Over the last several years, we have felt the wonderful breeze of fresh, invigorating winds penetrating the often-resistant-to-change legal profession.  That breeze has come through the ascendancy of some amazingly innovative applications intended to enhance lawyers’ abilities to provide, and clients’ abilities to receive and use, legal services and work products … intended to create new ways of addressing legal challenges … intended to close the “justice gap” and increase access to legal services among economically disadvantaged individuals … and intended to add new lenses through which to understand the value added by lawyers and the value realized and perceived by clients.  The undercurrents, which have reinvigorated the minds and spirits of lawyers and other professionals, have been manifested through applications such as LexMachina, LegalMation, LexPredict, Luminance, Mitratech, Exari and Paladin, among many other inspiring and transformative tech apps.

The undercurrents of this new breeze have also brought about a renewal, that is, the beginnings of an open conversations among lawyers and other legal services professionals, clients, the economically disadvantaged who but for their circumstances would be clients and the civic leaders who advocate for the economically disadvantaged.  And, the conversations have rightfully been centered upon all aspects of the legal profession from law firm economics and pricing of legal services to service delivery models and everything in between.

All that said, we as entrepreneurs - some of us lawyers and some of us not, would not be able to do what we do – to usher in this new breeze and its kaleidoscopic panoramas of innovation without the data scientists, technologists, coders and other tech specialists who, every day, help us understand more about what we do – about the practice of law and about how to make it more efficient and accessible to as many people as possible across the globe.

So, this is a “thank you” to the data scientists, technologists, coders and other tech specialists – the unsung heroes – who help us lawyers and other advocates and legal tech entrepreneurs provide aid to clients and to those in need.  You, data scientists, technologists, coders and other tech specialists work assiduously every day ... with every diagram or language map you create, every piece of code you write, every terabyte of data you extract with a clever script, every algorithm you synthesize and every translation you make from “legalese” (in whatever the language) to “English” and, then, to logical operations … help us be better entrepreneurs, better lawyers and better service providers.

Thank you to all data scientists, technologists, coders and other tech specialists, especially the one who has helped this author see new possibilities!  You have already helped transform the legal profession, and you will ultimately help bring the legal profession into the 21st Century for the benefit of all. In doing so, you will help create the “public good” of making legal services more efficient, more affordable and more accessible.

Alongside of a 21st century lawyer is, or will be, one or more data scientists, technologists, coders and/or other tech specialists!


By:  Karen Suber

©Frontier of the Law

What helpful insights, tips, or strategies might you be willing to share that would help other professionals think through how to incite innovation and efficiency gains into the practice of law?

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