• As I was making an AI presentation earlier this week, I made my usual comments about this history of AI from mythology to Turing to the Dartmouth Conference and up to the present. A bit later I mentioned the news about Google Duplex. Then it clicked. Duplex may have just passed the Turing Test! (Not in terms of general AI, but certainly with narrow/vertical AI.) Judging from this post, it seems I’m not the only one to have made this connection.


  • This, from Michael Mills via “Law Practice Today”: Siri, Esq.—The AI Robots are (not) Coming. Michael divides AI into three sorts of knowledge and reasoning: semantic, logical and statistical. He then uses this taxonomy to organize a discussion of today’s use of AI in legal and to take a look into the future. (Spoiler: some legal jobs will be replaced.) Good stuff.


  • Jordan Furlong has prepared a very thoughtful piece titled, Thinking Differently about Legal AI. He briefly reviews the post by Michael Mills discussed above, then presents a “new framework” for dividing legal AI tasks into those concerned with “volume costs” versus those dealing with “scarcity costs.” It’s an interesting approach.


  • Here’s more such thinking about AI in legal from HighQ’s Andy Neill: Are robot lawyers the future?


  • From Artificial Lawyer: CLM Co. Apttus Partners with Legal AI Pioneer Kira Systems. “Apttus has all the legal data that clients send to it, Kira has the ability to really do something special with that legal data that is of value to the clients. In short, this makes a lot of sense.”


  • From CooleyAI’ll be back… EC strategy paper on AI targets liability and safety laws for further review. “The EC’s paper recommends further steps to prepare for the arrival of AI and ensure European leadership in the technology.”



  • India is trying to catch up with the US and China in AI. Here’s how, why and in what sectors. But, as this article shows, China is not about to be left behind.


I swear I curate this stuff, passing over at least 20 articles and posts for every one that I mention here. It’s just a REALLY busy time for legal AI!


  • “(A) survey (of lawyers)by IQPC, ahead of its Legal AI Forum event later this year (18 -19 September in London), gathered feedback from around 200 legal professionals and the following is what they found:” Actually, what they found is here. The findings are very interesting (with several cool infographics), and point to movement regarding AI “toward real and substantive market adoption.”


  • Back in December, I mentioned that “LawDroid, has been awarded a contract to build a voice-activated legal aid bot in the US in a major ‘real world’ test of the technology and its access to justice (A2J) capabilities.” Seems they were serious as Artificial Lawyer posted today that “LawDroid, the legal bot pioneer, has helped to develop a new bot (PatBot) with Washington State law firm, Palace Law, that helps clients gather essential information about personal injury claims in the workplace.The objective of the bot is not to give legal advice, but instead to provide a ‘legal health check’ to make sure potential clients are not missing out on their legal rights, or to find if they have omitted key steps in the claims procedure, which most people would not be aware of.” A2J!!


  • A smartphone launched in India today (Realme 1) “comes with Artificial Intelligence (AI)-powered real selfies technology, which is capable of recognising 296 recognition points based on age, sex, skin color or tone and precisely get all the face information of the owner.”


  • Arnold & Porter’s Rhiannon Hughes wonders Is The EU Product Liability Directive Still Fit For Purpose? “(G)iven the challenges posed by digitisation, the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence and cybersecurity now and in the future, and, if it does not, what changes would be required to address the shortcomings.”


  • Cleary Gottlieb Partner Lev Dassin Discusses Influence of Tech on Financial Crimes. The post is not much as much a “discussion,” as an attempt to start a discussion thread rolling.


  • From Sidley Austin’s Christopher Fonzone and Kate Heinzelman, What Congress’s First Steps Into AI Legislation Portend. “Although it’s too early to provide a definitive answer about how Congress will react, the past several months have offered the first real clues as to where lawmakers might be headed.” Details here.


  • Press release: “Thomson Reuters has enhanced its World-Check One platform with the launch of Media Check, a unique media screening and processing feature powered by artificial intelligence (AI) that helps address the regulatory and reputational consequences of overlooking key data in the fight against financial crime.”



  • “Amazon is currently working towards the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requirements so Alexa can start providing healthcare advice and information.” Details here and here.


  • Other interesting posts from Artificial Lawyer:

– Reed Smith Rolls Out ‘Innovation Hours’ Towards Billable Targets. Good idea!

– “US law firms appear to have well and truly got behind AI-driven legal research, with Casetext, one of the pioneers in the sector, adding AmLaw 100 firm Blank Rome to a growing list of clients that includes: Quinn EmanuelFenwick & WestDLA Piper, Baker DonelsonOgletree Deakins, and O’Melveny & Myers to name a few.” Other providers and firms are discussed here.

 – Norton Rose Rolls Out ‘Parker’ the Legal Chat Bot for GDPR.

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner Launches Own Contracting Tool – Swiftagree


  • Press release: “According to survey findings released today by Seyfarth Shaw, the majority of business leaders are more “hopeful” about the future of enterprise than last year, with 84 percent expressing optimism compared to 70 percent in 2017.” “Over the next five years, automation and artificial intelligence will have the biggest impact on business operations and processes, according to 62% of survey participants.”


  • Here’s another press release from Compliance.ai. With more than 2.3 Million Regulatory Documents Processed, Compliance.ai is providing Chief Compliance Officers With a Competitive Advantage and Transforming RegTech. (I posted the first on August 16, 2017)


  • Here’s an interesting list and discussion of “ethical issues raised by the use of AI in healthcare.”


  • “YouTube has announced that, as part of its YouTube Red original programming, Robert Downey Jr will host and narrate an eight-part documentary series … to explore AI through a lens of objectivity and accessibility, in a thoroughly bold, splashy, and entertaining way.” Details here.


  •  I love the headline to this post from Popular Science. Did artificial intelligence write this post? Maybe. It’s an article with various news tidbits.


  • AI and insurance, in China. “Assessing damage caused to their rides has just gotten a lot easier for car owners in China, with the rollout of a video-based, artificial-intelligence app from Ant Financial.” “Dingsunbao 2.0’s secret sauce includes 46 patented technologies, such as simultaneous localization and mapping, a mobile deep-learning model, damage detection with video streaming, a results display with augmented reality and others.”


  • When making a presentation about AI yesterday, several in the audience seemed surprised and at least a bit alarmed when I talked about surveillance cameras and AI-based facial recognition being used by governments in public places. I was surprised they were surprised. Get used to it folks, this stuff is real, and it’s not just in China and Dubai. In many ways, trying to protect your privacy is a fight you will not win. To wit, here.
  • Must Read: LawGeex is/are back with the 2018 edition of their LegalTech Buyer’s Guide. As promised, it provides: “130+ top technology solutions, definitive step-by-step guide on buying legal tech, first-person accounts from law departments, in-depth analysis of leading players in 16 categories of legal tech, and jargon-free explanation of legal “buzzwords.” Of course my favorite section is “AI: From Buzzword to Bulwark.”


  • From AustraliasianLawyer.com: “Several law firms are working with Tel Aviv-based legal tech venture LitiGate to further develop and test a litigation platform that uses artificial intelligence to automate legal research and argument assessment in relation to High Court applications. Taylor Wessing, Miscon de Reya, and BakerMcKenzie are working with the tech firm which aims to revolutionize legal services. Ben Allgrove, Baker McKenzie’s Global R&D Partner, says investing in new technology is paramount. “Technology and AI are transforming the delivery of legal services and our partnership with LitiGate is a great opportunity for us to support them develop cutting edge legal tech solutions, and ultimately shape the future of law. This collaboration is a core part of our innovation strategy and we look forward to embarking on this journey with LitiGate.”



  • Legal chatbot will tell you whether new EU data laws apply to your South African business: “Norton Rose Fulbright has launched a chatbot powered by artificial intelligence that responds on the new European Union data protection law, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).” Story here.


  • From Artificial Lawyer, “Pan-African law firm, Bowmans, has chosen Kira Systems for AI-driven review work in M&A, private equity and compliance matters.”


  •  Also from Artificial Lawyer, news of another player in the contract review field. “A new legal AI-driven contract review company, Heretik, which operates primarily through the well-known Relativity ediscovery platform, could well be the shape of things to come.”


  • Press release: “Swedish corporate law firm Setterwalls has selected Luminance’s artificial intelligence platform to improve the efficiency of its due diligence process in M&A transactions.”


  • Check out ‘Legal Robot‘, According to Inc.com, it’s “an AI-powered “legal advisor” that helps both lawyers and consumers build contracts. Built to overcome the difficulty of understanding legal language, the app uses deep learning and natural language processing to create models of contracts for various scenarios and uses. It can then translate the terminology into layman’s terms, compare documents to create a language benchmark for consistency, and ensure compliance. The app aims to help businesses identify risks and pinpoint their specific blind spots in creating contracts, and its ability to learn and transform its understanding boosts its likelihood of doing that.”


  • Amazon develops a new health team for its Alexa division. “Causing stocks to plunge across the pharmaceutical industry, to working with existing healthcare providers in a number of initiatives, the e-commerce giant is set to explore the potential of its voice-recognition technology further through its new health and wellness team.” Details here.


  •  This from SPACENEWS and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. Artificial intelligence is changing everything, ‘We need a different mentality.’ “NGA’s answer is what the agency calls its “triple A” strategy: automation, augmentation, AI. “We intend to apply triple A by the end of this year to every image we ingest,” said Poole. It will be a massive undertaking. Just over the past year, NGA ingested more than 12 million images and generated more than 50 million indexed observations.”




  • This post from Seal’s Christina Wojcik: Legal AI – how robots can improve your bottom line. “While many lawyers tend to focus on AI as a threat – whether a robot can do my job better, faster and cheaper – the other approach is to figure out how AI can give your business and clients an edge.”


  • I suppose I should not be surprised that so many companies seem ill-prepared to deal with the GDPR’s imminent enforcement date. The same applies to the eagerness with which some alternative legal service providers (ALSPs) are embracing it as a chance to demonstrate their superiority to old, big law. Likewise, the author of this post on law.com. (It’s a good discussion of the relationship between law firms and ALSPs generally.)


  • Google’s announcement yesterday of “Duplex” received a lot of attention, much of it something akin to outrage (here, for instance). As a result, “In a bid to deliver transparency in technology and stay ahead of ethical pitfalls, Google has said that its Artificial Intelligence (AI) calling system “Duplex” would now identify itself while making appointments.” More details here.


  •  Yesterday, “the White House convened academic researchers, industry experts and federal leaders at an event on Artificial Intelligence for American Industry. National Science Foundation (NSF) Director France Córdova participated in the event and issued (this) statement.” It concludes with, “The effects of AI will be profound. To stay competitive, all companies will, to some extent, have to become AI companies. We are striving to create AI that works for them, and for all Americans.”


  • “Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh will offer the nation’s first undergraduate degree program in artificial intelligence.” Details here.
  • This news was WIDELY covered yesterday. Google has developed a “computer assistant (called ‘Google Duplex’) that makes convincingly human-sounding phone calls.” You should definitely check out the video. The system is not yet as refined as the video makes it seem; still, the implications (including legal) are serious and far-reaching. Representative coverage here and here.


  • Check this for an overview of the current state of AI and copyrights in the US and Canada: Ars ex machina: artificial intelligence, the artist, by Andrée-Anne Perras-Fortin of Lavery de Billy LLP.


  • L&E lawyers may want to check this out: Deputy Announces AI-Driven Auto-Scheduling To Optimize Hourly Worker Shifts in a Single Click.Auto-Scheduling to enable businesses with hourly workers to quickly and easily create, optimize and fill legally compliant schedules across industries such as restaurants, fast food, healthcare, staffing and franchises.”


  • From Artificial Lawyer, here’s a review of innovation taking place in Italy.


  • “U.S. Senators Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, and Joni Ernst (R-IA), Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Emerging Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee, today introduced bipartisan legislation to spur much needed attention to maintaining America’s competitiveness in artificial intelligence (AI), in support of U.S. national security and economic interests, as well as to maintain a competitive advantage over other nations in the use of this cutting-edge technology.” Here’s the bill. It includes one of the more complex yet ambiguous definitions of AI that I have seen. Its effect is to create a committee which will generate a report as specified and then terminate.
  • I expect some defense work will be required here: “vpnMentor ran a test of over 2,500 websites in the EU that will need to follow the new GDPR regulations and found that as little as 34% of websites are currently compliant. Most of the websites we checked either had old privacy policies, and in some cases no privacy policy at all, and are in no way ready for the stricter privacy guidelines.” Breakdown by country here.


  • From Insurance Edge: Human Vs AI: Where Will Blame Lie in Autonomous Vehicle Accidents?


  • From McDermottSurfing “Tech’s Next Big Wave”: Navigating the Legal Challenges in Digital Health. “(There are) myriad, complex legal challenges that must be addressed at the earliest stages of the planning process and the intensifying interest of government oversight and enforcement bodies.”


  • From Artificial Lawyer:

– Taylor Wessing, Bakers + MDR Partner with LitiGate AI Startup, “to help develop its AI-driven research and argument assessment platform.” Link to story.

– “UK’s HM Courts & Tribunals Service has rolled out an online divorce application platform, which should reduce stress for parties involved and also – and this is the key bit – reduce the cost of a key justice process.” Good news for A2J here.

This is an interesting story about Thomson Reuters taking a step into blockchain contracts via Kleros. “…(F)or those who are already familiar with blockchain technology and feel comfortable with the idea of crowdsourced justice this could be an effective means of dispute resolution.”


  • White House to hold artificial intelligence meeting with companies. “The White House will convene a meeting on Thursday on the future of artificial intelligence in U.S. industry with major companies including Facebook Inc, Amazon.com Inc, Google parent Alphabet Inc and Oracle Corp as well as senior government officials.” “The goal is to convene industry experts to advise the federal government on what regulations will be appropriate for the coming wave of artificial intelligence and machine learning technology.” Details here and here.


  • This is an overview of the ways AI can benefit HR management in almost any organization.


  • Microsoft Commits $25 Million to ‘AI for Accessibility’. Details here.


  • Google news:

Google is relaunching its news site with lots more artificial intelligence as part of its effort to fight fake news. “Today we’re rolling out an all new Google News, which uses the best of artificial intelligence to find the best of human intelligence—the great reporting done by journalists around the globe.” “Using real-time AI/ML to organize the news.” Details here and here.

– Google goes all-in on artificial intelligence, renames research division Google AI. Details here.

  • During the second day of the Dar Al Khaleej Conference on AI in Dubai, the Chairman of the Private Law Department at United Arab Emirates University, Dr. Emad Abdel Rahim Dahiyat, presented a paper on the Legislative and Legal Framework for Artificial Intelligence Institutions in the UAE. “…(I)t is necessary to review legislations pertaining to information technology in a realistic manner that harmonises with the type of programme and its role and balances interests of concerned parties.”


  • This article discusses the impacts of the imminent GDPR on the use of AI. For instance, “(t)he GDPR bans employers from making decisions based solely on automated programs, unless it’s necessary to perform a contract, is otherwise authorized by EU or member state law, or the person whose data is being crunched freely and explicitly consents to the arrangement.”


  • From Artificial Lawyer: “…PwC, has announced a joint business relationship with legal AI company eBrevia, to accelerate the application of machine learning across a wide range of unstructured data use cases.”


  • Drive.ai has begun testing in Frisco, TX, the first rollout of a new autonomous vehicle player since the autonomous Uber killed a pedestrian in AZ in March. They plan to launch a taxi service in July. Coverage here and here. “At the launch, each car will have a drive.AI employee sitting in the driver’s seat as a “safety driver” ready to take over in case of emergency. Later on, the safety driver will move to the passenger seat. Eventually, the plan is to operate the vehicles with no employees in the car with a drive.AI “tele-choice” operator offsite monitoring each ride.”
  • Here’s the story of Jones Day lawyer Mark Rasmussen’s interest in and practice in blockchain.


  • From the International Bar Association (IBA), this discussion of trends in globalization. AI is mentioned as a force somewhat immune to borders. “Now they’re looking at technology, they’re looking at artificial intelligence, and they are concerned that, with technology acquisitions, it’s even easier for a foreign acquirer just to switch activities to another country.”


  • Norton Rose posted this notice of Canada’s Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology conducting its mandatory five-year review of the Copyright Act. “An important goal of this review is to keep Canada’s copyright framework current in light of rapidly evolving digital technology. As the protection and use of artificial intelligence technologies is significantly influenced by both the Patent Act and Copyright Act, this is an important opportunity for artificial intelligence stakeholders to be heard.”



  • As you’d expect from The New Yorker, here’s a lengthy and interesting post titled, “How Frightened Should We Be of A.I.?” (The article appears in the print edition of the May 14, 2018, issue, with the headline “Superior Intelligence”.)
  • These thoughts by Paul Rawlinson, Global Chair of Baker McKenzie and sobering and realistic. Will lawyers become extinct in the age of automation? His observations include, “…(T)he market will kill those who don’t adapt. They are the ones who should be scared of the machines. For them, the robots are coming. The really wise lawyers, they know it’s not one versus the other. For those who can find ways to use AI to augment, not replace, judgement and empathy, I believe the future is very bright indeed.”


  • The Legal AI Forum has commissioned a survey (Artificial intelligence and the future of law) of “200 professionals within the legal sector” and presented the results in this report. Results like the chart below suggest their interviewees may be on the leading edge of things. More coverage of this very optimistic report here.

  • From Artificial Lawyer: “Global law firm Linklaters has partnered with the International Swaps and Derivatives Association, (ISDA) to build a platform that automates significant parts of derivatives documentation and also helps to negotiate initial margin (IM) issues.”


  • AI in healthcareNew data sources pose ethical conundrum for AI. “Technologists developing AI tools for healthcare must “completely re-engineer” their data flows around de-identified data to avoid regulatory hurdles, Stanley Crosley, an attorney who chairs the data privacy and health information governance team at Drinker Biddle, said.”


  • More from SOLI2018 here, including, “That includes embracing artificial intelligence rather than being fearful of it. Robots will not take your job,” said Shawnna Hoffman, global cognitive legal co-leader at IBM. “Robots will take away the things that annoy you, like processing invoices.”


  • If you’re at all interested in the legal (especially liability) implications of autonomous vehicles, read this post from Artificial lawyer.


  • Also from Artificial Lawyer: “Luminance, is branching out into the regulatory world in order to expand its offering by covering areas such as Brexit impact on contracts and GDPR compliance. … the company’s initial strategy of focusing only on M&A due diligence is well and truly over, with a mission now to capture a greater share of the NLP-driven doc review market across different practice areas.”


  • Here are 14 Ways Law Firms Are On-Point With Their Tech Game.  Good examples.


From Law firms:

Clifford ChanceClifford Chance establishes Best Delivery and Innovation Hub for Asia Pacific in Singapore

Finnegan (podcast): Susan Tull on Patenting the Future of Medicine. “Artificial intelligence, or AI, is rapidly transforming the world of medicine. AI computers are diagnosing medical conditions at a rate equal to or better than humans, all while developing their own code and algorithms to do so. With the rise of AI, there are new issues of patentability, inventorship, and ownership that must be addressed.”

Hogan Lovells (white paper): ADG Insights: Artificial Intelligence. “…(T)he top legal and political issues affecting the aerospace, defense, and government services (ADG) industry.”

Littler (survey of 1,111 in-house counsel, human resources professionals and C-suite executives): The Littler® Annual Employer Survey, 2018. “Recruiting and hiring is the most common use of advanced data analytics and artificial intelligence, adopted by 49 percent of survey respondents.”


  • Thomas B. Edsall contributed to the NYT this opinion piece about the impacts of AI and other major economic changes (e.g., getting Trump elected). Industrial Revolutions Are Political Wrecking Balls. Sobering.


  • And now, some unsettling news about increased use of AI by Facebook and the Russian military.


  • Finally for this week, here’s a thought piece for your weekend by Anthony Giddens, former director of the London School of Economics and member of the House of Lords Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence. A Magna Carta for the digital age. Among his recommendations:

The main elements of that charter are that AI should:

Be developed for the common good.

Operate on principles of intelligibility and fairness: users must be able to easily understand the terms under which their personal data will be used.

Respect rights to privacy.

Be grounded in far-reaching changes to education. Teaching needs reform to utilize digital resources, and students must learn not only digital skills but also how to develop a critical perspective online.

Never be given the autonomous power to hurt, destroy or deceive human beings.

Earlier this week I attended Vanderbilt Law’s Summit on Law and Innovation (#SOLI2018). One of my favorite panels was “Leading Lawyers Without a License” featuring Waller’s Teresa Walker, Pillsbury’s Kathleen Pearson and Fenwick’s Camille Reynolds. Coverage from law.com here. Ms. Walker commented: “We’re dealing with people that are highly autonomous. We’re dealing with people that do not take direction well, so we influence instead of direct.” (Don’t call these three “non-lawyers”; conference attendees voted unanimously to ban use of “non” when referring to administrative professionals.)


  • From Bloomberg LawAhhh, Smart Offices, Hot Coffee. But Watch Out for Legal Risks. “…(B)e aware that corporate legal risks can go hand in hand with the conveniences of internet-connected devices.” Attorneys from Paul Hastings, Crowell Moring, Frost Brown and Ice Miller are quoted.


  • From Law.com: How Ogletree Deakins Overcame Legal AI Burnout. It’s a quick read about getting past the hype and adopting LegalMation’s product “that drafts responses to employment suits by simply dragging a PDF of a complaint into the program.” “For the end user, the lawyer or paralegal doing it on behalf of the lawyer, it’s dead simple…. It couldn’t be easier. You drag and drop the complaint and two minutes later you have the result. And the results are very good.” and…


  • From Artificial Lawyer: “LegalMation allows the user to drag and drop the PDF of a complaint and get an answer back in around 2 minutes. And according to Patrick DiDomenico, chief knowledge officer at Ogletree, the results are pretty good. That’s why Ogletree has become the first law firm to publicly announce that they use LegalMation’s product.” This is an interesting read.


  • iManage has upgraded iManage Threat Manager and iManage Security Policy Manager, including AI-driven tech. Details in their press release here. “New features enable firms to better detect “smash and grab” attacks and automate need-to-know security at scale.”


  • From last week’s CLOC conference, here’s a discussion of Nationwide’s and Walmart’s take on AI in law. Maybe AI Can’t Do Everything, but Corporate Legal’s Still Trying to Adopt.


  • I love this from the Philippines Daily Inquirer re The University of the Philippines College of Law: Bar exams vs artificial intelligence. “AIs trained with every single decision, law and bar review outline will always outperform law students in memorization games, so what is the point? The practice of law will increasingly value higher level, creative analysis and the irreplaceable human touch of being a credible adviser even the opposing side can trust. Scoring 100 on a bar exam will be just as useful as reciting Pi to 100 decimal places.”


  • From Medium, this is an interesting discussion of lawyers and technology. I don’t agree with all of it (e.g., the author does not believe lawyers are generally tech-averse), but it’s an insightful essay.


Today’s news from law firms:

Crowell & MoringCrowell & Moring Launches ‘Digital Transformation’ Practice to Aid Corporate Innovation. “The practice, led by a steering committee of 11 lawyers, focuses on helping in-house attorneys support their company’s innovation efforts.”

Norton Rose: AI is your new document drafter. (The article discusses AI beyond document drafting.)

Quarles & BradyEverything happening right now is creating opportunities for us to be more innovative. Interesting interview with Peter Ozolin of Manzama. “The convergence of everything happening right now is creating opportunities for us to be more innovative in how we use technology in the practice and business of law than any time I’ve experienced in the last 30 years.”

Cooley’s take on the UK House of Lords’ “AI in the UK: ready, willing and able?”. “We will continue to beat the drum about the need for policymakers and legislators to understand the technology before seeking to regulate its application.” Hear! Hear!

Squire Patton BoggsNew EU Strategy on Artificial Intelligence. This is a good explanation of the Three Pillars I have discussed previously.