• There’s AI-related work afoot in the US Congress:

Yesterday, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, & Transportation’s Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet, met to discuss advancements in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, “to discuss the new and emerging role of AI in the nation’s growing digital environment.” Among the issues discussed were: threats to jobs, workforce diversity, bias, weapons, anticompetitive business, consumer safety, the ‘black box’ nature of AI (lack of transparency), lack of applicable laws and regulations, and developments in other nations (especially China). Details here.

A new bill (pdf) drafted by Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) (‘‘Fundamentally Understanding the Usability and Realistic Evolution of Artificial Intelligence Act of 2017’’ or the ‘‘FUTURE of AI Act of 2017’’) asks the Department of Commerce to establish a committee on artificial intelligence to advise the federal government on how AI should be implemented and regulated. The bill includes five definitions of AI. Discussion here, and here’s the bill. Congressmen Ted W. Lieu (D-CA), John Delaney (D–MD) and Pete Olson (R–TX) introduced a companion bill in the House.

 

  • According to Bob Ambrogi, for 2017, “The Legal Technology Word Of The Year Is …” (I disagree a bit, as you might expect.)

 

  • Artificial Lawyer reports that, “UK law firm, TLT, has … entered into a strategic, multi-year partnership with Pittsburgh-based legal AI company LegalSifter, which includes a minority equity share in the US business.”

 

  • Norton Rose Fulbright today announced the launch of “Parker”, the first Australian law firm chatbot to respond on privacy law, powered by artificial intelligence.

 

  • “A Working List of Things Accounting Firms Will Be Fretting About in 2018.” I expect pretty much the same for law firms.

 

  • Here’s Major, Lindsey & Africa’s “2018 Industry Outlook.” Among the predictions, generally “uneven footing,” and “(g)reat opportunities … for those who are willing to adapt to the evolving needs of the profession and the changing conditions of the marketplace.” Most interesting: “(w)hile ominous predictions hint at AI ultimately replacing lawyers, this is far from reality. Instead, AI combined with personnel will make way for a supercharged lawyer.”

 

  • More prognostications (nothing earth shattering): “5 Artificial Intelligence Predictions For 2018.”

 

  • This report looks a bit further down the road: “Gartner Says By 2020, Artificial Intelligence Will Create More Jobs Than It Eliminates.”