04 March 2012

Tech I Want: A Megakindle

The Kindle is a nice device in that it is simple, thin, has a very low battery life, and allows a certain amount of annotation of texts.

One of the main reasons that I print documents is because they have formating that doesn't translate to a computer screen and because it is easier on the eyes and easier on a person's ability to scan text to see it on paper. A Kindle would address many of the reasons I print documents rather than viewing them on a screen, but it is too small of the purposes that I print documents and doesn't have a stylus interface for easy proof reading.

I would love to have (although I might not be able to afford it) a Kindle-like electronic device, integrated with my office's computer system, with a screen the size of a legal sized piece of paper and a stylus which which I could mark up documents on that screen. Call it the "Megakindle." It would also facilitate an ability for people to review legal documents like Wills and real estate closing documents in electronic form, initialing and signing them manually, without actually printing them out - eliminating the need for people distant from each other to Fed Ex or scan or fax documents, or the need to have documents signed by multiple people signed in counterparts, without a complicated user interface.

A complimentary technology to the Megakindle would be a secure repository in the cloud for executed legal documents that could be called up with a url and some sort of security code or personal ID (for example, a finger print reader integrated into the Megakindle). Indeed, biometric verification of identity would be better than the authentication role served by notarization, in addition to the narrowing the universe of documents that a user of a Megakindle would have to choose from in a cloud environment, and would also eliminate the hassle of user names and passwords. There are consumer grade biometric identifiers out there (24 Fitness, for example, has that option in lieu of a pass card), but they aren't very widely used.

This would also be a good general purpose device to substitute for a dedicated credit card electronic signature unit, or PDAs used by delivery services, for small businesses like law firms and process servers. The credit card receipt, or proof of delivery document, could show up on the screeen and be signed like any other legal document at any location where the consumer had one available, even if it wasn't where the person generating the credit card sale was located.

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