• How far have smart speakers come? Amazon has 10000 employees dedicated to Alexahere are some of the areas they’re working on. Speaking of Alexa: Amazon team taps millions of Alexa interactions to reduce NLP error rate. Story here. (Ask yours who will win the Super Bowl.)

 

  • This is kinda fun from Above the LawYou’ll Eat A McRib, But You Won’t Try Machine Learning? What Gives?

 

  • Here’s some A2J news from Mary JuettenFree Legal Research For All: AnyLaw. “AnyLaw was established to provide a no-cost alternative solution to the unnecessary – and exclusionary — expense of legal research.”

 

  • I have friends and relatives who are GMU grads, so here’s George Mason students have a new dining option: Food delivered by robots.

 

  • This story is from Singapore’s Channel NewsAsia: The Big Read: Rise of the machine — how technology is disrupting Singapore’s law firms. “Singapore is playing catch up to embrace technological adoption in the legal and judicial world. Legal professionals say tech may also reduce the number of legal roles.”

 

  • It seems the US government shutdown is impacting AIChina To US Tech Investment Plunges 79% To Lowest Level In 7 Years Amid DC Crackdown. “In the BAT’s case, that means U.S. transactions centered on artificial intelligence, e-commerce and games — exactly the sorts of deals they made in the U.S. during 2018.” Story here.

 

  • This, from the WSJDriverless Cars Tap the Brakes After Years of Hype. “Developers take a more cautious, low-key approach in testing and talking about autonomous vehicles after Uber crash.”

 

  • And there’s more about autonomous vehicles in this article:How AI Is Transforming The Next Generation Of Vehicles. “The headliner of this year’s CES in Las Vegas wasn’t the futuristic concepts of robocars. Instead, it was the production-ready technologies that will infuse AI into the next generation of cars for safer, more efficient driving in the near term.”

 

  • From the always astute Jordan Furlong, this pieceWhy law firms need to think differently – and smarter – about AI. “…(W)e need to go back to basics and deconstruct what we are trying to achieve with this technology, and why.”

 

  • This NYT story is thought provoking: How Do You Govern Machines That Can Learn? Policymakers Are Trying to Figure That Out. “The subject was artificial intelligence, and his students last week were mainly senior policymakers from countries in the 36-nation Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.”

 

  • This ABA piece is a well-annotated deep dive into several of the big issues in legal AI: Pros and Pitfalls of Artificial Intelligence in IP and the Broader Legal Profession. “(S)trong and efficient practitioners must learn to harness the power of AI, but must be wary of overreliance on these technologies.”

 

Law firm posts (blockchain included):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • This is a large and useful post from Gibson Dunn: Artificial Intelligence and Autonomous Systems Legal Update (4Q18).

 

  • Megan Seabourne of British law firm VWV, this postWould you trust a robot to write your will? “More than seven out of ten people would not want their will to be drafted using artificial intelligence (AI), according to VWV’s latest survey and as law firms are increasingly adopting AI in legal matters.”

 

  • Sunil Thacker senior partner at Dubai’s STA is heavily quoted in this pieceSpace, AI, renewable energy to get priority as sectors open for more foreign investment in 2019.

 

From Artificial Lawyer:

  • Artificial Lawyer Announces Launch of Legal Innovators Conference. Post here.

 

  • Neota Logic Partners With Actuate Law To Develop New Legal Tech Tools. Post here. More coverage here.

 

  • CLOC London – Getting To Grips With Data + Better Contracting. Post here.

 

  • M&A Due Diligence Will Get Much Faster – Survey by OCR Co. Merrill. Post here.

 

  • Law Company Elevate Buys Yerra Managed Legal Services Co. As M&A Binge Continues. Post here.

 

  • Mitratech Launches TeamConnect Essentials in Legal Ops Drive. Post here.

 

  • Disputly – Solving the Consumer Legal Challenge One App at a Time. Post here.

 

Press Releases and sponsored content:

  • From ThoughtRiverTurning The Future Vision Of The GC Into Today’s Reality. “Access our new eGuide to discover how automated contract pre-screening technology can transform the role of the GC’s team – and therefore business performance.” Release here.

 

  • Also from ThoughtRiver: Why has the legal profession been slow to embrace AI technology? Release here.

 

  • Actuate Law Debuts New Legal Tech Subsidiary, Quointec LLC. “Quointec will collaboratively build next-generation legal and compliance tools that leverage artificial intelligence (AI) to provide clients with innovative and more cost-effective solutions.” Release here.

 

BLOCKCHAIN:

  • Here’s some news re blockchain payments: MIT, Stanford and others to build blockchain payments network to rival VisaNet: “Seven universities are collaborating to create a blockchain-based online payment system that will solve issues of scalability, privacy, security and performance, enabling up to 10,000 transactions per second.”

 

  • This, from MarketplaceThe blockchain is coming to Wall Street. “(F)uture ICOs and their digital coins might start to look a lot more like good old-fashioned stock, except traded on the blockchain. And that has big ramifications for Wall Street.”

 

  • Here are the findings of a statistically reliable survey: Deloitte’s 2018 Global Blockchain Survey: Blockchain Is “’Getting Closer To Its Breakout Moment’. “…(O)ut of all of the participants surveyed, 65% reported that their organization will invest $1 million or more in blockchain technology in the coming year. The enterprises with the largest investments will be coming from Mexico, France, and Canada respectively.”

 

  • Securitize To Join IBM’s Blockchain Accelerator To Modernize $82T Corporate Debt Market. Story here.

 

  • CanadianLawyer publishedBlockchain justice. “Crypto-currency and blockchain will increasingly be the subjects of litigation in Canada.”

 

  • Crude oil is about to be traded on a blockchain platform backed by five of the top 10 oil companies.Chevron, Total and Reliance Industries are backing VAKT, a digital platform for crude oil trading based on blockchain that launched late last year. They join a consortium of investors that includes BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Equinor as well as traders Gunvor, Mercuria and Koch Supply & Trading.” Story here.

 

  • Speaking of oil & gas, here’s a piece that probably belongs above under AI, but here it is! The Incredible Ways Shell Uses Artificial Intelligence To Help Transform The Oil And Gas Giant.
  • 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.

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2019) is in full swing in Vegas, and my feeds are swamped with press releases and news coverage of the myriad AI-enabled products (like this one about a laptop with AI built in). I won’t even attempt any coverage here. If you’d like to catch up and have a few hours to spare, search for “CES 2019 Artificial Intelligence”. That said, this coverage of the keynote by IBM CEO Ginni Rometty is quite interesting.

Now, the news:

  • Check out this very interesting post from Judge Penalizes Lawyers For Not Using Artificial Intelligence.”It may not be the most significant opinion, but it may be a sign of things to come.”
  • Bob also posted this interview with Judicata Founder Itai Gurari who “believes he has built a better legal research platform. A lawyer and computer scientist, his approach to designing a legal research engine was to first “map the legal genome” — that is, map the law with extreme accuracy and granularity. The result is a research engine that returns the best results the fastest….”
  • This story (Young lawyers “fearful of innovation resistance) from Legal Futures is based on a survey by the International Association of Young Lawyers (AIJA). I could not find the survey methodology, but there were 180 respondents.
  • “Chicago law firm Corboy & Demetrio said on Tuesday it filed a lawsuit against electric carmaker Tesla Inc alleging that its 2014 Model S sedan had a defective battery pack that caused the death of an 18-year old passenger in an accident last year.” Story here.
  • From Lawyers Weekly comes this storyHow to fight push back when accessing big data. “…Jay Carle … and Kathleen McConnell… of Seyfarth Shaw shared the benefits of using big data and analytics to both a firm and a client’s advantage.”
  • Mark Medice posted this interesting thought piece: Why a Digital Strategy is Important for Your Firm – Priorities for 2019. Good stuff.
  • Philip Scorgie, technical advisor for AdvoLogix made this post (Late for the Sky: Legal Tech and the Cloud) on ALPMA’s A Survival Guide for Legal Practice Managers.
  • “Forbes publishes 300 stories a day, and is developing AI software that writes first drafts of articles.” Story here.

 

Law Firm AI Posts:

  • Andrew J. Sherman of Seyfarth Shaw postedNow Is The Time To Figure Out The Ethical Rights Of Robots In The Workplace.
  • Peter Vogel of Foley & Lardner wrote this postGood News About The Future Of Humans With AI.
  • From the very prolific Giangiacomo Olivi of Dentons comes this postSmart farming: the rise of AgriTech and its legal issues.
  • From Epstein Becker: Employment Law This Week: January 7th, 2019: A Look Back and the Year Ahead. “In 2018, many employers put the potential of artificial intelligence (“AI”) into practice. AI is being adopted at a rapid pace across the country, and the changing landscape is creating complex concerns around workforce management.”

 

From Artificial Lawyer:

  • Legal AI Litigation Co. LegalMation Partners With Ogletree Deakins + Interview with Patrick DiDomenico, CKO. Post here.
  • The Innovation Paradox: Lawyers Want Innovation, But Fear Market Change. Post here.
  • Elevate Buys Halebury Lawyers on Demand Service, Plus Interview With Denise Nurse. Post here. More coverage here.
  • Welcome to GROWL – The Global Rise of Women in LegalTech Initiative. Post here.
  • Smart Contracts: The Big Questions – Charles Kerrigan, CMS. Post here.
  • MDR LAB Legal Tech Incubator Opens for 2019, Partners with Microsoft + AWS. Post here.
  • Kennedys KLAIM Automation Platform Goes Global, Now in US, Oz + More. Post here.

 

News Releases and Sponsored Posts:

  • Pillsbury sign up for OpenText Magellan AI system. Release here. And a different version here.
  • iManage postedShort-termist approach to AI tech buying will give way to strategic and rational adoption in 2019.
  • Also from iManage, this post from Legal Support NetworkiManage – Unravelling the Labyrinth of AI Myths: AI does not learn by itself.
  • Exterro’s Winter 2019 Product Release Delivers Significant Innovations in the Use of Artificial Intelligence and Integration with Microsoft Office 365. Release here.
  • Claim Technology announce collaboration with Plexus Law, offering innovative outsourced claims solutions. Release here.
  • This is from HighQ: Leveraging technology as a driver for improved client experience.
  • And from Sysero, this piece: A New Way to Deliver Legal Service: The Scandinavian Approach.
  • Here in Nashville: Cicayda Announces Partnership with NAEGELI Deposition & Trial to Combine its eDiscovery Software and Professional Services with NAEGELI’s Court Reporting and Trial Support Services. Release here.

 

BLOCKCHAIN:

  • From Argentina: NEM Foundation to Develop Blockchain-Powered Copyright System for Journalists. Post here.
  • How cool is this?! The First Program To Train High School Girls With Blockchain Skills.
  • Here’s an interesting background piece: A No-BS Guide to the Blockchain as a Service Space Part I.
  • From Deal Street Asia we have this post: From AI to blockchain, Indian law firms add new practice areas to stay ahead of peers.
  • Press releaseOntology blockchain to create private smart contracts through collab with TEEX.

 

Law Firm Blockchain Posts:

 

 

  • If you’re a student of AI you should at least skim through this summary of MIT’s recent Platform Strategy Summit. It presents an excellent overview of the state of AI (and a bit of blockchain) from academic and business perspectives (even Thomson Reuters). “Most corporate app development effort today is spent on keeping things running, not on changing and innovating.” (Many cool infographics!)

 

  • This article (Does the legal profession have a moral duty to innovate?) appeared in Canadian Lawyer: “The panel also discussed the fact that more than 30 states in the U.S. have adopted the American Bar Association’s model rule that imposes a duty of technology competence on lawyers. The Federation of Law Societies in Canada is said to be looking at changing the model code of professional conduct in Canada to impose a duty of technology competence similar to the ABA’s rule.”

 

  • This piece (Are big data and artificial intelligence throwing down a new regulatory gauntlet?) from American Enterprise Institute is likely to set you to thinking about the regulation of information technologies in new ways. ‘…(I)f there is a principle to guide the future regulation of big data and AI, it is to focus on first understanding information asymmetries and how they affect the distribution of the gains, rather than the technologies that they are associated with.”

 

  • From The Law SocietySix ways the legal sector is using AI right now. The usual applications are discussed here, plus a bit about threats and a forecast. Interesting definition” “When we talk about AI in 2018 (and for the purposes of this article), we mean clever forms of computerised automation and search.”

 

  • More Reynen Court news hereClifford Chance and Latham Invest in ‘App Store for Legal Tech’. “They are putting an undisclosed amount of money into Reynan Court, the highly touted tech venture that provides law firms with a single platform to manage the procurement, deployment and management of third-party apps. The CIOs of both firms have joined the tech startup’s board of directors.” Coverage from Artificial Lawyer here.

 

  • This, from the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA): Law firms must be able to explain decisions made by AI. (There’s a link to a larger paper.) “While AI has not been 100% accurate in various tests, the SRA said it has never proven any less accurate than work carried out by humans, and in some cases, it has been more so. Looking at some of the issues AI’s use would raise, however, the SRA said firms may find it difficult, where decisions were made by “self-learning AI”, to explain the “assumptions and reasoning behind some automated decisions”.”

 

  • This, from Missouri Lawyers WeeklyNew services or products that support Missouri’s legal community: Manu Stephen. “…(T)he Inventr app uses artificial intelligence to help companies discover patentable inventions in 24 hours. … The app also helps companies to find attorneys to work on their patents by providing the companies with a list of attorneys who have been vetted and preselected by Inventr.”

 

  • “Over 2,000 U.S. adults answered the online survey earlier this month. The survey was conducted by the Harris Poll at the request of Your Lawyers Online, an online legal service provider that guides clients through family, animal and estate planning law.” 69 Percent of People Would Use Online Legal Services Over Attorneys. Other juicy stats here.

 

  • And speaking of surveys, surprise! Report Proves What We Already Knew: Clients Will Pay Any Fee Hike To Get Brand Name Firms. “This has long been the conventional wisdom among legal industry observers, but the new Citi Private Bank Law Firm Group Report went out and actually gathered some hard data to see if our gut instincts are correct. It turns out… they are.” More results survey here.

 

  • A2J: Start-up aims to help NFP sector identify legal nature of problems. “A law graduate will next year launch an artificial intelligence-backed (AI) product that uses natural language processing (NLP) to help not-for-profit agencies identify precisely the legal nature of a problem, potentially cutting out time-consuming confusion.” Story here.

 

  • Artificial intelligence set to free solicitors from lower-level work. “The report, Technology and legal services, suggests that rapid developments in AI will mostly be focused on back-office functions.” More here.

 

  • IBM Unveils Its Vision For The Future Of Artificial Intelligence. “IBM, which has been working on artificial intelligence since the 1950s, is not only keenly aware of these shortcomings, it is investing heavily to improve the basic technology. As Dario Gil, Chief Operating Officer of IBM Research recently wrote in a blog post, the company published over 100 papers in just the past year. Here are the highlights of the technology being developed now.” This is a fast, interesting read.

 

Posts by Law Firms

  • Two of my posts in a row for Dentons‘ Giangiacomo Olivi. Here’s his latest, Non-Personal Data Regulation, AI and the data economy: an Italian perspective. “This new piece of legislation aims to strengthen the principle of free circulation of non-personal data in the EU for the benefit of businesses and the public alike, with a view to foster the European data economy and the future Digital Single Market.”

 

  • Also from Dentons, Eric J. TanenblattAndrew Shaw and Crawford Schneider wrote: Federal Autonomous Vehicle Bill Moves Closer To Passage. “The support of the American Association for Justice, an influential trial lawyer advocacy group, is a welcome sign for the bill. The new-look legislation, circulated Monday night, was altered to reaffirm state and local authority over motor vehicle operation, mitigate concerns about the effect of federal preemption on state common law and statutory liability and constrain the use of pre-dispute arbitration clauses related to death or bodily injury.” Post here.

 

  • Winston Maxwell and Gauthier Vannieuwenhuyse of Hogan Lovells postedRobots Replacing Arbitrators: Smart Contract Arbitration. The 10-page scholarly journal article is here. “Given the current legal framework, fully robotised arbitration will not become a reality in the near future. However, prospects of automated expert determination are much more likely. They will lead the way to speedy, less-costly and accurate calculations or determinations, to the benefit of parties in various specific sectors.”

 

  • This, also from Hogan: The emergence of intelligent systems in health care. “With artificial intelligence being implemented across the health care continuum, FDA and other agencies find themselves contending with the prospect of regulating a moving target.”

 

  • Alan S. Levins and Amanda M. Osowski of Littler Mendelson posted: Self-Driving Trucks And Labor Law—A Look Ahead. “Welcome to the future: The year is 2020 and an organized—i.e., unionized trucking company—”L2M2″ has announced it is acquiring a convoy of autonomously powered—i.e., “self-driving”—transportation vehicles.” Post here. (Seems I’m failing at putting my futurist stories in one place.)

 

(More law firm posts under Blockchain below.)

 

Prognostications

  • From Inc.: Here Are 27 Expert Predictions on How You’ll Live With Artificial Intelligence in the Near Future. “It might make life better or it might be the end of us. Either way, it’s coming and here’s what it’s going to look like.”

 

  • This post includes a section on AI, so I did not include it with the Blockchain predictions below. Blockchain And Crypto Industry Predictions For 2019.

 

  • Here’s a half hour podcast in which Elie and Joe talk to Ralph Baxter, former head of Orrick and current board member of Intapp, about the future of the legal industry. (Ralph joins about 7 minutes in.)

 

(More predictions under Blockchain below.)

 

Press releases

  • Lex Mundi Partners With Diligen To Offer Artificial Intelligence Contract Review Tool. Release here.

 

  • Evisort launch Document Analyzer: advanced AI data mining, search and reporting tech. Release here.

 

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

 

  • Innovate UK backs bid to create “thinking” legal AI. “Contract review business ThoughtRiver has been awarded funding from the government for a £400,000 development project to develop “thinking AI”.” Story here. Coverage from Artificial Lawyer here.

 

Blockchain

  • BakerHostetler‘s Robert A. Musiala Jr. publishedCryptocurrencies Continue To Permeate Capital Markets As Blockchain Permeates Settlement Systems. “…(T)he long-sought approval of Bitcoin ETFs appears unlikely in the near future, based on recent comments from SEC Chairman Jay Clayton, who cited continued concerns over a lack of adequate investor protections, including difficulties mitigating risks related to cryptocurrencies being stolen or manipulated on exchanges.”

 

  • Scott H. Kimpel of Hunton Andrews Kurth posted: Blockchain Legal Resource: CFTC Publishes Primer On Smart Contracts. “The Primer discusses their functionality, use cases, regulatory environment and potential risks.” Post here.

 

 

 

  • From  Marc D. Powers of BakerHostetlerBlockchain Platform For Energy Commodities Announced In U.S., Restrictions Ease In Foreign Markets. This post includes several useful links.

 

  • Also from BakerHostetlerJohn C. McIlwee posted: More Blockchain Uses For Digital Advertisers, Software Licensees And Marine Insurers. This post is mainly a summary of a recent report, and here’s a link to the referenced report.

 

  • Neil Gray and Maxwell J. Eichenberger of Reed Smith posted Blockchain: Immutable Ledger, But Admissible Evidence? “(A) brief overview of blockchain technology, then addresses the current evidentiary hurdles blockchain records face, and concludes with considerations for attorneys seeking to enter blockchain receipts … into evidence and businesses implementing blockchain solutions.”

 

  • Amazon got quite a bit more serious about Blockchain in 2018, including its Blockchain as a Service (BaaS) offering: “a fully managed service that makes it easy to create and manage scalable blockchain networks using open source frameworks such as Hyperledger Fabric and Ethereum in just a few clicks.” Story here.

 

  • First Blockchain loan closes in Latin America amid transparency concerns. “Itaú’s US$100m proof-of-concept loan, provided by Standard Chartered and Wells Fargo, utilized the R3 Corda Connect blockchain platform, a paperless system that allowed the banks to assess revisions, comments and approve the club loan digitally.” Story here.

 

  • Several law school faculty from around the world contributed to: The Distributed Liability of Distributed Ledgers: Legal Risks of Blockchain. “Part of the attraction of distributed ledger systems, such as Blockchain, lies in transcending law and regulation.” Link here.

 

  • Blockchains should have ‘privacy by design’ for GDPR compliance. “Some believe that public permissionless blockchains cannot be GDPR compliant, and that private blockchains might be the answer to blockchain’s regulatory woes. Even so, private blockchains bring into question the very meaning of what a blockchain is. There is no simple answer.” Story here.

 

  • Here are some prognostications about Blockchain: Top 5 blockchain predictions for 2019.

 

  • And here4 Major Blockchain Trends to Watch for in 2019. (Not the same as those above!)

 

  • And much more here10 Ways Blockchain Technology Will Change The Legal Industry.

 

From Artificial Lawyer 

  • RelativityOne Goes Down Under With Australia Partnership. Story here.

 

  • Back to the Future For Legal AI + Automation. Story here. (Again, I’ve put prognostications is a different section.)

 

  • Slaughter and May Publishes Innovation Guide. “The 32-page report, spearheaded by Slaughters partners, Rob Sumroy and Ben Kingsley, and produced in association with Tromans Consulting, the strategy and innovation consultancy, explores both the theory behind innovation and looks at real world examples of what businesses have done and what can be learned from them.” Post here, and here’s the link to the full report.

 

  • AI Co. Diligen Wins Major Business Boost With Lex Mundi Deal. Story here and here.

 

  • Legal AI Co. Seal Launches Financial Services NLP Suite. Story here.

 

  • What is ThoughtRiver’s New ‘Thinking AI’ + What Will It Do? Story here.

 

  • Kira Systems – AL Product Review – Part One. Story here.
  • Enough Hype Already: Inside Legal’s (Over?) Excitement with AI. “While many in the legal industry still over hype AI technology, some are beginning to separate fact from fiction. But the hype hasn’t been all bad—or good—for the legal market.” The post by Rhys Dipshan is here.

 

  • Covington’s Thomas Parisi postedAI Update: FCC Hosts Inaugural Forum on Artificial Intelligence. “Chairman Pai made clear in his opening remarks that the purpose of the forum was not to initiate AI regulation at the FCC. He stated: “It’s important to note that this event is about discussion and demonstration.”

 

  • Anna Cope and Melanie Lane of CMS wrote: Disciplinaries and Performance Management: Artificial Intelligence and Emotional Intelligence. The article addresses, “AI can help to remove both conscious and unconscious bias in decision-making and to ensure consistency of approach. However, will it ever be acceptable culturally for a machine to decide to fire an employee? Where should the line be drawn when important decisions need to be made about employees’ performance or disciplinary matters? Is the human element still important in this process?”

 

  • Cadwalader’s Steven Lofchie postedAgencies Urge Banks To Pursue AML (Anti-Money Laundering) Compliance Innovation. “In a joint statement, the Federal Reserve Board, the FDIC, FinCEN, the National Credit Union Administration and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (the “agencies”) stated that innovation – including the use of artificial intelligence, digital identity technologies and internal financial intelligence units – has the potential to augment banks’ programs for risk identification, transaction monitoring, and suspicious activity reporting.”

 

  • In this post, Chris Cook, Katherine Bravo, KC Halm and Amy Mushahwar of Davis Wright Tremaine summarize the FTC’s hearings on Competition and Consumer protection (a month ago). FTC Hearings Exploring Algorithms, Artificial Intelligence, and Predictive Analytics Focus on Notions of Fairness, Transparency and Ethical Uses.

 

  • Here’s a complete seminar from Dentons. It’s their eighth annual CPD Bootcamp. Chasing Shiny Objects: A Practical Guide To Managing The Challenges Of Transformative Technologies. “The session covered the following: Things to consider before acquiring a transformative technology: how much is real and how much is hype? And how do you know? How select transformative technologies create unexpected privacy and other compliance challenges and ways organizations can address them. Steps organizations can take to manage common risk and liability issues, including via contracts.”

 

  • And this from Dentons Italy’s Giangiacomo OliviAI And Drones, A Love Affair (Part I). “One of the main innovative characteristics of drones is their capability to collect and process great amounts of data, including personal data, which is often difficult to manage. This implies that the future usage of drones will be increasingly linked to data analytics and AI patterns and algorithms.”

 

  • “Microsoft Corp. called for new legislation to govern artificial intelligence software for recognizing faces, advocating for human review and oversight of the technology in critical cases.” Details here.

 

 

  • K&L Gates has posted Volume 39 of its Blockchain Energizer Energy Alert, this time summarizing three recent developments.

 

  • More on AML Reform: Artificial Intelligence, Beneficial Ownership and Real Estate from Ballard Spahr. “…(T)he OCC believes that ‘[n]ew technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning offer banks opportunities to better manage their costs and increase the ability of their monitoring systems to identify suspicious activity, while reducing the number of false positive alerts and investigations’.” This in-depth post includes this link to Part One.

 

  • Sameer Gokhale of Oblon, McClelland asks is the Pendulum Swinging Back In AI Direction? “(M)ost inventions in AI will not be directed to a magical robot or the self-driving car. Instead, a lot of inventions are directed to the building blocks of AI, such as deep learning and machine learning algorithms along with data collection techniques which are vital to train the AI software.” “If the USPTO director can guide the examining corp to take a patent owner-friendly approach toward inventive algorithms related to AI, then it will help swing the pendulum of patentable subject matter toward a place that is in harmony with the current state of technology.” Article from Intellectual Property Magazine here.

 

  • Suebsiri Taweepon and Pimpisa Ardborirak of Tilleke Gibbins postedChallenges of Future Intellectual Property Issues for Artificial Intelligence. “…(W)ould the software developer(s) of an AI be entitled to the work created by that AI? And if the user of the AI continually inputs new sources of information for the AI to learn, resulting in newly created IP, would the user be entitled to own the created IP?”

 

  • This interesting post warns of possible negative unintended consequences of cheap “lawtech” A2J such as, “the silencing of #MeToo activists with an avalanche of libel lawsuits; honest tradesmen ripped off by an automatic lawsuit over every invoice; online bullies spinning up endless court cases against their enemies in order to intimidate them into submission; patent trolls automating their hunt for genuinely innovative companies to exploit”.”

 

  • Meanwhile, here’s more progress on the A2J front: Chatbot to help renters released today. (From New Zealand.)

 

  • Peter Krakaur of UnitedLex posted this overview of legal technologies. It includes a nice summary chart. Planning Your Next Legal IT Strategy Discussion: A Service Delivery Framework (Part I).

 

  • Columbia University’s AI Business Course Studies Legal Tech Startup (Evisort). “…(L)egal technology offers a prime example of using tech experts and industry experts—in this case lawyers—in the development of a needed business tool.” Coverage here.

 

From Artificial Lawyer:

– “Big Tech company, Microsoft, is to broaden the appeal of its NLP and machine learning tools for doc review as part of a project to bring its Azure Cognitive Service capabilities into the Power BI platform for business level analysis and data visualisations. The service will open for public preview from March 2019.” Post here.

HighQ Integrates With Legal AI Co. LEVERTON + Launches V. 5.0. Post here.

– “Smart contract pioneer, OpenLaw, and oracle platform Rhombus, have joined forces to build derivatives smart contracts, as part of a project to see if their tech can be used in the $500 trillion market for handling derivatives trades.” Post here.

Relativity Develops ‘Pre-Crime’ Abilities With Trace App at ING Bank. Post here.

 

  • Press release from Littler: Littler Hosts Roundtable of Industry Leaders to Discuss Impact of Automation Technologies. It’s an interesting summary of the event and includes a link to Littler’s recent TIDE (Technology-Induced Displacement of Employees) report. Oh heck, why not just include that link here and save you a click?

 

  • Press releaseElevate Acquires Sumati, Expanding Capabilities and Scale in Contract Lifecycle Management Support.

 

  • Press releaseXDD Acquires Leading AI Automation Software Company, Esquify, Further Optimizing the Company’s Managed Review Service Offering.

 

  • Press release: Successfully Migrates 10 Terabytes of Litigation Data to Casepoint eDiscovery Cloud.

 

More prognostications:

– Legal Technology – the future of legal services from Dan Bindman. Post here.

– Moving Beyond Smart Contracts: What Are The Next Generations Of Blockchain Use Cases? Post here.

– 2019 will be the year of artificial intelligence. Post here from Damien Willis.

– This, from Information AgeArtificial intelligence for the lawyer – transforming the legal industry.

– 5 Artificial Intelligence Trends To Watch Out For In 2019. This is a bit technical, but interesting.

– Tech predictions from The Economist in 2019: Facial recognition to AI regulation. “…Major League Baseball will start allowing fans to validate their tickets and enter stadiums via a scan of their face, rather than a paper stub. Singapore’s newest megamall will use the technology to track shoppers and recommend deals to them. Tokyo will spend the year installing facial-recognition systems in preparation for the Olympics in 2020, when it will use the technology to make sure that only authorised persons enter secure areas.” More here.

– If those forecasts aren’t enough for you, how about: 120 AI Predictions For 2019. I did not verify the count or even read them all, but 120 feels about right. Here they are.

 

Blockchain

  • This, from Scott H. Kimpel of Hunton. Blockchain Legal Source: Mining Cryptocurrency Under Federal Election Law. “The acting general counsel of the Federal Election Commission (“FEC”) recently published for public comment a draft advisory opinion under the Federal Election Campaign Act and related FEC regulations regarding mining cryptocurrencies for the benefit of political committees.”

 

  • Seven EU States Sign Declaration to Promote Blockchain Use. “…(T)he document cites “education, transport, mobility, shipping, Land Registry, customs, company registry, and healthcare” as services which can be “transformed” by this technology. The group also cites blockchain tech’s use for protecting citizens’ privacy and making bureaucratic procedures more efficient.” More here.

 

 

  • James Marshall, Deals Partner at PwC postedHow blockchain could upend M&A and other deals. “As a tamper-proof shared ledger that can automatically record and verify transactions, blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) could vastly change how investors value, negotiate and execute deals.”

 

  • From Legal Theory Bookworm, this review of the recent book, Blockchain and the Law: The Rule of Code by Primavera De Filippi & Aaron Wright. “De Filippi and Wright welcome the new possibilities inherent in blockchains. But as Blockchain and the Law makes clear, the technology cannot be harnessed productively without new rules and new approaches to legal thinking.”

The biggest story in AI this week is the launch in China of an AI (“Digital Human”) news reader/anchor person. It’s certainly not Uncle Walter, but at first glance it’s pretty convincing. “The Chinese AI anchor man looks very much like the average Chinese citizen, a typical Chinese guy with that oddly intellectual look. He looks reassuring, made for his market like most news readers’ images are supposed to be.” Coverage here, here, here and video here. “There’s fake news, and then there’s fake people doing the news.”

In related news, Microsoft has developed AI that goes beyond the now well-established systems that write news articles. “Condensing paragraphs into sentences isn’t easy for artificial intelligence (AI). That’s because it requires a semantic understanding of the text that’s beyond the capabilities of most off-the-shelf natural language processing models. But it’s not impossible, as researchers at Microsoft recently demonstrated.”

 

  • Read this post from Artificial Lawyer. It provides some excellent insights from the heads of legal departments in some major corporations as to where the industry is headed and why. Legal Is Not ‘Special’ – Key Message of TR Legal Tech Procurement Event.

 

  • Artificial Lawyer (AL) has begun to do product reviews. The first company to be reviewed is Kira Systems, and here is the link. It’s not actually a link to a review, but rather a call for users to review the product according to specified criteria which will then be reported. Cool.

 

More posts from Artificial Lawyer:

– BCLP Launches ML Early Dispute Evaluation Service. “Clear/Cut harnesses the firm’s award-winning in-house forensic technology capability.” More here.

– Big Data Startup Concirrus Wins Norton Rose InsurTech Prize. Details here.

– Using AI Contract Analysis to Prepare for Brexit – Seal Software. More of this sponsored post here.

 

  • Blank Rome publishedWill “Leaky” Machine Learning Usher in a New Wave of Lawsuits? in RAIL: The Journal of Robotics, Artificial Intelligence & Law. “…(I)t seems all but inevitable that some of those (AI) systems will create unintended and unforeseen consequences, including harm to individuals and society at large.”

 

  • Law.com posted this news from Byran Cave: New Data Analysis Service Could Help In-House Clients See the Future. “…Clear/Cut leverages predictive coding and machine learning to comb through massive amounts of data and pluck out key information for legal analysts, who use the data to recommend whether clients should settle or forge ahead with litigation.” More here.

 

 

  • From Laura H. Phillips of DrinkerThe FCC Wades into the Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning Pool. ” Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai issued a Public Notice announcing a first ever FCC Forum focusing on artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. This Forum will convene at FCC headquarters on November 30.”

 

  • This, from Jonathan BockmanRudy Y. Kim, and Anna Yuan of MoFo: Patenting Artificial Intelligence in the U.S. – Considerations for AI Companies. “…(C)ertain AI technologies can face increased scrutiny at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) with respect to whether the invention is directed to patent-eligible subject matter.”

 

  • James M. Beck of ReedSmith publishedThe Diagnostic Artificial Intelligence Speedbump Nobody’s Mentioning. This is a very interesting and thorough treatment of the FDA’s regulations and the need for more.

 

  • Canada’s Torys published: Software As Medical Devices And Digital Health In Canada: What’s Next? Link here.

 

  • From Pillsbury’s Ashley E. CowgillArtificial Intelligence: A Grayish Area for Insurance Coverage. Download here from The Journal of Robotics, Artificial Intelligence & Law Vol. 2, No. 1.

 

  • Here’s an interesting post by Ian Connett of QuantumJuristA Future of J.D. Advantage Jobs? (“J.D. Advantage” jobs are those for which a law degree is strongly preferred, but not necessarily required.) As you might expect, the answer is “yes”, and the specific examples he presents are interesting.

 

  • “Amazon Web Services (AWS), Amazon’s on-demand cloud computing subsidiary, was partially HIPAA eligible — AWS customers could use Polly, SageMaker, Rekognition, and dozens of the platform’s other offerings to process health information. But Translate, Comprehend, and Transcribe remained notable holdouts — until now, that is. As of this week, all three comply with HIPAA.” Story from Venture Beat here.

 

  • Dentons has published this Market Insights volume titled: Digital Transformation and the Digital Consumer. There’s a chapter on AI and much of the content is AI-related. There’s a video excerpt here.

 

  • LeClairRyan has published Airplanes and Artificial Intelligence Parts I and II. “…(A)pplications for AI in aviation and its effect on the legal liability and regulation of those who use it.”

 

  • From Hogan Lovells, here’s a link to download Artificial Intelligence and your business: A guide for navigating the legal, policy, commercial, and strategic challenges ahead.

 

  • Milena Higgins of Black Hills is the guest on this episode of Legal Talk Network’s “Legal Toolkit”: Robot Takeover: How Automation Makes Law Practice Easier.

 

  • Here’s Part 4 of Mintz’ Strategies To Unlock AI’s Potential In Health Care, Part 4: How And When Will Congress Act?

 

  • At two events in the past 30 days I’ve been part of discussions about law firms acquiring tech companies. Here’s an example: Singapore law firm Rajah & Tann acquires e-discovery startup LegalComet.

 

  • “Nalytics, is working with Strathclyde University’s Law School post-graduate students on a new project dedicated to promoting digital transformation in legal education. By providing free access to the Nalytics search and discovery platform to students on the Diploma in Professional Legal Studies, the project aims to help students develop a greater understanding of legal technology and more importantly, its applications in tackling a range of big data problems.” Story here.

 

  • This article from S&P Global Platts (Commodity market AI applications are emerging along with new risks) cites partners at several prominent law firms among others. “Artificial intelligence and smart contract technology like blockchain are slowly being adopted by commodity markets, creating opportunities to streamline trading and other functions, but not without introducing challenges and risks experts said Thursday.”

 

  • Exterro has issued the results of another survey. (2018 In-house Legal Benchmarking Report. There’s a link here.) All that is presented regarding the methodology is “…with over 100 respondents (more than ever before), this year’s report surveys a wider distribution of companies, including more from organizations of fewer than 25,000 people than in the past.” So, I’m assuming there are 101 respondents, making the typical margin of error error about +/-10%. Given the wide range of company sizes (1 to 250,000+ employees) and the fact most fall into one size category (1,000-25,000 employees), I don’t see how there can be much useful information anywhere in the report. Law.com talks about it (without regard to the methodology) here.

 

  • Here’s another industry survey. (The Blickstein Group’s 10th Annual Law Department Operations Survey.) This one has 128 respondents this year, but reports data back to 2008 when they had only 34 respondents. This year’s stats are probably accurate +/-9% which means that many of the differences reported are actually in a statistical tie, and the prior year data with very small samples should be ignored. Above the Law includes a summary by Brad Blickstein here without comment on its methodology. When combined with the included content by vendors and law firms, I see this study as the equivalent of an interesting focus group — just don’t take the statistics seriously.

 

  • I find it interesting that this post from Kyocera BRANDVOICE in Forbes (Can The Right Office Equipment Improve Our Legal Culture?) has a section on AI. They include AI as “equipment-related”.

 

  • Here, from the New York Times DealBook is a thorough examination of the bias present in today’s artificial intelligence:  AI: The Commonality of A.I. and Diversity. (It’s written by Alina Tugend)

 

Blockchain

  • This, from ContractWorks: Are Your Contracts in Chaos? Get Organized with These 4 Tips.

 

 

Also from Artificial Lawyer:

Smart Contract Pioneer OpenLaw Goes Open Source. Story here.

  • Wow. This tool sounds like a serious way for in-house counsel to leverage AI to better choose outside counsel. There’s No Such Thing As A Competitive Legal Market — But There Are Ways To Make It Better. “Bodhala’s legal analytics offer in-house counsel a wealth of information about the entire Am Law 200, high-quality boutiques, as well as a number of local firms that clients can easily customize to find exactly what they want. The platform also leverages machine learning technology to make predictive calls about opportunities to lower costs with other firms. Beyond talent procurement, the product offers spend optimization features that grant clients an opportunity to really market test quotes for legal services.” Press release here.

 

  • From Gerry Riskin: Next Step in Law-Firm AI Implementation? Getting the Lawyers on Board. “Even at DLA Piper, one of the major users of legal technology (such as the contract and document analysis programs available through Kira Systems), Director of Innovation Adam Hembury estimates that his firm is using only one percent of the overall potential AI support currently available to its lawyers.”

 

  • From WombleInnovation in construction and law: unlocking new value. “To address this, law firms are exploring the use of: Artificial Intelligence (AI) powered tools that provide machine learning capabilities. These are being widely adopted by the legal profession and over the next few decades software systems such as that provided by Kira Systems will apply machine-learning techniques to many of the routine tasks presently undertaken by lawyers, in a way which improves accuracy and limits risk. …”

 

  • State Bar of Michigan On Balance podcast: NEXT Conference 2018: Artificial Intelligence, Ethics, and Automation. “Nicole Black talks about artificial intelligence and other legal technology.” “She shares tips for automating your practice, with and without AI, and ethics advice to keep in mind when using the cloud and social media.” Here’s a link to the 13-minute podcast.

 

  • Must you disclose what your bot is up to? California weighs in on AI. “The California Legislature recently tackled this issue and the dilemma between the legitimate and productive use of ‘bots’ and the misleading and often socially disruptive use of this technology. In Senate Bill 1001, which was signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Sept. 28, the Legislature took the approach of requiring disclosure when a company or a political advocacy group is using a ‘bot’ to communicate with people. The operative language of the law is it is illegal for ‘any person to use a bot to communicate or interact with another person in California online …. to incentivize a purchase or sale of goods or services in a commercial transaction or to influence a vote in an election.'” The post is by Glen W. Price of Best Best & Krieger.

 

  • This, from EntreprenuerWhy Big-Name Investors Like Mark Cuban Are Disrupting the Legal Profession. “It does not seem an obvious or exciting industry for big-name investors. But, some of the most famous entrepreneurs — now including billionaire Mark Cuban — are putting their money into disrupting the legal profession.”

 

  • Five9 Aims To Unlock Insight From Contact Center With Artificial Intelligence. “Five9 has offered new AI features, such as the Five9 Genius, that delivers contextual and intelligent routing using unstructured data from emails, chats and other data channels to derive customer intent. It includes real-time natural language processing, business rules, and open AI connectors to create more intelligent routing and agent guidance.” Much more here.

 

  • The objectives of this video from Law Technology Today are:
    • Learn practical tips on how to bring innovation to legal services
    • Discover the key elements of innovation initiatives
    • Hear best practices in the evaluation, deployment, and adoption of technology
    • Understand the building blocks necessary to be successful

It features Jim Lupo of Northwestern Law, Tariq Abdullah of Walmart, and Wendy Curits and Daryl Shetterly from Orrick.

 

  • Press releaseCorporate Counsels and Contract Management: A Guide to Making the Case for Technology. “Exigent’s new guide, Corporate Counsels and Contract Management: A Guide to Making the Case for Technology, dives deeper into the ins and outs of legal technology. It provides some key questions to ask to identify the right solution for your business, including: What are your security needs? What functionality is and isn’t necessary? How much training will members of your organization need to use the new technology?”

 

  • This, from contractworks: An Introductory Guide to Contract Risk Assessment. “How to analyze, measure, and score your contract terms to identify risks, maintain compliance, and improve operational oversight.”

 

  • Artificial Intelligence – A Counterintelligence Perspective: Part IV by Jim Baker: “Instead, in keeping with the counterintelligence focus of this series, I want to discuss two important baskets of implications and risks related to XAI (explainable AI) and ethical AI:  (1) effective management of certain operational, privacy and reputational risks; and (2) adversaries’ use of black-box AI.” Post here.

 

  • Teaching Technology Today: One Law School’s Innovative Offerings. “Lawyers of the future, regardless of practice area, need to be proficient in legal technology.” Here’s what Hofstra Law’s doing about it. Check out the courses!

 

  • What’s Artificial About Ethical AI In The Legal Industry? Everything. “Lawyers are trained and have studied ethics. They must be utilized to succeed in creating ethical AI programs.” Here’s the post by Andy Neill of HighQ.

 

  • Lisa Morgan interviewed Joe Lynyak of Dorsey & Whitney and other experts for this postPrivacy Compliance May Get Tougher Soon. “Organizations have had a tough time trying to comply with the European Union’s GDPR and now they have to consider the potential effect of the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).”

 

  • Calif. Looking to Tech to Increase Access to Justice. “How technology can increase access to justice while protecting the public is the focus of a newly appointed California Bar task force. The question is how the legal services industry can integrate new tech to become more efficient and responsive while avoiding ethical roadblocks against fee-sharing with non-lawyers and other arrangements.”

 

  • This, from Freshfields: People Analytics: The Opportunities and Legal Risks of a Brave New World. “Advances in technology and artificial intelligence are allowing companies to solve strategic issues in ever quicker, more innovative ways. These advances are just as applicable to people management. People Analytics is the application of digital tools and algorithms to data about or relating to people, including through profiling. The data that is collected, processed and interpreted by People Analytics tools can allow employers to make better HR decisions and run their businesses more efficiently through cost reductions and enhanced operational capabilities. In our briefing we discuss the benefits, the challenges and the legal risks associated with the use of People Analytics.”

 

  • Frances Wilding and James Ward of Haseltine Lake postedUK: Updated Guidelines For Examination At The EPO In Force 1 November 2018. “In the 2018 Guidelines, a group of sections relating to CII have been significantly revised and newly added: … New section added about the field of artificial intelligence and machine learning, aimed at better defining the criteria for their patentability (G II, 3.3.1).”

 

  • This, from Craig W. Adas and Alex Purtill of Weil Gotshal: Valuation Issues in Acquiring Artificial Intelligence Companies.

 

  • “Further, regarding emerging technology, 68% of solos and 72% of lawyers in firms with 2-9 attorneys report it is “very” or “somewhat” important to receive training and education on emerging technology like blockchain and artificial intelligence.” More from the annual ABA Legal Technology Survey Report here. (It’s huge.)

 

  • From Gwynne MonahanFalling for Legal Technology Recent updates and releases. “…(L)egal technology product updates and release announcements over the past month.” Just in case I missed something.

 

  • Press release: “Consilio, a global leader in eDiscoverydocument reviewrisk management, and legal consulting services, has announced it has acquired DiscoverReady, a premier eDiscovery, document review, and compliance solutions provider. The combined company will operate more than 70 offices, review centers, and data centers around the world in 11 countries. The company’s global operations will continue to serve investigation, litigation, and compliance matters of all sizes and complexities, anywhere in the world.:

 

  • Lawyers safe from brave new AI world… for now. “James Kwan, partner at Hogan Lovells, said there are ‘few laws’ that explicitly ban robots from being decision makers. He alluded to the Code of Civil Procedure in France, which makes references to arbitral decisions being made by a ‘person’, as one that does appear to reject the prospect. ‘Other laws may have implicitly excluded the possibility,’ he added. However, Kwan referenced proposals going through the European Parliament that would afford ‘legal status’ to robots and ensure that highly capable AI have recognised rights and responsibilities. ‘It’s amazing that we have even got to the point where we can have a discussion on this,’ Kwan said, adding: ‘I think lawyers are safe for the time being’.” Story here.

 

  • This, from Bernard MarrHow The UK Government Uses Artificial Intelligence To Identify Welfare And State Benefits Fraud. “Investment in data strategy, technologies that support machine learning and artificial intelligence, and hiring skilled data professionals is a top priority for the UK government. Ministers of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) have rolled out and tested AI to automate claims processing and fight fraud within their department.”

 

  • Criminal justice system ‘really creaking’, warns outgoing CPS chief. “She would also see how technology can be improved to support everyone’s roles: ‘Digital forensics offer us valuable evidence in cases, but at the moment they simply take too long. And everything from faster Wi-Fi connections in court to the use of Artificial Intelligence could make everyone’s roles easier and the system faster and more effective for victims, witnesses and defendants.'” Story here.

 

  • “Charles Ciumei QC of Essex Court Chambers in London said the use of prediction tools “to assist human judicial decision making” was more achievable than “robot judges”.” Post here.

 

  • This, from Shanti Berggren of Optus Legal: Law, the digital age and change to come. “It is technology that facilitates our Optus Legal Team operating nationally allowing some of our lawyers to live and work away from our Sydney headquarters. In short, technology is changing legal culture and what it means to be a lawyer. But how should that change be managed?” The story has some answers.

 

  • Press release: Dentons Rodyk will use XION.AI’s deep learning bots as part of its wider technology initiative designed to enhance productivity and further innovate its legal service offerings in the region. It is part of the firm’s strategy to leverage on technology to optimise legal services for its clients.”

 

  • From Artificial Lawyer:
    • AL Caffeine, Feat: Relativity, QDiscovery, Taylor Wessing, TLT, Luminance + AI Art. Post.
    • TL, DR: The 14 Key Lessons From Juro’s Legal Operations eBook. Post.

 

  • Not AI, but pretty cool tech: (New Zealand’s) TMJAM launches real time IPONZ trade-mark filings. “New law tech company TMJAM disrupts traditional intellectual property lawyering with an advanced platform allowing the public to file their own trade mark applications online.” Story here.

 

  • EPIC calls for US adoption of AI guidelines. “In its letter to the NSF, EPIC argues the principles match up well with AI strategies already laid out by the U.S. “By investing in AI systems that strive to meet the [universal] principles, NSF can promote the development of systems that are accurate, transparent, and accountable from the outset,” EPIC President and Executive Director Marc Rotenberg writes.” Full story here.

 

Blockchain

  • Here’s a collection of TED talks about blockchain.
  • I can’t wait to see a demo of this. Neota Partners With Legal Consultants for AI-Based Billing Tool. “Neota Logic and legal pricing consultants Burcher Jennings and Validatum teamed up to launch Virtual Pricing Director, a collaboration years in the making.”

 

  • Here’s more news from Neota Logic: Legal tech education: Neota partners with three new universities. “Neota Logic will today (19 October) announce three new education partnerships, with The University of Limerick, Ulster University and London South Bank University, which has launched a new law and technology option for students. Over the course of a semester, students at these schools will learn how to design, build and test digital legal solutions that solve a specific access to justice problem.”

 

  • Slaughter and May expands scope of its technology entrepreneurs programme. “The first two cohorts of the programme, originally named Fintech Fast Forward, focussed on UK-based start-up and high growth companies operating in the fintech sector, including paymentstech, insurtech, regtech, data analytics and AI. Under its new name, Fast Forward, the programme will be expanded to cover young companies operating in a diverse range of emerging technology sectors including IOT, cryptography, cyber, robotics, machine learning and DLT, as well as fintech.” More here.

 

  • Corrs postedAlong for the Ride: Considering the Legal and Practical Consequences of Self-Driving Vehicles. “If you’re over seven years of age – and have completed an online registration process – you can be part of Australia’s first Automated Vehicle Trial, by taking a ride on the Royal Automobile Club of Western Australia (RAC) Intellibus, a fully automated, electric shuttle bus launched on public roads with the support of the WA State Government and the City of South Perth.”

 

  • Gavelytics Partners with CourtCall, Expanding Judicial Analytics to New States, Markets. “Remote court appearance provider CourtCall will offer a ‘simplified version’ of Gavelytics judicial analysis as it expands to Florida, Texas and California.” Details here.

 

  • From LittlerWhat Construction Attorneys Need To Know About AI. (Subscription required.)

 

  • This post isn’t as “legal” as the title might suggest, but it’s an interesting consideration. Artificial intelligence — Who is responsible for the outcomes?

 

  • Thomson Hine postedDepartment of the Treasury Releases Interim Rules Expanding Scope of CFIUS and Creating Pilot Program for Certain Transactions. “While the text of ECRA does not define the term “emerging and foundational technologies,” the following industry sectors could be included: artificial intelligence….”

 

  • Neil Rose postedNew tech demands code of “cyber ethics” for lawyers.

 

  • More from the Mintz seriesStrategies to Unlock AI’s Potential in Health Care, Part 2: FDA’s Approach to Protecting Patients & Promoting Innovation. “Artificial intelligence—AI—is the future of everything. But when patient health is on the line, can we trust algorithms to make decisions instead of patients or their health care providers? This post, the second in our blog series about AI in health care, explores FDA’s proposed regulatory model that is supposed to be better suited for AI (and similar technologies) while still protecting patients.”

 

  • This from HR Daily Advisor: “Like it or not, it’s time to prepare your employees for the fourth industrial revolution, where automated technologies and artificial intelligence are becoming mainstream. Below is more information about what you can do to accomplish this as an L&D professional.”

 

  • From WombleA.I. in the TCPA Crosshairs: TCPA Class Action Challenges Hotel’s Use of IVY Concierge Artificial Intelligence SMS Platform.

 

  • This from the International Association of Privacy Professionals: Perspective: Should robots have rights? “(California) Bill 1001 implicates a hitherto-abstract, philosophical debate about when a simulation of intelligence crosses the line into sentience and becomes a true artificial intelligence.”

 

  • This 5-minute podcast is from Shook Hardy: Can Robots Be Sued? Q&A With Cory Fisher.

 

  • Fully digital conclusion of contracts via Alexa becomes possible for clients of insurtech firm Deutsche Familienversicherung. “Customers can now not only receive advice from Alexa, but can also simultaneously conclude an insurance contract within only a few seconds.” Story here.

 

  • At least in the UK: “There may need to be some coverage disputes before professional indemnity (PI) insurers work out how to deal with bad advice given by artificial intelligence (AI) systems used by lawyers, a leading City firm has warned. It said the widespread use of technology that utilised AI ‘contributes to additional complexity and uncertainty for insureds and insurers when assessing risk and apportioning liability’. More here.

 

  • From Legal Futures: Law firms look to leverage data in battle with new providers. “Law firms big and small are increasingly viewing artificial intelligence (AI) software and particularly the exploitation of data as integral to business health, a survey has found. The annual law firm benchmarking survey by accountancy and consultancy firm Crowe, also found a growing fear of non-lawyer legal services providers, especially among City firms.” I could not find the survey methodology, so let the reader beware.

 

  • “Above the Law and Thomson Reuters present Big Data and the Litigation Analytics Revolution, the fourth and final installment of our Law2020 series, a multimedia exploration of how artificial intelligence and other cutting-edge technologies are reshaping the practice and profession of law.”

 

  • From Artificial Lawyer:
    • “Global legal tech company, Thomson Reuters (TR), has partnered with contracting automation platform Synergist.io, in a move that will see the Germany-based startup integrate with the well-known Contract Express document automation system.” Story here.
    • We Are All Lawyers Now – The Rise of the Legalish. Interesting perspective here.
    • Language and Machine Learning – A Lawyer’s Guide. Post by Johannes Stiehler, CTO, of text analytics company Ayfie
    • More A2J news! California Starts Special Task Force on A2J Tech, Legal AI Founder Joins.

 

Blockchain

  • China’s Internet Censor Releases Draft Regulation for Blockchain Startups. ” The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) published a draft policy on Friday, called “The Regulation for Managing Blockchain Information Services” and is now looking for public feedback before it will take effect.” Story here.

 

 

  • What Carl Sagan has to do with regulating blockchain smart contracts. “If policymakers seem flummoxed by the rise of cryptocurrencies, wait until they get to smart contracts. Just ask Brian Quintenz, commissioner for the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission. At a conference in Dubai this week, Quintenz expressed a sense of awe at the vast unknown that blockchain-based computer programs have created for his agency. “Post here.

 

  • Blockchain developments in Nashville:
    • “Stakeholders in the creation, growth and connectedness of blockchain- or distributed ledger-enabled jobs and wealth creation in Tennessee gathered twice within the past 24 hours with representatives of Tennessee Economic and Community Development (ECD) to explore the technology’s status, the state’s competitive assets and its potential strategic options.” “A nonprofit organization is to be formed to support the collaborative’s aims, according to Waller Lansden attorney Kristen Johns, who is the prime mover in this emerging initiative. Waller cosponsored the event with Brooklyn-based Consensys, a distributed-ledger-oriented tech company.” More here.
    • And check out Tokenize Tennessee here.

 

  • This story has received VERY wide coverage, with headlines including:

Stephen Schwarzman Makes Anchor Gift For New $1 Billion School Of Artificial Intelligence At MIT;

MIT announces $1b outlay for study of artificial intelligence, computing; 

M.I.T. Plans College for Artificial Intelligence, Backed by $1 Billion;

MIT commits $1 billion to make AI part of every graduate’s education;

M.I.T. wants to build an AI-focused college using a ‘planned investment’ of $1 billion.

From Simpson Thatcher: “The Firm represented Blackstone Chairman and CEO Stephen A. Schwarzman’s foundation in connection with the foundation’s $350 million gift to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The gift is a portion of a $1 billion investment to establish a college for computing and artificial intelligence. The college, called the M.I.T. Stephen A. Schwarzman College of Computing, will address the global opportunities and challenges presented by the prevalence of computing and the rise of artificial intelligence.”

Coverage herehereherehere and here.

 

  • William Hays Weissman of Littler postedWhy Robot Taxes Won’t Work. Several arguments to support the thesis are presented, including: “… from a tax administration perspective, robots pay no income tax because they do not earn income, pay no sales tax because they do not purchase items, and pay no property tax because they do not own anything”

 

  • Knobbe Martens publishedFDA Expresses Priorities for Clinical Trial Efficiency, Artificial Intelligence. “According to (FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D.), clinical trials “are becoming more costly and complex to administer” while “new technologies and sources of data and analysis make better approaches possible.” In order to take advantage of these better approaches, Gottlieb pointed to the FDA’s Breakthrough Devices Draft Guidance, which proposes streamlined procedures to develop flexible clinical trial designs for important medical devices. This will allow the FDA to “evaluate . . . innovative devices more efficiently.” Six breakthrough devices have already been cleared using this program.”

 

  • From GoodwinTreasury Department Imposes Mandatory Filing Requirement on Parties to Certain Foreign Investments in U.S. Critical Technology Companies. “‘Emerging and foundational technologies’ soon to be controlled pursuant to a separate, interagency process underway and expected to target technologies not currently subject to ITAR or EAR controls, possibly including technologies relating to artificial intelligence, robotics, cybersecurity, advanced materials, telecommunications, and biomedicine, among others.”

 

  • From Osborne ClarkeShaping future competition law enforcement in digital markets | Furman review calls for evidence. “The first set of questions in the call for evidence asks about the substantive analysis of competition in digital markets and considers: … artificial intelligence tools and their impact on competition, including whether algorithmic pricing raises new competition concerns.”

 

  • Can artificial intelligence change construction? “As IBM’s Watson adds its computational power to construction sites, tech sees an industry in need of an upgrade.” “On especially complicated projects, Fluor (a global engineering and construction company) will begin using two new tools, the EPC Project Health Diagnostics and the Market Dynamics/Spend Analytics, to make sense of the thousands of data points found on a crowded construction site. Constant analysis will help forecast issues before they show up, and automate how materials and workers are distributed.” “Fortune found many tech firms investing billions in construction tech firms, including Oracle, which purchased Aconex for $1.2 billion in February, and Trimble, which bought Viewpoint for $1.2 billion in April.” Much more here.

 

  • Mintz publishedStrategies to Unlock AI’s Potential in Health Care, a Mintz Series. “The Journal of the American Medical Association in its September 18, 2018 issue included four articles on deep learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI). In one of several viewpoint pieces, On the Prospects for a (Deep) Learning Health Care System, the author’s conclusions aptly describe why health care providers, entrepreneurs, investors and even regulators are so enthusiastic about the use of AI in health care: Pressures to deploy deep learning and a range of tools derived from modern data science will be relentless, given the extraordinarily rich information now available to characterize and follow vast numbers of patients, the ongoing challenges of making sense of the complexity of human biology and health care systems, and the potential for smart information technology to support tomorrow’s clinicians in the provision of safe, effective, efficient, and humanistic care.”

 

  •  of Hunton postedLawyering Cashierless Technologies. “There is no doubt that there’s a revolution coming to the way consumers buy goods at brick and mortar stores as retailers seek to better meet customers’ need for speed and create novel shopping experiences. However, with this revolution comes new risks. There are a wide range of potential issues that retailers should consider before launching cashierless technology….”

 

  • Press releaseFirst-Ever Virtual Law Firm Puts Clients First. “By using Artificial Intelligence and robots, they’re (“2nd.law”) able to provide legal services for their clients at a steeply discounted price — up to 75% lower than the rates and fees that traditional firms offer — all while putting client relationships first.”

 

  • Lloyd Langenhoven of Herbert Smith Freehills posted this thoughtful piece: The symbiotic relationship between lawyer and legal tech. “Continued and efficient success for the legal profession, on both a macro and micro scale, lies in the ability of the profession to foster a symbiotic relationship between legal technology, client’s expectations and traditional legal knowledge. The future looks bright and exciting for the legal profession and it is about time our professional dusted the cobwebs off and donned a new, futuristic suit.”

 

  • This article from The Law Society Gazette frequently cites Brown Rudnick’s Nicholas Tse: IBA Rome: Artificial intelligence must mean strict liability – and higher insurance premiums. “‘The law needs to try not to multiply problems of dealing with AI and should not invest AI with legal personality,’ he told a session moderated by Law Society president Christina Blacklaws. ‘The work of the law is to try and be pragmatic, ensuring accountability while not stifling progress.’”

 

  • This from an associate at a major City law firm: “For at least a year I have been reading in the legal press how wonderful corporate law firms are with technology and how their pioneering work with artificial intelligence is unleashing a ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’/’profound paradigm shift’/’New Law 2.0 era’/insert buzz-term of choice that will fundamentally change the profession. But when I look around all I can see is some new laptops and phones given to us by our supposedly tech-savvy firms. This despite my own employer aggressively marketing itself as some kind of futuristic Silicon Valley-style start-up.”

 

  • From Lawyerist.comHow an Online Game Can Help AI Address Access to Justice (A2J). “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that the majority of those in possession of legal problems, remain in want of solutions.1 Also, ROBOTS!  Ergo, we should throw AI at A2J. There is considerably less consensus, however, on how (or why exactly) this should be done. But don’t worry! There’s an app/game for that, and it let’s you train artificial intelligence to help address access-to-justice issues.”

 

  • Holly Urban, CEO at EffortlessLegal posted: Artificial Intelligence: A Litigator’s New Best Friend? “This article is intended to help litigation attorneys looking to utilize AI to maximize their outcomes with minimal additional effort or expense.” In conclusion, like several before her, she reminds us: “As the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct states, ‘To maintain the requisite knowledge and skill, a lawyer should keep abreast of changes in the law and its practice, including the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology, engage in continuing study and education and comply with all continuing legal education requirements to which the lawyer is subject.'”

 

  • This story has been widely reported: Stephen Hawking feared race of ‘superhumans’ able to manipulate their own DNA. “Before he died in March, the Cambridge University professor predicted that people this century would gain the capacity to edit human traits such as intelligence and aggression. And he worried that the capacity for genetic engineering would be concentrated in the hands of the wealthy. Hawking mulled this future in a set of essays and articles being published posthumously Tuesday as ‘Brief Answers to the Big Questions….‘” “Once such superhumans appear, there are going to be significant political problems with the unimproved humans, who won’t be able to compete.” More coverage here and here.

 

From Artificial Lawyer:

 

  • Suffolk Law School Uses Reddit to Create Legal Question A2J Taxonomy. “A collaboration of Suffolk Law School’s Legal Innovation and Technology Lab in the US and Stanford Law School’s Legal Design Lab with funding from The Pew Charitable Trusts is taking legal questions from consumers posted on social media site Reddit, and using them to create a taxonomy of legal issues to help train A2J tech applications. Sounds unusual? At first it does, but when you look deeper it all makes sense. David Colarusso,  Director of Suffolk University Law School’s Legal Innovation and Technology Lab, explained to Artificial Lawyer what this is all about.” Here‘s the post.

 

  • I particularly enjoyed this opinion piece by the founder of Artificial Lawyer, Richard Tromans: The Politics of Legal Tech – Progressives vs Conservatives. “There are clearly then a wide range of views and goals when it comes to legal tech. We are not all on the same page. There are divisions. There are competing narratives. There is a battle of ideas to see which ones win out and different people, firms and organisations are arguing for different points of view. The legal tech world is, in a word, political.”

 

Blockchain

  • The state of blockchain: 11 stats. “How many CIOs are actively adopting or experimenting with blockchain? Dig into telling data from multiple sources.” Here’s the story from The Enterprisers Project.

  • This from Artificial Lawyer: Integra Ledger Launches Tools to Add Blockchain Tech to All Legal Software.
  • From Akin GumpPolicymakers Focusing in on Artificial Intelligence. “Following a series of recent events involving policymakers from Trump’s Administration and Capitol Hill, artificial intelligence (AI) was the second hottest topic in D.C.”

 

  • From Haynes and Boone:’s Stephanie Sivinski in Law 360: 4 Ways Advances in AI Could Challenge Patent Law.  “Looking further into the future of AI, it is becoming plausible that a machine could devise an invention without any direct input from humans. That would probably not be a physical object, but perhaps a suggestion for a new chemical compound or an optimized method of medical treatment. Recognizing the AI as the inventor of the technology could put patent law into uncharted territory….”

 

  • Insurance (UK): Consumers Increasingly Happy to Let AI & Robots Sort Out Claims. A survey of 2000 consumers in the UK is discussed here.

 

  • Here’s an interesting 14-minute podcast from Above the Law: Managing A Law Firm Right Requires A Good Map. “Data analytics are essential for the successful law firm.”

 

  • From Pinset Masons‘ Out-Law.com: CMA (the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority): collusion could be addressed with personalised pricing. “The risk of businesses colluding with one another over the price of goods and services would diminish if there was extensive use of personalised pricing algorithms in digital markets….”

 

  • Roman V. Yampolskiy of the University of Louisville: AI Systems Could be Able to Own Property, Sue, Hire Lawyers and Enjoy Freedom of Speech. “Humans aren’t the only people in society at least according to the law. In the U.S., corporations have been given rights of free speech and religion. Some natural features also have person-like rights. But both of those required changes to the legal system. A new argument has laid a path for artificial intelligence systems to be recognized as people too without any legislation, court rulings or other revisions to existing law.” “Those human figureheads could be used to expand corporate rights or even establish new rights specific to artificial intelligence systems expanding the threats to humanity even more.” Much more here.

 

  • Gibson Dunn’s H. Mark LyonClaudia M. BarrettFrances Annika Smithson and Ryan K. Iwahashi posted this lengthy, scholarly piece: Artificial Intelligence and Autonomous Systems Legal Update (3Q18). “We are pleased to provide the following update on recent legal developments in the areas of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and autonomous systems (or “AI” for short), and their implications for companies developing or using products based on these technologies.”

 

  • From The Indian ExpressPM Narendra Modi: ‘Artificial intelligence, blockchain to change nature of jobs’. “…(A)rtificial intelligence, machine learning, blockchain, and big data, can take India to new heights of development and improve people’s quality of life. Our diversity, our demographic potential, fast-growing market size and digital infrastructure has potential to make India a global hub for research and implementation,….”

 

  • Counterintelligence Implications of Artificial Intelligence—Part III by Jim Baker … former General Counsel of the FBI. “This is the third post in my series about the counterintelligence implications of artificial intelligence (AI). The first two are here and here.” “AI and Big Data are a potent combination with many implications. This post focuses on how adversaries might apply AI to the vast amount of data that they collect about American to understand us, predict what we will do and manipulate our behavior in ways that advantage them.” Scary stuff here.

 

From Artificial Lawyer:

  • Two Thirds of Large Corporates Implementing RPA (Robotic Process Automation)– Deloitte Report. “While many law firms perhaps are not looking at RPA yet – although they may be using LPOs that do use this approach – there are some interesting parallels with doc review automation in law firms.” Story here.

 

  • More about DoNotPay’s recent release/expansion, including a list of the 14 applications. “Not a single one of the things above you could not do on your own. None of them give you new rights or powers that you did not already have (if you live in the right location). All they do is encourage you to go out and get what someone else, somewhere in the vast sprawl of civic, justice and consumer organisations out there, has already created for public use….” (And here’s an update to the post from ABA Journal.[Updated on Oct. 11 after the app’s launch to add details about the issues users were reporting and Browder’s response.])

 

  • Viewpoint: Nouriel Roubini Hammers Blockchain + Crypto’s Failings. “…(B)lockchain tech and the cryptocurrencies that have evolved with it are not without their challenges, as is the case with all tech, from AI systems to mobile phones to airliners to hairdryers.”

 

  • As a die hard Tar Heel, I have issues with anything to do Duke University (a.k.a., “dook”), so it pains me a bit to post thisSeal Software and the Duke Law AI Showdown – #TheRealThing. There was a competition, and “the legal professionals from Duke, UNC and Wake Forest were nothing short of awesome in how quickly they grasped the issues for analysis, and even more so how quickly they mastered the technology at their disposal to solve their problems.” Of course, the team from UNC won the competition even though it took place on Duke’s home court. In conclusion, “… our group of energetic students showed to a certainty the power that a genuine AI platform can deliver.”

 

Blockchain

  • Developing Blockchain Technology Has Potential to Aid Real Estate Transactions. “…(T)he technology has the potential to significantly increase the speed and reduce the costs of real estate transactions, as well as make investments safer and more liquid.” More here.

 

  • From ETH News: Senate Committee Hears Two Very Different Takes On Blockchain. “The banking committee today heard blockchain offers ‘otherwise unattainable benefits’. It also heard it is just a ‘glorified spreadsheet’ that will never produce anything of value.” Testimony of several witnesses is summarized here.

 

  • For your weekend reading, here’s another fairly understandable explanation of blockchain. Blockchain for Lawyers: What Is a ‘Distributed Ledger’, and Why Is It Useful to Lawyers? by EffortlessLegal’s Holly Urban.

 

  • This infographic (quite a few images followed by narrative) may also help you understand the basics of cryptocurrencies. It’s from Bitcoinfy.net.