If you were absent from the ABA TECHSHOW last week, then you missed out on the munificent congregation of the best, brightest and most influential minds in the legal technology field.
The 21st annual TECHSHOW, ably sponsored by the Law Practice Management section of the ABA, hosted more than 2,200 attendees, juggled 140 booths in the exhibit hall and delivered 50 superb educational sessions by more than 60 speakers.
As expected, sessions addressing electronic discovery were popular and well-attended. Presentations delivered by premier speakers on the topic, including attorneys Craig Ball and Browning E. Marean III, required additional seating.
SPOTLIGHT ON E-DISCOVERY
TECHSHOW's dedication to e-discovery issues was evident in Judge Shira Scheindlin's keynote address. The Honorable Judge Scheindlin (of Zubulake fame) delivered a sincere and insightful speech to a packed room. She focused her remarks on new questions raised by the four-month-old amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and how they impact the traditional adversarial practice of law in this country.
Judge Scheindlin addressed the importance of preparing for the Rule 26(f) "meet and confer" by learning where and how your client stores electronic records and information. Bringing this knowledge to your initial meetings with opposing counsel, and actually sharing that information with them, indicates a change in law practice that does not sit comfortably with many attorneys. Judge Scheindlin recognized the struggles attorneys and judges will face in the near future as they legally define terms like "inaccessible data," "reasonably usable format," and "routine operation of an electronic system."
While e-discovery was certainly a hot topic, this year's TECHSHOW offered enlightenment on many other techie subjects relevant to the practice of law. The track on Microsoft Office was highly attended, as were both tracks on Basic and Advanced IT. Judge Christina Habas (District Court, City and County of Denver) and Judge Herbert Dixon, Jr. (Superior Court of Washington, D.C.) tag-teamed on an excellent presentation discussing trial technology.
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