Managing a Law Practice in the Age of Intelligent Machines represents my attempt to speak to those lawyers who are perplexed by the number of things they are reading and hearing about law office automation and artificial intelligence replacing lawyers. That can happen and I cite one example where it has happened already. But many, hopefully most, lawyers will be using automation and AI to better serve their clients. I hoped to provide a general framework of when automation makes sense and how the law evolves to make particular legal processes more amenable to automation.
This column was published in the March/April 2018 issue of Law Practice magazine, which is its Marketing issue.
Among the many great articles in this issue are Developing a Marketing Mindset by Wendy L. Werner, Social Media Marketing Has Gone Viral by Dan Pinnington, Moving Beyond the ‘Practice of Law’ by Jordan Furlong (Yes, him again!), Do Lawyers Need a Digital Detox? by Sharon D. Nelson & John W. Simek and The Showdown: Amazon Echo Versus Google Home by Tom Mighell.
Lawyers have been working with machines for a long time. The IBM Selectric typewriter was a law office favorite because it could save and automatically regurgitate sentences and paragraphs into documents. That was smart technology at the time.