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5 Posts Reflecting on Last Year’s ABA TECHSHOW


The ABA TECHSHOW is gearing up to open its doors later this month. In preparation, there’s an app posted for attendees using iOS, the show’s blog is posting news and announcements, the Twitter handle for the show is in full swing, and the hashtag, #ABATECHSHOW is heating up – complete with promoted tweets.

As we did with LegalTech, we’ve searched and sorted through a handful of blog posts to get a sense for the sentiment from last year’s show. Overwhelmingly, last year’s show earned high marks for the networking opportunities, the content of the sessions, and the way the ABA fosters engagement between vendors and attendees.

Here are five posts reflecting on the 2013 show we found helpful:

1. iPhone, J.D.:  Reflections on ABA TECHSHOW 2013

Jeff Richardson, a New Orleans-based attorney wrote that the 2013 event was the “best TECHSHOW ever” but he did offer a constructive critique.  Primarily, he’d like to see mobile device sessions broken down by platform because, “iPhone and iPad users didn’t gain much learning how Android users are trying to work around the lack of legal-specific software for that platform.”  By the looks of the conference schedule, he may have gotten his wish: There’s a dedicated track to the iPad and on day three, separate sessions for iOS, Windows, Android and Blackberry platforms. He also noted that he enjoyed the keynote speaker — David Pogue a former New York Times technology columnist who is now working for Yahoo.

I didn’t realize that his grandfather, Welch Pogue, founded a D.C. firm that merged with Jones Day in 1967 (hence the “Pogue” in “Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue”) and his father, Dick Pogue, was the managing partner of Jones Day for many years.  (Jones Day grew from 335 to 1,250 lawyers under his tenure.)  So while Pogue is not an attorney and did not speak much about the law, he definitely has an understanding of what it means to be an attorney.

Mr. Richardson has an excellent post filled with many more observations from the 2013 TECHSHOW and has included several photos.

2. The MacLawyer: Reflections on ABA TECHSHOW 2013

We know what they say about great minds – they think alike – and Ben Stevens shares both an affinity for Apple products, if not a headline, with the iPhone, J.D.  Mr. Stevens’ had similar observations on the quality of the show – he wrote, “There are some conferences that are just too good to sum up in a few words (or even a few paragraphs), and ABA TECHSHOW 2013 is one of them.”  He cited three primary reasons – the CLE sessions, an exhibit hall filled with vendors “offering all sorts of programs, apps, hardware, and anything else you could possibly imagine,” and a chance to catch up with geographically dispersed friends:

TECHSHOW provides me with a chance to spend quality time with some of my good friends, whether sitting with them in CLE sessions, having lunch or dinner, chatting in the Expo Hall, etc. Because they are scattered all across the country (and the world), it is difficult to see them as often as I’d like, so I really treasure opportunities like this.

3. Real Lawyers Have Blogs: ABA TechShow : Where companies and legal professionals engage

The seemingly omnipresent Kevin O’Keefe, who has been attending the conference for 17 years, observed that the TECHSHOW values and stimulates the engagement between company leaders and attorneys. It’s only with that feedback, he noted, that the “inventors” at vendors can improve the products that serve the market:

When most conferences refer to companies as vendors, it was refreshing to hear TechShow’s perspective. I also suspect this attitude and mission plays a large part in why lawyers and companies serving the legal profession love coming back to TechShow year after year.

4.  InsideLegal: LexThink.1 and ABA TECHSHOW: Disruption, Disruption, Disruption

As they do for other shows, InsideLegal keeps tabs on the numbers.  In her recap of the 2013 TECHSHOW, JoAnna Forshee points to record attendance and reported 112 vendors exhibited – up about 5% over the 2012.  Ms. Forshee and the InsideLegal team joined up with Matt Horman to produce LexThink.1, on which she wrote:

Our big focus for 2013, and the main theme for our LexThink.1 legal innovation and disruption event the night before TECHSHOW kick-off, was disruption. As mentioned in our own disruptive post pre-show, we headed into the week with key questions in mind — what can we learn from market disruption? can innovation and disruption be ‘force-fed’? and is ‘build it and they will come’ still the best way to ‘acid test’ disruption?

LexThink will be on again this year, the evening prior to the show and Christopher T. Anderson, a product manager for the Firm Manager cloud-based law firm practice management solution, is gearing up for his six-minute presentation on Lean Startup for Lawyers (we’ll be exhibiting too, so stop by and see us in booth #300).

5. LawSites: A Recap of ABA TechShow in 46 Links

It’s genuinely hard work to carefully curate content from such events.  But doing so is a valuable service to the larger community. The ever prolific Bob Ambrogi provided – a comprehensive post that categorizes a range of links for each day of the event.

If you missed ABA Techshow last week, here’s an armchair recap, courtesy of the bloggers and journalists who covered it.

What posts would you recommend adding to the list?

Photo credit:  Flickr via Creative Commons

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About Frank Strong

Frank Strong
Frank Strong is the communications director for the LexisNexis software division located on NC State’s Centennial Campus in Raleigh. In this capacity, he leads communications efforts in support of software products for law practice and law department management and also litigation tools – across large law, small law and corporate counsel segments. With more than 15 years of experience in the high-tech sector, Strong previously served as director of public relations for Vocus, which developed marketing, PR and media monitoring software. He has held multiple roles both in-house with corporations, ranging from startups to global organizations, and has also endured the rigors of billable hours, having completed gigs at PR firms including the top 10 global firm Hill & Knowlton. A veteran of two year-long deployments, Strong has concurrently served in uniform in reserve components of the military for more than 20 years, initially as an enlisted Marine and later as an infantry officer in the Army National Guard. Strong holds a BA in Film and TV production from Worcester State University, an M.A. in Public Communication from American University, and an M.B.A. from Marymount University. He is a PADI-certified Master Scuba Diver and holds a USPA "B" skydiving license.