• 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.
  • Lawyers Are Drowning in Data. What Can They Do About It? “The ‘Why Lawyers Are Adopting AI Faster Than You’ panel at this year’s Legalweek will examine at how firms can use AI to find the needle in some pretty big data haystacks.” Link.

 

 

 

  • Briefing: China looks to build ‘smart courts’ with AI. “A Shanghai court has adopted an artificial intelligence-enabled assistant to help improve courtroom efficiency and accuracy.” Post.

 

  • This software thinks like a lawyer—so you don’t have to pay one. “A Chicago law firm (Actuate Law) is rolling out a subsidiary that offers clients software designed to mimic their lawyer’s thinking—at a fraction of the price.” “….(I)ntelligent software that walks them through whether they have a legal obligation to report a data breach.” “Although Quointec has no outside funding so far, the partners created the new venture to allow for such investment in the future without violating professional regulations.Post.

 

  • LawNext Episode 26: Mark Cohen’s Strategies for the Global Legal Marketplace. “On this (hour-long) episode of LawNext, Cohen joins host Bob Ambrogi to talk about a range of topics. They discuss Clearspire and the lessons Cohen learned from that. They also talk about what Cohen sees as the “skills gap” in law and why it is that law schools and law firms are failing to address it. In the fact of a rapidly changing global legal economy, Cohen offers insights on how law firms should adapt.” Post.

 

  • From The Law Society GazetteAccountants winning in ‘rapidly expanding’ alternative legal services market. “So-called alternative legal service providers – including the Big Four accountants – are growing more quickly than previously predicted and moving up the value chain, research on both sides of the Atlantic reveals today. The new entrants, offering such services as litigation support, legal research and document review with the help of new technology now make up a $10bn (£7.6bn) a year market, the Thomson Reuters study found.”

 

  • Also from The Law Society Gazette: How legaltech can help you compete against larger firms. “Continuing the discussion on the evolution of the legaltech sector and how it could revolutionise the legal industry, Law Society partner and equity crowdfunding platform Seedrs explains how the rise of legaltech is closing the gap between large and small legal firms.” Post.

 

  • I thought the 2019 forecasts were behind us, but here’s an interesting report from CBInsightsArtificial Intelligence Trends. Lots of infographics.

 

  • This lawyer got a gig in Silicon Valley by promising to automate a lot of legal grunt work — now he’s got his own company. “Wouldn’t it be great if you could have associates who could code and automate their own jobs and would make the firm more efficient?” Post.

 

From Artificial Lawyer:

  • New York Bulletin: Data is Not the New Oil + LSBs Are Splitsville. Story here.

 

  • Pew: How Stanford + Suffolk Law Schools Are Improving NLP for A2J. Story here.

 

  • TR: ALSP Market Now $10 Billion-Plus, Law Firms Major Customers. Story here.

 

  • New York Bulletin – AI Workshop + Do We Need an FDA for Algorithms? Story here.

 

  • Australia Launches ALTACon Legal Tech Conference. Story here.

 

  • Legal AI – Its Definition and Its Value to the Legal World. Story here.

 

  • Global Insurer Allianz Launches Injury Claim Automation Tool. Story here.

 

  • ALM – Legal Market Will Split In Two + ALSPs Will Grow – NY Bulletin Extra. Story here.

 

Posts by Law Firms:

  • Alston & Bird: … Teams Up with Georgia State University on Data Analytics.Alston & Bird and Georgia State University have announced a joint effort to develop broad-based competency among the firm’s attorneys in leveraging data science and analytics to help drive new levels of client service and satisfaction.” Post.

 

  • Andrea PerronaceTechniques for Patenting Blockchain in Europe, the United States, China and Japan. Post.

 

  • Baker Donelson: 90-minute CLE video post: Analyzing the Impact of Artificial Intelligence in Legal. (5 ‘Micro-Presentations’.) Post. (Poor audio.)

 

 

 

 

 

  • Baker McKenzieThe Year Ahead – Innovation: A new generation of legal analysis tools is emerging. Post.

 

 

  • Dentons: Chloe A. SniderSmart Contract Series – Legal Implications For Consideration, Part 1: Definition And Enforceability. Post.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Press Releases, Posts and Articles by Vendors:

 

  • Clio releases new client management platform to ‘help lawyers ensure the future success of their business’. Post.

 

  • Allianz to use Artificial Intelligence to deliver a true end-to-end automated solution for Stage 3 injury claims. Post. — and — “Allianz Insurance has launched a new digital platform that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to enable its injury claims handlers to process Ministry of Justice Stage 3 claims at a single click of a button.” Story here.

 

  • Thomson Reuters: Introducing Litigation Analytics. “Unlock data-driven insights on judges, courts, attorneys, law firms, and case types to better develop case strategy and manage client expectations.” Post.

 

  • Relativity Brings Reduced Data Fees, Unlimited Analytics, and a More Flexible Licensing Model to RelativityOne Customers. Post.

 

  • Emerging from Harvard Law/MIT, Evisort AI Tech Company Posted Tremendous Growth in 2018, Announces Upcoming New Product Launch. Post.

 

  • Zero Now Helps Lawyers Bill More Time in Bellefield, Intapp, Carpe Diem and Other Time Entry Tools. Post. — and — Ryan Steadman of Zero: Business as Usual: 5 Law Firm Activities AI will Seamlessly Transform. Post.
  • Legalweek (formerly Legaltech) is just a few days away, so here’sA Beginner’s Guide To The Biggest Week In Legal Technology.

 

  • Data & Analytics: Transforming Law Firms” has just been published by ALM Intelligence and LexisNexis. Here’s an executive summary and link to the report.

 

  • Here’s a fresh essay about law firm innovation from  of Thomson Reuters Legal Managed ServicesGreasing The Gears Of Legal Commerce — Automatic, Systematic, Hydromatic (alt.legal) Innovation. “CLOs indicated that nearly 25 percent of outside counsel fees are “price-insensitive.”

 

  • The Big 4 continue their relentless march into legal. I skip most of these posts, but this one specifically mentions AI: KPMG expands Asia Pacific legal services. “It will also offer technology enabled legal services, using robotics, artificial intelligence and other technologies developed globally and in China through the KPMG digital ignition centre.”

 

  • This is an interesting post by Charles P. Edwards of Barnes & Thornburg: The Noisy Business of the Law and Insurance Claims. “…(T)he idea we humans are needed for most decisions is an ‘illusion.'”

 

  • Here’s a good example of a law firm (Amsterdam’s De Brauw) using tech as a differentiating marketing strategyHop on board and experience the value of legal tech and project management.

 

  • Bob Ambrogi posted this 47-minute podcast: LawNext Episode 25: Using AI to Enhance Virtual Receptionists, with Smith.ai.

 

  • From Arup Das of Alphaserve Technologies, here’s an interesting discussion of the age-old build vs. buy conundrum: How to Approach Legal Innovation: Options for Every Firm.

 

  • This is a thought-provoking post: Can Deepfakes Pose a Cybersecurity Threat to Legal? ““Deepfakes are real and emerging as an issue but they, like certain types of technology, could emerge very quickly; we talk about this today and it could be a very big deal in six months or it could be nothing,” Reed Smith’s Stegmaier cautioned. “We simply don’t know.””

 

  • This hour-long podcast is from the Lawyerist: “In this episode with Natalie Worsfold, we talk about her law firm’s approach to law practice, and why more firms aren’t following suit. We start by asking Natalie what problem Counter Tax was trying to solve, then explore how they solved it, what their solution does now, and the plans they have to evolve and grow their solution.”

 

  • This is an idea I have been kicking around for a while. Nick Hilborne gives it the thought I believe it’s due: “Reproduction of the legal profession” at risk from automation. “If junior associates are ‘gradually culled’ from law firms as a result of automation, the entire reproduction of the legal profession could be jeopardised….'” And here’s a US write up of the same issue: Junior Lawyers Are Going Extinct And Nobody Knows What To Do About It.

 

  • AI Goes to Court: A Conversation With Lex Machina and Dorsey & Whitney. Post here.

 

From Artificial Lawyer:

  • The Benefits of the LexisNexis LegalTech Accelerator. Post here.
  • EY and Artificial Lawyer Hold Legal Ops + Technology Event.  Post here.
  • Slaughter and May Names 3rd Fast Forward Cohort, Inc. Blockchain Co. Post here.
  • Meet ATJ Bot – The World’s First Legal Aid Voice Assistant. Post here.
  • How to Build Your Business Case For Contract Management – The Juro Guide. Post here.
  • Oz + NZ Professional Services Startup of the Year Award Launched. Post here.
  • Legal AI Co. CourtQuant Predicts Hard Brexit Impact on British Law. Post here.
  • Christian Lang + Former TR Boss, Tom Glocer, Join Reynen Court. Post here.
  • GCs Keen To Embrace Tech Tools + Legal Ops Skills – Survey. Post here. (Note: This story is based on a survey where n=80. Assuming no other methodological problems [big assumption!], this means that in all of the findings each number is well within the margin of sampling error of the statistics above and below it on the graphs.)
  • Meet Fincap Law: A New Tech-Driven Firm For the New Legal Era. Post here.

 

Posts by Law Firms:

 

 

 

 

 

  • Eric A. Klein and Aytan Dahukey of Sheppard Mullin posted: Day 2 Notes From The 2019 JPMorgan Healthcare Conference. “We are seeing a lot of healthcare entities starting to focus on precision medicine – artificial intelligence suggesting which oncology drug works best for your specific genetic condition and cancer – but that essentially is a transactional function. And the market really wants a partnering function ” Post here.

 

 

 

  • From Reed SmithDraft ethics guidelines for trustworthy artificial intelligence published by the European Commission. Post here.

 

 

  • Akin Gump postedPolicymakers Focused on Artificial Intelligence, Write Akin Gump Lawyers in The Journal of Robotics, Artificial Intelligence & Law.

 

  • Hogan Lovells postedLitigating intellectual property issues: The impact of AI and machine learning.

 

Press Releases and sponsored posts:

  • Here’s a thorough explanation of Gavelytics: Want Better Litigation Outcomes? Know Your Judges. “…(W)ith Gavelytics, you finally get the quantifiable and reliable judge information you need to customize your litigation strategy and increase your chances of winning.”

 

 

  • Gibson Dunn launches AI and automated systems group. Post here.

 

  • The world’s first virtual lawyer, built for Amazon’s Alexa, tests whether lawyers will be replaced by robots. “Australian legal-technology company Smarter Drafter have announced a prototype virtual lawyer, built on Amazon’s Alexa, that creates legal.” documents instantly, just like a real human lawyer. Here’s the Smart Drafter release. Hype much?? And then there’s this: “No date has been set for the release of the first working Alexa integration.”

 

  • HaystackID Acquires eDiscovery Managed Services Provider eTERA, Release here.

 

  • Legal IT Newswire New Product News… Alphaserve Technologies launch Execution as a Service. Post here.

 

  • I’m including this because I used to work there! Am Law 200 Firm Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie Selects Litera Desktop, Litera Microsystems Full Document Drafting Suite.

 

Blockchain

 

 

 

 

  • From the Baker & Hostetler Energy BlogNew Blockchain Products, an FBI Raid, the $11 Billion Bitcoin Case, Hackers Strike With a 51 Percent Attack and Crypto Tax Analysis. Post here.

 

 

  • Here’s a deep dive into the legal services offered by Oath ProtocolThe Lay of the Land in Blockchain Dispute Resolution and Governance Designs.

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.
  • If even you’re casually interested in AI, check out this list of the biggest AI milestones achieved in 2018. E.g., from Microsoft: “Hitting human parity in a machine translation task is a dream that all of us have had. We just didn’t realize we’d be able to hit it so soon.”

 

  • And this isn’t specifically legal-related, but it’s interesting: CES 2019 Trends To Watch – 5 Predictions Everyone Should Read.

 

  • Even if you’re not particularly interested in China or the US-China AI rivalry, this article is a good look at cutting edge innovation in AI. AI Domination: The Zero-Sum Game Between The U.S. and China.

 

  • In this post from Legal IT Insider, “12 IT leaders tell us about their achievements, challenges and priorities for the year ahead.” There was quite a bit of AI in 2018 and in their forecasts. For instance, from Clive Knott of Howard Kennedy, “Our most significant development has been the first real use of AI technology in the business, which has significantly reduced the time taken to analyse source documents and produce specific reports.

 

  • And here’s LegalWeek with seven of the same: Cutting through the hype: predictions for innovation in law in 2019. “The Big Four broke cover and started to talk more openly about their ambitions in the legal sector.”

 

  • From MyShingle.com, here are some interesting thoughts re the Tax Implications of Productizing Legal Services. “…(W)hen lawyers convert traditional legal services into hard-copy books or digital products or apps or chatbots because many states subject digital products and/or a software-as-a-service  (e.g., assessment tools like this product ) to state sales taxes.”

 

  • Here’s a good explanation of what’s going on (and coming ) in use of crypto-technologies in real estateBlockchain’s real estate break.

 

  • In this interesting post, “Gopi K, SVP at Infosys, explores the future of blockchain in 2019.” He presents his four areas of expected greatest growth and explains the state of regulatory affairs in several key countries. This post is very relevant to law.

 

Law Firm Posts/Content

  • “OpenText™ announced that leading international law firm Pillsbury … will be the first law firm to deploy OpenText Magellan, OpenText’s AI-enabled analytics platform.” More here.

 

  • From “…Dentons TMT Bites, the newsletter of Dentons’ Italian Intellectual Property & Technology group. This month we will deal with Artificial Intelligence (“AI”) from IP to privacy and contracts.” Ten December posts are included here, along with a 1-minute video intro.

 

  • Also from Dentons (Saverio Cavalcanti and Giangiacomo Olivi), “With this article, we will address some legal issues arising from contracts featuring AI-based services/products.” It’s a pretty deep dive.

 

 

 

  • From Shearman & Sterling, here’s the longest title of a post I have seen in a while: District Of New Jersey Denies Motion To Dismiss Class Action Against Blockchain-Based Company, Finding That Plaintiff Adequately Pled Defendants’ Initial Coin Offering Constituted The Offer And Sale Of Unregistered Securities.
  • The big news yesterday was Thomson Reuters’ launch of “…Westlaw Edge, an updated, artificial intelligence-assisted legal research platform. The updates include new warnings for invalid or questionable law, litigation analytics, a tool to analyze statutory changes and an improved AI-enhanced search called WestSearch Plus.” Here’s their video promo piece, and here the press release. Kudos to Thomson Reuters for garnering so much coverage, such as here and here. This early review by Bob Ambrogi is especially interesting, as is this from Jean O’Grady.

At the same time, Artificial Lawyer has this coverage of Eikon Digest, Thomson Reuters’ “new algorithmic research service aimed at the financial sector, in a move that shows the increasing use of machine learning, NLP and related tech.”

 

  • Meanwhile, “LexisNexis® Legal & Professional today announced the launch of Lexis Analytics, a comprehensive suite of analytics tools that leverages advanced technology, vast stores of legal content and expert curation to give lawyers a decisive competitive advantage in the business and practice of law.” Here’s the press release.

 

  • From LegalWeek, here are Jeffrey Catanzaro’s thoughts about: What junior lawyers need to know about artificial intelligence. “The new lawyers of today are the managing partners and general counsel of tomorrow, and although some commentators may assert that the profession is disruption-free, an increasing body of evidence does suggest the contrary. As the American media mogul Ryan Kavanaugh once said: -The key is to embrace disruption and change early. Don’t react to it decades later. You can’t fight innovation.'”

 

  • Tracy Molino of Dentons has these thoughts about: The practical uses of distributed ledger technology, beyond cryptocurrencies. She breaks down the applications by industry. “Dentons is proud to be the first Canadian law firm to join the Global Legal Blockchain Consortium (GLBC).”

 

  • This piece from The Economist, Law firms climb aboard the AI wagon, doesn’t break any new ground, but provides an overview of law firm applications of AI and the possible ramifications thereof. “Will legal employment eventually shrink? The jury is still out. Some firms expect to employ fewer graduates. But others argue that cheaper services could encourage clients to consult their lawyers more. And although some tasks are automatable, many others rely on human judgment. AI might pinpoint atypical clauses in contracts, for example, but it cannot decide if the anomaly is a deal-breaker. In any event, lawyers should start to find their work more interesting.”

 

  • Here’s a new A2J tool! “An artificial intelligence (AI) platform designed for businesses is to help staff at food banks and MPs’ surgeries refer legal enquiries from members of the public to lawyers….” “What we will be offering is a tool to connect advice givers and lawyers, rather than a replacement for initiatives already taking place.”

 

  • From Artificial Lawyer, “US law firm Fenwick & West has taken the unusual step of making a public announcement about the positive impact its use of legal AI technology, in this case mainly Kira Systems, is having on the firm, stating that use of automated review technology has cut the time needed for such work ‘by half’.

 

  • Press release: “Seal Software, the leading provider of content discovery and analytics solutions, today announced the acquisition of Apogee Legal, a global leader in advanced contract analytics for the enterprise, in a move that will bolster Seal’s award-winning suite of market leading Intelligent Content Analytics (ICA) AI solutions and its global management team.”

 

  • I’ve posted several times about the burgeoning field of AI-based sentiment analysis and it’s use in applications from police departments to job interviews to advertisers. Now there’s an app for that, so you can try it yourself. “The app uses the latest emotional artificial intelligence (Emotion AI) to read 43 facial muscles 14 times a second, using the front camera of a smartphone. The app gives you seven emotional states – fear, anger, disgust, happiness, contempt, sadness, and surprise. It works while you’re watching a video from a friend, recording your reaction at the same time using the front camera. The recipient and the sender both can see the emotion results in real-time, with the top two emotions given priority. These top two emotions are shows with percentages, indicating which emotion is felt the most by individuals concerned.”

 

  • And finally, here’s a weekend thought piece for you: The New Intelligence: Modern AI and the fundamental undoing of the scientific method. “The days of traditional, human-driven problem solving — developing a hypothesis, uncovering principles, and testing that hypothesis through deduction, logic, and experimentation — may be coming to an end. A confluence of factors (large data sets, step-change infrastructure, algorithms, and computational resources) are moving us toward an entirely new type of discovery, one that sits far beyond the constraints of human-like logic or decision-making: driven solely by AI, rooted in radical empiricism. The implications — from how we celebrate scientific discovery to assigning moral responsibility to those discoveries — are far-reaching.” It’s thought provoking, to say the least.

  • Check out this interesting post by Gerry Riskin about LTaaS (Legal Technology as a Service). It seems Allen & Overy is using Neota Logic technology to offer some fresh packaging/delivery of services. It’s branded “aosphere.”

 

  • From  Alicia Ryan, Knowledge & Innovation Delivery Manager at Fenwick via Artificial Lawyer, this projection of how consumers of corporate legal services may see AI in about 5 years.

 

  • Also from Artificial Lawyer, this post by Laura van Wyngaarden, COO of legal AI company, Diligen, in which she discusses client pressure on legal fees and how legal AI technology can play a positive role. She makes good points about using AI to increase efficiency, but keep in mind that optimal pricing need not be a race to the bottom, being the cheapest. A healthier approach is to discover the client’s value drivers in each situation and work to meet those criteria, and price accordingly. More discussion of this here.

 

  • I’m usually somewhat selective about posting AI content from law firms, but to give you an idea of how much is typically out there, here are almost all of the AI-related briefs from law firms I have seen in the past two days:

I have often mentioned the need for regulations and laws to catch up with AI. Here, from Neil Kirby, Director for Healthcare and Life Sciences Law at Werksmans Attorneys is a good review of the state of affairs in AI and healthcare regulation in South Africa. His general observations are relevant across borders.

From DLA Piper: “Connected devices and the Internet of Things: What insurers need to know.”

and, “Top 5 Internet of Things predictions for 2018.” (It’s all about the data, and hence, the GDPR.)

From Frost Todd Brown: “You Can’t Sue a Robot: Are Existing Tort Theories Ready for Artificial Intelligence?”

An interview with McDonald Carano’s IT Director, Rob Sawyer: “Automating Law-Firm Contracts.”

From Goulston & Storrs: “Facial Recognition in Retail: “Attention all Shoppers: We Already Know Everything about You.”

From Tom Fox Law: “Using AI In a Compliance Function – Part I.”

From Allen & Overy: “Using artificial intelligence to fight financial crime – a legal risk perspective.”

From Bird & Bird: “Data, Database Law, and Digital Innovation – Lessons from the Technomed Telemedicine case in the English High Court.”

From Littler: “AI’s Transformational Role in Making HR More Objective While Overcoming the Challenge of Illegal Algorithm Biases”

 

  • Here’s a good overview of what AI my hold for document management in the coming few years.

 

  • From The Guardian: In the UK, “Police ‘may need AI to help cope with huge volumes of evidence’.”

 

  • And while we’re in the UK, Artificial Lawyer reports that Allen & Overy’s banking practice has adopted deal management platform, Legatics. (It seems I post about Allen & Overy at least once a week.)

 

  • From the always excellent Attorney-At-Work folks, here are several summaries of the most interesting stuff at last week’s Legalweek 2018.

And there are many interesting AI observations and slide shots from Legalweek here.

 

  • Gotta love this application of AI and facial recognition: “AI computer vision breakthrough IDs poachers in less than half a second. … Thousands of animals including elephants, tigers, rhinos, and gorillas are poached each year. Researchers at the USC Center for Artificial Intelligence in Society have long been applying AI to protect wildlife. Initially, computer scientists were using AI and game theory to anticipate the poachers’ haunts, and now they have applied artificial intelligence and deep learning to spot poachers in near real-time.”

 

  • From our ‘Kiss Your Privacy Goodbye‘ bureau, “Police in China are wearing facial-recognition glasses. … Fixed facial recognition cameras have been in use to fight public toilet paper theft and to catch beer festival-going criminals in China, and now the technology is being mounted onto wearable glasses to eliminate any blind spots for crimes.” There’s much more here about the “insidious downside” of China’s massive investment in artificial intelligence.

Even in the US, as discussed here, consumers seem to be giving up interest in their privacy.

 

  • Finally, for an hour of your weekend listening pleasure, here’s “Frontiers Lecture: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence with Max Tegmark and Neil deGrasse Tyson.”

 

  • From Osborne Clarke: “From a venture capital perspective, London was Europe’s premier destination for technology investment last year, with research figures showing that London attracted more funding than Paris, Berlin and the next seven cities combined.  Whilst Fintech continued to be a particularly attractive target for funds in 2017, the standout growth area over the last year has been artificial intelligence, with many VC investors pinning their capital to it as the next big thing by placing significantly more capital in AI businesses in 2017 than ever before.”

 

  • Press release: “LegalMation® was named by the National Law Journal today in its inaugural “Legal A.I. Leaders” list. Published as part of the Law.com network, the “Legal A.I. Leaders” list identifies and highlights the most innovative companies applying artificial intelligence in the legal industry.Developed by award-winning litigation experts, LegalMation® is the only legal A.I. solution that produces actual first drafts of key litigation documents—a fully automated process that takes 60-120 seconds. With no installation required or any functions to learn, LegalMation® identifies key claims and allegations of complaints and then produces high-quality first drafts of answers and initial written discovery. This results in substantial cost savings of up to several thousands of dollars per matter.”

 

  • Hogan Lovells has issued this guide to AI and space: “In this guide, we highlight the key challenges and commercial opportunities for AI and advanced machine-learning, with particular focus on space based business considerations. We also touch on AI in the areas of space, drones, and terrestrial convergence, particularly communications and imaging platforms or applications.”

 

  • Allen & Overy has issued this rather detailed discussion of “Using artificial intelligence to fight financial crime – a legal risk perspective.”

 

  • Foley Hoag announced its representation of “machine learning startup Indico in its $4 million equity seed financing …. Indico helps users benefit from the dramatic advantages of artificial intelligence and machine learning at a fraction of the time and cost of traditional techniques.”

 

  • I mentioned yesterday that it would be impractical for me to cover all of the product announcements and upgrades from Legaltech18, but I have to mention the release of Neota Logic 9 for a couple of reasons. 1. Much of what is being labeled “AI” is just Big Data, close but not exactly Artificial Intelligence per se. Neota Logic was one of the first in the legal space to have its tech underpinnings firmly in actual AI systems. 2. With this release, Neota is no longer the rather esoteric product (or was it a service?) that lawyers and legal business people may have had trouble figuring out how to use. With this release Neota is clearly positioned to directly address process improvement needs in both the business and practice of law.

 

  • Finally from Legaltech, this summary of a panel imagining what work in a law firm might look like in 2048. (I suggest that these predictions are all reasonable, but more likely to be in place in 10 years, not 30.) The session was called, “A Day in the Life of a Futurist Jurist Empowered by Artificial Intelligence: An Ethical Dilemma,” but from the summary, I don’t see the “ethical dilemma.”

 

  • Moving beyond legal, just imagine AI with a quantum computing platform. Among this article’s remarkable observations: “Quantum computers and AI also share another trait: exponential growth. Processors for quantum devices are measured in qubits, with today’s most advanced ones coming in at around 50 qubits. At this size they’re the equivalent to a supercomputer. At just 60 qubits, it would exceed the power of every supercomputer on the planet combined, and then some.”

 

  • Every few weeks I try to provide a fresh introduction to AI for those new to the topic. Here I go again: first, from Wired, this good history and overview; then from the NYT, this very accessible explanation, based on comparisons between AI and human intelligence; and from the University of Cambridge, this thought piece about the likely societal impacts of AI. And finally for the newbies, here are 10 (not 9) fun facts about AI.
  • From Down Under: Dean of Swinburne Law School, Professor Dan Hunter, and Swinburne researcher Professor Mirko Bagaric say artificial intelligence (AI) could improve sentencing procedures by removing emotional bias and human error. Seems these gentlemen are unaware of 2017’s several instances of AI exhibiting bias and even racism. AI has a way to go to fulfill their expectation that “(AI) would also eliminate judicial subconscious bias in sentencing that results in people of certain profiles, such as indigenous offenders, being sentenced more harshly.” They do admit that this transition will take some time, partly because people aren’t yet ready for machines to assume this role. For now, they recommend AI working alongside judges. Their full article can be purchased here.

 

  • Artificial Lawyer reports that “(l)eading legal AI company, Kira Systems, has partnered with document management system (DMS), NetDocuments, to allow its customers to make use of AI-driven analysis tools. The move is part of NetDocuments’ AI Marketplace, which the company says ‘paves the way for enhanced document understanding and matter intelligence’.” Kira says the “strategic objective of Kira is not to repeat what RAVN did with iManage,” but the parallels are hard to miss. Press release here.

 

  • Also from Artificial Lawyer, “Thomson Reuters is introducing a new AI-driven tool, Data Privacy Advisor, powered by IBM’s Watson suite of machine learning technology. The tool is ‘a specialised data privacy research solution that brings the company’s collection of global legal and regulatory information together with expansive data privacy guidance from Practical Law editors, curated news, and a question-answering feature built by artificial intelligence and technology professionals from Thomson Reuters and IBM Watson.’” Here’s the press release. Good point here by Ron Friedmann about this development — can individual law firms undertake this training?

 

  • From law.com: “(this) week kicks off another Legalweek and its flagship Legaltech conference. Alongside panel discussions taking place all week will be a host of companies exhibiting the latest and greatest in legal technologies. A number of companies will debut new products and upgrades while at the show. And while Legaltech News would love to cover them all, we only have so much time (and space!). Here’s a by-no-means-exhaustive snapshot of some of this news.” And here’s a link to Legalweek’s ongoing conference coverage. I expect excellent coverage, especially of all things AI, by LexBlog’s new publisher and editor-in-chief, Bob Ambrogi at LegalweekMonitor.

 

  • Here’s a realistic essay about AI in law from Norton Rose Fulbright South Africa Inc. The basic premise is that “Law firms that are proactive about incorporating AI in providing more value to clients will eventually outrun competitors who ignore it.” Yep.

 

  • I’ve reported several times that the black box nature of most of AI, and our inability to trace back its conclusions through simple if-then logic has cause quite a few problems, not the least of which involves courts’ inability to clearly assign liability. Late last year I reported that AI itself is now being assigned the task of figuring out how to make such explanation possible. This interesting essay from Wired cautions, “Don’t Make AI Artificially Stupid in the Name of Transparency.” It also suggests some work-arounds that might solve the problem, at least in specific situations.

 

  • It seems full realization of the dystopian world of 1984 is getting a bit closer, at least in Dubai. Last November I reported that “Dubai Police will soon be able to monitor you inside your car through an artificial intelligence machine that will be installed on the officer’s vehicle.” Now the “Dubai Police General HQ announced the launch of an artificial intelligence surveillance programme, called Oyoon (Eyes). It is a part of the Dubai 2021 plan and it aims to enhance the emirate’s global position it terms of providing a safer living experience for all citizens, residents and visitors.” “The aim of the project is to create an integrated security system that utilises modern, sophisticated technologies and artificial intelligence features to prevent crime, reduce traffic accident related deaths, and prevent any negative incidents in residential, commercial and vital areas.” I expect that, “prevent any negative incidents” could be interpreted rather broadly.

 

  • Apple and AI: reports suggest that Apple is cutting production of the iPhone X, its smartest phone, in half. Meanwhile, last Friday it finally began selling HomePod, its AI-driven smart speaker competitor to Sonos, Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home with little fanfare and no advertising support, perhaps in expectation that this very expensive rival is doomed from the start. (Mine is scheduled to arrive on February 9. I’ll let you know what I think of it.) All of the recent reviews I’ve seen comparing Alexa, Google Home, Siri and Cortana have Siri and Cortana way back in 3rd and 4th place. Apple seems to be in serious catch-up mode in the race to capture market share with AI-driven devices for consumers.