finance," says Stickel.

On-the-fly reports via sorting and filtering enable you to answer any question you might have or receive about the estate. You can sort the Assets, Debts, and other tables by column, including secondary sorting (e.g., sort by asset type and then value). Each table column contains a search field for filtering. For example, you can find remaining assets of a certain type, at a certain location, or with a certain keyword such as "watch," the value of assets received per beneficiary, all assets worth more than a certain value, and much more.

Regardless of whether you choose to give others access, you may also want to send them saved reports. You can export reports in PDF format for a professional look, as well as in CSV format for analyzing in Excel or importing into products such as QuickBooks.

What Else Should You Know?

EstateExec runs in all major desktop and mobile browsers. It costs $79 per estate regardless of size. You can try EstateExec for free. Learn more about EstateExec.

How to Receive TL NewsWire
So many products, so little time. In each issue of TL NewsWire, you'll learn about five new products for the legal profession. Pressed for time? The newsletter's innovative articles enable lawyers and law office administrators to quickly understand the function of a product, and zero in on its most important features. The TL NewsWire newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Online/Cloud | TL NewsWire | Transactional Practice Areas

Reviews of Bitcasa Personal, Scalar; Document Management Recommendation; Laptop Buying Advice

By Kathryn Hughes | Friday, March 13, 2015

Today's issue of TL Serendipity contains these articles:

Fredric Gruder, Review: Bitcasa Personal for Secure Cloud Storage

Derrick Jackson, Review: Scalar iPad Calculator App

Matthew Appleton, Two Document Management Systems for Law Firms

Don't miss this issue — or any future issues.

How to Receive TL Serendipity
Our most serendipitous offering (hence its name), TL Serendipity consists of contributions by TechnoLawyer members who have important information to share. You'll no doubt enjoy it because of its mix of interesting topics and genuinely useful knowledge, including brutally honest product reviews and informative how-tos. The TL Serendipity newsletter is free so don't miss the next issue. Please subscribe now.

Topics: Backup/Media/Storage | Coming Attractions | Document Management | Laptops/Smartphones/Tablets | Online/Cloud | TL Serendipity | Utilities
 
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