10 Devices You Should Never Take Along on a Business Trip

Mobile gadgets should boost productivity, not create a burden.

, Law Technology News

   |4 Comments

Travel-savvy attorneys hit the road with only the minimum number of devices necessary to complete their work quickly and effectively. Writer John Edwards recommends ten things that can stay home.

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What's being said

  • Ware Cornell

    Unless I have a brief that's due, or am in a trial out of town I rarely take my MacBook Pro with me. My iPad can do it all.

  • Paul Robinson

    He's incorrect on the cost of a SD card reader; I've bought them from computer stores for under $3 and one can turn an SD card into a jump drive, and you can swap out the SD card at any time, plus if you're taking a camera to take pictures - I disagree with his camera assessment, even inexpensive cameras often take better pictures than some smartphones; add a tripod and you can mount the camera and take video depositions - you can often use the same single card for everything and thus reduce what you have to carry. Combine that with a 16-GB SD card at $10 and you should be able to carry everything you really need to take. You have no business carrying a 2TB external hard drive or that much extra data; if your documents are so huge you can't get by on the equivalent of 16,000 scanned pages at 300 DPI in one $10 item the size of two paper clips, I suggest you're either handling a billion dollar lawsuit, in which case, get a good internet connection and use cloud storage or connect back to your office, or figure out why you can't use multiple SD cards that you can carry in a wallet and that dropping won't break.

  • Lawrence Husick

    I disagree, respectfully, with your discouraging attorneys to carry a "tablet". Clearly, you want to have your full Windows functions with you, but you need to see that most travelers never use such functions. Pair an iPad with a Zagg KeyFolio keyboard, and load Apple's Pages, Keynote and Numbers ($10 each) as well as AirSharing and CloudOn and you have 99% of the function of a full laptop, with 12 hr. battery life in a 1kg package that slides right through TSA still in your bag. Time to rethink.

  • Richard D. Slaughter

    Great points! I would add to your list an addition to Number 9. There are many apps for portable recording on smart phones. However, I think there are some other areas of consideration. Just about anyone can create something you can record voice into and playback. However, there are some very smart apps that takes you to a professional level.

    I think an app that allows you to work with the most widely used OS are the best. One that will be supported on Apple, Blackberry and Android. Also, a device that allows you to dictate memos, letters and even complete documents. That you can save or immediately send back to your secretary for action or transcription - even interface into speech recognition for document creation. However, one of the big drawbacks of smartphone dictation is that battery life (a consideration). But, that is another topic.

    I also think that a smartphone app should be a secondary tool for traveling or backup. Most of all - the smartphone app should be easy to use, difficult to misuse and produce quality sound for transcription or speech recognition.

    Philips offers an amazing product that is not free but will only run you the cost of billing out a few minutes of your time. And, you should probably have an office digital portable recorder for dictation while not traveling.

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