Legal Tech #TBT – Special Prince Edition courtesy of Jim Calloway

Prince’s passing has all of us sad, but Director of Management Assistance Program at Oklahoma Bar Association and Legal Services Consultant, Jim Calloway is making us nostalgic with his post, Legal Technology Like It’s 1999. It’s a fond look back at all the law office technology from the year Prince paid tribute to. The more things change, the more things stay the same. Checkout his post here: http://www.lawpracticetipsblog.com/2016/04/legal-technology-like-its-1999.html

Manage Your Excel Spreadsheet with a Table

If you’re working with a list of data, you can turn it into a Table.  Excel gives you some features that make manipulating this data much easier. Your column headings will always be visible, and your rows are now formatted with alternating, colored ledger lines (like a checkbook register), which makes your data easier to see. Each column now has the AutoFilter dropdown menu. You can use AutoFilter to filter or sort columns of your data. It will sort everything all together at once, so you don’t run into the common problem where you sort one column, and then everything is no longer corresponding to the cells around it.

 

To convert your data into a Table, select your data. On the Home tab, under the Styles group, select “Format as Table” and choose the table formatting that looks best to you.

 

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Now that you’ve converted your list into a Table, you’ll see that the Ribbon has now given you a new tab called Table Tools Design. You can check “Total Row” in the Table Styles Options group. When checked, a row will appear at the bottom of your data that calculates different totals you can toggle for sum, average, and count.

To take advantage of the AutoFilter feature, scroll up to the top with the column labels. Click the dropdown arrow of the column you want to sort. In my this case, I will sort the Date Opened column.

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As you can see in the dropdown menu, I can sort Oldest to Newest or the opposite, but what’s cool is that I can quickly check and uncheck the months. If I only want to see what happened in November, I just uncheck October and December and now my table is only showing November.

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If I want to see October and December data again, I just go back to the dropdown menu and recheck the boxes. Nothing’s been lost!

 

You can go back to a regular Excel range by clicking “Convert to Range” in the Tools group of the Design Table Tools ribbon.

 

For my example, I am using a spreadsheet of 140 pro bono clients that are in nine clinics. You can get a copy of this spread sheet to fiddle around with yourself here: https://excelesquire.wordpress.com/2015/07/19/analyze-matter-data-with-pivot-tables/

Reverse Image Search with Google

Did you know you can search a picture? If you ever wanted to find out information about an image, you can use Google’s “Reverse image search.” Google can then find related images and tell you what websites are hosting them. Images of a place can lead you to a more specific location. If your image contains people, it may pull up their social media profiles to tell you more about who they are.

 

There are two easy ways to search your image. If it’s a file on your computer, you can upload it to Google. Go to images.google.com and click the camera icon in the search box. Click “Upload and image” and then “Choose file.” Select the file from your computer.

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If it is on the web, you can right click and search for it if you are using Google’s browser, Chrome. Right click on any image you see on a website, click “Search Google for this image” and a new tab will bring up your search results.

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Expand Your Practice with Client Centric Strategies

Preserving the old ways from being abused.
Protecting the new ways, for me and for you.
What more can we do?
- The Kinks, Village Green Preservation Society

Lawyers in Chicago can look forward to Spring for change and renewal – and the Client Centric Strategies conference on 4/15 at the Chicago Bar Association! The headlines in the legal news consistently speak of the changing legal marketplace, whether meeting the needs of the modest means client or learning to solve problems for clients with the help of automation, artificial intelligence, and expert systems. Have you heard about the need for change, but haven’t done it yet because you are waiting for guidance, help, or to see who goes first? Well, there are lawyers who have taken the opportunities to expand their client base and embrace change by leveraging alternative fees, proactive legal services, unconventional law firm business entities, document automation and more to provide quality services and help close the justice gap. On April 15 at the Chicago Bar Association we have invited some of these lawyers – from Chicago and beyond – to talk about what they have done and what they have learned. Then we will invite you to discuss ideas and concerns to help move the conversation from thought to finish, focusing on building resources and tool kits to provide lawyers the guidance they need to move forward. You will leave with practical and ready to use resources to help you get out in front of the changes happening around the profession in a way that is good for both you and your clients.

Sessions will have breakout discussions and include:

  • Lessons from the Client Perspective: Transforming the Delivery of Legal Services
  • Redefining the Role of the Lawyer through Preventive Lawyering, Legal Health Checks and Group/Prepaid Legal Plans
  • Compensation Models
  • Emerging Delivery Models
  • and more!

SPEAKERS:
Trevor Clarke, The Chicago Bar Foundation
Margaret Duval, Domestic Violence Legal Clinic
Eleanor “Nora” Endzel, Endzel Law, LLC
Bob Glaves, The Chicago Bar Foundation
Karin Galldin, Canadian Bar Association
Will Hornsby, American Bar Association
Fred Headon, Canadian Bar Association; Air Canada
Conor Malloy, SMNP Law, LLP
Catherine Sanders Reach, The Chicago Bar Association
Nicolle L. Schippers, ARAG North America, Inc.
Sara Smith, American Bar Association
Bert “Tiger” Whitehead, Access Legal Care, PLLC

Learn more and register now at the Chicago Bar Association website

Looking for some immediate guidance?  See the Chicago Bar Foundation’s Pricing Toolkit:

And some food for thought:

Let’s go beyond the discussion and move to action, learning from leaders who have started forging the path to change.

 

Google Drive Collaboration Cheat Sheet

Even if you have been using Google Drive for multi-user collaboration since the day it came out, there is always more to learn. Below are a few tips and tricks I learned while researching the topic for a complete (but quick) guide to Google Drive Collaboration for Attorney at Work:

Using an Existing File to Share

If you upload a Microsoft Office document to Google Drive it automatically converts to a Google document,  sheet or slides (unless you are using the Office Editing for Docs, Sheets & Slides Chrome extension), but it can be downloaded to a .docx format when you are finished editing (go to the File menu and select “Download as” to see all of the options).  If you have a Microsoft Office document that is heavily styled or formatted, though, you will likely lose some or all of the formatting.

Turn on Sharing: The Invitations

If the invitee does not have a Google account she will be invited to create one. One wrinkle: If the invitee does have a Google account, but you used a different email address when inviting her to collaborate, she will need to request access to the document from the email associated with her Google account.

You might not want everyone to have editing rights. You can choose to give invitees edit capability, comment-only, or view-only rights. No matter what level of editing rights they have, they must log in to access the documents. If you click on the (tiny) “Advanced” link in the sharing dialog box you will see more options, such as “Prevent editors from changing access and adding new people” and “Disable options to download, print, and copy for commenters and viewers.” Toggle these on and click “Save changes” to further refine user rights.

Multi-User Editing

Once you have established permissions and invited collaborators, invitees can open the document and begin typing. If several people are in the document at the same time you will notice that their identities will appear at the top of the document as avatars. You can have real-time chat by clicking on the speech bubble icon next to their avatars. You can follow changes made by other users in real time, too, because each user is associated with a color. You can see a colored cursor with their name hovering over it, as their edits appear. If you want to see the last place another user edited, just click on their avatar and to jump to their last edit.

Comments and Suggestions

Like MS Word, comments are preserved with the document. Clicking on a comment in the comment pane will take you to the place in the document the comment references. Users in the document can respond to comments by clicking on the comment box and typing in the “reply.” Once a comment has been responded to and users want to dismiss the comment, simply mouse over the comment box and click the “Resolve” button that appears there to remove the comment thread and archive it. Resolved too soon? Click on “Comments” at the top of the screen, scroll to the closed thread and click to “re-open”.

Much like the Review features in Microsoft Word, Google has “Suggesting” (equivalent to Word’s Track Changes feature).  In the upper right, in the same toolbar as the editing features (like bold, italics, etc.) click on the arrow next to the pen icon and choose “suggestions”. Now, changes will show inline on the document, color coded to the user and also appear in the Comments pane on the right side of the document. There is no accept all/reject all workflow, instead users must accept or reject each change. Users with Comment-only permissions can make suggested changes to the document as well, though only users with edit rights can accept changes.

If you upload a Word document that already has tracked changes, those tracked changes will be converted to suggestions in the Google document. Likewise, suggestions in a Google Doc saved back to .docx and opened in Word will appear as tracked changes.

Version History

One last useful feature to mention in Google docs collaboration is the Revision history. Go to File – See revision history to open a panel that shows all edits and revisions to the document and who made them. You can click on the timestamp in the right panel to see previous version of the file and revert (restore) to previous versions. Restoring to a previous version doesn’t eliminate any versions, but merely moves it to the top of your revision history.

If you want to just see new changes since you last opened a document click on “See new changes” from the File menu. Like versions, added text is highlighted, and deleted text has a strikethrough. This feature is only available for docs.

Conclusion

Google Drive for collaboration with multiple people is as simple or as sophisticated as you need it to be. It reduces reliance on email, addresses version control and is a great way to get a project started.

Quickly Change Letter Casing in Microsoft Word

It was there all along, but you may not have noticed it: the capitalization menu in Microsoft Word.

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Quickly change the casing in any word document by highlighting the selected text, mousing over to the Change Case menu and click the dropdown menu.

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You can select sentence case, lower case, upper case, capitalize each word, or try the odd toggle case. Simple and no more retyping.

Hiding Posts and Unfollowing Friends on Facebook

Do you have a Facebook friend who, at certain times of the year, posts too much about sports, politics or religion and you don’t want to see them in your News Feed, but you don’t want to unfriend them? Facebook has come up with a way for you to silence these contacts, but remain friends with them. This means you can still visit their profile and post on their wall if you wish, but their updates won’t appear in your News Feed. There are two ways to do this: “Hide Posts” or “Unfollow” the person.

You can do both on the News Feed itself. When you see a post on your News Feed that you would rather not, click the “V” in the top right corner:

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You will see a few options. I can “Hide post,” meaning that this particular post will disappear from my feed, and Facebook will use its enigmatic algorithm to determine how to show me less content similar to this in the future. My friend, Justen will still appear in my feed. But if Justen has offended me, and I don’t want to hear anything he has to say on Facebook anymore, I can click “Unfollow Justen.” This means his posts will no longer appear in my News Feed. He and I will remain friends, and I can take any action as his friend. I can still see his posts if I go directly to his profile.

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If this post violates Facebook’s standards, you can click “Report post.” Facebook will then review the post and potentially review it. The friend in question will not know you reported them.

Another way to unfollow someone is to go to their profile page directly and click the Following tab:

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From here you will have the option to click “Unfollow.”

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Now your News Feed will be filled with news you actually want to see!

Customize Chrome Start Pages

If you are using Google’s Chrome browser for the desktop (and why wouldn’t you?) did you know you can have it open to whatever page – or pages – you want? If you like to see your Gmail when opening the browser in the morning or headlines from Crain’s or the weather for the day you can set Chrome to open one or many pages to get you going. Or, perhaps you would like to continue where you left off from the previous browsing session? Read on to learn how!

By default the Chrome start page (the page Chrome shows you when you launch the browser) shows the Google search bar and thumbnails of the websites you most frequently visit. However, you can change that to open any page or pages that you want.

Click to Expand

Open Pages on Start in Chrome

 

To set the browser to open a specific page or pages when you launch you will need to be signed into Chrome. Then in the top right corner click on the Chrome menu (three horizontal lines stacked on each other). Click Settings – On Startup – Open a specific page or set of pages. Then click “Set pages” and enter the web address of the page(s) you want to see when you open Chrome. Then click “OK”.

 

Click to Expand

Continue Where You Left Off in Chrome

If you would like to see the last tabs you had open before you closed the browser click on the Chrome menu in the top right and then click “Settings”. Under “On Startup” select “Continue” where you left off.  If you allow cookies to be saved you will still be logged into any websites you were visiting before. If you do NOT want to be automatically signed into these pages in “Settings” go to “Show Advanced Settings” and under “Privacy” click “Content Settings”. Under the “Cookies” section choose “keep local data only until you quit your browser” and then click “Done”. When you close your browser you will be logged out of all the sites you were logged into. This is a good security measure, especially if you share you computer.

In addition to the start page, Google’s Chrome also has a Home page you can enable and customize. This is located next to the left of the address bar. In “Settings” go to “Appearance” and check “Show Home button” and below that click “Change” to choose your homepage.

Finally, the Bookmarks Bar in Chrome will link you directly to your favorite sites. When adding bookmarks click on the star icon in the address bar then choose “Bookmarks Bar” from the drop-down menu. You can add folders (and subfolders) to the bookmarks bar too! If you want to add a bookmark or folder of bookmarks just go to the Bookmark Manager (CTRL + Shift + O in Windows; CMMD + Shift + 0 in Mac) and drag and drop the icon or folder into Bookmarks Bar.  Be aware you have limited space in the Bookmarks Bar so choose wisely. If you can’t see the Bookmarks Bar go into “Settings” and under “Appearance” choose “Always show the bookmarks bar”.

Bookmarks Bar in Chrome

Bookmarks Bar in Chrome

Legal Tech #TBT – Special Prince Edition courtesy of Jim Calloway

Prince's passing has all of us sad, but Director of Management Assistance Program at Oklahoma Bar Association and Legal Services Consultant, Jim Calloway is making us nostalgic with his post, Legal Technology Like It's 1999. It's a fond look back … [Read more]

Manage Your Excel Spreadsheet with a Table

If you’re working with a list of data, you can turn it into a Table.  Excel gives you some features that make manipulating this data much easier. Your column headings will always be visible, and your rows are now formatted with alternating, colored … [Read more]

Reverse Image Search with Google

Did you know you can search a picture? If you ever wanted to find out information about an image, you can use Google’s “Reverse image search.” Google can then find related images and tell you what websites are hosting them. Images of a place can lead … [Read more]

Expand Your Practice with Client Centric Strategies

Preserving the old ways from being abused. Protecting the new ways, for me and for you. What more can we do? - The Kinks, Village Green Preservation Society Lawyers in Chicago can look forward to Spring for change and renewal - and the Client … [Read more]

Google Drive Collaboration Cheat Sheet

Even if you have been using Google Drive for multi-user collaboration since the day it came out, there is always more to learn. Below are a few tips and tricks I learned while researching the topic for a complete (but quick) guide to Google Drive … [Read more]

Quickly Change Letter Casing in Microsoft Word

It was there all along, but you may not have noticed it: the capitalization menu in Microsoft Word.   Quickly change the casing in any word document by highlighting the selected text, mousing over to the Change Case menu and click the … [Read more]

Hiding Posts and Unfollowing Friends on Facebook

Do you have a Facebook friend who, at certain times of the year, posts too much about sports, politics or religion and you don’t want to see them in your News Feed, but you don’t want to unfriend them? Facebook has come up with a way for you to … [Read more]

Customize Chrome Start Pages

If you are using Google’s Chrome browser for the desktop (and why wouldn’t you?) did you know you can have it open to whatever page – or pages – you want? If you like to see your Gmail when opening the browser in the morning or headlines from Crain’s … [Read more]

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