Tag Archives: iPad

Links We Love Weekly Round-Up — April 14, 2014

weeklyroundup

Anti-SLAPP Victory in Oregon: Anti-Telemarketing Blog Wins Big with Pro Bono Help

Here’s a hard fact about free speech: vindicating it in American courts takes either money (and lots of it), or lawyers willing to provide pro bono help. Right is right, and law is law, but court is court — and winning in court generally requires competent representation, which is ruinously expensive for normal people. It’s not fair, it’s not right, but it’s true.  Therefore the vitality of the First Amendment depends not just on the law, but on the service of lawyers like Troy Sexton of Motschenbacher & Blattner LLP in Portland, Oregon.

Charlotte School of Law Hosts Clinic for Victims of Beazer Homes

If you bought a home from Beazer Homes between August 2001 and August 2007, you may be eligible for restitution payments.  Charlotte School of Law students will hold a free clinic Saturday, April 26, to help home buyers who were victims of Beazer’s mortgage practices.

Drone Killing Policy Withstands Challenge

The Obama administration’s use of unmanned drones to kill terrorism suspects overseas has withstood its strongest legal challenge — a constitutional lawsuit by the father of a U.S. citizen slain by a missile strike in Yemen nearly three years ago.  The case was dismissed on Friday in a forty-one-page decision by a federal judge in Washington, D.C., Rosemary M. Collyer.  Her ruling can be appealed.

N.C. Sen. Dan Clodfelter Named Charlotte Mayor

State Sen. Dan Clodfelter was named mayor of Charlotte Monday night, replacing Patrick Cannon, who resigned nearly two weeks ago after his arrest on federal corruption charges.

ABA Survey Finds 10% of Lawyers Have Blogs: I’m Not Buying It

LexisNexis’ Frank Strong (@Frank_Strong), reporting from last week’s ABA TechShow shares that per an ABA Technology Survey, 10% of lawyers have blogs.  The survey goes further in finding that 27% of law firms have legal blogs.  On first glance I liked those numbers. That would be a heck of a lot of lawyers providing insight and commentary on the law.  But you need to take a step back and take a critical look.

Thom Tillis Gets Cash Boost in North Carolina Senate Fight

Thom Tillis, one of the Republicans running against Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan in North Carolina, raised $1.3 million in the first three months of the year, according to a person familiar with his totals.  The first-quarter fundraising haul – his best since entering the race last spring – comes as congressional Republicans rally around Mr. Tillis, the speaker of the North Carolina House, ahead of a crowded May 6 primary.

61% of US Adults Don’t Keep Track of Their Money

In case you didn’t mark it on your calendar, April is Financial Literacy Month.  That’s 30 days dedicated to educating consumers about the contents of their wallets, spearheaded by nonprofit credit counseling agency Money Management International.  And why do we need an entire month of learning? A survey by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling gives us a clue.

Lawyer iPhone and iPad Accessories

One of my favorite parts of ABA TECHSHOW a few weeks ago was a presentation that Ben Stevens and I gave on March 27, 2014 called iGadgets and iGear for the iLawyer.  In that session, Ben and I talked about and showed off some of our favorite iPhone and iPad accessories.

Happy Birthday, Maya Angelou: The Beloved Author Recites Her Poem “Phenomenal Woman”

From her extraordinary autobiographies to her beautiful essays to her lesser-known children’s verses, Angelou has served as an inspiration to generations. To generations of women in particular, her poem “Phenomenal Woman,” found in the sublime and soul-lifting 1978 poetry volume And Still I Rise (public library), became an anthem of empowerment, and nowhere does it come to life more beautifully than as it pours out from Angelou’s own lips, who recites her iconic poem in this rare recording…

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Survey of CSL Student Opinion on Initial iPad Setup

In early 2010 Apple Inc announced the iPad and the tablet computer has caused quite a stir in both the education and legal fields. iPad applications allow users to interact with information in new ways and the portability of the device allows people to keep information, literally, at their fingertips.  Some modern courts have discussed going paperless and because of the the versatility of the iPad, it has the potential to replace the legal pad in the courtroom. Due to these developments institutions of legal education have begun adopting tablet technology into their educational models.

In the summer of 2011 the Dean of the Charlotte School of Law Library, Roberta (Bobbie) Studwell, mandated that the Law Library purchase and begin circulating iPads by the end of fall 2012 semester. Dean Studwell had informed the library staff she would be taking a position at a law library in Florida and that the library staff would be responsible for establishing the policies and procedures associated with the new library iPad program. To prepare the library staff for this venture into new technology iPads were ordered for the library staff to use in their daily work.  Over the next couple of months the staff became familiar with the different applications and resources offered by this new technology.

An iPad task force was established to make decisions on tablet circulation policy, iPad security measures, and to make decisions on installed applications. The task force consisted of the library circulation manager, two reference librarians, and two members of the circulation staff (myself included in the last group.) Over the course of several semiweekly meetings, the task force discussed our opinions on the applications and circulation policy.  Each member of the task force did their own separate research on applications, looked into the way other schools (specifically law schools) circulated tablets and presented the information back to the group. We based many of our decisions on the policies used by our sister school, the Phoenix School of Law.  PSL’s iPad policies did not fit the scope the Charlotte iPad program so additional research was needed and other school policies were consulted.   In the end, policies were decided, iPad applications were earmarked and 20 iPads were purchased.

Over the course of the next year the implementation of the Charlotte School of Law Library iPad program was stagnated by a number of technological hurdles as well as some schedule conflicts. Until, October of 2012, I was asked to take on the responsibility of the initial iPad setup and making the final push in integrating the iPads into the library.

Concerns, Problems, Areas of Interest and Methodology

Even with over a year spent on preparation, a few questions needed to be addressed before the iPads could begin to circulate. After meeting with the library leadership team and explaining my idea it was decided that a short questionnaire would answer some needed questions and help to inform students about the upcoming iPad program. I wanted to keep the survey short and simple so I could hit a broader audience. Historically it has been hard to get busy law students to give more than a few seconds of their time, unless you bribe them with food which for the purpose of this survey I was not willing to provide.  I decided to conduct the survey at the circulation desk of the Charlotte School of Law Library.  It is one of the most visited desks in the building and it would insure we gain the opinions of the people that regularly used the library.  I setup three iPads with the decided upon applications and placed them at the circulation desk. I then asked the students to “play around” with the new technology and then take a short survey when they finished.

I created the CSL iPad survey by using the website www.surveymonkey.com. I chose to use this website because it is free to use, tracks the data, and allows the students to complete the survey on the actual iPad they were trying out. Using Safari, the default web browser on the iPad, I made a shortcut to the survey webpage that looks like an application icon and placed the short cut on the home screen of the device. This also made it much easier to have students participate in the survey when all they had to do was tap the icon labeled “iPad Survey.” Below is a screenshot of the survey taken from one of the demonstration iPads.

iPad_screenshot

These questions were chosen for a number of reasons. The first and most important reason was to allow students to begin thinking about how they would use this device.  Simply providing a piece of technology will not get people to use it. You have to let people make a personal connection to the technology. This is why it was essential to have the students explore the iPad and take the survey using the iPad.  By placing the device in their hands, the iPad stops being a concept and starts being a tool.  Secondly, most of the applications we installed on the iPads were law research related and I did not want this to stifle students’ ideas about the possible uses for these devices. It is my opinion that libraries provide resources and should not dictate how these resources are used. This is why I chose to ask several questions about the possible entertainment uses for these devices. Thirdly, I realize that even with all the research done by the library our student body may know of additional application that could be useful to our library patrons. Lastly, buying applications and study aids for 20 individual devices can be rather pricy and I wanted to use this survey to justify this expenditure. For this reason I wanted to get very specific information from individual students about what study aids they wanted to see on the circulating iPads.

Findings

Early in the CSL iPad project one of our reference librarians conducted a focus group on student opinion on the law library circulating iPads. The pool for the focus group consisted of students with experience using smartphones and tablets. The overall consensus of the study was negative toward the library integrating iPads.  I had hoped that opening the survey to a broader audience would lend more positive results. After two days of surveying the students coming to the circulation desk, 83% of the students said that they would checkout an iPad when they came available.

survey1

The majority of students stated that they would most likely use the iPads to do legal research. Many of the students were also interested in web browsing and other entertainment applications.

survey2

There was a stronger divide in student opinion over the installation of entertainment focused applications. Of the students that said they were interested in more entertainment applications, Facebook and Pandora were the most requested.

survey3

As far as additional legal applications suggested by the student body there was no great consensus. Black’s Law Dictionary, a bar preparation application, and a language translator were all requested. Students appeared to be the most interested in question 6 regarding the purchase of study aids. Q&A appears to be the front runner of the suggested study aids to be purchase with Examples and Explanations, Glannon Guides, and Fins following close behind.  By using the data collected in this survey we will determine the applications to be used in the final product.

~Aaron Greene~

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CALI’s Unbound Conference

I had the pleasure of attending the Computer Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) conference at the Marquette University Law School from June 25-27.  The law school building was a sight to behold.  The building is only a year old, cost over 82 million, and has as much state of the art technology as anyone could ask for.  The classrooms are designed to engage students – from push to talk mics to clean sight lines to configurable spaces that are geared towards collaboration or traditional lecture, depending on the class being offered.  Their “conference center” is set up to accommodate guests, let local tv stations plug into their state of the art recording studio, and give conference goers a beautiful view of downtown Milwaukee at the same time.

View of the School from one of the upper floors – notice the “exploded library” located on every floor!

The CALI conference was a real eye-opener on a variety of topics.  Speakers presented information on topics ranging from the latest uses of iPads in the classroom to new technology options for sharing and collaborating on faculty scholarship.  The crowd was nearly as enthusiastic as the speakers were for all the sessions I attended, and the questions were interesting as well.  To see the list of conference sessions, view the recordings, and listen to those questions, go to http://conference.cali.org/2011/webcast

The iPad sessions focused on not only the latest apps available in the legal market, but on some very creative classroom uses of apps.  At least two of the sessions used Xtranormal to illustrate ways of capturing students’ attention and introducing a topic that might normally be a little dry.  The speakers suggested that new apps and cartoons created using Xtranormal may just be the trick for getting students away from those FaceBook pages and back to concentrating on the law school topic of the day!

~Bobbie Studwell~

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