They’re light, portable, and intuitive. Many computer tasks can be done efficiently on a tablet, and as a society, we are huge fans.
Both tablets and laptops make a huge impact in the courtroom when it comes to trial presentation technology, but every case is unique and each presenter has different needs. We compare the differences between the two so you can choose the option that is best for your circumstances.
For those “pacers” out there, an iPad allows you to walk freely around the room and present from wherever you’re standing. A laptop is a little more restrictive; you can still pace, but you need to return to the laptop to move forward in your presentation or rely on someone else to call up your exhibits. However, presenting with an iPad requires you to set-up a private, wireless network to use Apple TV and similar products, and there is always the concern of becoming wirelessly disconnected in the middle of your presentation.
When using TrialDirector on a computer, you have much more storage and a higher processing speed, which allows you to handle a higher volume of documents, photos, and videos. Due to the lower processing speed, TrialDirector for iPad is great when using a small number of exhibits but not for managing larger case files.
Within the PC software, you have access to more tools and features while preparing and presenting your case, while you can use your iPad to make fewer, more basic edits and play pre-edited clips. This allows the iPad application to have a simpler experience and interface. However, working with an iPad requires you to load sensitive documents through iTunes, Dropbox, Box, or any other file sharing application, but you get to skip that step if you’re using a computer.
With a PC, you also have access to the most-used aspects of TrialDirector software. You can easily:
Retrieve and display exhibits faster
Create or adjust deposition clips, even while you’re in trial
Search transcripts and create detailed search results
Import synched transcripts
Easily cut deposition clips
Choose from eight different playback options
Link exhibits to deposition clips
Ultimately, the choice is yours. You want to do your best while presenting, and so we recommend using the software the allows you to manage your case your way you while also allowing you to be comfortable and confident in the courtroom.
During your next trial, which one are you going to use?
Connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, or learn more about TrialDirector and how it can help you by visiting our website. Already have TrialDirector? Check out one of our training courses.
The kind of day that just drags on in a perfect storm of bad luck. Her computer crashed right before she finished writing her quarterly report. For some reason, her office smelled like a rotting dairy farm, and she managed to spill her lunch all over her new blouse.
It was just one of those days.
As she flipped through her mail while walking through the front door of her tiny apartment, she paused on an official-looking envelope. “Official Jury Summons Smith County” was printed in a bright yellow box. Just like that, she knew the universe was working against her.
With no valid reason to be excused from jury duty, Jenna dutifully, yet grudgingly arrived at the appointed time and location to offer her services as a juror. When she arrived, she was amazed by the diversity of people who would be serving with her; people from a variety of backgrounds and education levels, all working together for a common goal.
But after the amazement came the worry. Jenna had earned a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and considered herself fairly educated, and even she was stressed about understanding the court proceedings and vocabulary used by the judge and attorney. But there were other jurors who didn’t have the same educational opportunities as her, and she wondered how was she supposed to reach a verdict with people who were so different from her.
After everyone had entered the courtroom, the trial began. Jenna’s thoughts quickly left the case as she started to think about the work she needed to catch up on and when she would go grocery shopping. Occasionally, she would tune back into the trial, but it was hard to pay attention when they were using so many big words that she didn’t understand and showing documents that didn’t mean anything to her. If she wasn’t getting anything out of this, she doubted that any of the other jurors were understanding anything.
Does this sound familiar? It’s rare to find a group of jurors that are actively engaged during most of a trial, let alone the entirety of it. In a perfect world, each jury would be composed of 12 people from diverse backgrounds who are also well-versed in legal affairs while being wholeheartedly committed to pursuing justice. Since that situation isn’t a plausible option, we go for the next best thing: an appealing presentation.
Think back to your days in school when a professor would spend ten minutes writing on the board, and two minutes in you were mentally checked out; your jury isn’t any different. You can’t afford to spend time setting up documents, zooming in on images, and fast-forwarding to a specific segment of a deposition. You need to be able to present your case clearly and concisely so that the jury can understand and remember your presentation.
Yes, it takes a lot of time and effort to prepare a seamless case presentation beforehand; but if it helps the jury to reach the desired verdict, isn’t it worth it?
Connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, or learn more about TrialDirector and how it can help you by visiting our website. Already have TrialDirector? Check out one of our training courses
When you invest in software, do you ever wish it would do just a little more? On the other hand, have you ever found out something about the software you currently use that makes your job that much easier?
Sometimes the tools you use every day do everything you want them to do, but you may not know it. It’s a simple matter of learning a few tips and tricks to get to what you need.
Here are five things that you may not know that you can do with TrialDirector, the leading trial presentation software.
1 – Make a single PDF of some, or all, of your case items
Your case has hundreds of exhibits and thousands of pages. What if you need to review documents with a witness, expert, or colleague? It is much easier to review, share, and annotate documents as PDFs.
TrialDirector provides a really easy way to make PDFs of your documents.
Create a workbook and add items from your case. All you have to do is drag and drop. Then, right click on the workbook and choose “Send Workbook Contents To…” and select “PDF File.”
You can choose to export to a single PDF or multiple files and whether to apply markups.
The apply markups option will place any highlights, arrows, stamps, labels, etc…onto the PDF image. This is incredibly important and useful if you have redactions.
That’s it! Now you can save much more time as you review and prepare your case.
2 – Redact documents to keep private things private
Privileged information and private data are probably peppered throughout the evidence. You need to redact the information to protect you, your client, and your case.
Did you know TrialDirector lets you redact specific information from documents?
Not only that, but it lets you customize the redactions too. Choose white or black; with a border or without a border; labeled as “Redacted” or blank. Set your preferences in the Options area and they will apply to all redactions in your case.
To apply a redaction, open your annotation toolbar and select the Redact tool. Using your mouse, click, drag, and place the redaction on the desired areas. At this point, you’ll see the redaction is grayed over and you can still view the underlying image. This is helpful to you in the event you want to see the underlying text. However, when this image is printed or displayed in the presentation view, the redaction will display as white or black however you set it in your preferences.
There are times you will want to apply a redaction permanently. You can use TrialDirector for this too. Apply the redaction in the same manner as above. Next, make a PDF of the item(s) and apply the markups (see #1!) to the new file. Now you can send the redacted image(s) anywhere, and since the redaction was applied permanently to the new file, it cannot be removed.
3 – Use transcript search results in filings and other documents
You’re probably familiar with searching transcripts in TrialDirector. (In case you’re not: go to the Search tab in Transcript Manager, enter your word or phrase, choose any or all your transcripts, and click search…the results are displayed and you can expand them to see context! ßThat’s a bonus tip!).
“Great,” you might say, “but I want to include some of these in my motion. What good is it here?”
Use the Print function to create a PDF or “Print to File” to create a Word document. From there, you can copy and paste whatever you need into any document you like. You can then save your file so you can email, print, and share it with anyone you choose.
4 – Make pre-annotated presentations with Save Stage
Wait, what? Are we going the theater? Courtrooms may contain drama, but no, that’s not what we mean by “Save Stage”.
We think of the presentation display as a stage where you show your case. Often, you start with a blank or empty stage and present one item at a time. But there are times you want to show a detailed combination of a variety of types of evidence: perhaps zoom in on two sentences of a multi-page contract, play a video deposition clip, and show a picture all at the same time.
TrialDirector can easily handle this number of actors on the screen, but you don’t want to set it up in front of the jury or on-the-fly. It would take precious seconds and the jury might get impatient.
Instead, impress the jury by creating the exact presentation display of your three items ahead of time. When you set up the presentation screen beforehand, choose Save Stage from the presentation tool bar. Like performers taking places before the curtain rises, the stage is saved exactly as you designed. When you are in court, just select the saved stage you created and begin.
The jury sees what you want, when you want with no muss and no fuss. It holds their attention without wasting anyone’s time during trial. Now that’s impressive!
5 – Use TrialDirector and TrialDirector for iPad together
We love the freedom and comfort that the iPad provides, so we created TrialDirector for iPad. It’s a slimmed-down version of TrialDirector and gives you great functionality.
But what about the unexpected events at trial? What happens when you need to find that previously inadmissible document? How can you find and present it quickly and efficiently? This is one example where the strength of a PC or laptop comes in. All that processing power makes it easy to search for and present that now all-important document.
Use TrialDirector and TrialDirector for iPad together. For scripted, no-deviation style presentation like an opening statement or closing argument, the iPad is a great fit. But for questioning witnesses, searching for items, and creating a dynamic and commanding visual, stick with the power of the full version of the software.
In TrialDirector, you can make a TrialDirector for iPad workbook, place your items inside and export. You can also import case items into the iPad app using Dropbox, iTunes, BoxSync, or OneDrive.
Here’s a bonus to using the software and app together: the iPad automatically sorts everything alpha-numerically. But, do you want to present things alphabetically or in the order you set? When you use the TrialDirector for iPad workbook, TrialDirector for iPad will retain the organization structure you set so items will present in the order you want.
It’s easy to get used to using something for one purpose and stay inside a comfort zone. With a little training and creativity, TrialDirector is more than presentation…it’s your trial preparation and presentation solution.
What tips have helped you be more efficient during case management or have helped you create your best trial presentations?