Law Technology News
May 2002
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Snap Shot: Nathan Hecht

Snap Shot: Nathan Hecht
Photo by Monica Bay
Location: Westin La Cantera San Antonio
VITALS: Undergraduate: Yale University, B.A., 1971 (honors in philosophy). Law: Southern Methodist University School of Law, J.D., 1974 (cum laude).

MILITARY: Lieutenant, Judge Advocate General Corps, U.S. Naval Reserves, 1971-1979.

AWARDS & ACCOLADES: Order of the Coif; SMU Law Journal; the Texas Philosophical Society, and the Federal Civil Rules Advisory Committee.

A.K.A. (NICKNAME): Hector (per #43 GWB).

CURRENT POST: The Senior Justice, The Supreme Court of Texas.

AUTHOR! AUTHOR! A lot of opinions, and many, many more dissents than there should have been.

BAR ACTIVITIES: In Texas, the Supreme Court oversees the bar. I patiently pay my dues to the American Bar Association.

OFFICE TECHNOLOGY: When I arrived at the Supreme Court in 1989, the office technology consisted of "automatic" typewriters (which maligned the meaning of "automatic.") I bought PCs for my chambers, and we used them until the court "computerized." We now have an ample network served by multiple Compaq computers for docketing information (a tailor-made database); word processing (WordPerfect 9); the Internet (Internet Explorer and Microsoft Outlook), and a Web page (www.supreme.courts.state.tx.us).

FAVORITE GADGET: A Magellan or any good GPS (global positioning system) product.

SECURITY BLANKET: My laptop: Dell Inspiron 7500.

HOME SYSTEM: Dell Dimension XPS T450.

PAGER: Suzanne, my administrative assistant (worldwide coverage).

PDA: Wristwatch. (Pulsar digital: in this day and age, why have an analog watch?)

FAVORITE COMPUTER GAME: Solitaire.

FAVORITE NON-TECH MAGAZINES: Texas Monthly; Science News, Smithsonian, Economist; National Review.

FAVORITE TV SHOW: Star Trek.

LETTERMAN OR LENO? Koppel (then Letterman).

CARS: 1980 Mercedes 300SD, 1984 Chevrolet Caprice Classic.

CELL PHONE: Nokia (AT&T).

LAST BOOK(S) READ: In the past six months: David McCullough, John Adams; James Gleick, Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman; The Koran; C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity.

WHERE WOULD WE FIND YOU ON A SATURDAY AFTERNOON? Listening to Garrison Keillor, A Prairie Home Companion.

APPOINTMENT I NEVER MISS: The Eucharist.

MOST IMPORTANT LEGAL TECH TREND? Internet access to courts -- opinions, docketing information, e-filing.

MOST IMPORTANT TECH ACCOMPLISHMENT IN LAST YEAR: I have set up a system for scanning petitions filed in the Supreme Court of Texas, and accompanying materials (copies of lower court documents), quickly into the network so that they can be made available to the court electronically with minimal work, regardless of the form in which they are submitted.

FAVORITE URL: oyez.nwu.edu; nytimes.com; texasmonthly.com.

FAVORITE SEARCH ENGINE: Google.

LAST VACATION: Vancouver, the Inside Passage, Alaska, British Columbia.

FREQUENT FLIER STATUS: Southwest Airlines -- A jillion miles -- winner of the Herb Kelleher most compliant V.I.P. flier award (just kidding!)

FAVORITE QUOTE: Mit der Dummheit kampfen Gotter selbst vergebens. -- Schiller (Against stupidity, even the gods wrestle in vain.)

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