Today Fastcase and Ross Intelligence are announcing a content, research and development partnership which the founders expect to drive innovation for both companies. Fastcase which is celebrating its 20th anniversary has excently expanded beyond its primary law focus into analytics, legal news and secondary source publishing and alliances. Ross which made headlines with its A.I. search engine for legal research has recently launched its law school program and begun building alliances with bar associations and with Clio practice management software.

I interviewed Ed Walters CEO and Co- Founder of Fastcase about this new alliance. Walters describes this alliance in terms of a major market shift in the legal research and technology space. “In the 1990s the main way market dominance was building gigantic silos of data” epitomized by the Lexis and Westlaw platforms. According to Walters “The future will be owned by small, nimble companies that have inter-operable parts. The Fastcase-Ross alliance is about creating a new paradigm for the next 10 years.”

Ross will gain access to the Fastcase pipeline of case law, statutes and regulations across all 50 states. Walters described t he benefits of the alliance in the press release. Fastcase will benefit from Ross’s “trailblazing work in the field of natural language processing in machine learning. The partnership will enable Fastcase to collaborate on exciting new products and jointly create new solutions for unmet needs of the legal profession.”

Lexis and Westlaw (Thomson Reuters) invented the online legal research market and have dominated it for years.
Continue Reading

Entering the “no hyperbole” zone. No Robots in Sight
I spent almost an hour last Friday talking to Jeff Pfeifer, Vice President of Product Management at Lexis Nexis about the upcoming release of a new artificial intelligence enabled Lexis Advance feature called Lexis Answers. Instead of the “robot lawyer” hyperbole that has characterized many recent AI product announcements, Pfeiffer while enthusiastic for Lexis Answers, is refreshingly restrained in discussing the product. Most importantly he does not oversimplify the true complexity of legal research when applying AI to a specific set of facts. Pfiefer describes Lexis Answers as getting lawyers to a “well informed starting point,” speeding up basic research so lawyers can start more complex research. He sees Lexis Answers the “next evolutionary step in a journey with big data sets which is moving towards human like interactions with machines using standard Dialog.”

Press releaseLexis® Answers, a new artificial intelligence (A.I.) enhancement within its flagship Lexis Advance® offering. Using powerful machine learning, cognitive computing and advanced natural language processing technologies, Lexis Answers transforms legal research by understanding the user’s natural language question and delivering the clearest, most concise and authoritative answer, in addition to finely tuned, comprehensive search results.Learning is based on a universe of 14 million case law opinions.


Continue Reading