I’m not attending ILTA this week, but I’m reading about a hundred blog posts, tweets and press releases from Vegas every day. So far, my biggest takeaway is “ho hum.” Most of the discussion I’m seeing is the rehashing of old news (e.g., IBM’s Tuesday keynote about AI and the business of law), and the press releases from the vendors don’t include much that’s really newsworthy. Again, I’m not there, so I may be missing something. Ron Friedmann (of course) and Artificial Lawyer are providing solid boots-on-the-ground reporting.

  • That said, this post from ILTA reinforces (but perhaps overstates) things I’ve been hearing for a few weeks about the coming importance of blockchain technologies to law firms and their clients. If you’re new to blockchain, check out this explanation from HBR.

 

  • This post from Ron Friedmann has good tips regarding implementation of AI in law firms from folks who have been there, done that.

 

  • Amnesty International said on Wednesday the number of suspected drug dealers killed in police raids in Indonesia… (Oops, wrong AI. Back to Artificial Intelligence.)

 

  • These statistics from Thomson Reuters point to the phenomenal growth of technology in legal services. To wit:

“…579 patents relating to new legal services technology were filed worldwide in 2016, up from just 99 patents in 2012….”  ‘…the figures reflect the rise of alternative legal services, such as virtual law firms, and the rapid expansion of the online legal industry’.”

 

In this post, Ken Grady does his usual sharp job of explaining why is is very important that lawyers be conversant in AI if they are going to, among other things, advise clients how to reduce the risk from the threats and benefits of AI. (I love the quote he chose: “Your defences must therefore be as flexible and inventive as the arts you seek to undo” — Professor Snape discussing defence during a 1996 lesson.”)

 

  • Here’s another solid primer on AI technologies.

 

  •  As Musk and others (rightly) call for regulation of AI, remember, in the USA we already have quite a few relevant laws & regs on the books.