Alan J. Steinberg
Les A. Steinberg
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The beauty of using your Palm Pilot as an everyday tool is enhanced when synchronized with your docket management software. In our small law office, we used ACT. While it is not primarily designed for attorneys, as this database was primarily designed for sales persons, it is easily adaptable to the needs of attorney, secretaries and para professionals.

ACT causes the user to create a record for each client or "other person" [i.e. similar to each Rolodex card] generically called a "Contact". The ACT database record contains many fields. The most commonly utilized fields are name, address, zip code, telephone number, fax number, spouse's name, business and residential address, and certain key dates, i.e. birthday, anniversary.

The Palm Pilot may be synchronized with the ACT database, as it will with other case management systems, i.e. Time Matters, and provide for the user the name of the Contact, the Contact's employer, a work and home phone number, and an office address with city, state and zip code. As an added plus, four other fields may be custom adapted for use with the Pilot.

My pilot will synchronize with a Contact list alphabetized by the Contact's employer-company, or by the Contact's individual name. I do this by utilizing the pilot's option switch that will enable you to toggle between listing Contacts in companies or individuals in alpha order related thereto.

In our office database, I can search on the name of a person related to a client, the name of the client, the office or designation that person holds with the company, a work home and fax phone, in addition to the address, city, state and zip code of the Contact together with that person's home address, anniversary and birthdates and spouse's name as applicable.

Good sales tool? I think so, if I can recall any item as listed above relating to a person whom I see at a restaurant for example, I can search the other elements of that person's record, and when the Pilot presents the full record to me, I will know that person's name, spouse's name, and even the "kids' names" where I have entered same into the data base. Not bad to walk up to that person whose name you couldn't remember, but whom you knew worked for the Bar Association and after searching all Contacts in the Pilot with BAMSL, you learn that the handsome guy sitting at the restaurant who you saw but he did not see you is named Ken Kline, and his wife's name is (fill in the blank, with kiddies X & Y). Now how impressed would your client be if you then took the time to walk up to his table and say Hi, Ken, how is X Y & Z????

Within the Pilot, the data transmission can be synchronized as often as the user would like. Synchronization means that as the database changes in the office by synching the Palm Pilot with the office data base, the Palm Pilot database is brought into alignment with that of the office. Synching is simple. Place the Pilot in the cradle that comes with it, hooked to your office workstation via one of the serial ports, and press one button. There, it is done. A few minutes later, the Pilot is synced.

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