Product News


Cordless Keyboards and Mice
Get some freedom of motion—go cordless. The folks at Logitech (www.logitech.com) have worked very hard to develop a line of cordless keyboards, mice, and trackballs to make your life easier. The devices are all battery powered (some come with rechargeable batteries) and use power-saving technology to coax long life from each battery. The devices work off of a secure radio signal technology. That means that they do not require line-of-sight contact to work and that your keystroke signals will not be easily intercepted. The keyboards and mice work over a 6-foot range from the receiver. All the devices work with both Mac and Windows computers. The receivers connect to your computer through USB or PS/2 plugs. The keyboard keys have Mac-specific key designations as well as Windows markings to make everyone happy. Mice start at $29.95 and come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Keyboards start at $39.95, and you have several choices of feature sets; the keyboards also include special keys for multimedia control.

For the best deal, get a keyboard and mouse combination. With the combination sets, both devices work off of the same receiver. Logitech offers combination packages ranging in price from $59.95 for the Cordless Access Duo to $99.95 for the Cordless Comfort Duo, which features the ergonomically designed split and contoured keypad, and the Cordless Elite Duo (my personal favorite), which has the best and biggest feature set and my favorite mouse of the collection. I have tried all of the combinations. They all are plug-and-play and work as advertised. I have been using them for the last several months, and the only required maintenance was changing the battery in one of my mice. I use the cordless combinations with desktop and often with laptop computers. I like not having the extra cord dangling below my keyboard drawer on my desktop, and I really like not having to hassle with mouse cords that always seem to get in the way or get tangled on something. As for my laptop, I really like having the laptop on a table, sitting back in my chair so that I can see the screen well and be comfortable while I use the cordless keyboard and mouse to do my work. Reviewed by Jeffrey Allen

 

Cordless Access Duo

Cordless Comfort Duo
Cordless Elite Duo


ContactEase!
ContactEase saves time by making it easy to gain and maintain a complete understanding of the firm’s relationship with clients and prospects. The program tracks and synchronizes multiple touch points, including phone, fax, and e-mail communication; event participation; accounting; and documents associated with client matters. Many times sharing information across the entire law firm provides enormous benefits; however, there are times and circumstances under which it is necessary to keep certain information private. ContactEase provides different permission levels so that only authorized individuals may view or edit specified data. ContactEase integrates with a wide variety of popular word processors, e-mail and fax programs, and devices such as PDAs and business card scanners. ContactEase allows you to: (1) identify opportunities to increase your share of client expenditures; (2) enhance client service by demonstrating an understanding of all touch points between the client and the firm (you can use ContactEase from applications such as Microsoft Word and Outlook, Novell GroupWise, and WordPerfect); (3) look up client information or add data when away from the office using your PalmPilot or HandSpring Visor; and easily send letters, e-mails, and other communications to the exact category of clients and prospects you specify. Cole Valley Software ( www.colevalley.com). Reviewed by Alan Pearlman

Save Money—Share Peripherals
The Belkin ( www.Belkin.com) 4 x 4 USB Peripheral Switch (“Switch”) lets you share up to four USB devices (printers, scanners, etc.) from up to four computers simultaneously. The Switch costs $129.99 and works with both Mac (OS 9.2 and higher) and Windows (98 SE, ME, 2000, and XP) systems. The Switch works with both USB 2.0 and USB 1.1 devices; with USB 2.0 you get a transfer rate of up to 12 Mbps. The Switch provides immediate access to your USB devices through either a manual push button or through new, easy-to-use Switch software. It keeps all your devices available without your having to detach and reconnect them from your computer or move them from one computer to another. You have the choice of using all the devices from a single computer or assigning each device to any of the connected computers. USB devices can be connected up to 30 feet from your computer. Want to try it for less? The Belkin website offers refurbished units for $64.99. Reviewed by Jeffrey Allen


Jeffrey Allen ( jallenlawtek@aol.com) has a general practice in Oakland, California. His firm, Graves & Allen, emphasizes real estate and business transactions and litigation. A frequent speaker and author on technology topics, he is the Special Issue Editor of the GPSolo Technology & Practice Guide and Editor-in-Chief of the Technology eReport.

Alan Pearlman ( pearlman@theelectroniclawyer.com) practices family and criminal law in Illinois. An active member of the ABA GPSSF Section, he has been a member of the Editorial Board of the GPSolo Technology & Practice Guide. He also works as a technology consultant, often writes for lawyers, and regularly speaks at continuing education courses for attorneys.

Neither the ABA nor ABA Sections endorse non-ABA products or services, and the product reviews in the
Technology eReport should not be so construed.

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