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    Technology: All-in-One Headset Solution

    Nerino J. Petro Jr.

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    Wisconsin Lawyer Wisconsin Lawyer

    Vol. 80, No. 10, October 2007

    All-In-One Headset Solution

    In an effort to get rid of wires and clutter on my desktop, I went in search of a wireless solution that would allow me to use one headset for both my phone and my dictation. Although it isn't listed on the Dragon NaturallySpeaking hardware compatibility list, here is the equipment I chose, and it is working exceedingly well for me: a Plantronics CS55 900 MHx wireless headset with HL10 Handset lifter; a GN Netcom SleCT switch; and a VXI USB translator.

    You place the GN Netcom SeleCT switch between the wireless headset and your phone. The switch itself comes equipped with a microphone and headphone jack to plug into a computer sound card. However, to gain the benefit of using a USB microphone to avoid background noise generated by the computer system, you need the VXI USB translator. The GN Netcom SeleCT switch cables plug into the USB translator at one end, and the USB cable on the other end of the USB translator plugs into your computer's USB ports.

    The Plantronics CS55 can be purchased with the HL10 automatic handset lifter, which automatically lifts the handset when you press the Answer button on the wireless headpiece. I initially thought this would be a problem (since you have to have the headpiece on to dictate, but when you push the On switch on the wireless headset it also activates the HL10 and lifts the phone handset so you receive a dial tone). However, all you need to do is simply push the phone handset down, which lowers the HL10 and hangs up the phone - and the wireless headpiece remains turned on. Then you simply push the switch on the GN Netcom SeleCT switch from the telephone icon to the computer icon and dictate into NaturallySpeaking.

    When the phone rings, I push the selector switch back to the telephone and push the Answer button on the wireless headset twice: This disconnects the headset and reactivates the handset while also activating the HL10 lifter so I can answer the phone. If you don't want to assemble a system such as I'm using, you can buy a similar setup with all the parts directly from www.knowbrainer.com.

    This has turned out to be a great solution, and although I chose the CS55 headset, others will probably work. In steady use, I've found the dictation capability to be as good as my USB wired headset and I've eliminated all of the wires and now need only one headset for both phone calls and speech recognition. - Nerino Petro

    Save the date - Nov. 29 & 30, 2007 _ Milwaukee

     Conference Caters to Solo and Small Firm Needs, Including Technology

    Meet with your colleagues at the Italian Conference Center in Milwaukee, Nov. 29-30, for two days of insightful programming and networking opportunities at the Wisconsin Solo & Small Firm Conference. Presented by the Milwaukee Bar Association and the State Bar of Wisconsin, the 2007 Wisconsin Solo & Small Firm Conference will be bigger, better, and oriented to every solo and small-firm lawyer and legal staffer statewide. Attendees can choose from four tracks of programming covering substantive law, practice management, technology, and ethics/quality of life, as well as plenary sessions from state and national speakers. CLE credits will be applied for in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Illinois for up to 10.5 CLE and 4.0 EPR credits.

      Come for the CLE and stay for the networking opportunities with your peers. Visit the sponsors in the exhibit hall for services, products, and information to assist you with your practice.

      Don't miss the only conference in Wisconsin that is focused on the needs of solo and small-firm lawyers. Register by Nov. 2 and save $35 off the State Bar member price of $260 and nonmember price of $360. Multiple attendees from the same firm save $25 for each additional attendee from the same firm.

    For more information, visit www.wisbar.org.