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Ideal Layout for Videoconference Hearing Rooms

Posted by Keith Fentress on Sep 24, 2015

Topics: Courthouse Space Standards and Functionality, Courthouse Technology

In my last article, I discussed the advantages of videoconference hearing rooms. Today, I will present an overview of the basic components that should be included in an ideal videoconference hearing room.
To better put this discussion in context, I should note that the mix of hearing room components that are depicted in the following example layout, and in the summary list, are intended to support a hearing room that can be flexible in its use for any of these three scenarios:

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Videoconference Hearing Rooms Increase Security and Decrease Costs in Courthouses

Posted by Keith Fentress on Sep 17, 2015

Topics: Courthouse Space Standards and Functionality, Courthouse Technology, Courthouse Security

As a follow-up to several comments I recently received about my article, “Top 3 Technology System Concerns that Impact Courthouse Proceedings,” I thought that it might be helpful to focus on one way that technology is improving the functionality of courthouses: the use of videoconference hearing rooms for court proceedings.

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Top 3 Technology System Concerns that Impact Courthouse Proceedings

Posted by Keith Fentress on Aug 27, 2015

Topics: Courthouse Technology

Today, we continue my eight-part series on quantitative measures used in courthouse planning with a discussion on Technology – the availability of technology systems in the courthouse to support court proceedings, public access, and coordination between court components.

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Courtroom Technology

Posted by Keith Fentress on Aug 7, 2014

Topics: Courthouse Technology

Courtroom Technology: Upgrading the Audio, Video, Communications, and Data Technology System

Courtroom technology has been a growing topic for the past two decades. The technology used by courts can vary widely. Some courts define technology as a projection screen in the well area with a projector on a mobile cart. Other courts use advanced evidence presentation systems with display monitors for the judge, jury members, witness, courtroom staff, counsel, and spectators. A common challenge is to introduce technology without distracting participants or blocking sightlines within the courtroom. When possible, technology should be considered as a feature in the design of a courtroom. When courtroom technology is accommodated after the fact, it often results in a nest of cables running across floors and over furniture. It is also common to see the backs of computer monitors that protrude above the judge’s bench or the lectern. Additionally, there is often no ideal place to erect a screen to show visuals – anywhere the screen is placed comes at a sacrifice to the vision of one or more of the courtroom participants. Selecting the right technology and planning for it during the design or renovation of the courtroom can result in tasteful furniture and fixtures that house screens and other equipment to keep the technology from being too obtrusive in the courtroom.

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