We suggest using your law firm’s own resources . . . to produce computer graphics in-house. Not only will it cost much less than using an outside vendor, the results will be better because of the trial lawyer’s central role in the development process. And with the myriad of sophisticated software publishing programs now on the market, you can achieve amazing results in-house.
Though the 1997 article is slightly out of date, it contains a number of tips that will be useful to you if you want to try creating your own computer-generated charts, graphs and animations.
An old-school trial lawyer's long-winded opening statement no longer hits home with today's jury the way it once did with more senior juries raised on newspapers, Walter Cronkite and Jim Lehrer.
Generation X (defined as people born between 1966 and 1981) and Generation Y jurors (born in 1982 and after) were raised on cable television, computers and video games. They are more likely to zone out during a rambling presentation -- no matter how eloquent -- than they are during a succinct statement punctuated by electronic visuals meant to give them the feeling that they figured it out for themselves.
The idea is to feed information to the jury "visually, graphically and in 10- to 30-second sound bites." These ideas are really nothing new, but law schools are apparently catching up by incorporating technology into their trial advocacy programs. The only resistance to these new ideas has been from "more senior members of the bar who've built distinguished careers on their eloquence."
The book is a joint production of the Federal Judicial Center and the National Institute for Trial Advocacy. In the preface, the authors note that the book draws on the expertise of judges, law professors, and practitioners. It's divided into four parts: Courtroom Technology, an Overview; Discovery; Pretrial; and Trial.
I got a chuckle reading Jim Dedman's post about a forward-looking decision from 1897 that predicted the use of technologically-advanced demonstrative evidence years before it happened. Read the post (and pay attention to the quotation from the poet Horace, who doesn't make guest appearances in judicial opinions too much anymore).
For a primer on using technology in opening statements, including a discussion of authentication and foundation, see "Using Technology in the Illinois Courtroom," by Michael J. Abernathy. Most of the analysis would apply to any jurisdiction . . .