Migrated from eDJGroupInc.com. Author: . Published: 2011-06-07 09:30:24  Well it’s a fine day for me. I’ve started a new role at a new and growing company.  There is great technology and a changing legal landscape.  It’s still the same story that we’ve been saying for years.  But now I get to look at the industry from a different perspective.Yes, I admit it.  I’ve been a vendor for the past 15 years…serving clients with data needs.  I started my career in the business working in the data recovery lab at Ontrack’s DC office when it first opened up in the mid-90’s.  That’s where I learned the key point that people were willing to pay money to give them data that they already own (but couldn’t get to for some reason).    At the end of the day, I have always felt like a lock-smith…you know…the guy that you call up in a panic when you forget the combination to a safe containing all your money.  It’s a good job…. an honest job based on having a certain know-how the general public doesn’t have.  However from the client perspective, when they have a need there is initially a sense of helplessness, a cry for help, and then a sense of relief when the problem is solved.  Unfortunately there is a sense from many client that they shouldn’t have to pay for those services…they think, “I had to pay money to get access to something I already own, that’s ridiculous!!”.The software vendors in the data space industry realized early on that the service providers shouldn’t make all the money.  The software makers felt like they could make a better safe to ensure that you don’t forget your combination.  Invention and evolution have a great deal in common.  Watching the software providers has been an interesting experience.  In my role at Merrill, I was responsible for coordinating the partnership efforts and evaluating the technology players in the market.  I spoke to just about everyone selling a software package and received a ton of demos.  I learned very quickly that things were still developing and that no one out there had the perfect solution.  Everyone was able to index data (some better than others) and allowed me to search for keywords.  That’s the easy part…but add on the needs of law firm and legal departments then things get complicated.  Redaction, predictive coding, analytic tools, near-duplication, and dozens of special features that each company or law firm wanted were thrown out there in the marketing materials given to me.  There really wasn’t a place for me to take an open and honest look at the technology out there and evaluate which one was right for me.One of the reasons I’m excited about joining the eDiscovery Journal is that Barry and Greg have done a phenomenal job at looking at industry and the technology in the market to create the eDiscovery Matrix.  Now the Matrix is a work in progress, but if I had the Matrix available to me when I was evaluating different technologies it would have saved me hours and hours of work.  Many you reading will say, “Yeah, I’ve looked at the Matrix, but how can I get it to work for me?”  The answer to that question depends on who YOU are –  the answer will vary depending on if you’re a corporate IT person, litigation support manager, a software provide, or other industry professional.I’ll be using my blog space to cover a few different topics in the coming months.  As one of those people that believe in transparency, I’ll be sharing with our readers how eDJ will be transforming over the course of the next few months as we develop our services and product lines, such as the Matrix.  I’ll also be sharing on a personal side how I’m converting from being a provider to an industry analyst. I hope that our readers provide feedback to help truly understand their needs so that we can get the best and most unbiased information out there.

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