Monday, July 28, 2008

Notes from the 2008 NFPA Tech Institute

I returned yesterday from the 2008 NFPA Tech Institute, held this year in Aurora, Colo. In a day and a half of sessions and exhibits, I took back a lot of information to digest. My firm sent me so that I could learn and gather information about Summation and document management (Summation is what we are considering, and after Bob Myers's session at the Tech Institute, I have to say, Summation is getting a very enthusiastic recommendation from me.) By the time the Tech Institute wrapped up, I had also learned about e-discovery, computer forensics, trial presentation, attending depositions remotely, and the dangers of ignoring structured data. I even learned how to navigate the U.S. Census Bureau's Web site to find demographic information, which will undoubtedly be useful during the next voir dire.

While the exhibitors themselves were lackluster, I thoroughly enjoyed the sessions, including the keynote speech delivered by Mary Mack, Esq. of fios, inc. She provided copies of her book, A Process of Illumination: The Practical Guide to Electronic Discovery, to attendees and lingered to autograph the copies.

NFPA plans to post a virtual trade show on their Web site for all those who couldn't attend, and they will also be selling copies of the CD chock-full of the materials used by the presenters.

My personal highlights included:
  • Chatting, albeit briefly, with Monica Bay, editor-in-chief of Law Technology News, who last year was kind enough to plug my blog on her own blog, The Common Scold -- and she recognized my name;
  • Being invited to the Tech Institute Planning Committee's wrap-up lunch and sitting between S. Kristine Farmer, RP, the current NFPA Board Advisor, and Anita Haworth, RP, NFPA's current president -- who remembered me from the 2003 NFPA Convention, where I had won the First Place West Group Scholarship;
  • Talking to other paralegals who are very excited about using new technology in their jobs;
  • Being part of a group photo that the Rocky Mountain Paralegal Association is going to use on their holiday cards; and
  • Dinners and some free time with the amazing Tamara Bigford, one of the co-chairs of the Tech Institute, NFPA's current Technology Coordinator, and current president of the Western New York Paralegal Association.

Overall, I feel like I came away with a lot of useful information that will not only help me but help my firm in meeting the challenges of litigation in today's fast-paced and overwhelmingly electronic world.


  1. Awwww, shucks! I really had a nice time hanging out with you too, Christine. Thanks for letting me tag along with you!!!


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