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    Wisconsin Lawyer
    November 01, 2015


    Tech Tip

    ‘Force Touch’ Increases iPhone Functionality

    touch padWhile we have seen significant innovation in mobile software and services, hardware advances have been incremental over the past few years.

    We have seen little that would make us say, “Wow, that’s new,” says Tison Rhine, State Bar of Wisconsin practice management advisor.

    However, a new feature of the recently released Apple iPhone 6S and 6S Plus may change that.

    The feature, called Force Touch, is a pressure-sensitive display, with vibrating haptic feedback that, when pressed a little harder, feels like you are pressing a button. In practice, this feature significantly increases functionality – sort of like adding a couple of buttons to your mouse.

    Rather than tapping into an app or link, for example, Force Touch lets you take a peek by pressing a little harder – just let go and you are right back to where you were, says Rhine. You can also get shortcut access to many of the apps functions, making common tasks seamless.

    “So easy, in fact, that I may convert back to iPhone from Android, despite my many frustrations with Apple’s comparatively closed system.”

    clown faceOut There

    Clowning Around

    The Argentinian province of Buenos Aires has passed the world’s first law requiring all public hospitals with pediatric units to use specially trained clowns to help brighten the spirits of sick children.

    The law was inspired by U.S. physician Hunter “Patch” Adams, who believes in the power of laughter as part of the healing process.

    He founded the Gesundheit! Institute, a free communityhospital and teaching center.

    Source: USA Today

    Did You Know?

    Don’t Forget the Cranberry Sauce

    Marcus UrannThanksgiving Day is upon us! That means gratitude and turkey and football (the Packers play the Bears on Thanksgiving Day evening this year). And, of course, a side of cranberry sauce, especially in Wisconsin, where the climate (and the law) is right for growing cranberries.

    Long ago, fresh cranberries became a traditional Thanksgiving Day side dish because they’re harvested in autumn.

    Did you know that in 1912, a lawyer named Marcus Urann changed the cranberry industry? He dropped his law career to buy a cranberry bog in New England and developed a way to make cranberries a year-round product in the form of canned cranberry sauce and cranberry juice.

    In the 1930s, Urann joined forces with competitors to create a cranberry association that ultimately became Ocean Spray Cranberries Inc., a world leader in cranberry products with major growers in Wisconsin.

    Happy Thanksgiving!


    Photo: Courtesy of Ocean Spray Cranberries Inc.

    Good Idea

    gavel and laptopOnline Courtrooms?

    What would you think of an online courtroom in which parties could arbitrate disputes more efficiently? California attorney Raj Abhyanker, who the ABA has recognized as a legal innovator, sees this possibility in the future.

    “I think the court system will change,” he said in a recent interview with the ABA. “There will be a reasonable number of courts that will adopt a quicker way to solve disputes through alternative dispute resolution, which could include something like online courtrooms.”

    Abhyanker, who developed a search engine called Trademarkia to search trademarks, says he’s excited to see how courts will evolve to address the needs of tomorrow through technology.

    Source: ABA Journal


    “Why Are So Many Law Firms Trapped in 1995?”

    cassett player– The headline in a recent article from The Atlantic.

    “Lawyers, … , still manually keep track of their time in six-minute increments, and many firms hold onto voluminous hard copies of old case files,” wrote lawyer and writer Leigh McMullen Abramson.

    However, Abramson said new technologies and increased competition “are forcing the legal industry to slowly remake itself.”

    From start-up companies that use software to analyze litigation data or match understaffed law firms with idle talent pools, to law firms that establish technology-driven business models and jettison the billable hour, the new-age market for legal services is driving innovative and creative

    On the Radar

    Biting the Apple

    apple biteSome of the technology that Apple Inc. uses in iPhones and iPads to improve chip efficiency was created by researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and patented in 1998.

    Last month, a jury in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin ruled against Apple in a patent infringement lawsuit commenced by the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF), which holds patents on many inventions coming out of U.W.-Madison.

    The jury ruled that WARF’s patent is valid and Apple illegally incorporated the technology into its mobile devices without a license, and awarded $234 million in damages.

    The outcome may impact a second WARF lawsuit against Apple relating to use of the patented technology in newer versions of iPhones and iPads.

    Source: Reuters

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