jordanfurlong + future   195

After 40 Years of Constant Change, What's Next for the Legal Industry? | The American Lawyer
Technology and artificial intelligence on their own are noteworthy, but what’s more compelling is the impact they will have on how firms are structured.

Mitch Zuklie of Orrick. Cedit: Jason Doiy/ALM.
“Everything that can be taken out of the hands of subject-matter experts and handed over to the process experts and technologists will be,” says Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe Chairman and CEO Mitch Zuklie. “There will be far fewer associates sitting in rooms with documents and more strategic partnerships among law firms and legal tech providers.”
future  firms  clients  process  innovation  it  compliance 
27 days ago by JordanFurlong
Curious Minds: Speaking with Firoz Dattu of AdvanceLaw | Legal Executive Institute
Rose Ors: What’s a key big-picture question facing the legal industry?

Firoz Dattu: While many of us talk a lot about new service providers, which I don’t discount as we are one of them ourselves — working with clients to identify innovative law firms and create mutually beneficial panels — a big question is how law firms will transform, and which ones will be around in 5 or 10 years.

I have three observations about this. First, while a lot of innovation is being developed by service providers, this doesn’t mean law firms won’t incorporate these innovations to create one-stop shopping for their clients. The firms that do this, without fear of cannibalization, will have a powerful offering.

Second, a number of firms are over-doing it with associate-to-partner ratios, in part to attract and retain star partners through higher partner profitability. This is a risk as it creates tension within firms and runs counter to what clients are looking for. Clients want creative solutions from someone who knows the business, and big teams often disintermediate the star lawyer with business knowledge from the work.

Third, many pedigreed firms dominating the legal market in terms of profitability forged their reputations at a time when clients were looking for something different than they what they want now. The blue-chip firms of the past are not necessarily the blue-chip firms of the present.
future  analysis 
may 2019 by JordanFurlong
Why Is It So Hard to Predict the Future? - The Atlantic
One subgroup of scholars, however, did manage to see more of what was coming. Unlike Ehrlich and Simon, they were not vested in a single discipline. They took from each argument and integrated apparently contradictory worldviews. They agreed that Gorbachev was a real reformer and that the Soviet Union had lost legitimacy outside Russia. A few of those integrators saw that the end of the Soviet Union was close at hand and that real reforms would be the catalyst.

The integrators outperformed their colleagues in pretty much every way, but especially trounced them on long-term predictions. Eventually, Tetlock bestowed nicknames (borrowed from the philosopher Isaiah Berlin) on the experts he’d observed: The highly specialized hedgehogs knew “one big thing,” while the integrator foxes knew “many little things.”

Hedgehogs are deeply and tightly focused. Some have spent their career studying one problem. Like Ehrlich and Simon, they fashion tidy theories of how the world works based on observations through the single lens of their specialty. Foxes, meanwhile, “draw from an eclectic array of traditions, and accept ambiguity and contradiction,” Tetlock wrote. Where hedgehogs represent narrowness, foxes embody breadth.
future  predictions 
may 2019 by JordanFurlong
Thoughts on the role and state of legal practice – Julio Avalos – Medium
Walter Benjamin, the great German philosopher, wrote that “behind every fascism, there is a failed revolution.”

If we perceive over the last several years, a growth of the nativist impulse around the world, the jolt of reactionary reflex, the creeping but unavoidable whispers of confusion, anger, and, importantly, civic disorientation — all, yes, conditions that have often given rise to fascisms around the world and throughout history — if we perceive these things, then I think we ought rightfully to ask ourselves whether in fact there is a corpse of a failed revolution lying unfound somewhere in our recent history.

And if and when we do discover such a body, to engage in a level of forensics to understand not just what revolution has failed, but why, and how, and whether it is worth or possible to resuscitate it.

Given today’s forum and the title of today’s talk, let me begin not at the beginning or by attempting to limn the still darkened corpse of this failed revolution, but at the end, with a reveal: the heroes and heroines of our revolutionary murder mystery will be (and will need to be) lawyers, people who self-describe as lawyers or leg
future  purpose 
april 2019 by JordanFurlong
25 Outstanding Legal Tech and Business of Law Predictions for 2019 | Aderant
20) Forecasting an “unremarkable” year

“2019 will be an unremarkable year in the business of law. ‘More of the same’ will be the rule:

Corporate clients will continue to complain about law firms but won’t really change their buying habits.
BigLaw firms will noisily roll out innovative projects but won’t change their profit and compensation models.
Amazing new legal technologies will be announced but won’t be incorporated into lawyers’ work habits.
Growing demand from clients will inflate law firm coffers and cool off most talk of impending upheaval.
A few law firms will grow stupendously rich; more young lawyers will take low-paying leveraged jobs.
Lawyers and judges will keep talking about access to justice while resisting new models that could address it.
Not much of a vision for the future, I know. But for once, I’d like to make a prediction about the legal market that I feel confident will come true.”
future  jf 
december 2018 by JordanFurlong
Mark Zuckerberg Missed an Opportunity - The Atlantic
Take the farm-to-factory migration. Hundreds of millions of people altered their way of life when collective mechanized effort became the norm. Their lives were generally much better in the end, but this transition took decades to sort out. It fueled the rise of communism, exacerbated urban poverty, and in some places led to failed states. It was rocky.

The success of this first technical revolution was not automatic. In the United States, its sharp edges were rounded not by laws of technology or economics alone, but by the sweeping, deliberate changes brought about by what we now call the Progressive movement, which created the Food and Drug Administration, child-labor laws, compulsory public education, boards of public health, the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, muckraking journalism, and labor unions, among other innovations. By establishing minimum standards of safety and trust, these reforms made impersonal, large-scale commerce possible. Our charge today is to create an analogous effort to leaven today’s disruptive change so we get the good with less of the bad. Nowhere is this need more acute than with regard to social media, artificial intelligence, and the biotech revolution.
future  access  purpose 
november 2018 by JordanFurlong
PORTIA.LAW - News & Views
The Future Firm Forum was held at the world-class Millbrook Resort, Queenstown, on the 19th and 20th of October. The Future Firm Forum is a law firm leadership and management conference attended by partners, directors, managers and lawyers from across the country, Australia and the UK. A number of speakers, including Portia principal lawyer Erin Ebborn and CEO Jarrod Coburn, addressed issues facing modern law firms; discussing how firms can innovate for and build a sustainable legal profession.
access  innovation  future 
november 2018 by JordanFurlong
Sir Mark Ivan Rogers KCMG speech at British Irish Chamber of Commerce Annual Gala Dinner - British Irish Chamber
Ladies and gentlemen: we now face a very critical few months in the Brexit process, and the potential for a severe political crisis between the UK and the EU, as well as for domestic British political turmoil on a scale we have not seen since the War.

We need a great deal of wisdom to be shown on all sides if we are to avoid, over Brexit, the sort of bitterness which this Continent thought it had left behind for good.

This autumn marks the 100th anniversary of the end of the first great global conflagration of the 20th century. One cannot but be reminded of the wisdom of what Maynard Keynes wrote in his brilliant work on the Economic Consequences of the Peace in 1919.

I quote:

“Very few of us realise with conviction the intensely unusual, unstable, complicated, unreliable and temporary nature of the economic organisation by which Western Europe has lived for the last half century. We assume some of the most peculiar and temporary of our late advantages as permanent, and to be depended upon, and lay our plans accordingly. On this sandy and false foundation, we scheme for social improvement and dress our political platforms, pursue our animosities and particular ambitions, and feel ourselves with enough margin in hand to foster, not assuage, conflict in the European family”.
future  global 
september 2018 by JordanFurlong
Gazing Into the Crystal Ball | Corporate Counsel
Ready or not, the changes are coming at an exponential rate. Swirling around and through the transformation of legal departments is a convergence happening in the broader industry. Three legal players—in-house counsel, law firms, and alternative legal service providers like Axiom, Elevate Services Inc. and UnitedLex—are mixing and matching people and services. Each group is jostling to become the dominant force in the industry.
client  future 
september 2018 by JordanFurlong
New Zealand legal services and lawyers — what might happen? - NZ Law Society
Simon Tupman
Simon Tupman: There are effectively two groups in New Zealand who provide legal services: law firms and in-house counsel. The latter group is gaining ground and learning fast about how best to add commercial value to their clients and how to operate most effectively and efficiently. For this group, I think the challenge will continue to be how best to resource their departments, and how best to exert influence on their CEOs and boards so that they are perceived to be much more than lawyers managing reputational and legal risk. The growth of in-house counsel augurs well for their future.

Law firms on the other hand face much bigger challenges which will require them to completely re-think how they operate if they are to remain viable. The fundamental difference today compared with 10 years ago is that legal services has become a buyer’s market. Clients call the shots not the lawyers. Law firms have to understand and be prepared to meet new criteria for purchasing legal services such as pricing, convenience, and overall commercial value. Time, and billing by the hour, has already become irrelevant. Increasingly, by their numbers and assisted by social media, the new generation of employees are calling the shots when it comes to the conditions of their employment. Employers need to shape new vibrant workplace cultures that break away from the traditional structures and offer a whole new way of flexible working, autonomy, high-trust and motivation. Numerous studies and ‘best employer’ benchmarks show that those organisations who invest in their people are more productive and profitable.

There will be some casualties as the progressives take on the conservatives, but it is both inevitable and imperative if firms want to stay ‘ahead of the curve’. This will require visionary leadership, something that has been as scarce as hen’s teeth in the 30 years I have been involved in the profession.
nz  future 
april 2018 by JordanFurlong
Evidence: Why BigLaw firms must start remaking now - Remaking Law Firms
Traditional law firms based on partnership, lawyer-centricty, leverage, and input-based pricing (known as BigLaw numbering at least 100,000 in the five regions) .
Remade law firms (probably better expressed as BigLaw firms in the process of being remade such as Allen & Overy and Seyfarth Shaw – both of which are featured in Remaking Law Firms).
NewLaw firms based on a quite different business model to BigLaw (read these posts for a deeper understanding of the range of NewLaw providers such Elevate, Conduit (recently acquired by Deloitte), and LOD).
Standalone automated legal services (based on information technology and artificial intelligence such as Lex Machina and KIM).
Legal departments rendering a wide range of legal services to their owner corporation.
Our study has identified five mega-forces that will drive the supply and demand sides of the legal service markets over the coming 10+ years. These forces are shaping the nature and volume of clients’ needs and how these needs will be met.

Hyper-competition. Hyper-competition will cause changes in industry structure, including clearer delineation of strategic groups and proliferation in the number and type of legal services providers, and intensifying supply-side competitive dynamics.
De-regulation. De-regulation will progressively reduce, even remove, restrictions on almost all aspects of the ownership of providers and the ways in which legal services are delivered.
Client transformation. The speed and intensity with which clients transform the ways in which they meet their legal needs will occur more rapidly than most anticipate.
Exponential technology. The impact of technology as a substitute, not just a complement, for lawyers’ services will be more dramatic than most predict.
BigLaw firm inertia. In the main BigLaw firms will be slow to develop the capabilities in change management and innovation that are needed to remain profitable in the conditions expected after 2025.
firms  future  competition  innovation 
february 2018 by JordanFurlong
The 16 Most Important Trends and Opportunities for 2018 — BTI Consulting Group
Ten years in the making—growth in outside counsel spending returns. Before we party like its 2007, it’s important to realize the 2018 increase is different. 2007 saw new money flooding the market. In 2018, clients are making a strategic choice to move money from in-house staff to outside law firms. These clients want more breadth of skills, the ability to tap skill sets as needed, and the ability to scale up quickly. These same clients want your smarts and experience. Of the many changes to expect in 2018, here are the 16 with the most impact:

Outside counsel spending will grow substantially for the first time in 10 years.
Clients are shifting $3B in spending to outside counsel from their internal budgets due to the steady increase in complex matters.
future  firms  clients 
january 2018 by JordanFurlong
2018 Citi Hildebrandt Client Advisory - Citi Private Bank
We are pleased to share the 2018 Citi Hildebrandt Client Advisory, our annual publication which outlines the current landscape of the law firm industry, how law firms are responding to these conditions and their best opportunities for growth in 2018.


The law firm industry remains in a channel of modest demand growth with high levels of dispersion and volatility1,2:

Revenue growth during the past several years has come primarily via standard rate increases as realization has been under pressure, and the modest demand growth has added limited lift
Headcount growth has come in the form of increased lawyer leverage, as equity partner headcount has remained essentially flat
Margin growth, where firms have been able to achieve it, has come in large part from overhead expense controls as the industry has become leaner
future  firms  data 
january 2018 by JordanFurlong
What does the legal firm of the future look like?
What drives higher profits for law firms?

The Australian legal services industry is in transition. Across the market, firms tell us they are under pressure from cost-cutting clients, innovative competitors and disruptive technologies. Many have responded by rethinking the way they do business — introducing new systems, investing in technology and refining their client offering.

In these benchmarking results, we take a closer look at how firms of different sizes are remaking themselves, and discover what it takes to earn above average profits in today’s legal services market.

Let’s look at the numbers
Because smaller firms have greater scope to achieve high margins and rapid growth, we’ve used distinct performance benchmarks for large, mid-size and small firms, centred on each group’s average profit.
global  australia  metrics  future  profitability 
november 2017 by JordanFurlong
Globalisation has marginalised many regions in the rich world
If there is a particular reason to favour dispersion of technological know-how and economic activity, it is that the concentration of such things also corresponds to a concentration of power. Since the late 1990s, as you would expect given the logic of globalisation, American industry has become more concentrated and more profitable. Superstar firms can draw on their financial and political capital to quash or take over would-be rivals, leaving fewer high-growth companies with the potential to anchor local economies. Not all these superstar perks are necessarily invidious, but looked at in the context of regional economies they can have striking effects. The announcement in June that Amazon would purchase Whole Foods, a grocer, led to a sharp drop in the share prices of companies like Walmart (headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas), Target (Minneapolis, Minnesota) and Kroger (Cincinnati, Ohio). Amazon has since asked America’s cities what they would be willing to offer to get its planned second headquarters, equal in status to the original in Seattle. Scores of cities responded with detailed investment plans and juicy incentives: a testament to the power wielded by America’s corporate superstars. But Amazon’s demands—which include a large, skilled workforce, lots of big-city amenities and extensive transport links—suggest that the prize will go to somewhere already thriving, rather than a place in need of the lift a firm like Amazon could provide.
global  future  economist 
october 2017 by JordanFurlong
The Firm of the Future - Bain & Company
New vehicles are also emerging to connect investors to specific investments within a firm—investments that are suited to their risk profiles and that do not involve owning a share of the whole entity. In healthcare, Pfizer and other pharmaceutical companies have lined up one-off funding for the development of specific products, matching their capital needs with the risk preferences and expertise of individual investors. In 2014, Unilever issued a “green bond,” offering clarity and transparency around the use of proceeds, including a set of clearly defined criteria on greenhouse gas emissions, water use and waste disposal for the projects funded. Peer-to-peer lending and crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter and GoFundMe are another aspect of this evolution.
firm  future 
october 2017 by JordanFurlong
[Criticism] | The Watchmen, by Alan Jacobs | Harper's Magazine
Political liberals who long expected to live in an increasingly liberal world may find themselves disoriented by these manifestations, whose nature they are ill prepared to understand, and they certainly wish such “forces of reaction” would just go away. But these forces will not go away. If we were to wish for something less fantastic than the disappearance of our political opposites, we might think along these lines: It would be valuable to have at our disposal some figures equipped for the task of mediation — people who understand the impulses from which these troubling movements arise, who may themselves belong in some sense to the communities driving these movements but are also part of the liberal social order. They should be intellectuals who speak the language of other intellectuals, including the most purely secular, but they should also be fluent in the concepts and practices of faith. Their task would be that of the interpreter, the bridger of cultural gaps; of the mediator, maybe even the reconciler.
religion  policy  future 
october 2017 by JordanFurlong
For a long time, simply ‘knowing the law’ was the sole requirement for lawyers to deliver legal services. Those days are over. The future lawyer must augment core legal knowledge with other skills including (1) understanding technology’s application to and impact on the delivery of legal services (e.g. e-discovery, cyber-security, contract management, legal research, etc.); (2) project/process management; (3) basic business fluency; (4) client management; (5) collaboration; (6) sales and marketing; (7) an understanding of global legal marketplace developments; (8) cultural awareness for what has become a global profession; and (9) emotional intelligence/’people skills.’ Emotional intelligence is widely overlooked as a critical legal skill. Top lawyers with high intellect (IQ) and people skills (EQ) will always thrive, no matter how pervasive technology becomes in legal delivery. Future lawyers, like physicians who have morphed from medical practice to the delivery of healthcare, will return to the role of ‘trusted advisers.’ They will interpret data and apply their professional judgment to solve client challenges. In some ways, future lawyers will be ‘returning to basics’ and performing only those tasks that they are uniquely trained to do. Technology, process, and other paraprofessionals and professionals will liberate them to focus on these core tasks. This will better serve clients even if there might sometimes be a harsh economic impact on mid-career attorneys caught between two different legal delivery models.
skills  training  future 
october 2017 by JordanFurlong
The Happiest Graph on Earth - Stratfor Worldview
At the same time, renewable energy is already growing faster than total energy demand in China, leading the consumption of fossil fuels to fall by 1.4 percent in 2015. That year, China also accounted for 28 percent of global electric vehicle sales, 32 percent of solar panel installations and 47 percent of wind installations. In 2016 it overtook Europe in wind power, and by 2020 it will probably surpass the Continent in solar power, too.

Historians sometimes like to say that mastering coal allowed Britain to dominate the 19th century, and mastering oil allowed the United States to dominate the 20th. If mastering the wind and sun allows China to dominate the 21st, the happiest graph on Earth will keep getting happier — but at a terrible price for the West.
future  energy  global 
october 2017 by JordanFurlong
The legal department of the future | Deloitte US
Drivers of change
Over the past 10 years, unprecedented disruptions—including the deregulation of the practice of law and advancements in technology—have been changing the face of the legal sector. Rigid silos are being replaced by more fluid structures. And in-house lawyers are becoming business partners, embedded and able to work across units and specializations.

So what will corporate legal look like over the next 10 years? Consider the following potential scenarios in technology, service delivery, and operations.
client  future  ops 
october 2017 by JordanFurlong
When Will Disruption Hit the Legal Industry | The American Lawyer
The data show that a similar number of firms (29 and 30) discontinued operations in each cycle due to bankruptcy, dissolution, merger into stronger entities, or falling below the Am Law 200 revenue cut off [Table 1(a)]. However, there is a sharp contrast in the number of firms that experienced RPL declines. Seventy-four firms experienced such declines in the second cycle compared with only 6 in the first cycle, [Table 1(b)]. This shows that the price erosion that we see for Big Law in aggregate since 2007 (Figure 1) varies markedly across firms and that, as evidenced by the slightly higher number of firms in the PPP 1-50 and PPP 51-100 cohorts that have experienced RPL declines, it affects higher-profit firms slightly more than lower-profit firms. Said differently: the erosion of price realization that economics tells us to expect is in fact occurring, is concentrated in a subset of firms, and is hitting firms of all profit levels.
So why aren't partners feeling the pressure more? A piece of the answer is that law firms have been able to mitigate the impact of price erosion on profitability. As Tables 1(b) and 1(c) show: in the first cycle, roughly the same number of firms experienced price erosion (RPL) and profitability (PPP) declines; in the second cycle fewer firms have suffered a decline in profitability than have suffered price erosion. There seem to have been two major levers in mitigating the effect of price erosion on profitability: cost reduction and nonequity partner changes.
On cost, as Table 2 shows, while firms of all profitability levels increased cost-per-lawyer over the first cycle, they slowed this growth dramatically through the second cycle. Indeed the 100 most profitable firms (the PPP 1-50 and PPP 51-100 cohorts) actually reduced average cost-per-lawyer. This probably reflects that it is easier for the more profitable firms to lower costs because they are typically starting from a higher cost position than their lower-profitability counterparts and thus have more to trim.
data  firms  profitability  future 
september 2017 by JordanFurlong
An Open Letter From 25 General Counsel | The American Lawyer
While large clients spend millions of dollars and thousands of hours a year working with their law firms, firm leaders are making structural, growth, technology, and market-entry decisions that turn on assumptions about what clients want. We believe that, working together, we can provide a helpful road map, suggesting which practices and innovations lead to positive results and strong relationships. Through better information, we hope to move the profession forward.
We are working together with AdvanceLaw to tackle this challenge. This is a real-time experiment testing which in-house practices (e.g., convergence, value billing, competitive bids) and law firm attributes (e.g., firm size and structure, legal project management) tend to produce the strongest relationships, satisfaction, and results. The methodology is fairly straightforward: we are collecting and sharing outcomes and performance evaluations on a wide range of legal matters with AdvanceLaw staff, who are determining which behaviors consistently generate better results. Through a large data set, across our companies, we are moving beyond the anecdotal to measure what really works.
The data set has already grown to represent thousands of matters; as the project continues, it will encompass millions of data points allowing for a detailed analysis of many critical questions. As the results come in, a number of general counsel from our group will author articles offering thoughts on these findings, including practical implications for both clients and law firms.
We know we can’t answer every key question, but we hope this effort will lead to a better conversation among leaders of the legal profession about service quality and innovation.
clients  data  analytics  firms  future 
july 2017 by JordanFurlong
Are Law Firms Too Sophisticated for Their Own Good | The American Lawyer
The challenges besetting Big Law are of its own making. The industry overshot the needs of its clients and overlooked the effect of growth on the intensity of competition. The really frightening part? Recent surveys show Big Law is doing nothing to mitigate the threats to its prosperity and much to exacerbate them. A change of course is needed. It will require today's leaders to bring more younger partners into leadership roles and to lead in a very different way.
firms  strategy  future  clients 
july 2017 by JordanFurlong
What Is Legal Operations - CLOC
Strategic Planning:  Create a long-term strategy, aligning yearly goals and corresponding metrics.
Financial Management:  Manage the departmental budget. Track accruals and forecasting.  Work with Finance to identify spending trends, potential cost savings and efficiency opportunities.
Vendor Management:  Create a vendor management program to insure quality outside counsel support at the right rates and under optimal fee arrangements. Hold regular business reviews.  Negotiate fee agreements.  Drive governance of billing guidelines.
Data Analytics: Collect and analyze relevant data from department tools and industry sources, define objectives to provide metrics and dashboards, that drive efficiencies and optimize spend, etc.
Technology Support:  Create a long-term technology roadmap including tools such as e-billing/matter management, contract management, content management, IP management, business process management, e-signature, board management, compliance management, legal hold, subsidiary management, etc.
Alternative Support Models:  Drive departmental efficiency by leveraging managed services, LPOs, and other service providers.
Knowledge Management: Enable efficiencies by creating seamless access to legal & department institutional knowledge through the organization and centralization of key templates, policies, processes, memos, and other learnings.
Professional Development and Team Building: Deliver improved GC Staff and overall team performance by globalizing the team and creating a culture of growth, development, collaboration and accountability.
Communications:  Work collaboratively across the legal ecosystem to create consistent global processes, from on boarding to complex project management support.  Publish regular departmental communications, plan and execute all-hands.
Global Data Governance / Records Management:  Create a records management program including a record retention schedule, policies and processes.
Litigation Support: Support e-discovery, legal hold, document review.
Cross-Functional Alignment:  Create and drive relationships with other key company functions, such as HR, IT, Finance and Workplace Resources.  Represent the Legal organization at CLOC.
ops  skills  training  future 
july 2017 by JordanFurlong
Tech Scene Pulls Firms to Pittsburgh, but Not Just for Clients
Pittsburgh's growing startup and technology scene is hardly a secret. And now it's drawing the eyes of large law firms across the United States, as they begin to notice what local firms have been tapping into for years.
Legal industry watchers in Pittsburgh say more large firms are likely to build outposts in the city, as they aim to be close to its research institutions and young talent pool, while potentially drawing in lateral hires from Pittsburgh whose practices fit well in a national or international platform.
"Pittsburgh is sort of uniquely positioned because of the lower overhead associated with practicing in Pittsburgh, as well as the growing and dynamic tech community," said Maura McAnney of McAnney, Esposito & Kraybill Associates, whose Pittsburgh-based legal recruiting business stands to benefit from the trend. "I do think more firms will begin to open up, mostly because there are so many Pittsburgh lawyers who have global practices."
global  it  robo  firms  future 
july 2017 by JordanFurlong
The Hollowing Out - The New York Times
McAfee has graphically illustrated the key findings that worry him and Brynjolfsson. The red line in the figure below, the employment to population ratio, tracks the ratio of the number of people working to the total number of working-age men and women in the United States.

On his blog, McAfee explains the graphic:

Since the Great Recession officially ended in June of 2009 G.D.P., equipment investment, and total corporate profits have rebounded, and are now at their all-time highs. The employment ratio, meanwhile, has only shrunk and is now at its lowest level since the early 1980s when women had not yet entered the workforce in significant numbers. So current labor force woes are not because the economy isn’t growing, and they’re not because companies aren’t making money or spending money on equipment. They’re because these trends have become increasingly decoupled from hiring — from needing more human workers. As computers race ahead, acquiring more and more skills in pattern matching, communication, perception, and so on, I expect that this decoupling will continue, and maybe even accelerate.
it  employment  future 
june 2017 by JordanFurlong
Mossberg: The Disappearing Computer - Recode
hen the internet first arrived, it was a discrete activity you performed on a discrete hunk of metal and plastic called a PC, using a discrete software program called a browser. Even now, though the net is like the electrical grid, powering many things, you still use a discrete device — a smartphone, say — to access it. Sure, you can summon some internet smarts through an Echo, but there’s still a device there, and you still have to know the magic words to say. We are a long way from the invisible, omnipresent computer in the Starship Enterprise.

Worse, those early computers were in your way. They were hulking objects that demanded space and skill. Even now, if you look around a restaurant, you’ll see smartphones on the tables, waiting to be used.

Computers have gotten vastly easier to use, but they still demand attention and care, from charging batteries to knowing which apps to use and when to use them.

Technology has been a great thing, but it’s been too unnatural, an add-on to life, for 40 years. What’s going on in the labs has the promise to change that.
it  future 
may 2017 by JordanFurlong
Prism Legal The Changing Legal Ecosystem - Prism Legal
Intro: When we met one year ago, no one expected Brexit or Trump. Why? We did not have good information and we had a bias in one direction. This panel will focus on legal: what you hope does not matter, you have to deal with reality.
firms  clients  robolawyer  roboclients  future 
february 2017 by JordanFurlong
Wisconsin Lawyer: Your State Bar Decline in Membership:
In addition, we are seeing a shift in the population of lawyers. While fewer new lawyers are entering the profession, older lawyers are working longer. The result is the increase in the number of emeritus members, those members 70 years old or older who can still practice law but pay no dues or supreme court assessments and no longer must complete CLE requirements. Decreasing numbers of new lawyers and increasing numbers of emeritus members are major factors in the projected decrease in the full dues equivalent membership numbers.
The decrease in full dues equivalent membership has an effect on more than the State Bar. It also affects the Office of Lawyer Regulation (OLR), the Board of Bar Examiners (BBE), the Wisconsin Lawyers’ Fund for Client Protection, and the Public Interest Legal Services Fund. All these entities set their budgets based on the State Bar’s full dues equivalent number. And while the OLR and the BBE will have fewer lawyers to regulate, emeritus members remain subject to the OLR even if they do not pay the assessment as do other active lawyers.
For many years, various individuals who look to the future of the profession have stated that we should expect a decrease in the number of lawyers, and some also have projected an increase in the number of legal professionals other than lawyers. It looks as though the first part, at least for Wisconsin, is coming true.
associations  future 
january 2017 by JordanFurlong
Whites Legal - What's a firm of the future?
o here’s my brief run down so those hunting around for a new lawyer or a lawyer of the future know what that means.

Firm of the future and NewLaw mostly describe the same thing. Genuine NewLaw firms have cast off the old business model (OldLaw) which leverages people’s time by an hourly rate (with many hands making expensive work), is usually top heavy with older white male partners, billable hours, will take on any work they think they can make a buck from (“I have never met a billable hour I don’t like yet”). The old model is fixated on tasks and inputs – time spent doing the work.

Firms of the future are client centered – focussing on results and outcomes, adopt much flatter structures, offer fixed and upfront pricing, are innovative and not afraid to take risks and encourage flexible working arrangements. Firms of the future are about finding a better way of doing business, not blindly accepting the old way.

I spoke with John, and here’s why he thinks Whites Legal is a firm of the future:

industry specialisation (something remarkably rare among lawyers);
fixed, guaranteed pricing;
pricing based on what the client perceives as value to them; and
more likely to be at a client’s bar/restaurant/cafe than in the office (another version of flexibility).
firms  future  innovation  australia 
january 2017 by JordanFurlong
University of Toronto Law Journal: Vol 66, No 4
data  robolawyer  future 
november 2016 by JordanFurlong
After the Election: ‘What a Pathetic Thing Is Decadence’ - The Atlantic
What a pathetic thing is decadence. Millions of Republicans as comfortable and secure as any people who have ever lived, who owe everything to the historic miracle that is the United States, chose to go along with a presidential candidacy shot through with moral degeneracy and contempt for the public good. They had other choices in the primaries; they were warned by their own former leaders what Trump represented. They voted for him anyway, hoping to give their team a win in the game, the shallow entertainment that is all they think of politics.
leadership  future 
november 2016 by JordanFurlong
The big law firm of the future - AI, digital robots and blockchain - Legal Futures
Big law firms will be using predictive analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) not only to predict where growth in services will be, but also which clients and cases are worth pursuing, according to PwC’s vision of the law firm of the future that also foresaw digital robots taking over “routine and standard human transactions”.
it  robolawyer  future  firms  analytics  predictive 
october 2016 by JordanFurlong
Is Globalization Sowing the Seeds of Its Own Undoing? | Stratfor
lobalization, he is saying, is sowing the seeds of its own undoing. By distributing its fruits so unevenly, globalization is driving wedges between upper and lower classes in the developed economies. In so doing, it is also driving further wedges between the lower classes in developed economies and the citizens of other nations, who are painted as enemies by populist demagogues.

The promise of free trade is undeniable: Everybody likes those everyday low prices. But the consequences of the differential distribution of the benefits of globalization are becoming disturbingly clear: For the upper classes, the world is their oyster. For the lower classes, the world is their competitor.

So what is to be done? Autor thinks protectionism would be a mistake. Instead he recommends, "'trade adjustment assistance' for affected workers. This idea has been an 'orphan' in policy circles, he says, adding that the current federal program is 'stingy.'"
global  future 
october 2016 by JordanFurlong
Anthony Hilton: Why their profession’s failures mean lawyers don’t win top City jobs | London Evening Standard
In the intervening century, however, the lawyers have allowed themselves to be pushed further and further down the food chain, and away from the seat of power. In today’s commercial world, when there is a deal to be done it is picked over by investment bankers, brokers and public relations consultants — all of whom have a share of the ear of the chief executive. Then when all the high-level stuff has been sorted by these experts, the package is tossed to the lawyer with instructions to sort it out and make it presentable. 

Lawyers have botched the transition from being a profession to being a business in a way the accountants have not. In going for volume, lawyers have lost the glamour, the access and the special status that came with having opinions worth listening to.

They have allowed themselves to be commoditised and to become the last port of call. They have allowed some of their best brains to move in-house as general counsel in the biggest companies, taking the interesting legal advisory work with them. They live in a world where, in many cases, competition between firms comes down to who will do it cheapest. 
future  accountants 
october 2016 by JordanFurlong
The Rise of a Not-So-New Elite | Stratfor
In the past 30 or 40 years, a postmodern Empire has been taking shape that has extraordinary similarities to the supposedly extinct Agraria. Whether this is something to celebrate or denounce remains an open, and complicated, question. On one hand, between the 1910s and 1970s the developed world saw falling income inequality, rising living standards, spreading democracy, expanding education, the decline of domestic service and the extension of full rights to women and many minorities; on the other, it also saw two World Wars and a nuclear standoff. Since the birth of the new Empire in the 1980s, by contrast, many of these positive trends have slowed or begun to reverse, but the world has also enjoyed unprecedented peace, witnessed groundbreaking technological advancement and seen its poorest billion people (mostly in Asia) lifted out of poverty.
global  future  elite 
october 2016 by JordanFurlong
Was Susskind Right 3 Keys to Understanding the Direction of Legal Tech at ILTA | Legaltech News
While many have come true in some way or another, a collective resistance in the legal industry at times holds back further tech progress. In balancing fact from fiction and looking at where things are headed, the panel discussed some key principals that define the trajectory of legal tech:
future  it  innovation 
september 2016 by JordanFurlong
This Week In Legal Tech: ABA Future Panel Chairs Respond To LegalZoom Co-Founder | Above the Law
Mr. Hartman begins with the claim that “[t]here is a stark absence of substance” in the Commission’s report. He supports this claim by saying that, even if the ABA were inclined to agree with the Commission’s recommendations, the ABA is not in a position to implement many of them, like calls for increased funding for the Legal Services Corporation, the decriminalization of minor offenses, and the greater use of legal checkups.  Well, of course. The Commission fully recognized that the ABA is not a state legislature, Congress, or a state supreme court. If the Commission’s final report focused only on solutions that the ABA itself could implement, the report would have been very brief and woefully incomplete.
aba  access  future 
august 2016 by JordanFurlong
On Growing Forever, When The Economy Is Not | Above the Law
First, these firms have thrown everyone who was optional out of the equity ranks. If you’re not bringing in very substantial business, then you’re not an equity partner at those firms. You can’t increase PPP without either increasing the numerator (revenue) or decreasing the denominator (number of partners). If you haven’t grown, then you’ve cut the number of equity partners.
firms  future 
may 2016 by JordanFurlong
Has the juice been squeezed from BigLaw's business model? - Beaton Capital
There is a limit to the profitability growth that can be achieved through the traditional BigLaw business model. Firm leaders have seen some success over the past 5 years in improving profitability. However, the evidence suggests that this reflects tinkering with Maister’s profitability levers rather than exogenous factors such as an improved value proposition from BigLaw firms, or a return to favourable legal market conditions.
firms  future 
may 2016 by JordanFurlong
The End of Lawyers, Period.
While I thought the answer was honest, I did not think it was complete. Because no one, including Laughlin, seems to have any idea what higher value activities these dislocated resources are going to be redeployed to do. It is easy to imagine a world where partners rely on machines instead of associates to do work that is already being done. It is much harder to configure a future where the machines have taken on those tasks while leading to employment of additional associates to perform higher value work that (a) no one is currently doing and (b) the capable machines, who replaced the associate in the previous work, cannot handle. That doesn’t mean it won’t happen. The markets work in mysterious ways, and it is often hard to identify in advance the exact mechanism by which a transformational technology will increase, rather than reduce, the demand for human labor.
innovation  robolawyer  future 
march 2016 by JordanFurlong
The justice system of the future: online continuous hearings and a single point of entry - Legal Futures
The first trial of online dispute resolution (ODR) in the UK’s courts and tribunals will introduce a concept known as the “online continuous hearing”, it has emerged, with the Senior President of Tribunals urging a change in perception of litigation from an adversarial dispute to “a problem to be solved”.

Sir Ernest Ryder outlined how the justice system should be a ‘one-stop shop’ to deal with multiple problems a person may have but with a single point of entry.

Giving a speech on the modernisation of access to justice in times of austerity, Sir Ernest said: “Digitisation presents an opportunity to break with processes that are no longer optimal or relevant and at the same time to build on the best that we have to eliminate structural design flaws and perhaps even the less attractive aspects of a litigation culture.
odr  access  future  courts 
march 2016 by JordanFurlong
The Voters Decide - Stratechery by Ben Thompson
This is a big problem for the parties as described in The Party Decides. Remember, in Noel and company’s description party actors care more about their policy preferences than they do voter preferences, but in an aggregated world it is voters aka users who decide which issues get traction and which don’t. And, by extension, the most successful politicians in an aggregated world are not those who serve the party but rather those who tell voters what they most want to hear.
innovation  future 
march 2016 by JordanFurlong
10 Big Issues Facing the Legal Market in 2016 | Big Law Business
The demand for services has changed, with growing segmentation in the nature and delivery of services
Competition is intensifying and morphing, coming from unanticipated realms
Corporations are buying legal services differently, and will continue on the path of rationalizing providers through strategic sourcing
The aura that once made legal departments unique within the corporation is continuing to get peeled away and they are joining the ranks of shared services
Cybersecurity will continue to nag the industry, with risks for many and cause for problems for some
While many advances are taking place in point solutions, the legal industry will still be befuddled on how to make technologies seamlessly work together
M&A among law firms will continue, justified primarily as adding market share and talent, but synergies and value will be elusive
Firms will continue on the march to greater professionalism in how they operate and are organized, led, and managed
While the industry is awakening to the significant issues it faces with this changing landscape and a changing workforce, few will make dramatic changes in their talent model
Given all of the above, there are too many law firms and too many lawyers
future  firms 
january 2016 by JordanFurlong
Ten Questions to Ask About Your Firm's Future | The American Lawyer
This essay is the last of a three-part series. Part one told the story of how Steve Jobs led Apple Inc. to the greatest market share story in modern history. Jobs used the "focus principle": starting with the needs of the customer and working backward to the technology.
Part two described how Am Law 200 firms can recapture market power and take market share. By applying Jobs' focus principle, firms can become best-in-class in a handful of practice areas and industries that fit the needs of the firm's current and prospective clients.
Do you believe that the winning strategy is to work backward from the needs of the client? If so, what must be done to maximize your firm's likelihood for success?
Many of the questions below are challenging because they impose strategic trade-offs. As Jobs famously said, "Focus is not about saying yes. It's about saying no." Firm leaders should first ponder the questions alone, thinking about where the firm is today and where it needs to go. Then they should discuss them with their management team.
strategy  firms  future 
january 2016 by JordanFurlong
Comment: What I (very roughly) said about the future of law for the quality mid-pack player |
Should you be a first mover, fast follower or don't botherer?

AN: My basic advice is: be insecure, alert to the threats and act accordingly. It's much better to worry that the tiger is in the bushes and for it not to have been there than the reverse. For a mid-weight law firm, in terms of deploying limited resources, being fast-follower is probably the most realistic approach. But that actually means acting fast. If you don't have anyone at partner-level who isn't a lawyer – I also think you've got a problem.

How much impact will consolidation have in the law in the next three-to-five years?

AN: It will be stable. It might slow down. It will often happen where it usually does: outside the UK top 50. There was a phase, roughly during 2011 to 2013, where there was a genuine step up in consolidation, but that has passed now. Its role is genuine but typically overstated.

Will the pace of mergers continue, increase or decline in the next two to three years?

AN: About the same.
firms  future 
december 2015 by JordanFurlong
Why the Law Firm of the Future Will Be a Software Company | Lexicata Blog
So as the evolution of the legal industry moves on, I fully expect that the law firm of the future will be a software company. The only question is whether today’s law firms are going to adapt and start building software themselves, or whether the rules will change and open up opportunities for software companies to steal away even more market share.

Whatever your thoughts on the matter may be, just keep in mind the troubled fates of Blockbuster, Borders, taxi companies, and record labels. Because they waited too long to make an entry into the software space, they either went belly up or are now confronting their demise as a real possibility. Let’s hope your law firm isn’t next on the list.
future  robolawyer  it 
november 2015 by JordanFurlong
iTunes store for professional services |
"Rather than going to the market with just time-based services, consultants will go to market with software assets that are developed to support client engagements or opportunities and delivered though digital platforms," KPMG Australia chairman Peter Nash said.
robolawyer  competition  future  firms  platform 
october 2015 by JordanFurlong
Stormy Waters Ahead? Navigating a Changing Profession | Juris Diction
“Ask any medical doctor about patients coming in to see them with information and knowledge about their symptoms,” Furlong said.
jf  future  schools  admission  innovation 
september 2015 by JordanFurlong
The Lunch Question | Stratfor
All things considered, long-term history suggests that answering "the lunch question" will not be as easy as I initially thought. Each economic system of energy capture has an ideal level of inequality, and perhaps we can even specify that in the fossil fuel world it is a Gini coefficient of 0.25-0.35 for income and 0.70-0.80 for wealth. However, running the numbers and looking for ways to stay in the right range is only the beginning. The real problem, as history shows, is that everything is connected to everything else. Tensions between those who are making it and those being left behind could easily exacerbate the "arbitrary and unsustainable inequalities" that Piketty identifies. Then again, a shift from regional economies to a global market coupled with the ongoing expansion of effective demand could soothe them. Or perhaps in a post-fossil fuel and partly post-human world, inequalities far beyond those Piketty imagined might start to seem entirely reasonable.
february 2015 by JordanFurlong
Clash of the Titans: Big Four vs MBB vs BigLaw - Beaton Capital
The next era will be a veritable clash of Titans with an intensity and consequences way beyond what the last 100 years has witnessed.
The boundaries between professions will become more and more blurred. New names, like Professional Services Giants, to describe the emerging combinations are required. And all the time the precious and perhaps precarious nature of professionalism must be protected for the benefit of society – and the professions themselves.
The scene is now set for the round 2 of the clash of the professions. As William Shakespeare put it, what’s past is prologue.
competition  accountants  firms  future 
february 2015 by JordanFurlong
What Just Happened? – AVC
1/ the social media phase of the Internet ended. this may have happened a few years ago actually but i felt it strongly this year. entrepreneurs and developers still build social applications. we still use them. but there isn’t much innovation here anymore. the big platforms are mature. their place is secure.
facebook  future  it 
january 2015 by JordanFurlong
While You Were Getting Worked Up Over Oil Prices, This Just Happened to Solar - Bloomberg
The reason solar-power generation will increasingly dominate: it’s a technology, not a fuel. As such, efficiency increases and prices fall as time goes on. The price of Earth’s limited fossil fuels tends to go the other direction. Michael Park, an analyst at Sanford Bernstein, has a term for the staggering price relationship between solar and fossil fuels: the Terrordome. I’m not sure exactly what that means, but it doesn’t sound very forgiving.
january 2015 by JordanFurlong
LEGAL FUTURES Report: artificial intelligence will cause "structural collapse" of law firms by 2030
For associate lawyers, the rise of AI will be a disaster: “The number of associates that firms need to hire will be greatly reduced, at least if the intention is to use junior lawyers for billable work rather than primarily to educate and train them ready to become business winners.
future  robolawyer 
december 2014 by JordanFurlong
Practice Innovations Newsletter, October 2014 – Thomson Reuters
The legal industry is facing a perfect storm, as the forces of globalization, technological innovation, and liberalization converge on an industry that has remained largely unchanged for decades. Change creates great opportunity, but it also poses great risk to those who do not remain fleet of foot. As we assessed the competitive forces facing Big Law in the global market for corporate legal services (see Figure 1) and the related changes taking place, we thought it would be interesting to explore from our respective demographics of New Law and Big Law and the UK and U.S. what might be the next wave of radical change in the industry, or the Next Normal.
firms  innovation  future 
october 2014 by JordanFurlong
The Future of Law: What the new world looks like - The Global Legal Post
Traditional law firms. Law firms will subject to much stronger competitive forces generated by each other and NewLaw providers. Most law firms have become smaller because other providers are now the preferred client choice for low-complexity work, and because technology has decreased the numbers of lawyers necessary for a given task. A small number, perhaps 10 or 20, prospering global law firms will have positioned themselves through high levels of specialized legal expertise, strong brands combined with highly efficient processes including extensive LPO usage, and services beyond individual advice.
september 2014 by JordanFurlong
What will the law firms of the future look like? - HighQ
At the ILTA 2014 conference in Nashville recently, I was lucky enough to be invited to speak at a session looking at the future of legal technology. The session was titled Do Robot Lawyers Dream of Billable Seconds?, and I was joined on the panel by fellow speakers Joshua Lenon of Clio, Noah Waisberg of DiligenceEngine and Michael Mills of Neota Logic. The session was put together and moderated by Ryan McClead of Norton Rose Fulbright (and 3 Geeks and a Law Blog fame). The title was a play on the famous Philip K. Dick novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? which deals with a post-apocalyptic near future that “probes the existence of defining qualities that separate humans from androids”, as Wikipedia puts it, and was famously the basis for the Blade Runner movie.
future  it 
september 2014 by JordanFurlong
Move It Or Lose It - My Shingle
Legend has it that Southwest Airlines started with a business plan sketched on the back of a cocktail napkin up by founders Herb Kelleher and Rollin King back in the mid-1960s.   Back then, the federal government regulated airline rates, keeping prices so high that only the wealthy could afford to fly.  Kelleher and King wanted to make flying cheaper but in order to slash prices, they needed to circumvent the federal caps. So they created an airline that flew only within the state.  By the time deregulation rolled around in 1978, Southwest already had a well-developed system for beating the competition on price:
regulation  innovation  future 
july 2014 by JordanFurlong
Law2023: Seven Technology Opportunities for the Future of Law | Business of Law Blog
That line of questioning completely turns over one challenge facing this slice of the legal industry.  To that end, it’s the same “outside-in” logic that Law2023 used to develop the “rules” found in its report.  We see these rules as seven profitable opportunities technology offers to the future of law:
july 2014 by JordanFurlong
With Uber, Less Reason to Own a Car -
Uber could pull this off by accomplishing something that has long been seen as a pipe dream among transportation scholars: It has the potential to decrease private car ownership.
cars  innovation  future 
june 2014 by JordanFurlong
Part 1 of 3: The Next Normal – Will the Traditional Law Firm Model Survive? -
So back to the initial question: will the traditional model be viable in the future? Is it the best structure?  What might an organization that retains some of the traditional values and structure of a law firm partnership but adapts to the changing landscape look like going forward? Perhaps it will look something like this:
firms  future 
june 2014 by JordanFurlong
A Futurist on Why Lawyers Will Start Becoming Obsolete This Year | Underwire | WIRED
Karl Schroeder is one of the best of the current generation of hard science fiction writers. He’s also an accomplished futurist who works for the design firm Idea Couture. In his new novel Lockstep, he presents the idea of a civilization that uses synchronized cryonics to maintain a thriving interplanetary society without the need for faster-than-light travel. This far future civilization has also replaced their entire legal system with all-knowing AIs. But we won’t have to wait thousands of years for technology to start replacing lawyers.
april 2014 by JordanFurlong
Rule 7 — Law 2023
Our findings: A deeper understanding of users’ experience is increasingly becoming the driving force behind the offerings of all kinds of companies. Companies are using data and design to predict consumers’ desires, aiming to appear in their lives before they even know what they want.
april 2014 by JordanFurlong
Why Lawyers Are Still Waiting for the Future | The American Lawyer
Then I visited a Flatiron loft for Lex Redux, a meeting designed to bring together investors and inventors with ideas to transform the practice of law. They were energetic and passionate, but still at a distance from organizing a tectonic shift in the marketplace. I ended the week at ReInvent Law, a TED–like event led by Daniel Katz and Renee Knake, two Michigan State University law professors who periodically gather legal visionaries and Cassandras, all determined, like me, to find the emerging future. At their event, many drums were beaten, many updates given, much progress announced. And yet I finished my week thinking that almost six years after Lehman’s death, technology-driven transformation remains on the margins. We are still in the early stages of change.
april 2014 by JordanFurlong
Blame Rich, Overeducated Elites as Our Society Frays - Bloomberg
So why is it important that we have a multitude of desperate law school graduates and many more politically ambitious rich than 30 years ago?
february 2014 by JordanFurlong
LEGAL FUTURES Waiting for the Dyson moment » LEGAL FUTURES
have been recently touting around an analogy that the law is like hand-dryers. Bear with me. For many years, all hand-dryers were pretty much the same and they kind of did the job, but not quite and you still ended up wiping your hands on your trousers. Then along came the Dyson Airblade with a radically new design for hand-dryers that does the job better, is more efficient, cheaper to run and more environmentally friendly.

But then Dyson’s hand-dryer didn’t come about overnight – it was the product, no doubt, of years of design and development. And there are still plenty of the old-style dryers around, and they are trying to improve themselves in the face of this new competition.

Whenever I give talks about ABSs, I end on a quote attributed to Bill Gates that less happens in two years and more happens in 10 years than you might think. If what we have seen in the last two years is anything to go by, the legal world of 2022 will be quite something, because surely by then we will have had our ‘Dyson moment’.
clementi  future 
february 2014 by JordanFurlong
Top Priorities for Law Firms in 2014? Depends... | JD Supra Perspectives - JDSupra
From Jordan Furlong, principal at Edge International and senior consultant at Stem Legal: "2014 will be the year that law firms either get serious about making themselves into competitive businesses, or start planning for their elimination from the market. Most firms now recognize that the legal services environment has become dramatically more challenging: clients want lower fees at more predictable prices, and they're taking advantage of multiple sources of legal work other than their traditional outside counsel. But despite what many lawyers still hope, this isn't a fad or a blip: it's the new way of doing business in the law. So law firms must streamline their operations to become more productive, analyze and control their costs of doing business, heighten the predictability of their fees, create workflow plans that engage and reward the most appropriate personnel for each task, prioritize client service and relationships as the primary means of retaining and developing business, and most of all, find the courage and vision to lay out a clear identity and strategic path for their firm and be prepared to shed any lawyers who will not adjust their behaviors to reflect the new direction. Cutbacks and price wars and lateral acquisitions have all been tried and none has alleviated the pressures on law firms; it's time to accept the conditions of the new market and start transforming law firms into professional businesses that can dominate that market."
jf  future 
december 2013 by JordanFurlong
Sentient code: An inside look at Stephen Wolfram's utterly new, insanely ambitious computational paradigm | VentureBeat | Dev | by John Koetsier
In about 30 seconds, Wolfram created a small web application that drew circles on a web page and included a user interface so a visitor could make them bigger or smaller, or change their colors. That’s doable simply because the Wolfram language — with its access to a vast reservoir of knowledge — knows what a circle is and can make it, and it automatically provides web-native user controls to manipulate it. It was a trivial example, but in another 30 seconds, Wolfram built a code snippet that defined the countries in South America and displayed their flags. Then he called up a map of Europe and highlighted Germany and France in different colors computationally, in seconds.
robolawyer  future  it 
december 2013 by JordanFurlong
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