I am looking forward to reconnecting with my colleagues in Chicago this Saturday at the American Association Law Libraries Meeting and Conference.

Facilitator, Writing Agendas and Scholarship Portfolios: From Ideation to Publication  AALL Annual Meeting & Conference Chicago,Il.  July 20, 2024 
Moderator, Unleashing Innovation: A Rollercoaster Ride to Implement, Plan, and Fund Your GenAI

Will Generative AI awaken the need for serious focus legal research education?

The introduction of Generative AI to the practice of law has been anything but smooth. First there was the unfortunate case of Mr. Schwartz who used Chat GPT-3 to write a brief complete with hallucinated cases which he submitted to a federal  court in New York. Judge castell of the Southern District of New York noted that the attorneys had “abandoned their responsibilities.” More recently there have been the controversies related to a Stanford Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence (HAI) team study criticizing the quality of the Lexis and WL generative AI products. The study was so roundly criticized that it was revised and reissued. The HAI study’s conclusions regarding the Westlaw Precision AI and Lexis+  AI products requires a nuanced understanding of the HAI benchmarking definitions.  The HAI studies flag a wide range of issues including some which appear to be subjective. Problems noted range from a “true hallucination” to a factual error e.g. name of a judge, to the length of responses. Everyone agrees that legal generative AI products require serious benchmarking studies, but Stanford fumbled the ball.

Selling any new legal technology to law firms is hard. Selling generative AI products to law firms appears to be moving at a glacial pace and this post will explore some of the obstacles to adoption of GAI in legal. There are probably more stakeholders in the mix than I have seen for any prior technology. Most noticeable is the presence of the General Counsel/Ethics Officer who in many firms is waving cautionary flags. Then there are clients who are sending conflicting signals limiting, requiring or banning use of GAI products on their matters.  Add to this stew of ambiguity, the proliferation of judges rules restricting or establishing requirements regarding not only the use of generative AI but AI products in general. (AI is probably in  90% of the products the average lawyer uses including their smartphone).

Why are law firms are holding off generative AI adoption for legal research?

Read the full post on Legal TechHubContinue Reading Generative AI Risk in Legal Research: Is the Fault in the Technology or in Ourselves? Answer is Both

It was only a year ago that the US based Fastcase was merged with a European legal information and technology company vLex. In what I have to assume is a move to compete with Casetext and Lexis + AI, Harvey would be positioning itself to take on the Generative AI strategies of Thomson Reuters and Lexis Nexis. Both companies have anchored their AI products in their proprietary “trusted” legal content which dramatically reduces the risk of “hallucinated” answers. For obvious reasons, hallucinations are intolerable specters haunting the growth of GAI in the practice of law.

A reader tipped me off to the rumor that Harvey is seeking $600 million so that it can purchase vLex. Fastcase was founded by former big law attorneys Ed Walters and Phil Rosenthal in 1999. vLex was founded by attorney Luis Faus.

Harvey was founded by former big law attorney  Winston Weinberg, CEO, and Gabriel Pereyra, president, Harvey has a low media profile, The executives rarely give interviews, they didn’t exhibit at Legal Week tech conference in New York this year, their website is spectacularly understated. My colleague Bob Ambrogi has covered Harvey regularly on his website and earlier this month reported that the company was looking to acquire a legal research company.

Does this have a real potential for disruption of the Thomson Reuters/LexisNexis duopoly? Continue Reading Breaking Rumor: Harvey Seeking to Buy vLex? A Move for Global Dominance?

This checklist assumes that the reader has a basic understanding of key concepts related to Generative AI  (GAI) including Large Language Models (LLM), Machine Learning, neural networks, deep learning and retrieval augmented generation [Editor’s note: . Many vendors and legal tech related organizations including the American Association of Law Libraries offer webinars and resources to their members or customers.

In response to discussions with colleagues and my own discussions with vendors I have outlined below the key issues to be considered in planning for the acquisition of GAI products related to legal research. Every organization is different and my hope is that this list can provide an outline which can be adapted to the specific issues and needs across law firm, government and academic law libraries.

Outline of Generative AI Acquisition Issues

Read full story on Legal TechHubContinue Reading Checklist for Developing a Research / Library Generative AI Procurement Plan

Acquisition will combine Henchman’s Document Management System data enrichment with trusted LexisNexis drafting guidance content to deliver personalized generative AI experience

NEW YORK, June 3, 2024 – LexisNexis Legal & Professional®, a leading global provider of information and analytics, today announced it has agreed to acquire Henchman, a legal tech company that enriches data from Document Management Systems (DMS) for faster document drafting. Henchman is a Belgium-based company, founded in 2020, with 170+ legal and corporate customers globally including top U.S. and European law firms and companies.

By acquiring Henchman, LexisNexis will deliver personalized generative AI solutions to customers around the world. Henchman core product functionality will be available to existing and new customers. LexisNexis has immediate plans to utilize Henchman’s technology with its proprietary Retrieval Augmented Generation 2.0 (RAG 2.0) platform in its flagship Lexis+ AI solution, enabling the use of trusted customer data as grounding data for generative AI drafting. Henchman’s capabilities will also be added to Lexis® Create, the Microsoft 365 add-in solution that enables point-of-workflow integration for generative AI drafting in Microsoft Word, Outlook, Teams and Copilot.

Henchman is used by leading law firms and corporations to enrich internal work product, creating a layer of intelligence on contract databases to accelerate drafting tasks.Continue Reading Breaking News: Press Release – LexisNexis to Acquire Document Drafting Tech Provider Henchman

Today vlex and iManage,  are announcing a new partnership which will integrate and enhance their customer’s workflows and access to firm’s knowledge base. Subscribers to the two services will be able to simultaneously query their firm “know how” in their iManage DMS and the vLex public law library and generate an answer. In addition, the firm’s state and federal litigation filings will be identified in DocketAlarm,  and loaded into the correct client matter folder in iManage.

Here are more details on the two initial integration points:Continue Reading vLex and iManage Announce Workflow Integrations to Enhance Law Firm Knowledge and insights.

I have been following Fastcase since 2011 when I wrote a blogpost, highlighting their innovative approach to legal research which included visual timelines and a feature called “foresight” that identified relevant precedent without relying on keywords. Fastcase was the brainchild of co-founders  Ed Walters and Phil Rosenthal, former big law associates who were driven by a passion to “democratize the law.”

Since 2011, I have written an astonishing 49 stories on my blog tracking Fastcase’s various upgrades, acquisitions and alliances.  Acquisitions include: Casemaker, Loislaw, Docket Alarm, Judicata’s “Legal genome,” TopForm, Next Chapter and Law Street Media. They expanded business intelligence, legal treatises, expert witness profiles, and corporate content by entering alliances with a host of companies, including Courtroom, Insight, JurisPro, the ABA, TransUnion, James Publishing , The Practicing Law Institute, Littler, Wolters, Kluwer, and Association of Immigration Lawyers and Matterhorn.

A year ago this month cast Fastcase merged with vLex,  the international research platform. I was really excited to talk to Ed Walters, Chief Strategy Officer at vLex and get his take on the vLex merger as well as the state of the legal tech market, advice for entrepreneurs and teaching robot law to next generation of lawyers.

O’Grady: It is a year since Fastcase merged with vLex. Has it been a win-win for both companies?

Walters: Fastcase was very successful as a 24-year-old bootstrapped company. We had not gotten a lot of outside financing, and we had grown Fastcase incrementally and responsibly as a profitable company. At the beginning of 2023 it was pretty clear, that we were coming into an age where “speed to market” and artificial intelligence were going to be more important than ever, and candidly, we just didn’t have the resources to compete as an independent, slow-growth company.

Continue reading on LegalTech HubContinue Reading The Fastcase/ vLex Merger – A Talk with Ed Walters on the State of the Legal Tech Market, Advice for Start-ups, Generative AI and Robot Law in Legal Education

I will be moderating a lively panel discussion including three experts exploring recent KM trends. We will also discuss the challenges an opportunities arising from the emergence of Generative AI.

Program Description: Join us for an insightful webinar on the evolving landscape of Knowledge Management. This session will delve into the dynamic trends shaping the

Today vLex  is announcing the launch of a powerful suite of generative AI-backed document analysis tools for litigators and transactional attorneys  Vincent AI platform.  vLex occupies a unique space in the legal research and workflow space since it is the only truly multi-national research platform which has now expanded into an AI enabled

Vincent AI Document Analyze The new product called Vincent AI Document Analyze is a workflow tool designed to streamline and enhance  the drafting of contracts, motions, pleadings, and other legal documents. vLex is the only legal research and drafting platform offering  AI tools with multi-national capabilities “built on top of the world’s most comprehensive global library of legal information, with more than 1 billion documents from around the world. “

vLex Labs  vLex is also announcing the availability of  vLex Labs. This will be offered to select Vincent customers and will enable them to team up with a vLex implementation team and in order to create proprietary AI-powered workflows.

Beyond Legal Research The most important sentence in the press release indicates that this is  a milestone marking  vLex’s commitment to drive innovation into their products and take the lead in developing legal research solutions “that go beyond information retrieval to revolutionize the way that legal professionals work.”

“With Vincent AI, you no longer have to choose between innovative technology and comprehensive content,” said vLex CEO Luís Faus. “Our platform offers a seamless integration of both, setting a new standard in efficiency, customization, and effectiveness across all legal practices.”

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Vincent AI Document Analyze

Vincent AI Document Analyze offers customizable GenAI-backed workflows that enable legal professionals to interrogate complex legal documents and use Vincent’s legal reasoning and analysis abilities to begin drafting strategic responses, harnessing the power of structured data. Users achieve benefits such as:Continue Reading  vLex Expands Vincent GenAI Toolset, and Launches AI-Focused Co-Development Lab