• Richard Susskind:  By 2036, he posits, “It is neither hyperbolic nor fanciful to expect that the legal profession will have changed beyond recognition.” Check out this article for comments by several others regarding the future impact of AI on lawyering. (My prognostication is that Susskind’s predictions are closer to what we’ll see than those of most of these nay-sayers.)

 

  • One of the developments that has caught me by surprise is the number of major players in AI who have open-sourced their tech. Here’s such an announcement from Intel. This is particularly good news for smaller companies (and law firms) who want to get into the game without huge investments. This author agrees about the benefit to smaller organizations.

 

  • Clifford Chance is staffing up to focus on cutting edge tech.

 

  • Big investments in:

Legal AI: Legal research leader ROSS Intelligence has landed an $8.7M investment from a group led by iNovia Capital. ROSS uses the IBM Watson AI engine and is now working with more than 20 law firms.

Marketing: A group led by Insight Venture Partners has purchased Nashville-based “Emma” a tech-driven eMarketing company.

 

  • The porn industry has been a driver of many tech innovations (e.g., VCRs, DVDs, augmented reality, Internet streaming). Now Pornhub is using facial recognition to identify and tag the “stars” of their videos.

 

  • Here’s a fun comparison by Time of where AI seems to really be headed vs its portrayal in Sc-Fi.
(Original Caption) Boris Karloff, Colin Clive and Dwight Frye in a scene from the 1931 Universal Pictures production of Frankenstein.
  • Later this month, Elexirr will hold a man (lawyer) vs. machine (AI) competition to see who’s best at predicting the success of complaints to The Financial Ombudsman Service. This link includes a link to register to compete.

 

  • AI doesn’t just analyze and predict, it can create art, music, prose, news stories and more. This post is a good overview of creative AI and the relevant copyright considerations.

 

  • Intraspexion does “preventative law with AI.” I enjoyed this quote from Richard Susskind re their founder’s 2015 book, Preventing Litigation: An Early Warning System to Get Big Value Out of Big Data:  “As a lawyer or client, if you prefer a fence at the top of a cliff to an ambulance at the bottom, this insightful book is essential reading.”

 

  • This interesting interview with Malcolm Frank presents his division of AI in business into three categories: 1) digitizing the customer experience, 2) creating smart products through digital extension, and 3) robotic processes behind the scenes. He mentions JP Morgan’s COIN contracts technology.

 

  • HT to Ron Friedmann for reposting this piece on the role of KM in an AI world by Nick Milton at Knoco stories .

 

  • If you’re new to AI, you’ll benefit from this: “12 Artificial Intelligence Terms You Need to Know.”

 

  • Here’s a fun and interesting infographic presenting lots of stats about AI. “3 Powerful Ways How to Use Artificial Intelligence in Your Content Marketing.”

 

  • Microsoft is intent on moving beyond narrow/vertical AI to general AI. They now have 8000 employees in the group focused on that goal. For instance, they’re partnering with Chinese search engine Baidu re self-driving cars.

 

  • Speaking of Microsoft, here’s an interesting/scary thought. Their CEO says it will be up to the tech giants to define ethics in the age of AI.

 

  • This post presents the AI vision of IBM (aka, “Watson”) CEO Ginni Rometty.

 

I expect a flood of interesting developments from ILTACON17 this week. I’ll do my best to focus on the essentials. I won’t post links to every press release (e.g.), only those with an interesting story or, IMHO, really breakthrough tech. (It’s still early Monday morning so there’s not yet much news from Vegas, where I expect many of the newsmakers are still asleep or nursing hangovers from the weekend.)

 

  • I’ve been posting quite a few announcements about law firms selecting AI vendors and issuing press releases. Seems I should be doing the same re ALSPs and their partners. For instance, Artificial Lawyer reports that in the UK, Carillion Advice Services has selected Luminance. I’m sure there will be a LOT of that coming from ILTA.

 

Not all of the interesting AI news is coming from Vegas.

  • For instance, at the ABA meeting in NYC, IBM continues to suggest AI is not a threat, and we should think of Augmented Intelligence helping people with their jobs, rather than displacing them. And according to a survey by Adobe, most of the office workers who would be displaced are optimistic about AI helping them and not worried–yet.

 

  • Richard Susskind has fresh thoughts about AI and the legal profession. Spoiler alert: he thinks it’s “exciting!” He believes it will be positive for A2J, but worries that the Luddites (my word) running firms today will hold back the enthusiasm the younger attorneys most likely to benefit.

In a related story from The Guardian, there’s optimism in the UK about AI helping with A2J, even though “…the new EU general data protection regulation explicitly states that individuals have the right not to be subject to a decision when it is based on automated processing….”

 

 

  • If all this talk about AI and your job has you concerned, not to worry, AI can help you spiff up your resume and interviewing skills as you look for your next opportunity.

 

  • For the Legal Marketers out there, here’s an interesting article about how AI will change the methods, substance and measurement of advertising. It’s not much of a reach to see how this will eventually come to law firms.

 

 

  • Seems Elon Musk really wants some AI regulation. He has doubled down on his rhetoric about how AI is to be feared. (HT to @DanielBGreene for this story.) Meanwhile, folks (like Musk’s own company, OpenAI) are teaching AI to behave, and other have contrary views about the threat. IBM seems to come down somewhere in the middle. 
  • China intends to be the world leader in AI by 2030, and late July’s second annual Legal+Technology New Champions Annual Convention was consistent with that theme. The western participants in Hangzhou included folks from Neota Logic, Thomson Reuters, IBM Watson, Ross and Richard Susskind. “The event  was hosted by Shanghai-based ‘BestOne Information & Technology Co.’, a legal services provider whose flagship offering is a consumer-facing platform for quick legal consultations delivered through an online and voice platform. (Since 2009, BestOne has delivered more than 21 million legal consultations.)” I look forward to learning more about ‘BestOne.’ A quick web search yielded little info.

 

  • Here’s a good overview of the applicability of AI to smaller firms.