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July 2010
Feature - Microsoft Office 2010
Adobe Acrobat - Lawyer's Best Friend
Affinity University Classes in July
Events in July
Microsoft Word Tip of the Month - Auto-Numbering of Exhibits
Green Corner - Cheap But Effective Solar Charger
Current Versions of Law Office Software
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Getting HotIt's getting hot!  In the last few weeks Microsoft released a new version of Office, likely the most used suite of applications in law firms, Apple's newest iPhone hit the streets, and a couple of new Android smart phones were announced by Verizon Wireless for release this month.  In other words, technology continues to move forward at a blistering pace.  How does a busy lawyer, law firm administrator, paralegal, or legal secretary keep up?  Not only must we contend with steamy summer weather, we must find ways to keep abreast of an ever-changing law office technology landscape. 

Rest assured that you are not alone.  We are on this journey with you.  Our job is to sort through the hype and exaggerated claims to find hardware, software, and services that will help you better serve your clients while improving the efficiency and profitability of your firm.  Sometimes it is the latest and greatest gadget, gizmo, or software application that will make your life easier.  More often, the best answer is a simple upgrade or better training to help you make the most of the hardware and software you already own and use.

As suggested earlier, Microsoft Office is the suite of applications your firm spends the most time with.  But are you really using it to its full potential?  This month, we will take a look at the new features in Office 2010, recommend which edition and version to buy, and provide a tip for Microsoft Word. 

We also bring you our regular newsletter features this month.  Included is a tip for Adobe Acrobat along with our complete Affinity University schedule and other events for July.  Don't forget Green Corner - our monthly article on environmentally friendly computing.  We conclude with a comprehensive listing of the Current Versions of law office software we support.
Microsoft Releases Office 2010 - What You Need to Know
It is a big deal when Microsoft releases a new version of Office.  Although perhaps not as sexy as the latest smart phone, practice management application, scanner, or speech recognition program, most of us "live" in Microsoft Office for hours each day.  It is where lawyers, and their staff, do the "money" work that supports their firms. 

This month we take you on a tour of the new features of the key applications in Office 2010 and provide some important cautions for those of you who need Office to integrate with other law office software.   

Read this month's feature article.
Adobe Acrobat - Lawyer's New Best Friend?
Adobe AcrobatWith the possible exception of Microsoft Office, lawyers today depend on Adobe Acrobat more than any other application.  Not only is Acrobat essential for litigating in the increasing number or courts permitting (or requiring) e-filing, Acrobat's open-standard PDF file format is the preferred format for discovery, scanning, and storage. 

Owning and knowing how to use key Acrobat functions is increasingly important.  This month we will get you up to speed on the basics of buying Acrobat along with our Acrobat Tip of the Month.

Read the Acrobat article.
Affinity University Logo Affinity University
Classes in July
Affinity University is the leading source for web based training sessions for the legal community.  All of our classes are one hour, making it easy and affordable for lawyers, paralegals and support staff to take time from their day to improve their efficiency and productivity.  No software is required and sign up is simple.  View all of this month's classes here.

7/9   - Microsoft PowerPoint for the Law Office
7/9   - Adobe Acrobat for the Law Office
7/20 - Time Matters Basics
7/20 - PracticeMaster Word Document Assembly
7/20 - Time Matters Productivity
7/23 - PCLaw Productivity Tips
7/23 - PCLaw Accounting

Events Events in July
7/5 - All Affinity Consulting Group offices will be closed on Monday, July 5, for the Independence Day holiday.  We reopen first thing Tuesday morning, July 6.

- Debbie Foster of Affinity Tampa will participate in an Atticus Graduate Network Call on "Tips, Tricks and Pointers on Reducing Paper, Managing Email, Productivity and Using Social Networking." Nora Bergman, Atticus Practice Advisor, joins Debbie on this call open only to Atticus graduates. To join the Atticus Rainmaker program, contact Chris Lee at

- Barron Henley and Paul Unger of Affinity Columbus present "Building a Successful Law Practice" for the Ohio Bar live in Columbus and simulcast in Akron, Cleveland, Fairfield, and Perrysburg. 

- Barron Henley of Affinity Columbus will speak on "Electronic Enhancements for Print Publications" and "Advanced Features Of MS Word 2007 And 2010 Including XML" at the ACLEA Annual Meeting in New York City. 

- Barron Henley of Affinity Columbus will speak about "Smartphones - Blackberries, IPhones, Windows Mobile, Palm And Android" at the ACLEA Annual Meeting in New York City. 
MS Word Tip MS Word Tip of the Month - Auto Numbering/Lettering of Exhibits and Schedules
Legal documents often contain exhibits or schedules which are attached to the end of the document and are typically numbered or lettered (i.e., Exhibit A).  These exhibits and schedules are often referenced in the body of the document.  Problems can arise when you insert a new exhibit or schedule which necessitates the renumbering of the existing ones.  We tell you how to avoid those problems.

Read the MS Word Tip of the Month.
Solar Chargers - Cheaper is BetterScosche solBAT II
The ongoing oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico reminds us of the need to find and use alternate forms of energy.  One of the most discussed energy alternatives is solar.  Converting sunlight to electricity is not a new idea.  But as photovoltaic technology matures, useful solar devices have fallen substantially in price. 

A good example is the Scosche solBAT II solar-powered backup battery.  It is among the least expensive devices of its type, yet according to recent tests by Laptop magazine, it outperforms solar chargers/backup batteries costing much more.  At a list price of $29.99 and a "street price" of $20 or less, it will charge cell phone and other small portable electronic devices that can be charged via a USB 2.0 connection. It comes with a clear plastic cradle with suction cups for mounting on a window for maximum sun exposure. It is tiny at 3.8 by 2 by 0.5 inches, so there is little additional burden slipping one into your pocket or purse. 
Current Versions Current Versions of Law Office Software
Check out our list of the current versions of important law office software we support.  Staying current is an important way to protect your data and documents.

Read the complete Current Versions list.