Ben Stevens of The Mac Lawyer: LexBlog Interviews

Ben Stevens has been practicing law in South Carolina for 15 years. He publishes three blogs, including The Mac Lawyer, and will be debuting an iPad for lawyers blog soon. Ben presented two sessions at TechShow: Mac Software for the Law Office and iPhone Tips for Lawyers.

Kelliann Blazek: What is your interest in TechShow?

Ben Stevens: I speak a lot on using Mac technology for attorneys so it’s kind of a good fit for me to plug in with these guys. I was one of the first speakers at the first Mac sessions three years ago and we’ve grown from Saturday morning with a couple Mac sessions to a full day Mac track this year. Hopefully there’ll be more programming next year.

KB: What is your fascination with Macs?

BS: It’s more or less just the ability to get things done effectively and enjoy doing it. I used to look at PCs as something I had to use. I look at Macs at something I enjoy using. We work together. The stability and simplicity of the operating system. The fact that it just works and it works quickly. My wife still uses a PC so we’ll go and look something up on the Internet. She’ll open hers and it’ll take two minutes bumping and grinding and fans coming on and it’ll eventually start up. I just open my lid and I’m typing away.

KB: You’re launching an iPad for lawyers blog in a few weeks. What do you envision the impact of the iPad will be on lawyers?

BS: I think the iPad, just from the Internet connectivity standpoint and the form factor, is going to be great for attorneys to have something more usable than a netbook. I’ve had netbooks before and the problem was the keyboard was too small and cramped to type on. So having something bigger, but not too big, that’s light and that’s intuitive, like the iPhone is. Just to be able to use the Safari component will be one thing but then when you integrate the ability to view and edit .pdfs and mark them up and documents and emails and all the other things. Before you get into all the apps that are out there now, I think it’s going to be a game-changer for attorneys.

KB: Do you think the iPad will be a technology that will be readily embraced?

BS: I do. If you think back to when the iPhone came out, there was this big question about, “Is it going to be as good as they say?” or “Are people going to buy it?” And then when it came out, people are standing in lines and camping out overnight and now everyone’s got one. Now the only complaint is the network’s not great. It’s not the phone’s not great. It’s the coverage. You take that same technology and put it into something a little bit bigger. I really think it’s going to change the way people practice law.

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