artificial intelligence

Ten Things: Artificial Intelligence – What Every Legal Department Really Needs to Know

[Note: this is a summary version of a four-part series I wrote for Thomson Reuters earlier this year with some key updates and new sections.  You can find the full series by clicking here]

Some of the best scenes in the television show Star Trek (the original version) involve the crew members asking the computer a question and the computer spitting out the answer in the form of a conversation.  I was utterly amazed by this and, of course, wanted my own computer that would “answer” my questions.  Alas, I was ahead of my time.  But, I was recently reading an article comparing the Google Home with the Amazon Echo, two devices that allow you to ask questions and get an answer.  From a computer.  Just like Star Trek!  This brought back two important memories from the TV show: 1) intelligent computers that can talk and answer questions; and 2) never be the crewman in the red shirt.  I always lived by the latter and now, it dawned on me, I could start to live by the former too.

Artificial Intelligence (“AI”) is just beginning to come into its own in terms of uses by lawyers.  We are on the cusp of a revolution in the practice of law led by the adoption of AI computers – in particular by in-house lawyers.  Much like email changed the way we do business every day, AI will become ubiquitous – an indispensable assistant to practically every lawyer.  This edition of “Ten Things” discusses what you really need to know right now about artificial intelligence:

(more…)

Advertisements

Ten Things: 10 Essential Legal Department Issues for 2017

There are an amazing number of issues, trends, and headaches to keep track of as in-house counsel.  So much, that it can be difficult to know what to focus on.  When I was General Counsel I made time each year to step back and try to take a look at the big picture, i.e., given everything going on in the world, what should I and my department be spending time on right now?  Certainly, I wanted to make sure things that were important to the goals of business where high on our list.  But I also wanted to “benchmark” my team and make sure we were aware of what other legal departments were doing.  I would gather information from many different sources and then come up with my own list of current essential “issues/best practices” that I thought we needed to focus on.  Generally, my list contained items dealing with risk reduction, technology needs, management practices, key analytics, and ways to enhance the value of the department to the business.

Though I have not been GC for a little while, I keep my eyes and ears open to what’s going on in the world and how might it affect in-house lawyers.  I thought I would highlight some of the important things I see out there right now — things that should be on every in-house lawyer’s “watch list.”  This edition of “Ten Things” discusses the essential items I would be focused on right now if I were running a legal department in 2017:

(more…)