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TL NewsWire Top 10 and 25 Products of 2015 Awards

By Neil J. Squillante | Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Below you'll find the TL NewsWire Top 10 and Top 25 Products of 2015 Awards — chosen by TL NewsWire subscribers.

When TL NewsWire subscribers read about a product of interest this year and clicked for more details, they passively casted a vote. Passive voting is the most meaningful type of voting for awards. The winners below genuinely attracted the most interest.

As you read about the winning products, you'll notice many that help lawyers create, annotate, and manage documents. Other hot product areas include email, law firm finances, litigation, and PDF. Finally, most of the products offer one or more key integrations, which enables law firms to combine previously siloed products into a cohesive system.

TL NewsWire is free — sign up now so you can choose next year's winners.

Congratulations to all the winners! Without further ado …

WINNERS OF THE TL NEWSWIRE TOP 10 PRODUCTS OF 2015 AWARD

Congratulations to the 10 hottest products of 2015 ranked in order by most clicks!

1. Matter Center for Office 365

Microsoft first previewed Matter Center at the ILTA Conference in August 2014. When Matter Center launched in September 2015 and we reported on it, TL NewsWire subscribers went bananas, vaulting it to a first place finish. Matter Center underscores the enduring popularity of both Microsoft Office and document management in the legal industry.

2. American Legal Style for PerfectIt 3

Fittingly in the year that gave us Ex Machina, American Legal Style for PerfectIt 3 proofreads your Word documents for incorrect citations and other style problems. It's like having Bryan Garner in your computer. Indeed, Garner's "The Red Book" is among the references American Legal Style for PerfectIt 3 can check your documents against.

3. Synergy Tools 1.0

Perhaps no legal software entrepreneur understands the pain of small law firms like Legal Matters Software founder John Ryan. Pretty much a gift to small firms given its $59.95 price, Synergy Tools 1.0 addresses nine pain points encountered daily by legal professionals who live in Windows Explorer.

4. Spark

It takes courage to build an iPhone email app given Apple's not-too-shabby Mail app. However, Readdle's Spark addresses Mail's biggest shortcoming — attachment handling. Spark enables you to attach documents from Dropbox, Box, Google Drive, iCloud Drive, and other cloud services the way your brain works — while writing your message.

5. LiquidText

LiquidText challenges you to use an iPad to annotate documents with interactions that don't exist on a PC but which hail from the world of pen and paper. Unlike Microsoft Word, Acrobat, etc., LiquidText gives your comments just as much of the spotlight as the document on which you're commenting. Apple named LiquidText the Most Innovative iPad App of 2015.

6. Capture.it Time Capture

Passive time capture apps like Capture.it capture the imagination of lawyers because let's face it — tracking your time stinks. Capture.it takes automatic time-tracking to new heights by periodically prompting you to assign captured time to matters, eliminating the need to open Capture.it for a dedicated billing session at the last minute each month.

7. Smokeball

Smokeball burst on the scene this year with a document-centric approach to practice management. Integrations with Word and Outlook and a document assembly engine keep all communications with clients and work product centrally organized. Smokeball also handles the yeoman's chores of practice management such as contacts and calendars.

8. LegalWorks

Uptime Legal merits a tip of our hat as the only company in 2015 that won two TL NewsWire Top Products awards. First up, LegalWorks is a cloud document management system. At many firms, Outlook is the hub through which documents usually arrive and leave. LegalWorks' Outlook integration enables you to save and retrieve documents from within Outlook.

9. iPad Pro

The long rumored iPad Pro arrived along with a first-party keyboard case and digital pencil. Like virtually all Apple products, the iPad Pro resulted in fierce online debates and vitriole among geeks. Meanwhile, lawyers and others who have long craved an iPad with a display the size of a sheet of paper are buying them like hotcakes.

10. LegalNature Pro

Launched in 2011 to offer complex legal documents to people whom LegalZoom doesn't serve, LegalNature found that it had many lawyers among its customers. Enter LegalNature Pro, which enables lawyers to automate their own documents while continuing to use LegalNature's forms.

WINNERS OF THE TL NEWSWIRE TOP 25 PRODUCTS OF 2015 AWARD

Congratulations to the next 15 hottest products of 2015 ranked in order by most clicks!

11. Dragon Professional Individual 14

After fits and starts over the past few years, Nuance has integrated its iconic Dragon Professional desktop software with your iPhone via Dragon Anywhere. Start dictating in your office and continue in your car. Dragon Professional also offers a new help system driven by — what else? — voice commands.

12. Pathagoras On Cloud

Research and development is a way of life at ISPV, which ships a new version of its Microsoft Word add-in Pathagoras every year. In 2015, the company launched Pathagoras On Cloud, which brings the Pathagoras' document assembly tools to a web word processor. This enables you to create documents on any device as there's no need for Microsoft Word.

13. TrustBooks

Trust accounting can seem like more trouble than it's worth — until a client fails to pay a large bill. Unlike other products, TrustBooks focuses exclusively on trust accounts. It offers three-way reconciliation, warns you about low balances, and generates statements for your clients.

14. Lexis for Microsoft Office 5.2

The only product to win two consecutive years, Lexis for Microsoft Office added proofreading tools in 2015. You can find undefined terms and inconsistent phrases. Also new, integration with Lexis Advance brings your research into Microsoft Word for instant access while you're writing.

15. Summation 6

Many litigators don't always have matters in the discovery phase. Summation 6 enables you to use the software as needed rather than commit to a traditional license. It also offers one-stop-shopping as it handles case analysis and transcript management in addition to document review and production.

16. EstateExec

No one likes to plan for their death. EstateExec makes estate planning an easier sell for lawyers as it enables your clients to manage and designate all their assets using their web browser. If you don't like serving as an executor or trustee, EstateExec may help persuade someone else to take on that role.

17. FactBox

Small law firms in particular have embraced web apps for billing, practice management, and more. It stands to reason that these law firms will continue this migration. FactBox brings case analysis to your web browser with all data stored in U.S.-based datacenters.

18. Xero

Hoping to capture QuickBooks users who want a cloud accounting system, Xero rolled out QuickBooks migration this year. The process takes about three hours after which you and others can manage your firm's accounting from anywhere.

19. Worldox GX4

This release of the popular document management system focuses on saving you time through automation. For example, Follow Me Favorites shortens the process of creating a document profile to just naming the document — the same amount of effort as Windows Explorer.

20. SWING Porter for Outlook

Many lawyers view Outlook as a silo as it keeps a matter's email apart from all the other documents. SWING Porter for Outlook exports email in PDF format using your firm's naming convention. You can manually export email or use a timed schedule to automate the process.

21. Uptime Practice

The second winner from Uptime Legal, Uptime Practice enables law firms to move to the cloud without giving up their robust desktop apps such as Amicus Attorney, Needles, PCLaw, PracticeMaster, ProLaw, Tabs3, Time Matters, and WorldDox.

22. Inbox by Gmail

Google reinvented email with Gmail so who better to reinvent it again? Inbox by Gmail surfaces information from email messages so you don't need to open them. A built-in task manager and integrations with Google Keep and Google Now seek to provide missing links for email productivity.

23. Adobe Acrobat DC

After years of not getting the Internet, Adobe leapt ahead with Acrobat DC. The PDF documents you open on your desktop become available on your smartphone and tablet (and vice versa) instantly without the need to move the documents anywhere. The recent integration with Dropbox added more icing to this tempting cake.

24. Soda PDF 7

Soda PDF poses a greater threat to Nitro Pro than to Acrobat as both products compete for price-sensitive law firms that find Acrobat too expensive (especially with Adobe now pushing subscriptions). On this front, Soda PDF costs less than Nitro Pro while providing the features lawyers need such as Bates stamping, PDF-to-Word conversion, integration with scanners, built-in OCR, and more.

25. Amicus Premium 2015

You can set your clock by the annual releases of popular practice management system Amicus Premium. This year brought the Amicus Client Portal for secure communications and file sharing with clients. Unlike standalone portals, the Amicus Client Portal prompts you to bill the time you spend communicating with your clients.

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: Accounting/Billing/Time Capture | Automation/Document Assembly/Macros | Business Productivity/Word Processing | Collaboration/Knowledge Management | Document Management | Email/Messaging/Telephony | Laptops/Smartphones/Tablets | Legal Research | Litigation/Discovery/Trials | Online/Cloud | Practice Management/Calendars | TechnoLawyer | TL NewsWire | Utilities

The Single Best Use of Siri; Cloud Concerns; Defending ActiveWords; Review of Ergotron Workfit S

By Kathryn Hughes | Friday, December 11, 2015

Today's issue of TL Serendipity contains these articles:

Neil Squillante, The Single Best Use of Siri

Michael Schwartz, Cloud Concerns: Speed and Data Loss

Edward Zohn, Beware the Cloud Oligopolies

Steven Schwaber, ActiveWords v. A Whole Slew of Keystrokes

Brian Moore, Review: Ergotron Workfit S

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: Automation/Document Assembly/Macros | Backup/Media/Storage | Coming Attractions | Furniture/Office Supplies | Laptops/Smartphones/Tablets | Online/Cloud | TL Serendipity | Utilities

Recommended Bluetooth Headsets and Headphones; Reviews of HoudahSpot and Google Voice

By Kathryn Hughes | Thursday, December 3, 2015

Today's issue of TL Answers contains these articles:

Tom Trottier, Recommended Bluetooth Headsets and Headphones and Usage Tips

Fred Kruck, Review: HoudahSpot

David Grabill, Review: Google Voice

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: Coming Attractions | Email/Messaging/Telephony | Gadgets/Shredders/Office Gear | TL Answers | Utilities

The Good Old Bad Days of Law Practice; Reviews of ActiveWords, Windows 10

By Kathryn Hughes | Friday, October 30, 2015

Today's issue of TL Answers contains these articles:

Dave Migliaccio, The Good Old Bad Days of Law Practice

Birney Bull, Review: ActiveWords v. Windows Jump Lists

Burton Bruggeman, Review: Windows 10

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: Automation/Document Assembly/Macros | Coming Attractions | Gadgets/Shredders/Office Gear | Legal Research | Networking/Operating Systems | TL Serendipity | Utilities

American Legal Style for PerfectIt 3: Read Our Exclusive Report

By Neil J. Squillante | Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Today's issue of TL NewsWire covers a legal proofreading add-in for Microsoft Word with special capabilities for briefs and other documents with citations (see article below), an inkjet printer with color laser muscle, and two task managers with their own unique approach to helping you get things done. Don't miss the next issue.

ADD LEGAL PROOFREADING CAPABILITIES TO MICROSOFT WORD

Your clients demand both efficiency and perfection when you draft briefs and other legal documents. More importantly, you demand a certain standard of yourself to maintain your reputation and prevent malpractice claims. But you cannot proofread documents endlessly — and even if you could, you'd still overlook something. A new Microsoft Word add-in addresses this dilemma.

American Legal Style for PerfectIt 3 … in One Sentence

Launched this week, Intelligent Editing's American Legal Style for PerfectIt 3 is a legal proofreading tool for Microsoft Word that enforces correct legal style usage across your firm.

The Killer Feature

Intelligent Editing worked with lawyer and law review editor Ivy Grey to create American Legal Style for PerfectIt. American Legal Style helps to enforce your style preferences and needs from popular references such as The Bluebook, Bryan Garner's The Red Book, Strunk & White's Elements of Style, Black's Law Dictionary, etc. As a result, PerfectIt can catch errors like a rogue space in "F.3d," "statue" when you mean "statute," "ex parte" when you forget to italicize it, and much more.

"I was drawn into this project because I know how it feels to draft documents under intense time pressure and worry about whether I've made style or consistency errors," Grey told us. "With PerfectIt, I feel confident that my work is clean and error-free, and I cut down on proofreading rounds that are often the cause of late nights and early mornings in the office."

Other Notable Features

You select American Legal Style from the PerfectIt icon on the Microsoft Word ribbon or toolbar. PerfectIt works like a spell checker, offering one or more suggestions for each error it finds. If it finds the error in multiple locations, you can correct every instance with one click. Among its capabilities, PerfectIt flags erroneous citations, misspelled legal words and terms of art, words that require italicization, and common dictation and speech recognition errors.

Multiple authors can wreak even more havoc on a document than dictation. Accordingly, American Legal Style for PerfectIt catches inconsistencies ranging from cultural variations (e.g., "color" versus "colour") to conflicting capitalization of defined terms.

PerfectIt can also improve the clarity of your writing by finding mistakes that elude spell checkers, suggesting plain English terms instead of legalese, and pointing out commonly confused or misused words. You can also further customize American Legal Style for PerfectIt to enforce your firm's house style.

What Else Should You Know?

PerfectIt works with Word 2003 and later (including Word 2016) and Windows XP and later (including Windows 10). PerfectIt costs $99 for one user with discounts available for volume purchases. Learn more about American Legal Style for PerfectIt 3.

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 | Litigation/Discovery/Trials | TL NewsWire | Utilities

Reviews of TextSoap, Windows Sync Center; Why Two Computers Is Better Than One; Windows Search Tips

By Kathryn Hughes | Thursday, October 22, 2015

Today's issue of TL Answers contains these articles:

Joe Bahgat, Review of TextSoap for Cleaning Up Transcripts

Douglas Morrison, My Dual PC Backup Strategy; Review of Windows Sync Center

Bill Onwusah, Tips for Using Windows Search for Document Management

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: Backup/Media/Storage | Business Productivity/Word Processing | Coming Attractions | Document Management | Litigation/Discovery/Trials | TL Answers | Utilities

Desktop Versus Network Scanners; Reviews of xplorer2, Plantronics CS50-USB

By Kathryn Hughes | Thursday, September 24, 2015

Today's issue of TL Answers contains these articles:

Scott Bassett, Desktop Versus Network Scanners; Office 365 Compatibility

Phyllis Dubrow, Review: xplorer2

Aaron Zimmerman, Review: Plantronics CS50-USB

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: Coming Attractions | Copiers/Scanners/Printers | Dictation/OCR/Speech Recognition | Document Management | TL Answers | Utilities

Tables of Contents Secrets; Reviews of Chrometa, ACD, TValue; VoIP Providers to Avoid; Radio and Newspaper Advertising in 2015

By Kathryn Hughes | Thursday, July 30, 2015

Today's issue of TL Answers contains these articles:

Robin Meadow, The Secret to Creating Tables of Contents

Colleen Heine, Review: Chrometa

Charles Kronzek, VoIP Providers to Avoid Plus Review of ACD

Adron Beene, Review: TValue

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 | Business Productivity/Word Processing | Coming Attractions | Email/Messaging/Telephony | Litigation/Discovery/Trials | TL Answers | Utilities

Review of powerOne; Why WordPerfect Is Perfect; Apple Watch Modular Face Uses; Young Lawyers and Technology

By Kathryn Hughes | Friday, June 5, 2015

Today's issue of TL Serendipity contains these articles:

Wesley Y. S. Chang, Review: powerOne Finance Pro Calculator

Philip Olenick, What Made and Makes WordPerfect Perfect

Neil Squillante, Apple Watch: When to Use the Modular Face

Paul Purdue, Why Young Lawyers Are Not Technology Enthusiasts

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 | Gadgets/Shredders/Office Gear | Laptops/Smartphones/Tablets | Technology Industry/Legal Profession | TL Serendipity | Utilities

Review of QuickFile 5 and SimplyFile 5 Plus Better Introductions

By Kathryn Hughes | Monday, May 18, 2015

Coming today to SmallLaw: New Jersey lawyer Ed Zohn is an aficionado of both Outlook and document management so we asked him to write a comparative review of QuickFile 5 and SimplyFile 4. These Outlook add-ons enable you to file incoming and outgoing email into the correct folder with one click. Ed covers setup, core functionality, and pricing. He also explores advanced features such as snoozing an email message to make it disappear until a later time. Don't miss Ed's verdict. Also, don't miss the SmallLaw Pick of the Week for nine tips on how to write introductions that keep readers engaged.

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: Coming Attractions | Document Management | Email/Messaging/Telephony | SmallLaw | Utilities
 
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