Wednesday, January 2, 2013

This and That in Court Tech – January 2013

Here are some things that recently happened in court technology and related areas.


Montgomery County Ohio Electronic Service Return

Our friends in Montgomery County (Dayton) report that they are requiring that:
 “Effective December 1, 2012, all persons appointed as a process server by the General Division of the Montgomery County Common Pleas Court shall obtain all civil documents for service and shall file all service returns for civil cases through the Court’s authorized electronic filing system.”
For more information go to:

Allen County, Indiana Implements Natural Language Jury System

Our friend, colleague, and editor of the NCSC Jur-E Bulletin, Paula Hannaford-Agor passed along an online video of the mJuror system that has been implemented in Allen County (Fort Wayne), Indiana.  The video stars another friend of ours, Court Director of Operations, Jeff Leffers. The mJuror system developed by Judicial Systems Inc. provides a “natural language” text message interface to communicate information to jurors and potential jurors questions.

To view the online "Vimeo" video demonstration click here.

European Data Exchange Challenges Discussed

A special issue of the International Association for Court Administration Journal included an article titled: Electronic Data Exchange Within European Justice: A Good Opportunity by Nadia Caboni and Marco Velicogna of IRSIG-CNR at the University of Bologna in Italy.  The opening sentence summarizes the goal of the article:
“This paper analyses one of the most debated and controversial issues regarding the changes which are taking place in the Justice domain: the complexity of developing and implementing ITC systems that ‘actually work’, and doing so with a reasonable budget and in a reasonable time."
The paper goes on to discuss the European Commission e-CODEX (e-Justice Communication via Online Data Exchange) program approach.  e-CODEX is an ambitious effort involving 15 countries working on "common approaches and standards" for:
  • e-Identity management
  • e-Signatures
  • e-Payment
  • e-Filing
  • and Document standards
To read the full paper click here.

 OASIS LegalXML Electronic Court Filing Version 4.01 Approved

From the announcement:
“Electronic Court Filing Version 4.01 defines a set of non-proprietary XML and Web services specifications, along with clarifying explanations and amendments to those specifications, that have been added to the ECF specification for the purpose of promoting interoperability among electronic court filing vendors and systems.  ECF Version 4.01 is a maintenance release to address several minor schema and definition issues identified by implementers of the ECF 4.0 specification.”
The full specification (HTML version) can be viewed by clicking here.

In addition the LegalXML ECF held its annual face-to-face meeting in Las Vegas on December 9, 2012.  The PowerPoint file containing the meeting agenda can be downloaded by clicking here.

Canada Self-Represent Litigants Studied

Thanks to Rob Richards of Legal Informatics we learned of Professor Julie Macfarlane’s of the University of Windsor work on self represented litigants through an article in the Ottawa Citizen newspaper .  The article describes some of the input she has received from conducting 280 interviews with self-represented litigants.

Free Microsoft Expressions Web Page Edit Software

From time to time I'm sure that many of you (like myself) must delve into coding HTML for our web posts and pages.  One WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) software program for this kind of work, Microsoft Expression Web 4 was recently released for free .  Click here to access the page to download your free version for Microsoft Windows OS systems.

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