• This is the biggest news from last week’s LegalWeek in NYC: Legaltech19: New global matter standard to provide “common language” for law firms and corporate counsel. “The Standards Advancement for the Legal Industry (SALI) Alliance is building matter coding that includes area of law and process codes, which it says will foster innovation and provide consistency for buyers and sellers of legal services – needed for better pricing and analytics.” “SALI members include: Association of Legal Administrators (founding member); Allen Matkins; Bloomberg Law; GSK; Greenberg Traurig; Holland & Knight; Honigman, Miller, Schwartz and Cohn; Husch Blackwell; Intapp; Legal Marketing Association (founding member); Level 2 Legal Solutions; LexisNexis; McKool Smith; Pepper Hamilton; Perkins Coie; Prosperoware; Schulte Roth; Shell; Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis; Wolters Kluwer.” More analysis here.

 

  • I heard these exact words at LegalWeek last week–so true: Blockchain Smart Contracts Aren’t Smart And Aren’t Contracts. Here’s the explanation by David B. Black.

 

  • Also from LegalWeek (and Inspire.Legal), here’s Bob Ambrogi’s general take on both events: Legal Tech For The Legal Elite: Observations Of Two Conferences. “Conversations about innovation in legal technology and practice continue to be stuck in the same echo chamber.”

 

  • According to CoinDesk, lawyers will be earning certificates in blockchain and cryptocurrency: Lawyers Rush In: New UNH Blockchain Program Nabs Big-Name Speakers. “(T)he program, which will feature of slew of industry players as guest lecturers – including Hester Peirce of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Ethereum Foundation researcher Vlad Zamfir and MyCrypto CEO Taylor Monahan.”

 

  • Deloitte’s tech podcast, “Deloitte On Cloud” is almost always worth the time. “This week is all about and .” Link here.

 

  • There’s more evidence of Deloitte’s tech chops here: Deloitte’s technology trends disrupting business. Post.

 

  • And if you have energy clients, check this from Deloitte: “On this , explore 8 of the biggest impacting the power & utilities industry in 2019. From to see what your organization should anticipate.”

 

  • This is from Bloomberg LawIBM Watson in Quiet Talks With Law Firms to Expand AI Offerings. Expect an announcement later this year covering US and UK firms. Hype?

 

  • This, from The Law Society GazetteTraining lawyers for tomorrow. It’s a very interesting and substantive article about the future of legal tech and women lawyers in the UK. “(L)aw firms and providers are looking at ways to improve diversity and meet new challenges concerning the role technology is playing in delivering legal services.”

 

  • Law.com’s LegalSpeak podcast postedMove Over Big Law. It’s Time for an ‘Alternative.’

 

  • And check out this podcast from 3 Geeks and a Law Blog for Cat Moon’s thoughts on tech, innovation, teaching and a bit of poetry. Good stuff. (Cat’s part starts at about the 24-minute mark.)

 

  • LawTechNews postedWilson Sonsini Launches Software Developer Subsidiary to Automate Legal Services.

 

  • It has been a while since I’ve posted one of AI’s essential mantras, ‘it’s all about the data‘. So, here’s 57 Million Reasons To Get Your Organization’s Data In Order. This one‘s about compliance, but still….

 

Law Firm Posts:

 

 

  • DechertUS Blockchain Enforcement and Litigation Update. Post.

 

 

 

  • Ward and SmithIn-House Counsel Insights: What In-House Counsel Need to Know About Blockchain. Post.

 

From Artificial Lawyer:

  • The Legal World Meets The Scientific Method at Inspire.Legal. Post.

 

  • Intuitive Automation Platform Autto Seeks to Shake Up Market. Post.

 

  • WSGR Lite? The Birth Of A New Tech-Led Business ModelPost.

 

  • Can Legal Tech Help A2J? Find Out at This PSU Fundraiser Event. Post.

 

Press Releases and other Vendor Content:

  • Synapse Technology Corporation’s Artificial Intelligence Security X-ray Platform Offers Risk and Liability Protection to Clients via DHS SAFETY Act Award. Post.

 

  • On To The Next Wave Of Analytics: A Conversation With Nik Reed Of LexisNexis. “Context is the legal industry’s only case-law language analytics tool.” Post.

 

  • AI Goes to Court: A Conversation With Lex Machina and Dorsey & Whitney (Part 2). Post.

 

  • Sparqa Legal: Platform aims to give SMEs legal advice without lawyers. Post.

 

  • Review: Analyzing Judicial Behavior Through Context on Lexis Advance. “In a product review for LTN, Sean La Roque-Doherty says reviewing judges’ rulings on motions and the outcomes of challenges to expert witness testimony in Context is like talking to a litigator steeped in practicing law before a judge.” Post.

In just two weeks, Legalweek 2019 will kickoff in NYC with all-day workshops on Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain. I wish I could attend those, but I’ll be participating in the Competitive Intelligence Workshop down the hall.

  • Check out this post by Mark Dibble of HighQ: How to Unlock a Firm’s Data Potential. Drawing on Andrew Baker of HBR Consulting’s idea of “Dark Data“, he does a good job of illustrating how firms miss many opportunities to leverage the data they already have.

 

  • And also check out this insightful post from Joanna Goodman: Two tribes go to war. “I recently watched Mary Poppins Returns and found the same lawyer stereotype. The first indication that Mary Poppins’ help is needed is when two lawyers knock on the door to give the Banks family an immovable loan repayment deadline. These fictional lawyers are inflexible until they ultimately realise that they are on the losing side – when they change their tune. This 2018 movie depiction is almost an allegory for legal AI and innovation, with lawyers and commentators gradually changing sides, so that eventually they all claim the ‘correct’ prediction.”

 

  • An issue with AI has long been the “black box” nature of its decisions. This is especially problematic when it comes to assigning liability in court. According to this article, Google is making some progress in this regard: Google Brain Built a Translator so it Can Explain Itself.

 

  • Here’s a good explanation of how chatbots can be used in law firms, from A2J to corporate clients: Chat show: How chatbots can grow your business.

 

  • Michael Heric and Neal Goldman of Bain & Company postedCorporate Legal Eagles Start to Embrace Artificial Intelligence. “Legal groups committed to accelerating their digital journey need to find a practical path that balances opportunities with the realities of the organization’s current digital maturity, investment budgets and the cultural transformation required.”

 

  • Ari Kaplan interviewed Suffolk Law’s Gabe Teninbaum for this post: Reimagining Innovation In Legal Education. “…(B)eing capable with technology is now a core responsibility for all practicing lawyers.”

 

  • A2J: Here’s a bit of the history about how Legal You is being used within the law firm Navigating The Courts: Legal You.

 

  • From Today’s Conveyancer we haveArtificial Intelligence Within The Legal Sector. It’s a summary of the SRA (Solicitors Regulatory Authority) report on Technology and Legal ServicesReport here.

 

  • Pepperdine Law’s Dean Paul Caron posted: How Law Schools Are Using Virtual Reality In The Classroom. “The University of Kansas School of Law, like a growing number of law schools across the nation, is starting to teach its students cutting-edge quantitative subjects such as data analysis and artificial intelligence.”

 

  • This post is from ComputerWeeklyArtificial intelligence qualification helps law firm implement AI-powered business systems. “International law firm Taylor Wessing is implementing artificial intelligence (AI) across the organisation and wants to ensure staff have the necessary skills to make the most of the technology.”

 

  • AI Litigation Analytics: A Fad Or The Future? A dive into . Article here.

 

  • (These) findings come from a survey conducted in the ABA’s 2018 Legal Technology Survey Report, with 900 respondents from across the nation and at firms of various sizes”: ABA Survey: Only 10 Percent of Law Firms Are Currently Using AI. (Take these results with a large grain of salt as the answers depend on how the respondents interpreted AI; if one rightly includes eDiscovery as AI, these numbers grossly understate actual use.)

 

From Artificial Lawyer:

  • Singapore to Launch Automated Litigation Work Platform For Prosecutors, Set to Embrace AI. Post here.

 

  • Linklaters + Deloitte Join £0.5m FinTech Financial Inclusion Project. Post here.

 

  • Anatomy of the LawGeex Rebrand, From Legal AI to Lawstars! Post here.

 

  • Autto: Pioneering Legal Workflow Automation – A Video Explainer. Post here.

 

  • Atrium: ‘Using Tech to Amplify the Talent of Lawyers, to Help the Clients’. Post here.

 

Law Firm Posts:

 

  • This, from Squire Patton Boggs’ Francesco Liberatore and Barry A. Pupkin: AI’s Impact on Antitrust and Competition Law Issues.

 

  • Gibson Dunn posted this piece: The Impact of the New USPTO Eligibility Guidelines on Artificial Intelligence-related Inventions.

 

  • From Crowell & Moring: Crowell & Moring Releases 2019 Litigation Forecast: What Corporate Counsel Need to Know for the Coming Year. “The Forecast takes a deep dive into how technology is increasingly having a profound impact on the practice of law, and in particular on litigation case strategy.” Post here.

 

  • STA Law Firm posted: Artificial Intelligence In Healthcare Sector In UAE. Post here.

 

 

 

 

 

Press Releases and Sponsored Posts:

  • ADP, Toronto startup bring employment law insights to HR with AI-powered tool. Post here.

 

BLOCKCHAIN

  • This, from MIT Technology Review: Hate lawyers? Can’t afford one? Blockchain smart contracts are here to help. “…(T)he two biggest players in the market—Rocket Lawyer and LegalZoom—are experimenting with blockchain smart contracts. In theory, they could help automate a vital part of the process and make some legal services easier and cheaper to use for everyone.”

 

  • Coindesk publishes a lot in this space, this post for instance: Lawyers Rush In: New UNH Blockchain Program Nabs Big-Name Speakers.

 

Who is Supporting And Who is Opposing Blockchain?

  • Against: China will now officially try to extend its Great Firewall to blockchains. “The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) will require any “entities or nodes” that provide “blockchain information services” to collect users’ real names and national ID or telephone numbers, and allow government officials to access that data. It will ban companies from using blockchain technology to “produce, duplicate, publish, or disseminate” any content that Chinese law prohibits. Last year, internet users evaded censors by recording the content of two banned articles on the Ethereum blockchain.” Article here.

 

  • Supporting: Douglas County, Washington: After the bitcoin bust and a local bankruptcy, Douglas County doubles down on blockchain. Post hereWashington’s Douglas County is Looking to Build a Blockchain Innovation Campus. Post here and here.

 

  • Supporting: Blockchain Research Now Granted Tax Credit in South Korea. Details here.

 

  • Supporting: Canada: Government of Canada welcomes DENSO Corporation’s Innovation Lab to Montréal, Quebec. Story here. (It’s really AI, but this seemed like a good place to put it.)

 

  • Supporting: Washoe County, Nevada: From Artificial LawyerUS State Officially Starts Using Blockchain for Marriage Certificates.

There was very little real AI or blockchain news over the holidays, especially legal-related. But there was a plethora of posts reviewing 2018 and forecasting 2019 and beyond, so that’s the focus of this post. I suggest you skim these titles and then skim through the lists included in most of the posts; you’re likely to find a nugget or two that focus on your interests.

(Note: there have been dozens of similar AI and blockchain posts specific to other industries. Many are at least tangentially related to legal, but I have omitted those to keep this post somewhat manageable. Those include almost every industry you can imagine from maritime to construction and from automotive to marketing. Healthcare leads the pack. Similarly, there have been many country-specific posts and quite a few regarding the international competition to lead in these areas. Some of that is summarized in this, from the Centre for International Governance Innovation: 2018: A Landmark Year for Artificial Intelligence.)

 

First, a bit of real news:

  • A2J has taken a step forward (I think) with SUE THE COLLECTOR. Here’s the (typo-filled) news release: “After partnering with literally dozens of law firms across the United States, Sue The Collector, Inc has helped thousands of Consumers in America turn the tables on Debt Collection companies and help consumers recover millions in damages caused by reckless and illegal debt collectors that violate the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act, (FDCPA), The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and RESPA, TILA and SCRA Acts including numerous state laws such as California’s Rosenthal Act. To date, the Lawyers have helped consumers cancel over 1 Billion Dollars in Debt and have recovered millions in fines and settlements.”

 

  • This, from Epstein Becker: Startup Roadshow: AI in Healthcare (FDA Regulation of Artificial Intelligence Used in Healthcare – 2019 Multi-City Tour). (H/T to Rich Westling for the post.)

 

  • From the Reno Gazette Journal, here’sDriver’s licenses next? How one Nevada county is using blockchain for marriage certificates.

 

  • Giangiacomo Olivi of Dentons posted: Top Five Issues To Consider. “Datasets processed through AI systems (also “AI Data Lakes”) are becoming increasingly popular, with an exponential increase in potential “use cases.” You will find here below the main legal issues to consider.”

 

  • Streetwise Reports postedMajor Title Companies Adopt Blockchain to Cut Down on Security Breaches.

 

 

  • Just this morning, the NYT postedCurbs on A.I. Exports? Silicon Valley Fears Losing Its Edge. “The Commerce Department is considering national security restrictions on artificial intelligence. Some worry they could stunt the industry in the U.S.”

 

  • From The IPKatCommercial use of image rights: Paris Tribunal boosts models’ and performers’ protection.

 

  • I had never heard of East Coast Polytechnic Institute University in my home state, but it seems University in North Carolina Issues Degrees Using Blockchain. And also from North Carolina, “For students at the North Carolina School of Science and Math, the future is now. An alum has given $2 million to start an artificial intelligence and machine learning program at the public boarding school in Durham.” Story here.

 

  • Sharmeen Shaikh of Khurana and Khurana posted: Is It Possible To Patent Artificial Intelligence? “(AI) is yet to gain compatibility with the patent laws on a global level.”

 

  • This, from American Banker: BankThink Don’t underestimate AI’s risks. “Artificial intelligence technologies have already begun to transform financial services. At the end of 2017, 52% of banks reported making substantial investments in AI and 66% said they planned to do so by the end of 2020. The stakes are enormous — one study found that banks that invest in AI could see their revenue increase by 34% by 2022, while another suggests that AI could cut costs and increase productivity across the industry to the tune of $1 trillion by 2030.”

 

  • The Next Web‘s blog, Hard Fork posted this useful guide: 5 of the best podcasts to get you into cryptocurrency and blockchain.

 

  • From the New York Times, here’s a sobering look at just how big tech is todayBig Tech May Look Troubled, but It’s Just Getting Started.

 

Artificial Intelligence in 2018:

  • One of the best sources of all news re legal innovation is , so here’s Bob’s My Most Popular Posts of 2018. Also from Bob, here’s The 20 Most Important Legal Technology Developments of 2018.

 

  • Another reliable source of the best and latest news is Richard Tromans’ Artificial Lawyer, so here’s Artificial Lawyer Year in Review – 2018 – What a Year! (I agree.)

 

  • Fieldfisher provided this list of 2018’s data protection milestones2018 – a year like no other for data protection! Part 3.

 

 

  • New Atlas publishedFrom weapons to works of art: The year in artificial intelligence.

 

  • According to “a panel of experts,” here’s What Mattered in 2018: Industry Insiders Reflect on the Biggest Moments in IP. (Lots of AI and some Blockchain is mentioned.)

 

  • From TechTalks, here’s The biggest artificial intelligence developments of 2018.

 

  • Here’s a useful collection: CMSWire’s Top 10 Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Articles of 2018.

 

  • From Pat Lamb and the good folks at Attorney at Work here’s2018 InnovAction Award Winners More Than Just the Latest Buzz.

 

  • Here’s How Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Google And Microsoft Made 2018 The Year That IT Mattered A Lot.

 

Artificial Intelligence Forecasts:

  • From the always astute Ron Friedmann, here are some thoughts about Overcoming FOMO – The Reality of Legal Tech. Not exactly a forecast, but how to shape your own future (in-house and law firm folks). And here are more thoughts from Ron on how to move ahead: The Long View of Legal Innovation. At the end of the latter post Ron included this link to another excellent post about legal tech innovation, this one from 

 

 

  • From Housing Wire, here’s Expert: Regulatory burdens to drive AI replacement of humans. (Ballard Spahr Partner Richard Andreano is interviewed.)

 

  • I did not sign up to receive this survey, so I can’t critique its methodology, but here’s “MarketResearchReports.Biz Announced New Research Study on Report “Artificial Intelligence and RegTech Market – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast 2018 – 2026.”

 

  • Rather surprisingly, this post is from Interesting EngineeringAI vs. Lawyers: The Future of Artificial Intelligence and Law. “Leibniz: The First Lawyer to Predict the Use of Machines in Law”

 

  • This, from Barron’sArtificial Intelligence Is Coming to Disrupt Customer Service — and Sooner Than You Think.

 

  • How about some tabloid click bait? From the UK’s Express, here’s Artificial intelligence: ‘Empathy bots’ with human emotions to be in our homes NEXT YEAR. “NEXT year will see the introduction of robots which have HUMAN emotions and could believe that they have been enslaved, according to leading tech experts.”

 

  • But seriously, from DataQuest, here’s The Rise of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in 2019. Sandeep Parikh of EY is interviewed.

 

  • From TNW (The Next Web): Here’s what AI experts think will happen in 2019. Story here.

 

  • From Wired, here’sIn 2019, despite everything, the UK’s AI strategy will bear fruit :The UK plans to spend £1 billion on artificial intelligence. By closing the skills gap, the UK can stay at the forefront of innovation.”

 

  • According to my favorite magazine and some Pew research, many Americans are not very comfortable with where all this is headed.

 

  • Just for funBlade Runner’ predicted what life would be like in 2019. Here’s what the movie got right — and wrong. Here’s another take on Blade Runner’s prescience. And from NBC, here’s19 bold predictions for science and technology in 2019 (lots of smart folks and their predictions).

 

Blockchain in 2018:

  • Here are some blockchain sports cards for you: CoinDesk’s Most Influential 2018.

 

Blockchain Forecasts:

  • This, from Olga V. Mack: How To Innovate Using Blockchain Within The Legal Field And Other Industries? I like her focus on the relationship between the practice and business of law.

 

  • FinExtra postedSome blockchain predictions for 2019. (If you only read one overview of what’s coming for blockchain generally, this would be a good choice.)

 

  • Crypto site Smartereum posted2019 May Not Be Marked With A Lot Of Progress In The Blockchain Industry According To Some CIOs, and thisWhat Will 2019 Bring For Blockchain Technology? and thisBlockchain Technology Will Fulfill Its Purpose By Revolutionizing The World In 2019.

 

  • CoinDesk posted2019: The Year We Might (Finally) See Better Blockchain UX? And also from CoinDesk, we have2019: The Year Blockchain Begins Finance’s Great Unbundling.

 

  • CoinTelegraph postedToo Soon for Blockchain Benefits in 2019, Says UPS Executive. “Senior executives at United Airlines (UA) and logistics giant UPS think 2019 will not be the year blockchain goes mainstream, the Wall Street Journal reported on Dec. 28.”

 

  • Digital Journal postedWill 2019 finally see the rise of blockchain?

 

Looking back and ahead, and/or AI and Blockchain:

  • From Zach Abramowitz, here’s Notes From A Legal Binge (Part II). “Legal technology has gone from something that no one cared about to one of the industry’s most important sectors — and the conversation continues to mature.”

 

  • This, from Information AgeArtificial intelligence: What changed in 2018 and what to expect in 2019. “In the artificial intelligence and machine learning space, 2019 will see the rise of the intelligent application.”

 

  • From Hacker Noon, here’s OpenText: Convergence of blockchain, IoT & AI will lay out the path for supply chain autonomy.

 

  • Law.com has pulled together several futurist articles here in: Business, Tech and Regulation: What’s Ahead for the Legal Industry in 2019.

 

  • TechTarget interviewed several IT professionals as the basis for this postTechnology trends 2019: Expect AI, blockchain uncertainty.
  • Will an A.I. Ever Become Sentient? “The quest for artificial intelligence could yield something that not only out-thinks humanity but can also feel like us.” Interesting (long) post here.

 

  • Also from Medium: Artificial Intelligence, Consciousness and the Self. This one too is interesting but rather long.

 

  • Capital One AI chief sees path to explainable AI. “Nitzan Mekel-Bobrov, head of artificial intelligence work at card issuer Capital One Financial, disputes the notion deep learning forms of machine learning are “black boxes,” and insists sensitive matters such as decisions to assign credit can be made ‘much more interpretable’.” Story from ZDNet here.

 

  • Uber is getting back into the autonomous vehicle game. Coverage here and here.

 

  • Meanwhile, Kia is looking past vehicle autonomy to reading the driver’s state-of-mind: CES 2019: Kia prepares for post-autonomous driving era with AI-based real-time emotion recognition technology. Coverage here.

 

  • This 45-minute podcast is from   LawNext Episode 23: Dan Rodriguez on Innovating Law and Legal Education.

 

  • Here’s another rather lengthy thought piece from Mark A. CohenLaw Is Lagging Digital Transformation — Why It Matters.

 

  • Google is opening another AI lab, this one at Princeton. Coverage here and here.

 

  • Construction Dive postedThe Dotted Line: Mitigating the risks of technology. “It’s finally happening. Robotics, artificial intelligence, virtual reality and other cutting-edge technology that has empowered a number of industries has undeniably made its way to construction sites. But with new tools come new risks and new ways to manage those risks.”

 

  • Google posted this update. If you’re generally following AI, it’s worth your time. “Six months ago we announced Google’s AI Principles, which guide the ethical development and use of AI in our research and products. As a complement to the Principles, we also posted our Responsible AI Practices, a set of quarterly-updated technical recommendations and results to share with the wider AI ecosystem. Since then we’ve put in place additional initiatives and processes to ensure we live up to the Principles in practice.” The text of the post isn’t what matters here, it’s the several links that provide what I consider best practices.

 

  • Jason Tashea of the ABA Journal postedCalifornia imposes new regulations on ‘internet of things’ devices. “…(M)anufacturers of connected devices will have to include ‘reasonable security’ features to protect stored or transmitted information from ‘unauthorized access, destruction, use, modification or disclosure’.” More coverage of how California’s new data privacy law could change how companies do business in the Golden State here.

 

  • This is also from Jason Tashea at the ABA JournalAccess-to-justice gap? It’s the economy. “In November, the ABA published Formal Opinion 484. From the ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility, the opinion approves of some forms of attorney fee financing, believing that they can help close the access-to-justice gap, defined as those who need but can’t attain legal support.”

 

  • This vendor (VerbIT) is new to me. “A VerbIT transcription process starts with an adaptive AI engine that automatically transcribes content at very high accuracy, regardless of subject matter or accent. A sophisticated algorithm distributes each file through 2-layers of human transcribers within seconds, and checks for congruence, localized spelling and other common inaccuracies. The entire process is extremely fast, and yields +99% accuracy.”

 

Law Firm Posts

 

  • From Ropes & GrayPodcast: Artificial Intelligence and Intellectual Property Considerations. Sixteen-minute discussion of AI-driven technologies here.

 

 

  • How Fenwick Labs‘ Growth Is a Microcosm of Legal Tech’s Evolution. Post here.

 

 

 

  • This, is from Bruce Stachenfeld of Duval & Stachenfeld: Artificial Intelligence: Is It Really A Threat To Us Lawyers? “(S)omeday AI may have an impact on our profession that is more than automating drudge business, but in my view not yet, and not for a long while.”

 

  • Stewart A. Baker of Steptoe & Johnson LLP postedThe Cyberlaw Law Podcast: Blockchain Takes Over The Podcast. It’s a summary of this hour-long podcast.

 

 

  • Today’s release of the 2018 Blickstein Group Law Department Operations Survey Report reveals law departments are taking advantage of #newlaw options. Post here. I would evaluate the survey’s methodology, but to download the report one must agree to “you are opting in to receive Above the Law Sponsored Messages,” and I won’t.

 

Press Releases/Vendor Articles

  • Seal Software releases most comprehensive contract analytics platform for banks and financial services firms. Release here.

 

 

  • DFIN Elevates Artificial Intelligence Platform with Acquisition of eBrevia. Post here.

 

  • Ascertus Limited has achieved over 100% business growth in 2018, including head count and revenue. This growth has come equally from existing client retention and new business, which has been driven primarily by increasing interest in iManage Work cloud deployments as well as BusyLamp legal spend management implementations.” Post here.

 

  • Dean Sonderegger of Wolters Kluwer posted: New Year’s Resolutions For Legal Tech. “We’ve covered several different use cases for AI in this column — and while the technology holds tremendous potential, we know that there’s no silver bullet or one-size-fits-all solution for everyone and every challenge. As we continue to see new offerings enter the market, the professionals who have a clear understanding of their business will ultimately be successful in unlocking the value of these tools and driving innovation within their organizations.”

 

From Artificial Lawyer

  • The eBrevia/Donnelley Merger, Start of A Legal AI Consolidation Wave? Post here.

 

  • This is a guest post by Michael Burne, Founder and CEO, Carbon Law PartnersA New Year’s Evolution: Is the Traditional Law Firm Model Finished…? “Are traditional firms a busted flush? Well, if by traditional we mean ‘unwaveringly wedded to a construct in the face of rapid change’ – then yes. If we mean ‘a broad adherence to values and a purpose driven organisation’ – then no.”

 

  • 2019 Legal Tech Predictions from the Market. Post here. Leaders of vendors are a few law firms make their predictions.

 

  • This look back is especially blockchain-focused. Christmas News Stocking from Artificial Lawyer.

 

  • Artificial Lawyer Year in Review – 2018 – What a Year! Post here.

 

Blockchain

  • This is a good, brief overview by Thomson Reuters Legal: Blockchain and Its Implications within Legal.

 

  • “The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) announced Tuesday that it has launched a new industry specification group for blockchain.” Post here.

 

  • “Earlier this month, Malta held its blockchain conferenceDELTA Summit, attracting more than 3,500 industry experts and government officials. The Summit operates as a platform for investors and experts to share their experience and opinions, specifically on the controversially debated issue of regulation, with fellow entrepreneurs and investors of all ages.” LOTS of topics are covered in this post.

 

AI and Blockchain Prognostications and Looking Back (also see Artificial Lawyer above)

  • From Health IT SecurityBlockchain, HIPAA Regulation Lead Top 10 Stories of 2018. “(T)o get a sense of the topics that matter most to executive and clinical leadership, HealthITSecurity.com compiled the top stories from 2018. Here are the most read stories of 2019, leading down to the most popular article.”

 

  • This, from Medium: 2018 in Review: 10 AI Failures. Several are law-related.

 

  • Team Ripple posted this rather technical look back: 2018: The Year of Breakthroughs in Blockchain.

 

  • From iappTop 10 Privacy Perspectives of 2018.

 

  • The Big Four’s Big Year: Expansion, Immigration and Evaluation. “Deloitte, KPMG, EY and PwC all made moves in 2018 aimed at building their law practices.” You really should read this summary. It includes coverage of law firms hiring from the Big 4!

 

  • This is by Frank Ready of ALM: Blockchain Made Big Strides in the Legal Services Market During 2018.

 

  • Market intelligence firm Tractica posted: Artificial Intelligence Deployments Have Expanded to Include 258 Unique Use Cases Across Enterprise, Consumer, and Government Markets. “Annual Artificial Intelligence Software Revenue Will Total $8.1 Billion Worldwide in 2018.”

 

  • This commentary is from Information WeekPredictions for Artificial Intelligence in 2019. I found these especially interesting.

 

  • 5 Legal Tech Trends to Watch in 2019. This post is from Sysero.

 

  • From Rachel WolfsonBlockchain And Crypto Leaders Share Their 2019 Industry Predictions. This post isn’t very long and it’s quite interesting.

 

  • This one is from ComputerWorldBlockchain in 2019 and beyond: 5 predictions. “After a year where cryptocurrencies lost 80% of their value, and the hype around blockchain as a panacea for business transaction problems has cooled, 2019 will be a year of building real-world solutions.”

 

  • Crypterium posted this look ahead: 4 Major Blockchain Trends to Watch for in 2019. It’s short and straightforward.

 

  • IBM Artificial Intelligence Chief Shares His Predictions For 2019. 4-minute video here. Interesting thoughts re progress toward General AI.

 

  • This post from Osborne Clarke’s Will Robertson, Mark Taylor and Tamara Quinn (Profiling and automated decision-making under GDPR) is a solid discussion of these important topics. “Profiling and automated decision-making (or ADM) are two areas of the GDPR that have caused a fair degree of confusion for businesses, often with perceived negativity and assumptions that the law significantly restricts most forms of computer-led analysis of data subjects and their activities. Not necessarily so. As per the general flavour of the GDPR, the law has undoubtedly tightened and places a greater burden and requirements on businesses wishing to carry out profiling or ADM activities. However, there’s still plenty of opportunity for those willing to understand the detail of the law, and more generally align their business models to the core themes of the GDPR.”

 

  • Here‘s a brief but interesting post about future improvements to legal search. How Much Better Can AI Make Legal Search?

 

  • From Baker Donelson’s Clinton Sanko: Legal Artificial Intelligence is Buzzing. Are You Ready? “This blog is focused on promoting responsible and knowledgeable adoption of legal AI.” This post is a somewhat skeptical review of current legal applications of AI. More to come.

 

  • Press releaseiManage Acquires Elegrity, Leader in Risk and Compliance Management. “Broadens capabilities in risk management to better protect law firms throughout the client and matter lifecycle.”

 

  • Here‘s a thought provoking post from Griffin Hamersky’s Ivy B. Grey: Innovation Is A Red Herring Without Cultural Change. “Though changing culture may be the toughest challenge law firms have ever faced, the potential rewards are enormous. No combination of automation, artificial intelligence, and firms from other sectors will be able to compete with the law firms that get this right.”

 

  • Legal AI Firm McCarthyFinch Goes to War in Law at TechCrunch Disrupt SF Battlefield. “McCarthyFinch showed off its AI-powered platform: a virtual lawyer that can be trained and plugged into any legal process, from financial compliance to contract automation. ‘Our AI platform learns up to 100 times faster than traditional AI, using far smaller data sets,’ said Nick Whitehouse, CEO and co-founder of McCarthyFinch. ‘Most importantly, its results are entirely explainable, defensible and trustworthy.'” Big claims! Press release here and coverage here.

 

  • Legal Tech: Key Takeaways from a Unique Secondment from Aird & Berlis LLP to Diligen, a Legal Tech Company. No big surprises, but an interesting read. “There’s been a big divide historically between lawyers and non-lawyers (the term that, thankfully, is beginning to be replaced by “other professionals”), but this separation is breaking down as the legal profession begins to better understand that other professionals bring so much value to the table.”

 

  • Excellent points made here by Jean O’Grady: AI in Legal Research – Does Casetext’s “Document As Query” Search Improve Efficiency and Results? “While some of the conclusions may be valid  – I have a recoil reflex when I smell ‘the fog of hype” which sadly hovers around so many discussions of legal AI.”

 

  • Here’s one last post regarding ILTACON 2018, a review of the conference’s stories of success and failure from Tessa Ramanlal, solicitor at Herbert Smith Freehills and co-founder of ANIKA. “For a conference firmly rooted in AI, blockchain and all things legal tech, I was surprised that the focus of ILTACon 2018 was predominantly human. Human successes, human failures, and human communities in this evolving world of legal tech.”

 

  • From SKW Schwarz, Artificial Intelligence: operational blessing, employment law curse? discusses the implications of the German government’s recent definition of “cornerstones for an artificial intelligence strategy.” “There are, however, several areas of employment law where the use of artificial intelligence affects the response to typical disputes in a way that is different from the past.”

 

  • From Artificial Lawyer:

– Irish Firm McCann Launches New Neota Logic Compliance App. Story here.

Minority Report’ AI System, Intraspexion, Boosts ‘Pre-Crime’ Tech with dtSearch. Story here.

 

  • This post from Covington’s Jadzia Pierce is largely a teaser for an upcoming webinar. “…an equally important reason for utilizing AI may stem not from these practical considerations, but rather from the ABA Model Rules: in a comment to the Duty of Competence under Rule 1.1, lawyers are required to “keep abreast of changes in the law and its practice, including the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology.” (emphasis added).”

 

  • “The (US) military’s research arm said Friday it will invest up to $2 billion over the next five years toward new programs advancing artificial intelligence, stepping up both a technological arms race with China and an ideological clash with Silicon Valley over the future of powerful machines.” Details here.

 

Blockchain

  • Google has announced the launch of a system to search for and collect data from the Ethereum blockchain, including data on transactions from self-executing contracts. It will operate via its BigQuery enterprise data analysis platform. Artificial Lawyer coverage here.

 

  • JAMS Launches Smart Contracts, Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies Practice. “…the first of its kind among institutional ADR providers. The practice is focused on creating protocols that support the use of ADR in disputes arising from blockchain transactions, including smart contracts.” Press release here.

 

  • Posted by Steve Harvey, senior business developer at Legal Futures Associate Allianz Legal Protection, this is a consideration of the balance that must be struck between tech and people in the many applications of blockchain in insurance and law.

 

  • From Artificial Lawyer: “In what is the most significant sign yet of wide-scale adoption of the technology, online consumer law company, Rocket Lawyer, announced yesterday that it will be partnering with smart contract pioneer OpenLaw and blockchain developer ConsenSys, to roll out a variety of blockchain-based applications, starting off with a ‘Rocket Wallet‘ to link to the Ethereum blockchain.”
  • Don’t miss this postWhy Alternative Legal Provider Market Share May be Limited, by Ron Friedmann. He presents some compelling arguments, contrary to a lot of recent thinking.

 

  • According to South Africa’s Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr, their enterprise search engine, Insight (powered by RAVN) “ensure(s) that legal information is leveraged and disseminated efficiently to lawyers to fulfill their tasks more quickly and more accurately.”

 

  • From Cleary’s FinTech Update, “(i)n its report on Nonbank Financials, Fintech, and Innovation released on July 31st, the Treasury Department (“Treasury”) generally embraced AI and recommended facilitating the further development and incorporation of such technologies into the financial services industry to realize the potential the technologies can provide for financial services and the broader economy.” Full (detailed) report here.

 

  • Womble’s Oliver Rickett and Caroline Churchill wroteIndustry 4.0 and the regulation of artificial intelligence. “This article looks at where AI regulation might be implemented and, specifically, what impact both AI has, and its regulation would have, on the manufacturing industry and what role the UK might have in this ever changing sector.”

 

  • From Harvard Law Today, “Operationalizing innovation in legal organizations.” Questions discussed include: “How is “innovation” operationalized within legal organizations? What are law firms and companies looking for regarding professional backgrounds and skill sets for innovation hires? What are the career paths for these individuals within organizations? By what metrics should “quality” in legal services be measured?” The discussion is based on a survey of 150 individuals (no more methodological details are provided), and should be treated as qualitative and exploratory in nature. “The survey’s target audience is a set of newly emerging innovation professionals. On the in-house side, these individuals are often called ‘heads of legal operations’. On the law firm side, they are often called ‘chief innovation partners’.” The article basically reports what was discussed without providing any conclusions.

 

  • This piece is an infomercial for Westlaw Edge. It’s a brief description of a very important AI-based product.

 

  • From Foley Hoag‘s Gwendolyn Wilber JaramilloUnited States: Foreign Investment And Export Control Reform Update (Part 1 Of Series). “Key elements of the NDAA discussed in this series of Alerts include:” … “4. Establishment of National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence: will conduct a national review of advances in AI and machine learning, address national security needs related to AI, and make recommendations including on how the U.S. can maintain a technological advantage in AI.”

 

  • I’m surprised more hasn’t been written about applications of AI in Alternative Dispute Resolution. Here are some thoughts on that topic from Kluwer Law Arbitration. Bottom line, “So what does AI mean for ADR? There are a good few possibilities – all of which could be true. AI could be a tool for the mediator or adjudicator to embrace, it could be another stage in a bigger resolution process change or it just might be our competition. So are such changes positive or negative? It is hard to know without a crystal ball.”

 

  • From Mark A. CohenLegal Innovation is the Rage, But There’s Plenty of Resistance. It’s an interesting study of why change is not happening, how and why is actually is, and how things may change. “(Lawyers) have an opportunity to leverage their legal knowledge in ways that did not exist previously—as data analysts, legal technologists, legal operations specialists, and scores of other positions yet to emerge. It’s an exciting time to be in the legal profession. It is also past time for the profession to focus on what’s good for consumers, not themselves. That would be ‘legal innovation’.”

 

  • 100th law firm signs up to use Smarter Drafter, the Australian artificially intelligent lawyer. “The software is powered by a unique AI (artificial intelligence), which the team have called Real Human Reasoning™. Smarter Drafter codifies the legal decision making and content of expert lawyers who have worked in top tier law firms like Baker Mckenzie and Clifford Chance. The system works by guiding lawyers through a Smart Q&A, then producing an advanced legal document instantly. Smarter Drafter is only available to law firms in Australia. The largest law firm using the system has over 150 lawyers. The smallest firm is a sole-practitioner….” More here.

 

  • Kim A. Leffert and Corwin J. Carr of Mayer Brown postedElectronic Discovery & Information Governance – Tip of the Month: Defensible Disposition of Data: Guidance from the Sedona Conference Scenario.

 

  • I have a bit of a backlog from Artificial Lawyer (seems they don’t recognize the US’ Labor Day in the UK!), so here goes:

– “Artificial Lawyer recently caught up with Shawn Gaines, the Director of Product and Community Marketing, at ediscovery platform Relativity and asked him if he could tell us some more about the company’s ambitious growth strategy to create a ‘legal tech app store’.” Article here.

This link includes several stories, including these: “Noah Walters, a law student doing a JD/MBA in Canada has developed a site called the Blockchain Law Society to serve as an educational platform for blockchain law-related issues across jurisdictions and that helps connect lawyers with blockchain clients.” and “Legal AI company, Diligen, has extended the company’s contract review platform to also include real estate documents.”

Guest post by Gordon Cassie, co-founder of Closing Folders: Legal Transaction Management Software is Finally a Thing. …(L)legal transaction management software (LTM for the acronym fans) is ready to be inaugurated as the newest category of Legal Tech software.”

 

  • Here’s the final installment of Bob Ambrogi’s Roundup of Company and Product News from ILTACON, Part 4: FileTrail, Workstorm, Casepoint, SeeUnity.

 

  • From Above the Law’s Small Firm Center, Thomson Reuters’ Amy Larson penned, Three Ways to Remove the Pain from Legal Research and Delivering on Client Expectations. Good suggestions here, and it’s no surprise whose products are recommended.

 

  • This opinion piece urges Trump to get serious about AI as a national security issue. AI Weekly: Trump, forget Google — focus on national security.

 

  • Here’s an interesting idea, how might we combine AI and crowdsourcing to come up with better prediction than either alone? Crowdsourcing in the age of artificial intelligence: How the crowd will train machines.

 

  • This development is another step towards the holy grail of General AI. New Artificial Intelligence Does Something Extraordinary — It Remembers.

 

  • From the WSJTop 25 Tech Companies to Watch 2018. “Three industries—AI, blockchain and cybersecurity—dominate the list of companies that look like emerging tech leaders.”

 

  • This is another very practical application of AI — far from the legal arena. Earthquakes. More here.

 

  • And what might those earthquakes impact? How about “risky dams”? It seems AI may be able to locate those too. Story here

 

Blockchain

  • Here’s another pretty easy to understand explanation of how Blockchain works. This one gets a bit deeper than most.

 

  • From Artificial Lawyer:

    – ChainLink: Solving the Smart Contract Fiat Money Problem. “Smart contracts that operate via a blockchain have one little problem: you can’t normally use British pounds, dollars or Yen (i.e fiat money), to conduct business with them. Instead you have to use a cryptocurrency, something that not everyone wants to do. But, ChainLink is working to get around that problem using what the blockchain world calls an ‘oracle’….” Here’s how it works.

– “Blockchain developer the Tezos Foundation has announced that it will issue an undisclosed sum as a grant to Clause to develop a smart legal contract layer on top of the Tezos blockchain.” Details here.

 

  • From Knobbe Martins‘ Bridget A. Smith: Banks Hate Cryptocurrency, But Are Filing Patents Anyway. “The major investment banks have criticized cryptocurrency and blockchain. For example, in their 2018 form 10-k filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, and JP Morgan all noted the risks that blockchain and cryptocurrency posed to their bottom lines.”

 

  • Here are a few more thoughts as to how AI and Blockchain may speed each others’ development. How Blockchain Technology Can Transform Artificial Intelligence (AI). “Blockchain has had a mark on the financial sector with cryptocurrency as well as throughout the future of software development. As it continues to improve the way that we encrypt, examine and handle large datasets this can play a particularly important role in the development of AI.”

 

  • Here’s a bit of clickbait from Forbes: Economist Nouriel Roubini Says ‘Blockchain Is Useless, All ICOs Are Scams’. “For Roubini, blockchain is nothing but useless and over-hyped technology. It will never go anywhere because of the proof of stake and the scalability issues. No matter what, this is not going to become another benchmark because it is just too slow.” The author presents contrary views.

 

  • From Roger Aitken via Forbes, this is a deep dive into smart contracts: ‘I Fought The Law’ & Blockchain Won: Smart Contracts For Businesses Handling Legal Have Conviction. “The digital revolution might be changing just about every aspect of society. But for some aspects, the changes can come slowly. Take for instance the legal and justice systems.” “Fortunately, the sector is not entirely opposed to digitization. Digital justice – encapsulating how the justice system and court rooms the world over can leverage technology to save money – is steadily gaining traction (i.e. including PA systems, large screens, video conferencing and high definition displays).”

 

  • Baker McKenzie steps toward next-generation contract analytics. “The global law firm has partnered with ContraxSuite by LexPredict, an open-source contract analytics and legal document platform.” “The custom software reduces time spent on legal document review, making sure human talent is focused more on high-value work, he said. ContraxSuite uses AI and human input to augment and integrate the user’s experience with the document they are working on.” More here.

 

  • From Cozen O’Connor: Ford’s new AV Unit, including Argo AI, opens door to all kinds of investors. “Ford expects to invest $4 billion in its autonomous vehicle efforts, including $1 billion in Argo AI over the next five years, and has structured Ford Autonomous Vehicles to take on third-party investments.”

 

  • Looking for a new home? Revolutionary New Real Estate Shopping Platform HomLuv.com Solves Millennial Home Buying Woes. ” HomLuv.com is a revolutionary new, AI-driven home shopping platform that helps buyers find the right home in the right area and price range with customization features that they have come to expect.” Here’s the press release.

 

  • Google has promised this sort of real-time translation for a while, but it never seems ready for prime time. I look forward to reviews of this one. Xiaomi’s new feature phone does real-time voice translation in 17 different languages. “It is a 4G VoLTE-enabled feature phone that runs on a forked Android OS called Mocor 5. The highlight of the device is its AI voice feature that does real-time voice translation in 17 different languages. Using AI, the phone is said to answer questions and tell stories to young ones.”

 

  • From DLADLA Piper advises doc.ai in partnership with Anthem, Inc., to launch AI data trial. “The 12-month trial will begin in August and explore whether AI can be used to predict when people will experience allergies or allergy patterns. To do so, doc.ai and advisors from Harvard Medical School will develop a framework for using machine learning to identify predictive models for allergies based upon the phenome (e.g., age, height, weight), exposome (e.g., exposure to weather/pollution based on location) and physiome (e.g., physical activity, daily steps) data collected from participating Anthem employees and members of the public. Participants will help accelerate research and benefit from the system’s personalized health insights.”

 

  • Upcoming webinar: “Blue J Legal’s CEO, Benjamin Alarie, will give a walk-through of Employment Foresight, a new AI-powered software being used by lawyers, in-house counsel and HR professionals to accurately predict how courts will decide outcomes of challenging employment law issues like reasonable notice periods. He will use the classifier on a recently decided case and demonstrate the impacts of key factors, including which factors can swing a decision one way or another.”

 

  • This is a bit of an infomercial from iManage RAVN, but worth a quick read nonetheless. Lawyers Reaping the Rewards From AI Robots: How Artificial Intelligence is Transforming the Legal Industry. “The real threat AI robots pose is to those lawyers who, through inertia or fear, fail to use AI to help them be more productive, smarter professionals. These lawyers shouldn’t fear being replaced by AI robots but instead, by those lawyers who are using AI to deliver services better than them.”

 

Blockchain

  • Well this hits close to home. Nashville’s real estate market has been on a tear for about a decade (now somewhat constrained by lack of inventory), and now, here come the cryptocurrency investors, “a growing number of competing technology-based ventures flooding Nashville’s real estate market with millions of dollars.” “Our business is something people haven’t seen before,” said Andrew Jewett, co-CEO of Property Coin. “We are buying homes in both cash and cryptocurrencies. We love the Nashville market and want to buy $50 million in Nashville real estate in the next year.”

 

  • From White & CaseIs blockchain M&A poised to accelerate? “As the token industry continues to mature, opportunities for M&A transactions will continue to abound. Start-ups will seek exits and infrastructure players in a fractured market will be consolidated and absorbed by more efficient market leaders. And in a bid not be left behind, established market players will leverage their existing client bases to pivot toward token exposure.” “In navigating these transactions, however, it is important to remember that token technologies, while novel and potentially revolutionary, are not immune from the fundamental legal, regulatory and compliance frameworks that apply to business, and in particular financial services business, more generally.”

Must Read: If you’re especially interested in blockchain or just want to learn what it’s all about, read this fresh report from McKinsey & Co.: Blockchain beyond the hype: What is the strategic business value? (The interactive infographics are outstanding.) “Blockchain was a priority topic at Davos; a World Economic Forum survey suggested that 10 percent of global GDP will be stored on blockchain by 2027. Multiple governments have published reports on the potential implications of blockchain, and the past two years alone have seen more than half a million new publications on and 3.7 million Google search results for blockchain.” “Despite the hype, blockchain is still an immature technology, with a market that is still nascent and a clear recipe for success that has not yet emerged.” Some very interesting and practical insights and applications are discussed. Applications in 14 specific industries are discussed — not legal.

 

  • Speaking of McKinsey, this story describes the Houston Astros amazing rise from profoundly terrible to World Series champs under general manager Jeff Luhnow, formerly a management consultant for McKinsey (who surrounded himself with other nerds). “‘How do you combine soft information with hard information in a way that allows you to make the best decisions?’ asked Luhnow in 2014.” It’s an interesting story of how combining big data analytics with “gut feeling” may still be the best solution — for now. “In an era in which we are deluged by data, with the specter of job-killing artificial intelligence looming on the horizon, success isn’t a matter of man or machine, but of man plus machine. As long as man remains in charge.”

 

  • Back to blockchain: “The Association of Legal Administrators is the first membership association to become part of the Global Legal Blockchain Consortium (GLBC), joining more than 30 large companies, law firms, software companies and universities. The GLBC exists to develop standards that govern the use of blockchain technology in the business of law.” Details here.

 

  • And more blockchain, this time a two-part post regarding cryptocurrencies from Barnes & Thornburg’s Trace Schmeltz (here and here). Cryptocurrencies — An Overview of the Legal Landscape, The Risks of Investing, and the Future of the Markets. It’s a good explanation of this aspect of blockchain with an explanation of the risks in trading and potential future.

 

  • From KennedysWhy being app-athetic is bad for law firms. “One simple yet undeniably persuasive argument for law firms to cultivate legal technology is that their clients want them to.”

 

  • I expect good things from Bob Ambrogi’s new podcast, “LawNext.” He’s off to a good start with this interview of Nicole Bradick.

 

  • A couple of years ago I would have been surprised to see stories regarding AI and pot. But this morning, “Global Cannabis Applications Corp. is a global leader in designing, developing, marketing and acquiring innovative data technologies for the cannabis industry. The Citizen Green platform is the world’s first end-to-end – from patient to regulator – medical cannabis data solution. It uses six core technologies: mobile applications, artificial intelligence, regtech, smart databases, blockchain and digital reward tokens, to qualify candidates for clinical studies.”

 

  • From Artificial Lawyer:

– Meet Sibyl AI – The New Claims Prediction System.

– US Survey Finds Big Legal Tech Knowledge Gap Among Lawyers. (I could not find the survey methodology, so caveat emptor.)

– Brummie Legal Automation Co. Clarilis Bags $4m Investment.

– Casetext and the Need for Legal AI for ‘Small Law’.  “…(S)mall firms have a double whammy of a challenge: they lack the financial resources to invest in AI research suites and they lack the additional staff resources to do that research work manually.”

 

  • Here’s some noteworthy AI-related news from the world’s biggest tech companies:

– Apple bigwigs Tom Gruber and Vipul Ved Prakash call it quits amid Siri reshuffle. (Dear Lord, I hope this means Siri with catch up to Google Assistant, or at least Alexa.)

– “(IBM) … reported second-quarter profit and revenue that topped analysts’ expectations as it benefited from growth in higher-margin businesses including cybersecurity and cloud computing.” “…IBM has been focusing on an array of new technologies ranging from artificial intelligence to cloud computing as it tries to offset weakness in its legacy business of selling hardware and software.” And this storyIs Watson enough to carry IBM?

Microsoft Will Build AI Into Everything, Says CEO Satya Nadella. “It’s going to have perception capability, language capability and autonomy that’s going to be built into the applications going forward.” Details here.

 Intel Partners with Forbes to deliver an all-new Digital Publication called ‘Forbes AI’. “You know that times are changing when Intel, who just turned 50 yesterday, is pushing hard into Artificial Intelligence. Last month during Computex, Intel’s keynote included a segment on AI for PC’s developer program as illustrated in an Intel slide below.” More here and here.

  • Facial recognition AI has been in the news and on my mind a lot lately. Of course, there are legal implications, but regardless of that aspect, these developments are a big deal of which you should be aware.

– Traveling this 4th of July? Orlando’s airport has rolled out facial recognition for all departing passengers in an attempt to speed up lines (e.g., no need to show your passport at the gate). It takes two seconds and is 99%+ accurate. (Passengers can opt out.) This story from CBS News discusses the privacy implications.

– Could this get a bit out of control? Here’s a case study: “(a)cross China, a network of 176 million surveillance cameras, expected to grow to 626 million by 2020, keeps watch on the country’s over 1.3 billion citizens.” (That’s a camera for every two people.) And, the intent is total surveillance, including inside people’s homes. “According to the official Legal Daily newspaper, the 13th Five Year Plan requires 100 percent surveillance and facial recognition coverage and total unification of its existing databases across the country. By 2020, China will have completed its nationwide facial recognition and surveillance network, achieving near-total surveillance of urban residents, including in their homes via smart TVs and smartphones.” “Soon, police and other officials will be able to monitor people’s activities in their own homes, wherever there is an internet-connected camera.”

Are they effective? Last year, “(i)t took Chinese authorities just seven minutes to locate and apprehend BBC reporter John Sudworth using its powerful network of CCTV camera and facial recognition technology.” That story here. And the case of the stolen potato here.

– “We live in a surveillance society: A U.S. citizen is reportedly captured on CCTV around 75 times per day. And that figure is even higher elsewhere in the world. Your average Brit is likely to be caught on surveillance cameras up to 300 times in the same period.” This post describes how those images can be used to spot (and even predict) crime.

This post (This Japanese AI security camera shows the future of surveillance will be automated) shows AI technology being developed in Japan to spot shoplifters and discusses the concerns about such technologies.

Facebook and others (such as Adobe) are using such recognition technologies to disrupt terrorist networks and mitigate the spread of fake news. “(T)he biggest companies extensively rely on artificial intelligence (AI). Facebook’s uses of AI include image matching. This prevents users from uploading a photo or video that matches another photo or video that has previously been identified as terrorist. Similarly, YouTube reported that 98% of the videos that it removes for violent extremism are also flagged by machine learning algorithms.”

Amazon employees (like Google’s before them) are protesting their company’s selling of such technologies to the government. Amazon workers don’t want their tech used by ICE.

Many (including me) consider this a much more benevolent identity technology: Thousands of Swedes are inserting microchips into themselves – here’s why.

 

 

  • “Mishcon de Reya has joined the ranks of law firms with high-level in-house data science capability, hiring UCL computer scientist Alastair Moore as head of analytics and machine learning.

 

  • From O’MelvenyFTC Seeking Input on Topics to be Explored at Public Hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century. Topics include: “(t)he consumer welfare implications associated with the use of algorithmic decision tools, artificial intelligence, and predictive analytics.”

 

  • Here, from Digital Journal, is a discussion of the general ways law firms are using AI: Q&A: How technology is shaking up legal firms.

 

  • From Artificial Lawyer, Wolters Kluwer Joins Global Legal Blockchain Consortium. “The GLBC is a global network of key stakeholders in the legal industry, working toward rules for the standardisation, governance, and application of blockchain and related technologies in the global legal system. Its mission is ‘enhance the security, privacy, productivity, and interoperability of the legal technology ecosystem’.”

– More from Artificial Lawyer about Blockchain hereEY + Microsoft Enter the Blockchain IP + Royalties Sector. “Big Four firm EY and Microsoft have launched a blockchain solution for content rights and royalties management, joining a growing group of legal tech start-ups – which are operating at a much smaller scale – that have also developed similar blockchain-based IP solutions.”

 

  • Also from Artificial Lawyer: Global AI Governance Group: ‘AI Decisions Must Track Back to Someone’. “A newly launched AI Global Governance commission (AIGG), tasked with forming links with politicians and governments around the world to help develop and harmonise rules on the use of AI, has suggested that at least one key regulation should be that any decisions made by an AI system ‘must be tracked back to a person or an organisation’.”

This Artificial Lawyer interview with Kira’s Noah Waisberg is more than just an overview of Kira’s rapid growth; it has good insights into doc review generally.

 

  • Here’s a somewhat entertaining look at how law firms are engaging AI vendors. Buying AI for Law Firms: Like a Trip to the Auto Show.

 

  • From Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed, P.A. via JDSupraShould Law Firms Embrace Artificial Intelligence and R&D Labs? “Change is difficult, especially in the legal market. Yet a firm’s willingness to think differently reflects its ability to adapt, to ensure sustainability for itself, and to help solve that industrywide puzzle.”

 

  • This article from the NYT (Is There a Smarter Path to Artificial Intelligence? Some Experts Hope So) may sound negative as to Machine Learning being over-hyped, but it positively presents other types of AI. It’s a good read.

 

  • Also somewhat negative is this post from MIT about the AI threat: “AI programs capable of perceiving the real world, interacting with it, and learning about it might eventually become far better at reasoning and even communicating. ‘If you solve manipulation in its fullest,’ Abbeel says, ‘you’ll probably have built something that’s pretty close to full, human-level intelligence’.”

AI Funding:

– Influential Raises $12 Mn Funding To Fuel Its Artificial intelligence Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Platform.

From BloombergBillionaire Who Helped Dark Knight Rise Goes All-In on AI.

From Artificial Lawyer: “Brazilian legal tech platform, Juridoc, is launching a fundraising round on Latin America’s Kria crowdfunding site.” “Juridoc’s founder, Maxime Troubat, is seeking to raise R$550,000 in total, which is about US$150,000, with R$300,000 coming from individuals making an investment via Kria to build out the platform for the Brazilian legal market.”

Also from Artificial Lawyer‘Legal AI is an Arms Race and the $17.5m Will Help Us Win It’ – Eigen.

 BEIJING – “JD.com, one of China’s largest E-commerce firms, has announced that Google are [sic] set to invest around US$550 million in the company in order to advance a strategic partnership with the aim of developing a ‘personalised and frictionless’ consumer experience.”

Whatever happened to all of the rush of law firms to go public? Well, there’s this: “In line with its strategy of ‘doing things differently’ and in order to help increase its investment in technology and connected services, DWF may shortly become the largest law firm to float on the London Stock Market with a valuation of up to £1bn.”

 

Some blockchain news bits:

This is an interesting podcast from Child & Child: “Artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain and smart contracts are the buzzwords of the moment. And some reckon that their combined force could be about to disrupt the legal profession as we know it.”

– Lots of legal implications here: ‘Walk In With Your Eyes Open’: Navigating Blockchain And CRE (Commercial Real Estate.)

From Global Banking and Finance ReviewArtificial Intelligence (AI) Takes a Giant Leap Forward With Blockchain Infusion. “As Artificial Intelligence advances, the need for enhanced security is becoming apparent and therefore Blockchain is becoming more common in the market.”

This 10-minute video Australian law firm, Corrs Chambers Westgarth shows how a real estate transaction can be executed on the Ethereum blockchain.

 

  • From ProskauerUnited States: AI: Next Big Thing Or Next Big Lawsuit? “AI is prone to bias and discrimination in employment decisions. The reasons for this are twofold. First, AI is only as objective as the engineers who coded it. As such, intrinsic biases can make their way into code, which the AI program’s analyses may reflect. Second, AI learns from the data it is fed. The data, however, often include implicit biases from the real world that AI may perpetuate.”

 

And… “In one of those unexpected moments of synchronicity, Canada has also just launched a major research project into AI and justice that, like the UK’s commission on algorithms and justice that was launched yesterday by the Law Society, may also produce recommendations on ethics and regulation of the technology, with a central aim to increase access to justice through the use of AI.”

 

  • “It’s all about the data” is a phrase I often repeat in my presentations on AI, and this post from Above the Law underscores the point. What Makes Good Legal AI? Quality Data.

 

  • Here, also from Above the Law, is a deep dive into The Ethical Implications of Artificial Intelligence. “Artificial intelligence is transforming the legal profession — and that includes legal ethics. AI and similar cutting-edge technologies raise many complex ethical issues and challenges that lawyers ignore at their peril. At the same time, AI also holds out the promise of helping lawyers to meet their ethical obligations, serve their clients more effectively, and promote access to justice and the rule of law.”

 

  • Here’s a good discussion of where we are today vis-a-vis reaching Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), in many ways AI’s Holy Grail. “A machine with true AGI would be able to perform any intellectual task a human being can. This means if you asked a robot with AGI to hammer a nail, it wouldn’t need to be programmed to do so. It would try — and possibly fail — on its own. It would be able to learn from its mistakes and try until it got it right.”