Lexis for Microsoft Office

Lexis for Microsoft Office was recently upgraded and it works great! One of the most useful features is that it will automatically create a table of authorities.

The drawback of LMO is that it is not Mac compatible. You have to use a PC to use LMO.

The LMO download is available on the LMO Support site: http://support.lexisnexis.com/lmo/download.asp. You must delete any prior version of LMO that you have on your computer before downloading it. This Support site also has instructional videos, FAQs, and Troubleshooting tips that you can use and/or refer to students.


Office 365 launching and possible uses at the Law School

UST has launched Office 365 and two sessions were held recently in Minneapolis. If you want to know more about the product, here is the link.

I think the best use of it will be for the people who need to work on Word while away from campus. Instead of VPN in like the old practice, now you do not need to use VPN. Log on to http://office365.stthomas.edu and the files will be there for you to edit.

This product is one more tool in addition to deptstor and Sharepoint where you can store documents. For some people, this will be confusing and hopelessly complicates the tasks of where to store the files. If you find it not fulfilling certain needs, you can safely ignore this service.


Anything can happen when using technology…

We often say it, but the cliche does not really sink in or bite until you come across one and when the technology has to work, it really sucks when it breaks on that point. But well preparedness can save a disaster. Here is what happened today to prove the point:

When helping out a class that brought in an outside speaker, I got everything to work: the equipment turned on, the internet connect ion was made, and video camera came on and the remote worked, so I turned off the system.

But one hour later, when I followed the same procedure, the equipment turned on, the internet connect ion was made, and video camera came on and …. wait a minute, I could not get the remote to work. After restarting the system a couple of times, the routine trick that could resolve a majority of tech problems, I realized the battery died on the remote. We do keep batteries in the class, but when I searched for it, I could find only 9V and AA batteries, but no AAA batteries which I needed. It always worked this way. It is an iron law of life: the book you need is gone from the shelf, the key you need disappears just when you need it and this time, it is the battery that died literally just minutes before I used it. One immediate thought was I should have kept the system running, but who would have that foresight far in advance, or one hour in advance!

Luckily in this case, the professor was in a better prepared state than I am and he produced two batteries, magically so I was saved and the class was saved!


Reduce the size of AVI with easy steps

AVI files are huge, a 2 minute video can be a few hundred MB. Luckily it is easy to reduce the file size using free software. If you use PC, the windows movie maker will work. First, load it into program, and save the video as .wmv file. That usually reduce the file size to a fraction of the original. The save as window only offers two options, one is .mp4 and the other wmv. You will not find .avi extension. But do not panic. Save it as .wmv. After the file is saved, here is the really neat part: simply rename the .wmv to .avi. That is it. The file still works and the size is reduced.

The question: why do you convert a .wmv to .avi? Because some small players only take .avi file. That is it.