While 2020 was a challenging year for many people and companies, we are excited to tell you about a new VR startup in the Treasure Valley. JUST VR launched in August of last year and replaces courtroom presentation training with an immersive VR environment.
The company was founded in response to a market need that co-founders Dennis Shewmaker and Bill Smith saw after the Coronavirus pandemic hit the Treasure Valley in March. “Bill and I were chatting one day and he mentioned that he wasn’t able to practice his oral arguments since no one was coming into the office,” Shewmaker said. It was in this conversation that a lightbulb went off and Dennis suggested they work together to create a program in VR to address this issue. Dennis had a little bit of bandwidth due to some face-to-face events being postponed so he started developing the first iteration. Fast forward a few months and several people in Bill’s office were leveraging the program. “We started thinking we might really have something here,” Smith added.
A bit more from Just about their company:
Courtroom skills are invaluable to every attorney’s career. They are essential to the success of their firm and their clients. However, it can take years to gain the firsthand experience needed to hone these talents. And thanks to the current pandemic, time in the courtroom is scarcer than ever. JUST uses cutting-edge, Virtual Reality technology to compress years of trial experience into a matter of weeks.
JUST is the world’s most sophisticated platform for trial presentation training. Highly realistic courtroom spaces truly capture the feeling of presence in the well so attorneys can practice arguments, depositions, and other legal presentations under true-to-life conditions. JUST’s immersive visualization capabilities include whiteboards, videos, photos, demos, and more. Others can replay the performance, viewing it from the bench, jury box, witness stand, or anywhere else in the environment.
This is just the beginning. Our long-term vision for JUST includes expansion into comprehensive software, and content solutions for judges, paralegals, and all of those involved in the legal profession.
So far the feedback has been extremely positive from the market. They’ve given a handful of demos to attorneys and spoken with several VR and legal experts, including one from Harvard Law who they are speaking with around a potential partnership. Smith said, “In one of our most recent demos the attorney was extremely surprised by how intuitive the program was and said his firm would be interested in using it for both trial and witness prep.”
“It’s an exciting place to be right now, we have been almost overwhelmed by the positive feedback we are getting from across the country. The sky’s the limit and we’re extremely excited about the opportunity we see ahead” Shewmaker said. If you’re interested in learning more about JUST VR or speaking with them directly, Dennis can be reached at dennis.shewmaker(at)justlegalv