Yesterday AALL announced the hot topic programming selected for the 2015 annual meeting in Philadelphia July 18-21st. I am moderating the IBM Watson program on Monday the 20th.Other topics include an exploration of how technology continues to impact the transformation of legal practice and an examination of the  issues surrounding “Net Neutrality” and how regulations will impact access to legal information.

Here’s AALL’s announcement:

Change is a constant in the field of legal information, and this year’s programming offers tools and strategies for harnessing the opportunities that change presents. Three new hot topic programs have been recently added to complement the daily lineup – be sure to check them out:

Hot Topic: Technological Innovation in the Practice of Law
Sunday, July 19 • 1:00 p.m.

Advances in computing, networking, and data analysis have revolutionized many aspects of American life, from politics to professional sports. These same advances have the potential to profoundly impact and greatly increase the efficiency of the practice of law. Yet lawyers, often a risk-adverse group, have at times been slow to adopt technological innovation. This session will describe the potential benefits of technological innovation, the process of innovation, and ways to mitigate the security concerns that arise with new technologies.

Hot Topic: Contestant, Doctor, Lawyer, Chef: IBM Watson Moving from Jeopardy to the Legal Landscape
Monday, July 20 • 11:30 a.m.

In 2011, the nation was riveted when IBM’s Watson computer system beat all-time Jeopardy winner, Ken Jennings. Since then, the IBM Watson team has been exploring how cognitive computing can be used in medicine, law, and other professions. Artificial intelligence has a place in the legal world, and information professionals need to understand how its development could benefit the practice of law, access to justice, and legal education. Kyla Moran, a senior consultant with IBM’s Industry Leadership team, will explain how linking smart people with smart machines can add new value to the legal industry. This session will explore Watson’s potential impact on law practice management, knowledge management, e-discovery, deep client understanding and process improvement.

Hot Topic: Net Neutrality and Law Librarians: It’s a Good Thing
Tuesday, July 21 • 11:00 a.m.

Network (net) neutrality is the fundamental principle that ensures that all internet traffic is treated equally. In February, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted new rules that reclassified fixed and mobile broadband as a telecommunication service, and thus established regulatory authority over these services. These rules protect and maintain open, uninhibited access to legal online content, and prohibit broadband internet access providers from blocking, impairing, or establishing fast/slow lanes to lawful content. This presentation gives an overview of the rules relating to net neutrality, and why maintaining these rules is critical to all law libraries, their missions, and their patrons.

Register for the 2015 AALL Conference at this link.