eDiscovery Daily Blog

BakerHostetler’s New “Attorney” Doesn’t Carry a Briefcase: eDiscovery Trends

BakerHostetler has brought a new “attorney” into the fold named ROSS (not like “Ross” from the old TV show Friends, but “ROSS”).  They call ROSS “artificially intelligent”, which doesn’t sound like a very nice thing to say, but it’s entirely accurate.

As reported in The American Lawyer (AI Pioneer ROSS Intelligence Lands Its First Big Law Clients, written by Susan Beck), BakerHostetler became the first law firm to announce (earlier this month) that it has licensed the artificial intelligence product developed by ROSS Intelligence for bankruptcy matters.

The ROSS platform is built upon Watson, IBM’s cognitive computer, and it’s “a digital legal expert that helps you power through your legal research”.  According to the Ross Intelligence site, “You ask your questions in plain English, as you would a colleague, and ROSS then reads through the entire body of law and returns a cited answer and topical readings from legislation, case law and secondary sources to get you up-to-speed quickly.”  As the site states, ROSS will:

  1. Provide you a highly relevant answer, not 1000s of results, to your question posed in natural language, not keywords.
  2. Monitor the law for changes that can positively/negatively affect your case, instead of flooding you with legal news.
  3. Learn the more you and other lawyers use it.
  4. Offer a simple, consistent experience across all your devices and form factors.

And, it’s not triskaidekaphobic, which would come in handy today.  Hey, does it write blog posts too?  Just asking… :o)

ROSS Intelligence CEO and co-founder Andrew Arruda said that, in addition to BakerHostetler, a few other firms have also signed licenses, and those announcements will come shortly.  “Our aim is to have ROSS on the legal team of every lawyer in the world,” he said.  Over the last year, ROSS Intelligence has been operating a pilot project with more than 20 law firms that enables the firms test the software for free.

In our thought leader interview at LegalTech New York (LTNY) earlier this year, Ralph Losey theorized about IBM someday making a big splash in the eDiscovery market and noted that “[w]hat they don’t have yet is ‘Watson, the review lawyer’.”  Perhaps not yet.  But, it will be interesting to see if ROSS (or some other technology) can eventually expand to certain discovery tasks and processes that will continue to automate the eDiscovery process as we know it.

So, what do you think?  Do you think ROSS will eventually become involved in the discovery process?  Please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.

Just a reminder that I will be moderating a panel at The Masters Conference Windy City Cybersecurity, Social Media and eDiscovery event on May 24 (we covered it here) as part of a full day of educational sessions covering a wide range of topics.  CloudNine will be sponsoring that session, titled Faster, Cheaper, Better: How Automation is Revolutionizing eDiscovery at 4:15.  Click here to register for the conference.  If you’re a non-vendor, the cost is only $100 to attend for the full day!

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Disclaimer: The views represented herein are exclusively the views of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views held by CloudNine. eDiscovery Daily is made available by CloudNine solely for educational purposes to provide general information about general eDiscovery principles and not to provide specific legal advice applicable to any particular circumstance. eDiscovery Daily should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a lawyer you have retained and who has agreed to represent you.