Thursday, 27 September 2007

Expert Chat On Tap: What XML Can Do For You

We received this announcement for an online program with our own Paul Embley as a speaker:
What XML Can Do For You: A Better Way to Share Data
Expert Chat: October 9, 2007, 2 pm (EDT)

Having trouble sharing data electronically? Many systems are innately incompatible with each other, even similar systems can have difficulty sharing when data itself is not identically structured.

Extensible Markup Language (XML) is an increasingly adapted IT standard being used globally. XML is already improving the way criminal justice information is exchanged, but its potential is far from fully realized.

Attend this online event, sponsored by the Government Innovators Network and the National Institute of Justice, where a panel of experts will present an accessible overview of the IT behind data sharing. They will highlight best practices, lessons learned, and the latest implementation projects. Ample time will be allocated for udience Q&A. The forum will be moderated by the Honorable Deborah Daniels, former Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Justice Programs. The panel will include:
  • Paul Embley—CIO, National Center for State Courts; Chair, Global XML Structure Task Force 
  • Paul Wormeli—Executive Director, Integrated Justice Information Systems Institute 
  • Col. Bart Johnson—Deputy Superintendent, New York State Police; Vice-Chair, Global Advisory Committee 
Learn more about the online event.

The Tenth Court Technology Conference

The NCSC will be hosting the Tenth Court Technology Conference in Tampa, Florida from October 2-4, 2007.  Our technology team will present our vision of the Future of Court Technology during the final morning plenary from 8:30-9:30 on Thursday, October 4th in the convention center ballroom.  The presentation will highlight ideas for improving customer service, communications, and work measurement.  Plus we'll have some fun.  We look forward to see all of our friends at CTC-10.

Monday, 24 September 2007

GJXDM / NIEM Users Conference Presentations Available

The Global Justice Information Sharing Users' Conference and a NIEM Executive Briefing were held in Chicago on August 20-24, 2007. The presentations from the conference and the briefing are now available online at topic_id=253

National Governors Association Solicits States for NIEM Pilot Funding

A press release: The National Governors Association ( NGA ) Center for Best Practices has announced solicitations for a Policy Academy in which selected states will identify and document pilot exchanges to utilize the National Information Exchange Model (NIEM) to improve justice information sharing. NIEM is designed to develop, disseminate and support enterprise-wide information exchange standards and processes that can enable jurisdictions to effectively share critical information in emergency situations, as well as support the day-to-day operations of agencies throughout the nation. Applications are due by 5:00 pm EST on October 12, 2007. 

The solicitation can be found at: (Letter to Governors)
and (Application Guidelines)

If you need further information, please contact Erin Lee at (202)624-5392 or or Will Ware at (202) 624-5311 or Erin LeeNational, Governors Association, 444 N. Capitol Street, Suite 267, Washington, DC 20001 202-624-5392

Friday, 21 September 2007

Georgia Appellate Courts Plan for E-Filing

The September 7, 2007 edition of the Daily Report newspaper contained an article titled "Courts heed e-filing call" describes actions being taken by the Georgia Appellate Courts to provide E-filing services in the future.

Thursday, 6 September 2007

NIEM Wayfarer 2.0

The National Center for State Courts has developed a new version of the Wayfarer exploration tool for the NIEM (National Information Exchange Model). NIEM Wayfarer 2.0 provides search capabilities against the latest production release of NIEM (NIEM 2.0). The tool provides detailed display of element information, including namespaces in which they reside, element definitions, contained and inherited properties, and container elements. Display of type details includes namespaces in which types reside, type definitions, derivation chain, derived types, and elements that are of a given type. Other features: schema or alpha ordering, dynamic augmentation display, a comparison matrix showing namespaces for identically named types, and a new graphical view showing related elements, derived types, and contained elements. The tool may be accessed at direct any questions or comments to Jim Harris at

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

The Search for a Quiet Keyboard

A problem arose when my laptop was replaced with a thin-client computer [1]with a detached keyboard. I found that keyboards that are not part of laptops tend to be enormously noisy in the courtroom. They are distracting and impaired my ability to hear on the bench. And this is especially a problem for me because I've taken notes via a keyboard since first taking the bench.
The IT department's first answer to the noise problem from the clerk's keyboard was to slap a mushy vinyl splash guard over it. This “solution” in my opinion makes for a terrible keyboard feel and hampers fast typing.

So I then started looking for a quiet keyboard for my bench. I've used a small keyboard with a short stroke that is pretty quiet at home and in chambers but couldn't duplicate it because it has been discontinued. In addition, this older keyboard is not compatible with my new thin-client workstation since it has a PS/2 style keyboard connector instead of the newer USB connector – and adapter/converters are hit and miss..

So having tried all the versions our IT department had to offer and having bought a few reasonably priced but ultimately unsatisfactory keyboards, I finally discovered one designed for the medical industry. This line of keyboards includes several versions; small and large, with and without function keys, numeric pads, touch-pads, and so on. All versions are available in black and white colors, and are waterproof or, more importantly, coffee-proof. What I bought was a "Slimcool model," which is small (about 12" wide) without separate number pad, touch pad, or function keys that I don’t use. My requirement was that I needed the additional space on my bench and that I liked the quiet, short stroke as well as the feel. The keyboard is absolutely horizontal, so I added some stick-on small vinyl bumpers to the back to elevate it to the incline I've become accustomed to with other keyboards. I find that it is fast and quiet, and the touch suits my requirements (though preferences on the feel of keyboards vary tremendously).

While I have absolutely no interest in this company, or in anyone buying keyboards from them, I just thought others might find theirs to be as welcome and rare a solution as I have. The website is

The Hon. Michael Marcus is a Judge in the Circuit Court of Multnomah County, Oregon.
1] For more regarding thin-client computers see: