Academia is one of the best places to find technology innovation. But new technologies are usually developed by engineering and computer science departments, not law schools.
The S.J. Quinney College of Law broke new ground with the technology it brought to market. Established in 2007, Utah-based Akadi Technologies makes digital signage and is a result of the law school’s technology initiative.
The group took their new flat panel display monitor and began coding it to display events maps and emergency information. The staff began to customize it to do just that and today that first display is used by the school’s Moot Courtroom, where it provides a video feed of courtroom events.
It’s an interesting concept and indicates both the pervasiveness of technology across all industries and areas of expertise and the recognition that, as we all use technology, we all have something to contribute to a growing and highly diversified landscape.
So, why should law students care?
Here are some things to consider for both law schools and paralegal certificate students:
This shift indicates that there are many areas of technology that have everything (and possibly nothing) to do with law but that may be used by you on a daily basis or that you’ve imagined bringing to fruition.
If you’re attending law school to bolster credibility in corporate America, take heed. It wouldn’t be bad to have a killer business idea before you even graduate.
Remember to look at things in new ways without assuming you know every technology’s sole purpose. That flat-panel display could parlay itself into a great courtroom tool—one that may help you win a case someday because you were able to be more thorough or present something to a jury in a way they could better understand.
Technology innovation programs encourage collaborative thinking, problem solving, risk taking, planning and strategizing. They help hone the very skills paralegals and lawyers need most, so it’s a win-win for anyone taking the leap outside their comfort zone.
Commercializing a technology requires a buyer and relationships outside the academic community must be built to bring solutions to market. These relationships are invaluable for both the university and its students.
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