Tom Ashley has over nine years’ experience in the IT profession, both in government and the private sector. In preparing expert reports, Tom has forensically analyzed project schedule delay, tested software performance, installed and tested prior art hardware and software, and conducted comparisons of program source code and user interfaces to determine whether copying has occurred.
Since joining DisputeSoft, Tom has acquired significant experience with software project failure cases. Tom has conducted in-depth investigations of various issues of fact in software failure disputes, including requirements elaboration, requirements traceability, test planning and execution, defect remediation, and project planning and scheduling. In conducting these investigations, Tom has applied analytical methods widely accepted in the IT industry. These include the review of testing systems such as HP Quality Center, JIRA, and Team Foundation Server (“TFS”), analysis of defect open/close rates, application of Critical Path Method (“CPM”), and investigations of the use of project management methodologies such as Waterfall and Agile.
Additionally, Tom supports patent litigation by conducting in-depth source code review relating to patent infringement and non-infringement claims. Examples of such investigations include the examination and analysis of source code for telecommunications software, video compression tools, and graphical user interfaces (“GUIs”) for Smartphones. Tom has also assisted attorneys in the selection and installation of “prior art” systems to challenge the validity of asserted patents. In performing such work, Tom has reconstructed highly complex, vintage hardware to demonstrate the presence of relevant functionality.
Similarly, Tom has investigated factual issues in disputes relating to software copyrights and trademark infringement. These investigations have included the review and comparison of source code and graphical user interfaces. Tom has also conducted in-depth investigations of online trademark infringement, involving extensive research of domain name registrations, HTML metadata analysis, and web traffic data.
Before joining DisputeSoft, Tom earned a JD from the American University Washington College of Law while working full-time at the NIH’s Center for Information Technology. After graduating from law school, Tom interned at an immigration defense law firm where he researched and drafted appellate briefs in cases before the Board of Immigration Appeals and the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Prior to attending law school, Tom received a B.A. in Computer Science, cum laude, from Carleton College. He holds a Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM®) certification from the Project Management Institute.
Below are representative examples of Tom’s skills and experience:
In a software failure case involving a failed public sector payroll system implementation, Tom conducted extensive research on issues pertaining to defect resolution and stabilization. This investigation involved the detailed review of contractual provisions, business requirements documents, software testing data, and defect reports. Tom also conducted an in-depth investigation of the planning and execution of testing on the project, including integration testing, performance testing, and a detailed analysis of payroll parallel testing.
In an online trademark infringement investigation, Tom’s work included the research of dozens of domain names and IP addresses to identify infringing entities. Tom’s analysis included the detailed review of HTML source code on infringing websites to establish the existence of “rings” of trademark infringers. Furthermore, Tom conducted extensive archival research of dozens of defendant websites to determine the extent of historical trademark infringement.
In a software failure dispute between United States Cellular Corporation and Amdocs Software Systems, Tom conducted a forensic schedule delay analysis to quantitatively determine the extent of project delay and to apportion responsibility for the delay between the parties. This analysis included the extensive review of project plans and status reports to determine the “as planned” and “as built” critical paths, and the compilation of an activity level variance model to quantify the extent of delay.
In a software failure arbitration relating to the development of a maritime shipping registry and accounting system, Tom conducted extensive background research relating to the vendor’s project management failures, with an emphasis on the vendor’s failure to properly follow an Agile software development lifecycle. As part of his work on this matter, Tom guided counsel on complications relating to the extraction, transformation, and preservation of cloud-based project data to an “on premises” alternative.
AREAS OF PRACTICE