As you know, I’m taking an extended family vacation and driving from our home in Oklahoma City to my parent’s home in California. In sum, we’ll likely spend a lot of time “on the road” in close, cramped quarters. That said, I’m also going to be trying to get responses to two big motions out the door. This will be my first true real-life test of what it means to be a mobile lawyer.
Day 1 happened to be a great success, in so much as I discovered a couple things:
- Google Drive (aka, Google Docs) still doesn’t cut it for handling word processing tasks. While Drive works, it lacks some of the nice features of MS Word, such as styles, quick parts, and general formatting.
- Tablets still don’t make “prime time” when talking about trying to tackle big jobs. Despite their ability to increase a lawyer’s productivity, tablets won’t allow you to accomplish what you could with a desktop or laptop computer. As a caveat though, a bluetooth keyboard could bridge the divide, but alas, I don’t have one.
- I need a larger laptop. I have an Acer Netbook, which I used to believe would handle tasks, but ultimately doesn’t cut it. Right now, I’m typing this post using my mother-in-law’s HP Pavilion laptop with a 17 inch screen. Makes me miss my two 21-inch screens sitting at my desk.
Overall, I was able to accomplish two very important tasks with my tablet. First, while I waited for a plane, I reviewed and annotated about 15 different cases using my favorite PDF editor, RepliGo Reader. Second, using the new offline mode in Google Drive (I know what I’ve said about the program before), I was able to draft and edit my response to a motion for summary judgment using only my tablet. Although I have concerns about the security of Google Drive, and some problems with the overall editing capabilities (see above), in a pinch, Google Drive performed well. Moreover, since we don’t have a must-have word processing program, Google Drive adds a great dimension to the tablet-only mobile office.
If you’re going mobile, it’s great to have an improved tablet atmosphere.