I've heard it said that "Life is an open-book test," and I believe that this has become even more true as the Internet, Google, smartphones and other fundamental features of the digital age have become ubiquitous. In the year 2012, when you want to understand something, or define something, or test something, or check someone's background, you typically have instant access to the tools you'd need to do so. If you are truly interested, you will take the 10 seconds needed to get an answer or to learn how you can get an answer... unless you are serving on a jury. If you are serving on a jury, however, the normal rules of life in the 21st century no longer apply, and you must get each and every scrap of information needed to do your job directly from the proceedings in the courtroom so that your ultimate verdict is determined solely by the evidence. Need to look up what a key word means? Too bad -- -put that cell phone down!! The Palm Beach Post has an interesting article on the rise of "juror mischief," i.e., jurors who revert to the "open book" mentality that governs most of their lives...

More...