Attorney gets the job done with Apple Macs since 1988

“For all but three of my 33 years at the bar, I’ve practiced on and from Balboa Island, Calif., in Newport Harbor, heart of the O.C. (that’s Orange County, for those of you who don’t watch teen TV),” Ed Siebel writes for Law Technology News.

“Most of those years have been spent solo, though I had a partner for four years and I spent a four-year interregnum working as the manufacturing manager for one of my clients,” Siebel writes. “Over the years, as is so often the case with solos, I have done a little bit of everything except evidentiary trial work. I’ve tackled real property transactions, low income tax shelter securities, business purchases and sales, law and motion, a significant number of appeals (both civil and criminal), lots of general small business counsel and, of course, estate planning, some probate and a bit of family law.”

“Since 1988, I’ve been using Apple Computer Inc.’s Macintosh computers. I’ve stayed with Macs for a single reason — they just work. Simply, consistently and at a high quality. They help me work solo or in a small office without worrying about my computer, essentially without the need for tech support. By and large, my Macintosh, like my telephone or desk lamp, is a reliable and unremarkable working tool. It’s just there and does its job,” Siebel writes.

“My system starts with the usual software — Microsoft Corp.’s Word, Sage Software’s Timeslips, Thomson West’s Westlaw, Safari (Apple’s browser), Intuit Inc.’s Quicken and Now Software’s networked calendar and contact managers. While the entire Microsoft Office suite is available for Mac OS X (and is loaded on my computer), I prefer Apple’s Keynote presentation software to PowerPoint, and I never use Outlook (e-mail/calendaring). Instead, I use Apple’s Mail extensively with my clients and colleagues. (I use Excel rarely, only when I need to build a spreadsheet.) I send and receive faxes over the network with 4-Sight Fax from Soft Solutions. I scan virtually all incoming documents and store them in client files on a Canon 1240U flatbed scanner and store them in client files on my computer desktop,” Siebel writes.

“File/document management is handled by Apple’s OS X operating system, an exact analog to a manual filing system. With Apple’s Searchlight index and search technology, finding any document, anywhere on the disk in seconds is a snap,” Siebel writes. “I haven’t had a system crash in perhaps a year on my desktop machine. Oh, occasionally one of the applications will crash, but it doesn’t affect the others. I find that every so often, Word will unexpectedly vacate the premises without warning, usually when I’ve grown lax and forgotten to save regularly. In six months, that’s happened maybe twice.”

Siebel writes, “Then there are the little things that make it a pleasure to work on the Mac. Any document from any application can be saved into Adobe’s PDF format. You print to a PDF file, instead of a printer, using a drop-down menu — just like selecting different paper trays. Makes electronic filing or eliminating metadata a snap. Of course, there’s the issue of viruses. One of the best advantages of using Apple is that you can just about forget about viruses, because there aren’t many that can penetrate Macs. And OS X, Apple’s UNIX-based operating system, does a good job locking them out.”

MacDailyNews Note: There aren’t any viruses that can penetrate Macs running Mac OS X. Five years and counting. By the end of 2005, there were 114,000 known viruses for PCs. In March 2006 alone, there were 850 new threats detected against Windows. Zero for Mac. While no computer connected to the Internet will ever be 100% immune from attack, Mac OS X has helped the Mac keep its clean bill of health with a superior UNIX foundation and security features that go above and beyond the norm for PCs. When you get a Mac, only your enthusiasm is contagious. – Apple Computer: 114,000 viruses? Not on a Mac.

Siebel continues, “There are quite a few of us out here practicing every day, very successfully using Macs. If you’re curious and want to find out more, I’d suggest a couple of sources for information. First, sign up on MacLaw. It’s a free, active legal community with more than 1,000 members. Questions are welcome and rarely receive fewer than four or five responses. Second, stop by to spend some hands-on time at your local Apple retail store. Either MacLaw or the Apple Store may even be able put you in touch with another lawyer in your area who uses Macs in his or her practice for some face-to-face answers. Try it — you just might like it. I do!”

Full article with more info here.

MacDailyNews Take: It’s always great to hear real-life stories of the Mac in action!

Related articles:
Lower prices give Apple Macs yet another edge over Windows PCs – September 18, 2006
Getting Macs into businesses despite the IT department – July 19, 2006
A corporate view of Apple’s Boot Camp announcement – April 07, 2006
Apple takes No. 1 spot in western Europe education; next step: overcome corporate IT ‘mistrust’ – March 05, 2006
Can Apple’s switch to Intel processors help Mac crack Windows’ corporate desktop stranglehold? – February 27, 2006
Is it time for your business to consider Apple Macintosh? – January 26, 2006
InformationWeek: Intel-based Macs won’t cause many businesses to replace their Windows PCs – January 16, 2006
Survey shows Apple Macs owned by nearly 10 percent of US small and medium-sized businesses – February 17, 2005
Group of America’s largest corporations complain about software vulnerabilities, security expenses – May 20, 2004


  1. Brad,
    He uses Microsoft Word, so it is possible for Word macro viruses to have an effect, even though they can’t target the Mac OS. The best defence: set the Ownership & Permssions (Get Info) of to read-only, so macro viruses can’t replicate. No need for av software.

  2. I wish someone would put together a Macrealstate web site to help realtors switch. That is one industry that is soooo Windows centric.

    It would help my real state buddies who are shackled by the MS bal land chain.

  3. Not for publication

    This is an interesting article. However, I am
    sad to report that Kiplinger has discontinued
    its two legal software programs which were the
    only major business and will legal programs available to Mac users. The Kiplinger programs were actually sold by H & R Block. One can
    hope that some other company will fill the
    large gap.

  4. To Karma:

    Pretend you are an owner of a business, and you have 5 employees. You bring your MacBook Pro or whatever every day to work, and four of your employees also bring their various mac notebooks or use mac desktops. But there’s one guy, the guy who handles the financial info, or whatever, who brings his PC to work every day. It’s in your best interest that he not get a virus so that your own business isn’t crippled.

    A better, cheaper option, though, would be to get linux.

  5. Macs suck! They’re fscking toys! And they have no games! FFS, get a REAL business machine, and HalfLife!

    But, the Mac Zealots are a bunch of great guys — doing free tech support for us WinDroids, and putting anti-Windows-virus software on their computers to protect us.

    Those MacZealots do drink too much of Jobs yellow koolaid straight from his spigot, but they don’t mind being called names while they help us with our PCs.

  6. So you say F-em if they run Windows, right? What if the person you screwed is a paying client? Are you going to tell him/her to F themselves? It sounds good among the fanboys, but the plain and simple fact is that, as a business, if you pass infected files to another and cause a loss of data or a delay in the timely use of it you can be sued.

    “In law, negligence is a type of tort or delict that can be either criminal or civil in nature. It can be defined as a conduct that falls below the standard established by the law for the protection of others against unreasonable risk of harm.”

    Your Honor, I didn’t buy inexpensive and widely available Anti-Virus software because you see I use a Macintosh. I knew it wouldn’t affect me. So I said F-it.

    It isn’t my fault that a file I sent he client in question was infected and denied the firm access to time-sensitive critical data that caused them to lose a bid on a large contract.

    Yeah, that’s going to go over really well. Any decent lawyer will beat you to death in court. You will be found to be negligent.

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