For law librarians, the past 25 years have engaged us in a journey from fee based access to the law via books, followed by dedicated terminals and CDs, to online portal services, to the current state of far more open, accessible and free access to the law. Sarah Glassmeyer’s perspective on this journey helps us focus on information access as a key facet of justice, highlighting the critical foundation that Cornell’s Legal Information Institute established for our communities of best practice to follow as we continue to pursue complete and free access to all facets of legal information on the Internet.
Our exposure to and reliance upon an increasingly ubiquitous range of technology is intertwined with issues related to intellectual property law. With smartphone cameras used to capture and share what their respective creators otherwise claim as intellectual property, to the devices, services and applications that comprise the Internet of Things (IoT), Ken Grady raises significant and as yet unresolved concerns about how the rule of law will be applied in response to the use, and misuse, of AI and digital personal assistants.
Law librarian and professor Brandon Adler identifies core issues to support educating third year law students in a wide range of reliable free and low cost legal resources. Many law librarians acknowledge that there is a lack of awareness and use of alternative legal resources, with the law student community as well across a large swath of attorneys in firms both large and small.
Legal AI pioneer Itai Gurari’s article is a commentary and a lessons learned that is critical to our communities of best practice as we seek to effectively assess both the promise and significant drawbacks of artificial intelligence and machine learning in the context of the legal sector. As Gurari clearly articulates, building reliably intelligent legal software requires more than just the application of the latest trendy tools. It requires building systems that are robust and that respect the use cases for which they are designed.
The Internet of Things (IoT) has permeated all facets of our lives – professional, family, social – more quickly and expansively than many are willing to acknowledge. The repercussions of IoT are multifaceted – and directly impact issues that span privacy, cybersecurity, intellectual property rights, civil liberties and the law. Law and technology scholar Joshua A.T. Fairfield discusses the ramifications of allowing our environment to be seeded with sensors that gather our personal data using a plethora of devices we now consider to be essential conveniences.
This overview by Peter Charles focuses on the impact of data collection in reference to DUI prosecutions, and includes recent court cases, notable articles on DUI law, and loops in the escalating use of data collection and privacy rights.
Assistant Professor of Law and Reference Librarian Brandon Adler’s pathfinder succinctly and instructively communicates how your law library can encourage seniors from local high schools to attend a programming activity in the law library to learn about the opportunities of pursuing a J.D. program.
Notable developments in courtrooms, academia and government institutions, both state and federal, are laying the groundwork for challenges to fingerprint matching. This extensively researched, comprehensive annotated bibliography by Ken Strutin includes new and noteworthy materials such as key opinions, significant articles and online resources concerning accuracy, reliability, validity as well as authenticity of fingerprint evidence. It also includes information on scientific and technological developments that are pushing the frontiers of biometric analysis.
Genevieve Zook’s guide to fake news takes a multifaceted, long view of the history of spreading misinformation, through word of mouth to the acceleration of this activity through social media. Zook identifies examples in which fake news impacts different disciplines, diverse topics and subject matter. She references the survey data gathered by reliable organizations that assist us in better understanding the dimensions of this issue. And vitally, Zook documents actionable resources, many of which are authored by law librarians, to facilitate our ability to make sound decisions, exercise our critical skills, and deliver expert services to our users and customers moving forward.
Nicole Black’s article addresses how solo and small law firms can effectively implement business process improvements using applications for critical tasks including time-tracking, billing, and invoicing.