This Summer, Apple is coming out with a credit card called Apple Card. Ken Segall wrote an interesting article about an effort by Apple back in 2004 to come out with a credit card that never came to fruition. He even shares some interesting ad concepts for the credit card, which would have let you earn points to get free music from iTunes. (Ads might have included lines such as "Buy bed, get R.E.M." and "Buy balloons, get Zeppelin." How does he know about this if it was never released? Segall used to work for Apple's advertising agency, TBWA\Chiat\Day, where he not only authored the Think Different campaign in the 1990s, he also came up with the name "iMac," which makes him in some way responsible for every Apple product to follow with an "i" including, the iPhone. There is one oversight in Segall's article; he didn't know that Apple also had a credit card back in the early 1990s. I know about it because I used it as my primary card when I was in law school. The card let you earn credit to use towards an Apple product, and I was able to earn enough over a few years to pay much of the price for a Macintosh Performa, the home computer I was using when I first started practicing law in the mid-1990s. And now, the news of note from the past week:
I often link to articles by California attorney David Sparks that related to the iPhone and iPad, and he has also created some useful video field guides for those devices such as his great Siri Shortcuts Field Guide (my review). Today, I'm going a little off topic to mention that Sparks created a video field guide for a Mac product called Keyboard Maestro, which you can use to automate tasks on a Mac. I purchased Keyboard Maestro a while back to use with my Mac at home, but I hadn't quite figured out how to use the software. David let me try out his Keyboard Maestro Field Guide for free, and I absolutely loved it. His videos show you exactly how to use the product, and after watching about half of the videos (there are lots of mini-sessions so you can just watch the ones that interest you, or you can watch them all), I had already created a number of new automation tasks on my Mac that I'm now using every day. If you own a Mac and you want to make it more powerful, you should check out the Keyboard Maestro Field Guide and the Keyboard Maestro software for the Mac. And here's a post by David Sparks introducing his new Field Guide.
Ryan Christoffel of MacStories reviews Vignette, a new app by Casey Liss which can automate the task of adding pictures to the Contacts entries on your iPhone. You can use the app for free to find out what pictures it can find, and then for a one-time $5 charge you can unlock the app to add the pictures to your contacts.
Last week, Apple released iOS 12.3, and I recommended that everyone update their iPhone and iPad. Even if you don't care about the new TV app, iOS updates always improve security. For example, Roger Fingas of AppleInsider explains how iOS 12.2 (released in March), fixed an exploit that websites could use to identify your specific device by using your iPhone's motion sensors. It's fascinating that someone was smart enough to figure that one out in the first place, but I'm glad that Apple fixed it.
I like that the Music app on the iPhone can tell my song lyrics and let's me search for a song based upon the one line in the song that I remember. But apparently there can be some pretty big errors in some of the lyrics. Jason Snell of Six Colors explores how these errors in lyrics happen.
And finally, you can no longer buy a gold Apple Watch from Apple, but apparently you can make one. Casey Neistat teamed up with Zach Nelson to gold plate an Apple Watch, and it looks like the process actually worked, as you can see in this video:
On Father's Day four years ago (June 21, 2015), my wife and kids gave me one of Apple's Milanese Loop watch bands for the Apple Watch. It normally costs $149 if you buy it from Apple, but I see that Best Buy is currently selling it for half-price at $74.99 as part of a clearance sale, or as low as $55.99 if you buy an open-box version. This is a great price for a great watch band. And I say that from personal experience because I've been wearing a Milanese Loop band almost every day for almost four years. I wear it every day at work, Monday through Friday, and I wear it on the weekends whenever I want something a little fancier such as when going out to a nice dinner or a party.
Everything I wrote in my 2014 review of this band remains true. It looks really nice, it feels incredibly comfortable, and because it uses magnets it is infinitely adjustable to any size. It is also very thin, so it works well even if I'm wearing a dress shirt with tighter cuff on the sleeve. I've seen both women and men wearing the Milanese Loop watch band and I think it looks good on everyone.
One way that you can tell that the Milanese Loop is a great band is that there are tons of knock-offs for sale. The few that I've seen in person didn't seem nearly as nice as what Apple sells. In fact, I see that Amazon is currently selling one knock-off that costs $0.01 — that's right, only a penny — with $10.99 shipping. It scares me to even think about what would show up in the mail if someone orders that one.
There are two other Apple Watch bands that I use all the time. I love wearing the Sport Band on the weekend and when working out. I use the XL version (my review) for a larger wrist. I also like the Woven Nylon Band (my review), but for some reason Apple is no longer selling those — strange because that is also a really good watch band. But I've spent more time wearing the Milanese Loop watch band than any other Apple Watch band, and I really love it.
If you own an Apple Watch and you don't yet have a Milanese Loop watch band, I encourage you to check it out, especially if you act quickly enough to take advantage of this half-price sale at Best Buy.
GoodNotes is my go-to app for taking handwritten notes on my iPad. I use it all the time to take notes in meetings and in court, and I also use it at my desk just to organize my own thoughts. I typically use a template with lines and a light yellow background so that the app mimics writing on a legal pad, but I also frequently import a PDF file and write on it. For example, if there is an agenda for a meeting, I will often import the agenda into a notebook and then, if there is space, take notes directly on the agenda, and when more space is required I write on a page behind the agenda.
GoodNotes was recently updated to version 5 and I reviewed it earlier this year. It's a great update, with full support for the second generation Apple Pencil. Double-tap on the side of the Pencil to switch between your current writing tool and an eraser and then back again.
An eraser is useful when you want to change something you wrote, but sometimes all that you want to do is undo your last stroke or your last few strokes. You have always been able to tap undo and redo buttons at the top of the screen but they are small and you need to hunt for them. A few days ago, the app was updated to version 5.1 to add a very useful new feature. Now, you can use two fingers to double-tap anywhere on the screen to undo your last edit. Double-tap again to undo even more. There is also a new gesture for redo; double-tap with three fingers to redo your last edit.
I find this to be a very useful update. It only takes a fraction of a second to move the Pencil in my hand so that my hand is in a position to tap on the screen with two fingers, and I find that it is much faster to undo using this gesture than finding and tapping the undo button at the top of the screen. I use the undo function far more than I use the redo function, but using three fingers to redo also seems to work very well.
Thanks to this update, one of the most-used apps in my law practice now works even better. I recommend that you check out GoodNotes if you want to take handwritten notes on an iPad.
On Saturday, May 18, 2019, Apple CEO Tim Cook gave the commencement address at Tulane University, right here in New Orleans in the Superdome. It was a good speech that encouraged graduates to make the world a better place by working on hard problems and having the courage to experiment to find solutions. As an example, he stressed the need to address climate change. He encouraged graduates to listen to and have empathy for the viewpoints of others instead of demonizing the other side so that real work can be accomplished.
You can watch a video of his speech on YouTube, but here is a transcript I prepared because it can be easier and faster to read text than to watch a video. (In a few places, I added hyperlinks and annotations.)
* * *
Hello Tulane! Thank you President Fitts, Provost Forman, distinguished faculty, other faculty [laughs], and the entire Tulane family, including the workers, ushers, [and] volunteers who prepared this beautiful space. And I feel duty-bound to also recognize the hard-working bartenders at The Boot. Though they're not here with us this morning, I'm sure some of you are reflecting on their contributions as well. [The Boot is a popular college bar right next to Tulane's campus which has been around for decades.]
And just as many of you have New Orleans in your veins, and perhaps your livers, some of us at Apple have New Orleans in our blood as well. When I was a student at Auburn, the Big Easy was our favorite getaway. It's amazing how quickly those 363 miles fly by when you're driving toward a weekend of beignets and beer. And how slowly they go in the opposite direction. Apple's own Lisa Jackson is a proud Tulane alum. Yes. She brought the Green Wave all the way to Cupertino where she heads our environment and public policy work. We're thrilled to have her talent and leadership on our team.
OK, enough about us. Let's talk about you. At moments like this, it always humbles me to watch a community come together to teach, mentor, advise, and finally say with one voice, congratulations to the class of 2019!
Now there's another very important group: your family and friends. The people who, more than anyone else, loved, supported, and even sacrificed greatly to help you reach this moment. Let's give them a round of applause. This will be my first piece of advice. You might not appreciate until much later in your life how much this moment means to them. Or how that bond of obligation, love, and duty between you matters more than anything else.
In fact, that's what I really want to talk to you about today. In a world where we obsessively document our own lives, most of us don't pay nearly enough attention to what we owe one another. Now this isn't just about calling your parents more, although I'm sure they'd be grateful if you did that. It's about recognizing that human civilization began when we realized that we could do more together. That the threats and danger outside the flickering firelight got smaller when we got bigger. And that we could create more — more prosperity, more beauty, more wisdom, and a better life — when we acknowledge certain shared truths and acted collectively.
Maybe I'm biased, but I've always thought the South, and the Gulf Coast in particular, have hung on to this wisdom better than most. [Tim Cook grew up in Robertsdale, Alabama, which is about an hour from New Orleans and is similarly close to the Gulf of Mexico.] In this part of the country, your neighbors check up on you if they haven't heard from you in a while. Good news travels fast because your victories are their victories too. And you can't make it through someone's front door before they offer you a home-cooked meal.
Maybe you haven't thought about it very much, but these values have informed your Tulane education too. Just look at the motto: not for one's self, but for one's own. You've been fortunate to live, learn, and grow in a city where human currents blend into something magical and unexpected. Where unmatched beauty, natural beauty, literary beauty, musical beauty, cultural beauty, seem to spring unexpectedly from the bayou. The people of New Orleans use two tools to build this city: the unlikely and the impossible. Wherever you go, don't forget the lessons of this place. Life will always find lots of ways to tell you no, that you can't, that you shouldn't, that you'd be better off if you didn't try. But New Orleans teaches us there is nothing more beautiful or more worthwhile than trying. Especially when we do it not in the service of one's self, but one's own.
For me, it was that search for greater purpose that brought me to Apple in the first place. I had a comfortable job at a company called Compaq that at the time looked like it was going to be on top forever. As it turns out, most of you are probably too young to even remember its name. But in 1998, Steve Jobs convinced me to leave Compaq behind to join a company that was on the verge of bankruptcy. They made computers, but at that moment at least, people weren't interested in buying them. Steve had a plan to change things. And I wanted to be a part of it.
It wasn't just about the iMac, or the iPod, or everything that came after. It was about the values that brought these inventions to life. The idea that putting powerful tools in the hands of everyday people helps unleash creativity and move humanity forward. That we can build things that help us imagine a better world and then make it real.
There's a saying that if you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life. At Apple, I learned that's a total crock. You'll work harder than you ever thought possible, but the tools will feel light in your hands. As you go out into the world, don't waste time on problems that have been solved. Don't get hung up on what other people say is practical. Instead, steer your ship into the choppy seas. Look for the rough spots, the problems that seem too big, the complexities that other people are content to work around. It's in those places that you will find your purpose. It's there that you can make your greatest contribution. Whatever you do, don't make the mistake of being too cautious. Don't assume that by staying put, the ground won't move beneath your feet. The status quo simply won't last. So get to work on building something better.
In some important ways, my generation has failed you in this regard. We spent too much time debating. We've been too focused on the fight and not focused enough on progress. And you don't need to look far to find an example of that failure. Here today, in this very place, in an arena where thousands once found desperate shelter from a 100-year disaster, the kind that seem to be happening more and more frequently, I don't think we can talk about who we are as people and what we owe to one another without talking about climate change.
[applause] Thank you. Thank you.
This problem doesn't get any easier based on whose side wins or loses an election. It's about who has won life's lottery and has the luxury of ignoring this issue and who stands to lose everything. The coastal communities, including some right here in Louisiana, that are already making plans to leave behind the places they've called home for generations and head for higher ground. The fishermen whose nets come up empty. The wildlife preserves with less wildlife to preserve. The marginalized, for whom a natural disaster can mean enduring poverty.
Just ask Tulane's own Molly Keogh, who's getting her Ph.D. this weekend. Her important new research shows that rising sea levels are devastating areas of Southern Louisiana more dramatically than anyone expected. Tulane graduates, these are people's homes. Their livelihoods. The land where their grandparents were born, lived, and died.
When we talk about climate change or any issue with human costs, and there are many, I challenge you to look for those who have the most to lose and find the real, true empathy that comes from something shared. That is really what we owe one another. When you do that, the political noise dies down, and you can feel your feet firmly planted on solid ground. After all, we don't build monuments to trolls, and we're not going to start now.
If you find yourself spending more time fighting than getting to work, stop and ask yourself who benefits from all the chaos. There are some who would like you to believe that the only way that you can be strong is by bulldozing those who disagree or never giving them a chance to say their peace in the first place. That the only way you can build your own accomplishments is by tearing down the other side.
We forget sometimes that our preexisting beliefs have their own force of gravity. Today, certain algorithms pull toward you the things you already know, believe, or like, and they push away everything else. Push back. It shouldn't be this way. But in 2019, opening your eyes and seeing things in a new way can be a revolutionary act. Summon the courage not just to hear but to listen. Not just to act, but to act together.
It can sometimes feel like the odds are stacked against you, that it isn't worth it, that the critics are too persistent and the problems are too great. But the solutions to our problems begin on a human scale with building a shared understanding of the work ahead and with undertaking it together. At the very least, we owe it to each other to try.
It's worked before. In 1932, the American economy was in a free-fall. Twelve million people were unemployed, and conventional wisdom said the only thing to do was to ride it out, wait, and hope that things would turn around. But the governor of New York, a rising star named Franklin Roosevelt, refused to wait. He challenged the status quo and called for action. He needed people to stop their rosy thinking, face the facts, pull together, and help themselves out of a jam. He said: "The country demands bold, persistent experimentation. It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it and try another. But above all, try something."
This was a speech to college students fearful about their future in an uncertain world. He said: "Yours is not the task of making your way in the world, but the task of remaking the world." The audacious empathy of young people, the spirit that says we should live not just for ourselves, but for our own. That's the way forward. From climate change to immigration, from criminal justice reform to economic opportunity, be motivated by your duty to build a better world. Young people have changed the course of history time and time again. And now it's time to change it once more.
I know, I know the urgency of that truth is with you today. Feel big because no one can make you feel strong. Feel brave because the challenges we face are great but you are greater. And feel grateful because someone sacrificed to make this moment possible for you. You have clear eyes and a long life to use them. And here in this stadium, I can feel your courage.
Call upon your grit. Try something. You may succeed. You may fail. But make it your life's work to remake the world because there is nothing more beautiful or more worthwhile than working to leave something better for humanity.
Thank you very much, and congratulations class of 2019!
Amy Howe of SCOTUSblog describes the U.S. Supreme Court's 5-4 decision this week in the Apple v. Pepper case. The Court reversed the dismissal of an antitrust lawsuit in which the plaintiffs allege that Apple should be required to allow users to buy apps from places other than Apple's own App Store. I'm not an antitrust lawyer so I cannot comment on decision itself, and I realize that this is just a preliminary so we are still far from a decision on the merits in the case. Nevertheless, if the plaintiffs are successful, it could mean that Apple will have to significantly change the way that you load apps into an iPhone and iPad, so it is worth watching this lawsuit. And now, the other news of note from the past week:
Geoffrey Fowler of the Washington Post tested Apple's new Beats Powerbeats Pro against the Apple Airpods and the Bose SoundSport Free in terms of which is best for head banging, with the help of Sammy Hagar, former Van Halen singer. I think Fowler expected the Beats product to come out on top, but the AirPods seemed to be the favorite.
Yesterday in my review of the Anker Powerline+ USB-C to USB 3.0 Cable, I mentioned the $350 Anker Powerhouse 200 portable battery. Phil Nickinson of iMore reviewed that battery this week, noting that it can quick charge an iPhone 12 times over.
Now that I am using the iPad Pro 12.9" (third generation), I need to update some of my Lightning accessories to USB-C accessories. I already have a USB-C to USB-C cord that I use with Apple's USB-C power adapter for fast charging of the iPad Pro. (I have the $49 29W power adapter, which I reviewed back in 2016, but Apple now sells a 30W USB-C power adapter which you can get for $43 on Amazon.) But sometimes I find myself in a CLE, a meeting, etc. where I am too far from an outlet on a wall to use a power adapter but I still want to provide power to my iPad Pro. All of the portable battery chargers that I own use normal USB, not USB-C, so I had no way to connect my iPad Pro. I needed a USB to USB-C cable.
I like the Anker Powerline+ and Powerline+ II series because these cords have nylon braiding, which makes it pretty much impossible for the cord to get tangled. Also, they hold up to bending very well, and the nylon protects the cords. The "II" versions are slightly more durable, as I showed in this comparison, but both are very good. Anker doesn't currently sell a Powerline+ II version of a USB to USB-C cable, so I didn't have to decide whether or not to pay slightly more for a "II" series when I was shopping for this cord.
Anker sells two versions of its Powerline+ USB to USB-C cable. One version supports USB 2.0 speeds and costs $9.99 on Amazon. The other version supports USB 3.0 speeds and costs $10.99 on Amazon. I am primarily using this cord just to provide power, so the data speed difference doesn't matter. But because the price difference is so minor, I figured that I might as well get the faster cord. USB 2.0 supports up to 480 megabits per second, whereas USB 3.0 is 10x faster at 5 gigabits per second. You can usually tell if a computer or other device supports the faster USB 3.0 speed because the "tongue" portion of the USB port is often blue, but this is not always the case; I have a new iMac at home which supports USB 3.0 speed but the ports are just white, not blue. With the USB 3.0 version of this cord, if I ever need to use this cord to transfer data, I can potentially take advantage of a 10x speed increase for only $1 more.
Keep in mind that if you want the fastest data transfer with the third generation iPad Pro, you'll need to use a USB-C to USB-C cord that supports USB 3.1 gen 2; that can give you transfers at 10 gigabits per second. But if all you have is a traditional USB port with 3.0 speeds, 5 gigabits per second is as fast as you can go. (Similarly, a Lightning connector goes up to 5 gigabits per second.)
Anker sells both a black and red version of this cord. I decided to go for the red version because most of the cords that I currently carry around with my iPad are either white or black. This is my only USB to USB-C cord, and the red color will let it stand out from my other cords.
The cord includes a built-in strap with a hook-and-loop Velcro-type fastener. With this strap, it is easy to wrap the cord into a circle for storing it.
Note that while I am primarily using this cord to charge my iPad Pro, USB-A to USB-C cords do not support the newer Power Delivery (PD) protocol, which means that they do not provide quick charging. You need a USB-C to USB-C cord that supports PD for the fastest charging of an iPad Pro. And along with that cord you need a portable battery which supports USB-C and 30W output, such as this $130 unit by Anker. I don't currently own one of those, and I am always finding USB-A power sources that I might want to use. Moreover, I've found that normal USB power charging seems to be sufficient for ensuring that my iPad Pro has enough power for heavy use during a long day.
I've been very happy with this purchase. It allows my new iPad Pro to bridge the gap to older accessories that only support the traditional USB Type-A port. Over time as I get more USB-C accessories, this cord will become less necessary. Even so, USB has been around for over 20 years, so I suspect that a USB to USB-C cord will remain useful for a very long time.
If you are looking for a good way to connect the USB-C port on your iPad Pro with accessories that only support a traditional USB connector, this Anker cord is a great solution.
Yesterday, Apple released an update to the operating system for the iPhone and iPad: iOS 12.3. Apple also updated its operating systems for the Apple Watch, Apple TV, and Mac. The main new feature for the iPhone and iPad is support for Apple's new Apple TV app, but even if you don't planning on using that app, I encourage you to update all of your devices to take advantage of numerous security updates that are included with this update.
The primary new feature is an update to the TV app on iOS. Like before, you can use this app to find and watch video that you have purchased or transferred to your library from elsewhere like a computer. But now the TV app tries to provide personalized recommendations of what you would enjoy watching next based upon your viewing history and other preferences.
Additionally, the app now supports Apple's new Channels feature which allows you to subscribe to subscription services from within the app. For now, these channels include Comedy Central Now, EPIX, HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, Starz, PBS Living, Acorn TV, Sundance Now, Smithsonian, Lifetime Movie Club, UMC, MTVHits, CuriosityStream, and Tastemade, but Apple hopes to add more in the future. If you already subscribe to one of these services, you can also use the TV app, but if you start a subscription within the TV app you get the added ability to download a show and watch it offline. Some services currently allow you to do this, but many such as HBO do not. (You can cancel a current stand-alone subscription and then start a new subscription from within the app if you want to take advantage of this.). It looks like you can try any channel for free for 7 days, which might be more than enough time to binge watch one or more good shows on a channel before you have to start paying.
For services not currently part Apple's new Channels service such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Hulu, you continue to use their individual iOS apps just like before.
If you have a new smart television set that supports AirPlay 2, with iOS 12.3 you can easily share content from your iPhone or iPad to the TV — something that previously could only be done if you had an Apple TV hardware box attached to the TV.
If you update your Apple Watch to watchOS 5.2.1, you will also get security updates. Additionally, there is now a new version of the Pride watch face showing bands of color. If you tap a band or shake your wrist as you wake up the watch screen, the bands will appear to move around with a ripple effect.
I suspect that there are additional, more minor improvements to the new versions of iOS and watchOS, but I haven't yet discovered anything else that is interesting.
Apple will show off the next major version of iOS at its WWDC developer conference next month, and I expect that the next major version of iOS (iOS 13?) will come out this Fall. Thus, while Apple may update iOS 12 over the next few months to provide security updates, this is probably the last of the new features that Apple will add to iOS 12.
I sure am glad that iPhone J.D. is devoted to legal mobile technology, not politics, because then I would have to discuss another depressing week of news in this Friday post such as a potential Constitutional crisis. So let's go to the other extreme and start with a story that is just too cute for words. Stephen Messenger of The Dodo reports that a woman who was looking for the beluga whale in Norway that some thought to be a Russian "spy whale" leaned out from a dock to pet the whale when her iPhone slipped out of her pocket into the waters around Hammerfest, Norway. But the beluga whale came to the rescue, retrieving the dropped iPhone and bringing it back to her. This story sounds a little hard to believe, but the story includes a video from Instagram showing exactly that — the whale bringing back the iPhone, almost like a dog retrieving a stick in a game of fetch. Let's just say that I hope that this story is true because that video makes me smile. And now, the other news of note from the past week:
Glenn Fleishmann of Fast Company explains how you might be able to avoid using passwords at all by instead using your iPhone to authenticate yourself, a new authentication approach being authored by MobielIron — a mobile device management product used by many law firms.
One such external keyboard that you might use is the Brydge Pro 12.9 keyboard, which Jason Snell of Six Colors reviewed (and really likes).
Chance Miller of 9to5Mac reports that the OLED screen on the Apple Watch Series 4 was named one of the "Displays of the Year" by the Society for Information Display. It is certainly one of the top reasons that I love my Apple Watch.
Apple has done an amazing job restoring the Carnegie Library in Washington, D.C., to turn it into an Apple Store which will open this weekend. Michael Steeber of 9to5Mac has a bunch of pictures showing it off.
Apple's Beats division has released the Powerbeats Pro. They are wireless earbuds like AirPods, but they sound better, last longer, come with different sized rubber tips so they are more likely to fit your ears than AirPods, and they have an over-the-ear design that makes them much more secure in your ears during vigorous workouts (not that I have ever had my own AirPods fall out of my ears,). They are also more expensive at $249. Jason Cross of Macworld posted this review.
And finally, here is a great drone video by Duncan Sinfield showing Apple's new Apple Park campus. You can see a rainbow stage in the middle, which Apple created for a special event it is planning for May 16 (described by Mikey Campbell in this article for Apple Insider.) The building and the campus look amazing.
Apple Park: The Inner Spaceship Stage - May 2019 - YouTube
I'm always interested to learn about how judges are using iPads, not only because I use my own iPad so much, but also because I often think about the way that a judge and law clerk will read my brief when I am making decisions on how to make my brief more persuasive. Last week, I attended a CLE sponsored by the New Orleans chapter of the Federal Bar Association. It was a "meet the bench" event featuring three of the newest members of the U.S. Fifth Circuit — Hon. James C. Ho, Hon. Kurt D. Engelhardt, and Hon. Andrew S. Oldham — who were interviewed by Hon. Edith Brown Clement.
When the presentation allowed for questions from the audience, I asked the judges whether they prefer to read briefs in paper, on the computer, or on an iPad, and whether that led them to have any preferences on how the brief is written, such as whether they prefer to see cites in the text or in the footnotes. All four judges said that they were big fans of the impressive use of technology at the Fifth Circuit. For example, after a lawyer e-files a brief, the court adds hyperlinks to the PDF version of the brief so that a judge or law clerk can tap on a record cite to instantly see that part of the record or tap on a case cite to read the legal opinion. Two of the judges answered my question by saying that their preference was to read briefs on the iPad, and both of them remarked that it is nice to be able to just take home an iPad without any other paper and still have everything that the judge needs to work on an appeal. The other two judges said that they prefer to read on paper but that their law clerks made extensive use of the digital versions of briefs.
In a post earlier this week on Above the Law, Massachusetts attorney Robert Ambrogi argues that the duty of technological competence that the ABA added to the Model Rules of Professional Conduct in 2012 should apply to judges as well. In my experience, I'm already seeing more and more judges taking advantage of technology, whether it be courtroom technology in trial courts or judges at all levels using iPads and other tech as a part of their workflows. The interest in technology that these four Fifth Circuit judges displayed is consistent with this.
It was nice to see the enthusiasm of the judges as they talked about how the iPad is used, but they had so much to say on that topic that they never got around to answering the second part of my question — which I found somewhat amusing because when I present an oral argument to Fifth Circuit judges I am very conscious of fully answering the questions that the judges ask me. Having said that, in the past, I've heard other federal Fifth Circuit appellate judges and law clerks say that they either have no preference on citation format or they prefer cites in the text so that they can take advantage of the hyperlink function to immediately view the record or jump to the applicable part of a case without having to first scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page to find the cite in the footnote. And for that reason, that's how I prefer to write my own federal appellate briefs. I still use footnotes if I want to make a less important point that doesn't belong in the text, but I try to keep them to a minimum.
Thank you to AgileBits, the developer of 1Password, for sponsoring iPhone J.D. this month. There are many software products for lawyers which are helpful to a law practice, but there are only a few which I consider essential. A good password manager is definitely one of those essential products, and 1Password is my favorite. It works incredibly well on every platform that I use including the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, PC, and Mac. And it helps me to keep my confidential information confidential. Here are the reasons that I always encourage other attorneys to use 1Password.
The core feature of the app is to store your usernames and password. You need to use sophisticated, unique passwords for every service to protect yourself, and — for services related to the practice of law — to protect your clients. We are constantly hearing about hackers getting access to systems, and if you don't have a strong password, you may be the next victim. And if your passwords are not different for each website and service, then hackers who exploit a security flaw on one website might be able to get your password from one website and use it on other websites. This is not a theoretical concern; it has actually happened, many times, and surely you have read news articles about incidents like this. But there is no way to remember all of those strong, unique passwords without keeping them a secure location that is easily accessible to you.
Not only does 1Password create secure passwords for you and store all of your passwords in a secure app, it can also automatically enter your username and password on your PC, Mac, iPhone and iPad. On a Mac/PC, you tap a keystroke to call up 1Password (control \ or command \) and then you type your single master password, the only password that you need to remember. On an iPhone/iPad, you need to type your single master password every time you restart the device, but after that you can have the app just use Face ID or Touch ID. After you authenticate yourself on your computer or mobile device, 1Password can automatically enter your username/password.
I love using 1Password to generate passwords for me. You can change the parameters such as length, and you can also have the app create password using words (such as hooves-bullber-jeweller) instead of random characters (such as 6yaKjprFM[3eP).
The app also works with two-factor authentication, allowing you to store a one-time password which expires after a short period of time. Better yet, the app will automatically help you enter that one-time password both on iOS and on a Mac/PC. For example, on my PC and Mac, 1Password will enter my username and password on the login screen, and then when I get to the next screen to enter the one-time password, 1Password has already copied it to my clipboard so I just paste it and move on.
The app also automatically remembers your previously used passwords, so if you think you changed your password but need to go back to the old one for some reason, the app has you covered.
You can also tag your passwords. That way, if you have a number of passwords associated with an activity, a person, an event, etc., use the same tag on every entry, and then you can just tap the Tags button at the bottom of the app to see all of the entries associated with that tag.
Ever since iOS 12 was released in late 2018, 1Password works infinitely better with the iPhone and iPad because supported apps like Safari can use the 1Password extension. For example, you can use Safari to go to a website, use your face or fingerprint to authenticate, and then 1Password enters your username and password without you having to even leave the Safari app.
There are times when you might want to share specific passwords with specific people. You and your spouse may share a bank or Netflix account. You may want to share your court login information with a paralegal or secretary. 1Password gives you many options for doing so. I myself use the family plan, which I described in this post from 2017. 1Password allows you to create different vaults. Most of my passwords are in my own private vault, but my wife and I share many passwords in a shared vault, and we even have a family vault that my son can use for passwords that we share with him.
There are also multiple plans the work best for companies, such as 1Password Business plan that gives you the option to have guest accounts and allows you to create different vault for clients, projects, or departments and set permission levels at scale. The Enterprise plan gives your company even more flexibility.
Secure storage for other information
What about all of the other information in your life that you want to store in a secure fashion? 1Password works with many categories of information, not just logins/passwords.
I use the Secure Notes feature to store confidential information that I want to keep protected even if someone else has temporary access to my iPhone, such as medical information. If you are trying to settle a lawsuit, this would be a perfect, secure place to track demands, offers, and settlement authority. You can either store just a bunch of text (like the built-in Notes app) or you can create sections and sub-sections. For example, I have a secure note associated with my car. The first section is called vehicle info, and it has a sub-section for the VIN, the Make, the Model, and the License Plate. The second section is called Purchase info and it has the date, the salesman who helped me, and other purchase info. The third section has the roadside assistance information that I received with my car, including all of the associated phone numbers, contract number, and benefits.
The app also stores credit card information. I don't like letting websites store my credit card information because that just increases the chance of a hacker getting my credit card information if they hack that website. But I also don't want to have to manually type my credit card number and other information every time I visit such a website. 1Password stores the information for all of my credit cards and knows how to enter it automatically on many websites. Thus, I get the convenience of having my credit card information entered automatically without the security risk of the website storing my credit card information.
The app can also store passport information (including a copy of your passport), social security numbers, membership information for organizations and clubs, wireless router information, secure documents, and more. You can also use 1Password to store a confidential photograph that you don't want to keep in your normal camera roll.
Usually in life, making something more secure means making it more cumbersome to use because you have to take the time to use a key, type a code, etc. However, because 1Password is so well designed and can automatically enter your username and password after you quickly authenticate yourself with your master password, or your Face, or your fingerprint, the app allow you to increase security while also increasing ease of use. And with the fantastic sharing features and the ability to store lots of different kinds of confidential information, 1Password is one of those rare apps that I use every day.
While a good password manager is useful for everyone, it is especially important for attorneys. Clients pay us and trust us to keep confidential information private, and the rules of professional conduct mandate that we do so. Whether you are using 1Password to store that confidential information or you use 1Password to store the username/password that you use to access that confidential information, 1Password plays a vital role in the security process.
My hope is that I am preaching to the choir and that you already use this app. But if you are an attorney not yet using 1Passoword, AgileBits is offering iPhone J.D. readers a $100 credit when you click here and sign up for the business plan. Try out 1Password to see what you think, but I strongly suspect that once you start using the app, it will be one of those rare apps that you use every day.