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Law.com: Hale & Farewell

Sep 21, 2000, 15:07 (20 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Claire Barliant)

"Hale and Dorr is the last Am Law 100 firm to make the switch from a server-and-terminal setup to individual personal computers. It's not a decision a firm makes overnight. Washington, D.C.'s Arnold & Porter made a similar conversion in 1998. Says Anna McManamon, Arnold & Porter's IT director: 'When changing from Unix to PCs, on a scale of one to ten, with ten being the most difficult, it's definitely a ten.'"

"The irony, of course, is that Linux, a variant of Unix, is starting to make inroads in the rest of the world as an alternative to Windows and as an Internet-friendly platform. Late adopters by inclination, law firms aren't likely to embrace Linux anytime soon."

"Life under Unix may have been reliable, but it wasn't rosy, especially as clients started to want to exchange documents with their lawyers via e-mail. When documents are exchanged via fax and courier, the word processor at either end is irrelevant. Not so with e-mail. Converting documents created in WordPerfect under Unix for use in Word under Windows, and vice versa, is a pain."

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