David Whelan

Explorations with information and technology.

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Latest from David Whelan

Reading Time: 6 minutes
Multi-factor authentication is now a permanent part of life. Unfortunately, it is implemented in so many different—and not always secure—ways that it can require a lot of tools to manage. I had done pretty well until recently by relying on Duo’s products. They have a really nice free MFA (or 2FA) authentication option that allows you
Continue Reading Dueling Authenticators

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I was hired during the COVID-19 lockdown. My interviews were entirely virtual, which was great because I was living in a different country from the law library. There was an exacting testing regimen to cross the border. Virtual suited me fine. The one thing that I missed was to be able to see the library, but
Continue Reading From Each, to Each

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One of the struggles public law libraries have is that they were conceived at a time when there was a tight connection between the bench and the bar. Law library governance is often replete with judges and lawyers even though many U.S. law libraries primarily serve people without a law degree. But that birthplace often meant
Continue Reading Friction Through Fear

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Our law library had an open house recently and some of the governing board were there. They reminded me of the first time I met them in person. One recounted that they had driven me home that evening—I had arrived by bus—and I realized that it was essentially the last time I’d ridden in someone’s car
Continue Reading On Foot, By Choice

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An issue came up recently that caused some of our library folks to want to help out a colleague. They found links from a third-party site that weren’t going to where they should be. Your website tools can help you manage these backlinks—links that people make to your site—for reasons other than search engine optimization.

Continue Reading Monitor Your Web Connections

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I’ve just gotten back from an invigorating experience discussing possible law library futures. Perhaps my senses were a bit heightened, then, as I read about the rootlessness of the Jackson County (MO) law library in Kansas City. While we need to remain vigilant about emerging issues that pose potential existential threats, sometimes we are already suffering
Continue Reading Post-Mortem on a Law Library

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At the turn of the century, I worked at the American Bar Association. We had successfully evaded the Y2K turmoil, dot-com was ascendant, and legal technology was having a bit of a boom. There seemed to be lots of emerging companies (until the dot com bubble burst) and the market was still very fractured. It was
Continue Reading The Productivity Spiral

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I was talking with a group recently and someone asked what media I read to get information. I always find that question hard to answer because “everything” is not helpful but I tend not to read too many publications regularly. I thought I’d try to capture why.

There has been a huge shift in my professional
Continue Reading Where To Start Professional Information Gathering