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February 24, 2017
Law firms are jumping into the cloud. There is no doubt that the cloud can provide better security and help with compliance and accounting issues that can occur. The cloud is the place to store HR, accounting, and financial statements if needed. It also helps with IT services, and daily applications for your law office.
Managed service providers (MSPs) are the guardians of the cloud. They can store your applications and make them work with much less resources than you can in your law firm. The following are some of the technologies moving forward into the cloud. Some of them may not help law firms directly, but indirectly they can help behind the scenes.
Containers are essentially the next evolution of virtual computing. Virtual computing allows the user to sit down at their machine and login, and everything they need to perform their job appears. While an hour later a different person can sit at the same computer and login, and have their necessary information – even if the first employee is in accounting and the second person is upper management in finance. Containers are prominent in the world of developers. They can send code and run applications in a container, which does not change its environment. This reduces latency, and increases effectiveness of the application.
Some MSPs are using this technology to run application faster to law firms, but there is a lot of side work that has to be performed to make the software work coherently in the network. This is not a strong MSP to law firm tool right now, but in the future it will expand and be more accessible to law offices.
Open source is a type of code that is not proprietary. In other words, no particular company owns the code. Many developers come together and start creating an application which is accessible to other developers. UNIX and LINUX are based off open source coding. What is nice about open code is the flexibility to change anything you want. Also, a lot of the frills are removed out of the code. They can be added on as an as needed basis, but generally, only the core code is installed.
This approach allows the application to run much faster, and the user gets to use the parts they want. This technology may or may not already be part of your cloud package. Not many cloud service providers are utilizing this at this time, but in the near future more providers will be hiring developers to help with the use of or to tweak open source applications. Find out more about new cloud technologies:
Analytic programs can record data and find out application usage, numbers of employees using the system, and how often. Although the technology is not new, the interface with data analytics is becoming a great tool for managers in law firms. Soon it will be easy for you to access a tool and have the answer about your network without having to contact IT or your cloud service provider.
This is another technology that is mainly used by developers, but has a back-end way of entering your law firm. This technology is not actually serverless, but it does manage code differently. The faster use of code helps to make applications run faster. At this time it does add some latency issues, but that is something that is being worked on through modulation. Find out more about small business computing, download the white paper: Small Business Networking.
Infrastructure as Code (IaC)
This new technology is actually old technology revisited. It essentially brings back the old .bat files from earlier DOS days. A text file is written explaining all the parameters of the infrastructure. As things change, different text files can be called to perform the necessary actions. This allows for a quicker response time when making changes. This is probably already in use at some level within your firm.
These technologies are mainly geared to a faster environment for your law firm. Simplicity is the common ground. By using simple text files, conforming to a modular way of thought, and getting rid of all the gimmicks and high-profile (often unneeded) add-ons, the cloud is becoming a faster more efficient environment for law offices everywhere. Get a free assessment, and learn more from a preferred cloud service provider.
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