Artificial Intelligence Meets Legal Research

Information Today, January 2010 | Go to article overview

Artificial Intelligence Meets Legal Research


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Peter Jackson is recognized as a leading authority on artificial intelligence technology. As Thomson Reuters Chief Scientist and Vice President of R&D, he and his team of researchers have revolutionized the search experience--by understanding and anticipating business needs and incorporating them into new product development. Peter holds a Ph.D. in Artificial Intelligence from the University of Leeds and has taught extensively on the subject. A second edition of his book, Natural Language Processing for Online Applications, was recently published.

Few would argue that legal professionals need to be experts in the field of law. But given their extensive workloads and time constraints, it's nearly impossible for them to become experts in many of the divergent legal areas they're thrust into. For that reason, they demand research tools that can work faster, delve deeper, and above all else, think the way they do--particularly with so much at stake. The latest Westlaw[R] innovations do just that, by providing a far more exacting research process--one that combines artificial intelligence along with the insight only a human component can provide. Peter Jackson explains how this cutting-edge technology is transforming legal research.

How do you describe the current state of legal search?

An attorney's two greatest assets are time and reputation. There's no room for compromise, and our customers use Westlaw because they know the information is correct, complete and current.

What is Westlaw doing to take legal search to the next level?

We combine the expertise of our legal editors with the latest search technology to deliver information attorneys can really rely on. …

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Artificial Intelligence Meets Legal Research
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