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Hardware Update

With this week’s release of the iPad 2, I was inspired to write a technology-related post.

I make an effort to integrate technology in my practice as much as possible, so I wanted to write about the things I use in my practice that allow me to provide results to clients, while being efficient as possible.  I am also attempting to become paperless.

Below is the hardware that I currently use in my practice.

My computer is a 13″ MacBook (white).  It is the same computer that I used to take the bar exam a few years ago.  While it’s performance metrics don’t exactly set the world on fire, I recently upgraded the memory, and It has been more than enough for my needs.My macbook

While I intend to upgrade to a MacBook Pro eventually, the MacBook has been bulletproof.  I’ve traveled extensively with it, and it suits my needs for the time being.  When I am in the office, I connect the laptop to a 24″ external monitor.  I also use the full Apple keyboard with the number pad.  While a wireless keyboard would be cool, I use the number pad too frequently to make the trade.

I also recently upgraded to an Apple Magic Mouse. Besides looking really, really cool on my desk, the functionality is incredible.  The last apple mouse I purchased didn’t even have scrolling capabilities.  I don’t think I’m using this mouse to it’s full potential yet, but I love it.  I’m also a little nervous about the trackpad on the new macbook pros that don’t have a button.  Having the external mouse will allay this fear.

I use a 500GB external hard drive to back up everything on my laptop through Time Machine. I’ll discuss my backup methodology more in my post discussing software.

For a printer, I have a wireless laser printer that I use for small jobs in my office.  The details are unimportant, as I actually print very little.

As a personal phone, I have a Palm Pre (no, not an iPhone).  While I don’t use this often for work purposes, I love the full, physical keyboard, and I use Evernote when I am away from my other phone or laptop.  As a business cell phone, I have an LG Optimus S.  It runs on Android, which is something relatively new to me.  The touch screen isn’t bad, but the availability of apps that suit my needs is really nice.  [Note: The Pre could have been a superior phone (even better than the iPhone) if it had developer support for apps, but for whatever reason the developer support was never there].  I use the Twitter and Facebook apps, as well as evernote, wordpress.  I also use the apps for my bank and credit card, and android offers a really cool alarm clock called “Good morning.”  If you have an android phone, get this app.  It’s such a pleasant way to wake up in the morning.

Future:

In addition to my eventual upgrade to a macbook pro, I will also be obtaining a scanner in the near future.  We have several commercial-grade scanners in our office building (which also serve as fax machines and copiers), but I would like to get my own scanner in my office.  I will probably be getting one of the ScanSnap scanners.  They seem to work well with mac’s, and it should be a great addition with my use of PDFPen.  This will help me to remain paperless, and should integrate nicely with my setup.  I also intend to scan the stack of business cards that I’ve collected.

We have a 24″ iMac at home, so I don’t think I am going to get an additional home computer anytime soon.  Although Apple is reportedly upgrading MobileMe, the current version allows me to access my office computer using “Back to my Mac.”  This is a nice feature if I leave my laptop in the office.

So far I have not had any issues with compatibility with other attorneys or clients.

That’s pretty much it for the hardware side.  Although, after watching liveblogs of the iPad2, I could probably find a way to effectively bring one of those into my practice.  I bet I could use it for client meetings and getting files organized for various stages of litigation.

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