Greetings from beyond the south!
Hi, my name is Gabriel, and I'm a law student from the Buenos Aires University
(Argentina) who likes computers. Becouse of that, now I'm currently
restarting an old project of my, of a open source legal software.
My biggest concern is that in most cases (99,9% of all cases) lawyers used to
have no clue about computers. And in most of the cases, they're terrified
about "changes", concerning their day to day programs. Even more, if u tell
them "use Linux", the terror screams can still be heared... (and there's
still two lawyers recovering from a heart stroke! ;-)
Seriously, my first concern here is the "easyness" of using and installing it.
And, as I said, at least here lawyers are reticent to changes. So, IMHO, to
ease a "multiplatform interoperability" I think that IMHO any developmente
must be "internet based". OK, it could be in a intranet, but if u provide a
web-based tool, u're giving a "small change": they won't change the OS,
something that could be very traumathic, even for computer aces. So I think
that some kind of tool based on mysql databases, and every languague needed
(such as php) to help that usage. This way, u said: "it's free, do this n'use
it in the explorer".
I think that here we could develope an awsome distro based on Debian (a distro
that I'll definetly install), but at least at first, it will go against our
main aim (give some useful set of tools). So I think that this sector (the
ones that read those "yellow books for dummies" ;-) must not be forgotten.
But I go further: through the web, as far as each Buffet could have their own
"soft" to manage "their stuff", we need to fund this project with some money:
and here I thought that something that could be useful is selling some
services, but at very, VERY LOW rates, in order to provide a custom-country
soft, so this way u could give laws, cases, customized & automatized
processes based on local laws (consulting a db or in a easy to install
module), and of course, the chance of check the "world databases" (managed by
each chapter of the project): so any lawyer in the argentinean project could
check the laws in the australian project, and the cases from France if they
need it. But the basic day to day lawyer's office soft must be free.
So this way, we could provide an AWSOME service with no comparison in the
world (the fact is that when u want to be BIG, unfortunately u need money...)
based in the power of the "Linux Philosophy". But of course, a legal distro
is an incredible idea that goes in paralel with something like this, but
until that day came, when the open source became a "valid option" for the
system administrators (not becouse now it isn't, it's well, they still think
that "Linux is hard"... and most of the ones that make this kind of decitions
are formed in other OS), we need to do something about the others who handle
their operation under other OS's. And this way, if in a near future the one
the one's who decide about the OS's sees the posibility of changing it
without having problems with their db's would be an easy decition ("¿should I
pay for something that could be free and better?..." I think it's an easy
call this one! ;-) So I think that we need to provide something that when the
"OS transition came", their db's could be still be usable.
Also I think that we need to work (and very hard) in the group that they still
have no db, I mean law students. So a law student's aplication must be
designed, so when the day that they became lawyers appear, the option must be
natural choice. I mean, the principal problem of no migration to other
programms or OS is the old db, with it's VALUABLE DATA. What u think about
these ideas? Cheers n'good luck, Gabriel.
PD: How could I collaborate in this project?