Lawyers that want to use Macs in their Law Office

The Definitive Guide for Lawyers that Want to Use Macs in their Law Office

Three years ago I was honored to write “So You Want an All Mac Office?” for the fantastic Attorney at Work blog. The post continued to rack up hits over the years so the editors asked if I would architect an update.

It was published last week: “Still Want an All-Mac Law Office? What You Need and How You Can Do It.” I discuss why lawyers are using Macs, which Mac you should purchase, and a list of software you can run.

But it gets better because I reached out to four Mac-using lawyers to ask how they used their Mac, why they chose the Mac, and what helps them make it through the day – “Lawyers Who Use Macs: Why They Do It and How.” Their answers are incredibly helpful to any legal professional that’s considering the switch from Windows to Macs and how to do it successfully.

Here's a graphic, courtesy of MyCase, that I included in the piece. This was drawn during the 2014 ABA TECHSHOW session titled, “The Business Case for Going All Mac.” (Click the graphic to enlarge it.)

Here’s a graphic, courtesy of MyCase, that I included in the piece. This was drawn during the 2014 ABA TECHSHOW session titled, “The Business Case for Going All Mac.” (Click the graphic to enlarge it.)


If you’d like more information, feel free to contact me with any questions.

Felt App Collage

Handwritten Notes Mailed Directly From Your iPad – The Wonderful Felt App

Felt App IconI’ve been a big fan of the Felt App and consider it one of the most innovative apps on the iPad.

Who doesn’t like to receive a handwritten note in these days of impersonal digital communications? But I don’t have time to run to the store and buy a card.

Open the Felt App, find the card design you like or create one yourself, and use a stylus to handwrite your note. You can even hand-address the envelope. Pay $4 (or 4 credits) and Felt will print the card on beautiful physical paper just as you wrote it and send it to your snail-mail recipient.

It’s a great way to send personal or business thank-you cards.

The Felt App is free to download but you’ll need a credit card to purchase cards or credits inside the app. They’re running a special 30% off credits for Labor Day which is a great deal.

Quick Tip: The Felt App does offer “wrist protection” when writing a card but it’s not very obvious – just simply swipe up from the bottom of the screen and you’ll have a place where you set your palm down without “writing” anything.

Pay What You Want: Mac Power User Bundle – BusyCal, CrossOver, and More…

BusyCal LogoYou have 3 more days to purchase this “Pay What You Want” bundle from Cult of Mac Deals. Honestly, if you pay anything less than $50 then you’re getting your money’s worth by purchasing BusyCal alone. I’ve been using BusyCal for many years now and prefer it over the OS X built-in calendar for the general look and customization options.

CrossOver 14 MacThe bundle also comes with CrossOver 14 Mac which doesn’t fully compete with VMware Fusion or Parallels, but provides a much simpler method of running select Windows-only software. Many Mac-using attorneys use CrossOver to open “E-Transcript” .PTX files from court reporters. Thomson Reuters only offers a free E-Transcript Viewer for Windows, but CrossOver can run this just fine without requiring you to jump into a full virtual Windows environment (Thomson Reuters does offer the free Westlaw Case Notebook Portable E-Transcript iPad app that will open .PTX files).

WinZip and StuffIt are great to have when working with compressed files.

I’m sure RoboForm Everywhere is good, but I still recommend 1Password for any Mac user.

WALTR sounds interesting, and I’ve been interested in checking out Scapple for a while now since it’s from the developer of Scrivener (Literature & Latte)

You can get everything for only $10 today, but I’d recommend adding on a few dollars. You’re supporting the excellent Creative Commons cause as well.

No referral link from me – you can go direct to the Cult of Mac site and get the bundle before it expires.

Brett Burney Interview on Law Firms Going Mobile with iPads

Lawyers and iPads: What Will Law Firms Do Differently in 5 Years Thanks to Going Mobile?

I was interviewed for a blog post entitled “Lawyers and iPads: What Will Law Firms Do Differently in 5 Years Thanks to Going Mobile?” that appeared on the Relativity Blog on July 24, 2105.

kCura is one of the few e-discovery vendors that offers a companion iPad app (Relativity Binders) for their document review product (Relativity). kCura interviewed five legal technology experts to get their ideas on where iPads and mobility will take law firms in the next 5 years.

Read  “Lawyers and iPads: What Will Law Firms Do Differently in 5 Years Thanks to Going Mobile?

The Name Game: How to Manage & Organize Your Digital Documents – ABA TECHSHOW Summer Series (Thurs. July 16, 2015)

Since I was the Chair of the 2015 ABA TECHSHOW Planning Board (which took place on April 16-18, 2015), I’m a little biased when it comes to how great the educational sessions were. So good, in fact, that the Legal Technology Resource Center (LTRC) picked up several sessions for the “ABA TECHSHOW Summer Series” of webinars.
The first is “The Name Game: How to Manage & Organize Your Digital Documents” that will take place on Thursday, July 16, 2015 from 1:00pm – 2:30pm Eastern. Registration is available here and is only $50 for ABA Members (only $75 if you’re not a member).

The presenters are Nancy Duhon of Duhon Technology Solutions LLC and Steve Best of Affinity Consulting and who also happens to be the Chair of the 2016 ABA TECHSHOW Planning Board.

The material covered in this webinar will apply to any lawyer, regardless of whether you’re using a Mac or Windows computer. But I fin that most Mac-using lawyers don’t have a formal legal document management system and so this webinar will be extremely relevant and helpful.

I encourage you to read more and register for “The Name Game: How to Manage & Organize Your Digital Documents.”

iPad App Review: “Rulebook App Can Replace Your Rule Books”

If you find yourself regularly thumbing through a book looking for a rule or statue then you might consider using the Rulebook iPad instead. All your rules are literally at your fingertips and you can search for the word or phrase that you need across all the books you’ve downloaded.

I spend a lot of time consulting on e-discovery projects which means I’m constantly referring to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure or the state equivalent rules. Rulebook lets me find what I need quickly and bookmark or copy important passages for later.

I reviewed the Rulebook iPad app for Law Technology News and found the app to be extremely useful for lawyers and legal professionals


Grab PDFpenPro Version 6 While It’s On Sale for 48 Hours!

PDFpenPro Version 6 available on Mac App Store for 48 hourI watched MacSparky’s screencast on PDFpen Version 6 and thought I’d have to wait several fretful days for the sale to happen but it’s here!

I’m a big fan of Smile Software’s PDFpenPro but I’ve always taken the position that Mac-lawyers who work a lot with PDFs need to invest in a full version of Adobe Acrobat Professional, just like I believe Mac-lawyers need to invest in a full version of Microsoft Office for the Mac. These are the “professional-grade” tools for our profession.

But with Version 6 of PDFpenPro, Smile is definitely narrowing the gap. Version 6 adds the ability to export to Word and form recognition which has historically been Acrobat Professional space. I’m still hesitant to completely abandon my Acrobat Professional recommendation, but I can tell you that I’m buying PDFpenPro Version 6 today because it’s that good.

First, go watch MacSparky’s screencast so some of his excitement can rub off on you.

Second, go read Smile’s blog post so you can understand the different purchase options. This gets a little confusing, but lemme offer some help: Buy the Mac App Store version so that you can take advantage of iCloud support. MacSparky has only barely commented publicly on why this is important, but when I’ve talked with him personally I completely understand the seamlessness of the system – PDFs sync between your Mac and iPad/iPhone via iCloud so you don’t have to worry about what folder they’re in, whether you e-mailed it, etc.

You only have 48 hours to buy PDFpenPro Version 6 on the Mac App Store for $39.99 before it goes back to its regular price of $79.99.

Fundamental iPad Tips for Lawyers (Brett Burney presentation for Chicago Bar Association)

Attorney at Work-Fundamental iPad Tips for LawyersIn November 2012, I was invited to give a presentation on iPads for the Chicago Bar Association by my good friend Catherine Sanders Reach. I had a great time and we had a packed house. Catherine has indicated that she’s going to have me back for an extended session in the early spring 2013.

Joan Feldman from Attorney at Work was in the audience and did a fantastic write-up of the session. It’s so good, in fact, that you could probably skip attending the session just by reading Joan’s report.

Joan covers my presentation in five areas:

  1. Get better acquainted – covers some general tips on using the iPad
  2. The apps – covers a few of my “top-ten must-have iPad apps for lawyers”
  3. Transferring files in and out of there – covers methods for getting documents on to your iPad
  4. Pointing fingers – covers my stylus (styli?) recommendations
  5. Security settings – covers my recommendations for securing your iPad

You can read the full report at “Fundamental iPad Tips for Lawyers” on Attorney at Work.

2012 Black Friday Mac & iOS Deals for Lawyers

Everyone enjoys a good deal, and fortunately the Black Friday craziness extends to the Mac & iOS App Stores. Here are some of the deals I’ve seen today that are excellent for lawyers and legal professionals:


1password 2012blackfriday1Password for Mac, iOS & Windows

Agile Bits is discounting the entire line of 1Password versions for Mac, iPhone, iPad & Windows so you should pick up whatever version you may still need. I’m a big fan of the 1Password family as a password-manager and I love the fact that I have access to my sync’d database from any device.

If you’re just starting out, I recommend 1Password for Mac reduced to $34.99 from $49.99 and 1Password Pro reduced to $9.99 from $14.99 which is universal for both iPhone and iPad.

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Brett Burney Giving iPad Presentations to Lawyers Around the Country

Brett Burney giving iPad Presentations for LawyersIt continues to amaze me how the iPad is changing the way lawyers use and interact with technology. One of my favorite activities is spending time helping lawyers learn how to use the iPad better. I’ve been honored to be invited to speak around the country on the topic and here is a list of upcoming presentations:

(Many of these sessions are already sold out, but please feel free to reach out and contact the appropriate sponsors in case attendees have to cancel or they expand the space. Thank you!)

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