Every year, the ABA Journal looks at the 3,500 law blogs and prepares a list of their favorites. Yesterday, the ABA Journal announced the 5th Annual ABA Journal Blawg 100, and I was pleased to see that iPhone J.D. was on the list for the third year in a row. The ABA Journal asks you to vote for your favorites among the 100 by going to this page. You have to register to vote, but it's quick and easy, and the requirement is there just to prevent one person from voting multiple times. After all, the ABA is based in Chicago, a city with a colorful history when it comes to elections. I'd be pleased as punch if you voted for iPhone J.D. — last year enough of you did so for this website to win the legal technology category — and you get to vote for 12 sites, which can be difficult because there are so many good ones. In fact, one of the best parts of this annual list is that it always helps me discover great sites that I had not run across before, so even if you don't vote you'll want to look at the list.
It has been a month since I've had a Friday "In the news" feature, so in addition to pointing out the iPhone and iPad news of note from the past week, I'm also noting some articles from the past few weeks that you might want to check out:
- I always hesitate before posting rumors on iPhone J.D. because they often are nothing more than someone just making something up. I'd rather discuss real products once they are available. But considering how important Microsoft Office is to lawyers, I couldn't help but notice this article by Matt Hickey in the iPad-only publication The Daily claiming that Microsoft is "actively working" on Microsoft Office for the iPad. And whether or not Hickey's source is accurate, California attorney David Sparks provided a good analysis of why Microsoft would be foolish to not enbrace the iPad.
- Nick Wingfield of the New York Times wrote about how large companies that once stayed away from Apple products are now very attracted to the iPad and iPhone. This has certainly been true in law firms. Virtually no large law firms use Macs any more. (My law firm was one of the last large firms to run exclusively on Macs; we switched to PCs a decade ago to take advantage of law-related software that worked only on the PC.) But as I reported recently, recent surveys show that virtually all of the most profitable law firms in the country now support the iPhone and iPad.
- Tim Baran wrote about Shoeboxed, an app that helps you organize your receipts, on Legal Productivity, a good blog published by the folks who created Rocket Matter, time tracking software used by many lawyers.
- Oklahoma attorney Jeffrey Taylor of The Droid Lawyer published his list of 2011's best apps for lawyers. Why am I linking to a story about Android apps? Because many of the great apps on his list also exist on the iPhone.
- The iSmashPhone website wrote about an (unidentified) lawyer's view on using the iPhone 4S on Verizon.
- Harry McCracken of Technologizer wrote about Apple's GarageBand app coming to the iPhone. It seems bizarre to use a screen that small to create music, but this app is really fun, whether or not you have any musical talent.
- Susan Stellin of the New York Times wrote about using an iPhone as a boarding pass.
- St. Louis attorney Geri Dreiling reviews the Documents to Go iPad app, one of the essential apps on my iPhone and iPad.
- Matt Chandler of Buffalo Business First reports that the Damon Morey law firm purchased 100 iPad 2s so that every lawyer in the firm would have one.
- Cory Clements, a law student at BYU, shared with me this post by Greg Israelsen comparing the iPhone plans on AT&T, Verizon and Sprint. The post includes some great charts that would be very useful if you, or someone you know, is trying to decide which carrier to use with a new iPhone.
- Here is a video clip of comedian Robin Williams talking to Ellen Degeneres about the Siri feature of the iPhone 4S.
- And here is comedian Steven Colbert talking to Siri. Funny stuff. (For a serious take on the silly news about Siri having a political agenda, Adam Engst of TidBITS wrote this good article.)
- Looking for a case for your iPad that is fit for a Commander in Chief? Matthew Panzarino of The Next Web reports that President Obama uses the DODOcase for his iPad 2. It does look like a very nice case.
- And finally, it is often said that the best thing about the camera on the iPhone is that it means that you always have a camera with you when you need one, even if you didn't expect to need it. So you have a camera when your child suddenly does something cute, when you suddenly want to preserve a memory, or when ... SHARK!!! ... an 18 foot shark suddenly starts circling your boat, which happened to this person. CAUTION: The audio in this video is not safe for work because there are a lot of curse words. (Frankly, I would have said a lot worse if I was suddenly this close to a huge shark.) Whether or not you turn on the sound, this is a pretty amazing video; good thing he had an iPhone with him. [via Daring Fireball]