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Archive for March, 2008

Lately we’ve taken a bit of a step back to look at how we can streamline Nextpoint to make sure you’re getting exactly what you want: A tool that is incredibly good at helping you organize and prepare your evidence.

The most important step in your preparation is gathering up all the pertinent data in one place. It’s Search. Find what I want. A simple idea with a very tough implementation, but it just so happens to be our specialty. Nextpoint has always had search at it’s core: The tool was built from our belief that your evidence should never be more than a couple keywords away.

Look for our ever-present behind-the-scenes focus on search to be brought forward and granted some key real estate in the coming months. We will make searches easier to conduct while also improving the way that you work with results.

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We here at Nextpoint have been working on beefing up our customer support features and have rolled out our brand new Nextpoint Support site. The site features user forums, online support request submission, and information to contact customer support via email and our 24-hour service line. A link to customer support can be found on the Nextpoint site, and all new Nextpoint users are automatically registered for access.

Besides using Nextpoint Support for end-users, we’re looking to migrate our internal support process over to this system as well. Our goal is to run all internal requests for support through the site so that they might be easily tracked and efficiently handled. In turn, we’ll use this information, as well as the answered requests from end-users, to populate the user forums, so that common questions can be answered at a glance.

We look forward to maintaining a more efficient internal support system, as well as providing first-class support to our customers.

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iPhone SDK

Last week, Apple made some significant announcements regarding their iPhone. Almost unbelievable, the iPhone has taken 28% of the U.S. smartphone market in eight months, second only to RIM, who makes Blackberry.

SDK is a software development kit. In this kit, Apple has released the same tools they use to build software. Apple has also released a simulator that will allow developers to test the applications developed for the iPhone.

The success of BlackBerries within the legal community has been validation for mobile computing by lawyers — and that’s just the beginning. It is clear that the iPhone is going to change the way businesses manage mobile applications. I’m sure there will be a competitive response from RIM, and there has been a lot of chatter about Google potentially entering the smartphone market. The innovations are coming to the marketplace rapidly.

It feels like the dawn of a new time. Our guess is that the success or failure of new legal technologies is correlated to how mobile the technology is. Network and server bound models are quickly losing their relevance.

How do you know? Watch the presentation, Apple is not talking about what the future looks like, they are releasing the mobile platform. They have released an SDK for the iPhone. They are releasing the APIs used to build mobile applications. iPhones now work with Exchange — and they will be more secure. Apple has laid out a road map.

Is the day of obsolescence for locally installed software today? No, but reinvesting in the old model seems like investing in a better VHS player. This is not future speak, or predicting what the new big thing is, this is happening now.

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Let Me Out!

I recently made the switch from 30Boxes to Google Calendar. I was generally happy with 30Boxes but just had to give Google a try when it started grokking the Outlook invites I was receiving. The biggest question I had to answer before I made the leap was: “Just how big of a leap is this?”.

The fact of the matter is: Google Calendar was easy to join – and that’s great – but if it wasn’t easy to leave, I wouldn’t have given it a chance. I really like products that make canceling/leaving easy and I’m not the only one around here that feels that way.

Export

If you want to switch your evidence system, it should be easy. It shouldn’t cost you some excessive amount of money and it shouldn’t cost you some excessive amount of time.

Likewise, if you want to “give a new product a chance” – you need to know that if you don’t like it, you can always dump everything back into the old system without wasting too much time and/or money – and certainly without losing any data. The last thing you need is one project stuck over in some tool that you didn’t like.

Of course, nobody wants you to leave their product and take your money elsewhere, but if they really believe in their product: They know you’ll be back.

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