nav search
Data Centre Software Security DevOps Business Personal Tech Science Emergent Tech Bootnotes
BOFH
Lectures

back to article
Shall we have AI judging UK court cases? Top beak ponders the future

Pete 2 Silver badge

Henry VI, Part 2!

> Some in the legal world fear the real reason for the project has more to do with cutting costs

And that alone would be an excellent reason. Anything that stops legal firms charging the rates of their senior lawyers (£200/hour recently in the UK, for a straightforward probate) and then having all the work done by an office junior, would be welcome.

If we can get web-present AIs to handle all the basic stuff that makes up the majority of a lawyer's workload that would be fantastic. If that could interface directly to another AI handling the bulk of litigation, that would be even better.

The only problem then would be how to get the system to work in such a way that those AIs would take 6 months to finish a simple job, when it only actually took a few seconds of compute time?

As for the Shakespeare quote? See here, but should that be a SIGTERM or a SIGQUIT?

Ledswinger Silver badge

Re: Henry VI, Part 2!

If we can get web-present AIs to handle all the basic stuff that makes up the majority of a lawyer's workload that would be fantastic.

There's already transactional legal work (like will writing) that is nothing more than a dumb algorithm in computing terms, with little evidence that anybody has successfully displaced meatsack will-writers with machines. Although the deregulation of will writing in 2011 could allow for automation, what actually happened was an increase in people using a qualified solicitor to write their wills rather than will writing services, so it seems Joe Public still seeks the comfort of an expensive legal professional.

Conveyancing is another area ripe for automation - all those crappy, expensive, painfully slow manual land searches and the turgid sale bureaucracy for housing is utterly unnecessary in this day and age. It could be done in minutes, and done more securely. But again, I see nobody trying to do this. Come on Zoopla, this is your sort of sh*t! Get it sorted!

Another legal job for AI: Search all stature law, and highlight all conflicts of law for resolution, and re-write the lot in the nearest possible to clear everyday English.

Pascal Monett Silver badge

Great ideas there, really.

Let's fully automate administrative and apparently trivial tasks with the magic of our "AI".

That'll give us more time to take to the streets and complain about how machines are taking over our jobs.

A Non e-mouse Silver badge

Re: Henry VI, Part 2!

Conveyancing is another area ripe for automation

The whole house buying process in the UK needs ripping up and starting again. It's absurdly bureaucratic.

macjules Silver badge
Paris Hilton

Re: Henry VI, Part 2!

The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.

~ Dick the Butcher, Henry VI, Part 2, Act IV, Scene 2

We have a plan to get rid of all judges and lawyers by developing an advanced AI to manage our courts.

~ Jon "The Butcher" Lewis, Capita

Peter2 Silver badge

Re: Henry VI, Part 2!

> Some in the legal world fear the real reason for the project has more to do with cutting costs

And that alone would be an excellent reason. Anything that stops legal firms charging the rates of their senior lawyers (£200/hour recently in the UK, for a straightforward probate) and then having all the work done by an office junior, would be welcome.

I'm the IT manager for a law firm, and that is a straw man argument. It is not currently possible to do that as redress can be gained through the very, very widely used part 47 procedure.

https://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/procedure-rules/civil/rules/part-47-procedure-for-detailed-assessment

If you trouble yourself to look, you'll find many, many complaints from Solicitors pointing out that the court is deciding that they won't get paid for charging for an office junior (at office junior rates) doing particular bits of work such as sorting and indexing 800 page court bundles. Now, if they won't allow that as chargeable then how do you think you can get £200 per hour for work that's not being done?

The substantial majority of cases are dealt with by fixed fee agreements. You might find somebody particularly rich who has somebody on retainer who they then pay a couple of hundred an hour, but I don't think you'll find many people doing that.

If we can get web-present AIs to handle all the basic stuff that makes up the majority of a lawyer's workload that would be fantastic. If that could interface directly to another AI handling the bulk of litigation, that would be even better.

Um, that was done about two decades ago with case management systems? The main time drain these days in law is that about a third of people in the population are utterly incapable of reading comprehension no matter how simple you make things and then want to speak to a human. Humans, especially highly trained humans are a very expensive cost. You want to pay for that? Fine. But do you really think I want my expensively trained solicitors talking to people on the phone instead of actually doing the legal work, especially when most of the work is done at a fixed fee?!

The only problem then would be how to get the system to work in such a way that those AIs would take 6 months to finish a simple job, when it only actually took a few seconds of compute time?

Ha. If you think you can deal with any legal problems with just CPU time then i've got news for you. If we could have done so, don't you think we would have done?

If we can get web-present AIs to handle all the basic stuff that makes up the majority of a lawyer's workload that would be fantastic.

There's already transactional legal work (like will writing) that is nothing more than a dumb algorithm in computing terms, with little evidence that anybody has successfully displaced meatsack will-writers with machines. Although the deregulation of will writing in 2011 could allow for automation, what actually happened was an increase in people using a qualified solicitor to write their wills rather than will writing services, so it seems Joe Public still seeks the comfort of an expensive legal professional.

<Citation needed>

If you can reduce will writing to a dumb algorithm, then please be my guest. I've been trying for a decade in hope of making actually writing the will profitable, and i've failed comprehensively because besides of 30 year olds who have just bought their first property, have no kids and both want simple mirror wills that say basically "If I die then everything goes to my partner, and if they've died then to my parents, and if they've died then to charity" then wills are fiendishly complicated masses of legally complicated ANDIF statements that not only have to state what people want to do, but also have to work around case law that would prevent their expressed wishes from being thwarted in court.

For instance, the grandparents who haven't s been blocked from seeing their great grandchildren by their grandchilren have decided that since the grandkids are effectively disowning them they would rather leave the money to somebody else than their grandkids. Grandkids challenge the money not being left to them in court, to which point the case law gets a bit more complicated. And i'd count that as a simple, predictable will.

You wouldn't know because you'll never see any large selection of wills, but take it from me you can automate about 20% of wills. The remaining 80% are so byzantine that an AI would probably decide that it's easier to do a skynet than deal with it.

And by the by, we do wills at a fixed fee. We do them (IIRC) for a fixed fee of £110 for a single will. We don't make a profit on this. The reason for this is that it's a loss leader. We offer to store the will for the client in secure storage, and a few of those will then turn out to be probate cases that some of the grandkids do decide to challenge in court and then we make a few quid from the litigation.

Companies that can do wills but cannot do the litigation or other services had to charge a lot, lot more for getting a will than we have ever charged precisely because they had to earn their living doing nothing else. For us, it's a loss leader and we aren't trying much to make money from it.

Peter2 Silver badge

Re: Henry VI, Part 2!

Conveyancing is another area ripe for automation - all those crappy, expensive, painfully slow manual land searches
Land searches are slow, if you are doing the official searches because your a tightwad. If your willing to pay for it then you can get the searches and the search report within a matter of hours by phoning up the head of the search company and asking them to do a personal search on that property as a priority. You then agree a price, the client agrees to pay for it and they then do their best. The record is I think about 40 minutes from request to the search report being received via email.

Of course, that comes down to the client being willing to pay to have the search done privately, rather than waiting for the local government getting around to it when they feel like it.

and the turgid sale bureaucracy for housing is utterly unnecessary in this day and age. It could be done in minutes, and done more securely. But again, I see nobody trying to do this. Come on Zoopla, this is your sort of sh*t! Get it sorted!

Oh please. Zoopla and Rightmove have hardly accomplished anything. Try and figure out how to list a property on either yourself. Oh, you can't? That'll be because the Estate Agents know that if people could list directly on these sites then estate agents would immediately cease to exist and turned around to both sites and said that they'd start up their own competitors and not list any properties on rightmove/zoopla if they allowed direct listings. Hence, you need an estate agent to list properties on rightmove/zoopla despite the agent not doing anything more than walking around snapping a few photos with a camera and then uploading them with a description. Oh, and pricing. Which is a matter of looking around at what everything else is selling for in the area, and then charging around that with allowance for the condition of the property.

Now, Zoopla can't even deal with Estate Agent's protecting their ability to charge percentage points of the property value for taking and uploading photos. But you think they are doing to deal with actually legally complicated issues? Please.

Technically speaking, you could just hand over the money to the buyer, and then register it at the Land Registry. Some people have been doing this since some TV "expert" suggested doing it. The problem with this is that generally speaking, most buyers get quite upset when they come to sell a property and then discover that somebody else doesn't want to buy it because of the legacy of the flooding in the area, or the possibility that it might collapse down an old mine shaft running under the property, or discover that the property has been built where an awful lot of chemicals were dumped post war, which upon somebody taking a soil sample is starting to leak nasty things into the environment. And um, yeah that's your legal liability to fix up because it's on your property. As is it when the local church has their roof damaged, and then decides to bill the houses that were built on church land for the parishioners in the 14th century.

Very strangely, mortgage lenders don't want to lend people money to buy liabilities like this, leaving the person owning the property having to pay to fix the problems before they can sell it. Do you have any idea how much it costs to fix any of those problems, such as filling in a mine shaft? Not cheap.

And have you ever wondered why conveyancing is the most frequent (and most expensive) insurance claims for law firms? Nope, guess not. Suffice to say that if a law firm misses things like my examples then their insurance tends to foot the bill. Making sure that none of these issues exist, and if they did they are dealt with by absurdly long running insurance policies is all part of the job. Making sure that the person buying the house (and the law firm!) is not liable for those sort of things takes up the majority of the conveyancing process.

The parts of conveyancing that can be automated have long since been automated, simply because when your doing conveyancing for a fixed fee then you automate everything that can be automated. Now consider something a moment.

Estage agent: 1% of £165,000 = £1,650. 30 minutes taking photos and posting them. 4x 15 minute appointments before one agrees to buy the property. That's about an hour and a half worked. Hell, let's call it 2 hours work. That's still £825 per hour for an unskilled job that requires no qualifications beyond a bit of customer service experience.

So: the law firm charges ~£600 for their work in conveyancing. That's 8-10 hours usually. £600/8=£75 per hour to to £600/10=£60 per hour worked. And that's costs, not profit. Paying wages, rent and keeping the lights on does cost something.

If you'd like the job done faster then it's quite possible: pay your Solicitor enough to employ more staff on the job, which lets them get it done faster. I think our firms record is doing a block of flats in about 3 hours, but that relied on somebody being willing to pay a partners rates for doing nothing else for the morning along with sufficiently expedited searches etc.

Another legal job for AI: Search all stature law, and highlight all conflicts of law for resolution, and re-write the lot in the nearest possible to clear everyday English.

Law is written in clear, everyday English already. Even the bits written in medieval latin have been translated to perfectly comprehensible English and are freely available to view online. Ok, let's pick something that everybody here ought to be reasonably familiar with, the computer misuse act.

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1990/18/contents

Read it. How it is unclear? Which bits in particular do you find unduly difficult? I'm going to guess none of it, because it's perfectly comprehensible to anybody who can understand "IF" statement.

1) IF you have done A, B & C THEN you are guilty of this offense. GOTO 3; sentencing. A: This is the penalty if convicted in a magistrates court in England and wales, B, in if convicted in a magistrates court in Scotland, and C anywhere in the UK at the Crown Court with a jury trial.

How could you possibly write that to be any simpler?

And even if it was difficult to understand, allowing an AI to write our laws is not something that should be even remotely desirable because the law is written by humans for humans, accepting the human judgement will be used, and humans still hate it. Without exercising human judgement which an AI is inherently incapable of then AI conceived and executed laws would be an utter disaster.

Ledswinger Silver badge

Pascal M: Let's fully automate administrative and apparently trivial tasks with the magic of our "AI"

That'll give us more time to take to the streets....

So, Mr Ludd, noting the tasks I highlighted, you'll be joining the barricades to protest the right of lawyers to earn a handsome crust through sloth, incompetence and inefficiency? I'll send my apologies, as whatever night the lawyers are rioting on I shall be busy.

All of the examples I gave are services that are expensive for us mere mortals, are notoriously slow, error prone and disproportionately costly. They are not volume employers, and I suspect about half of the searches in conveyancing are performed on digital databases already. Conveyancing and will writing are ideal for automation, offering cost savings, far greater speed (from weeks to minutes), and far fewer errors. And that's the thing about automation - it should offer a better quality outcome, and that's probably more important than the cost savings.

Looking at the replacement of manual assembly, welding and painting in car production with robots - that has enabled cheaper cars, but rather more importantly it does a far better job than people managed. Fair enough, it I buy a Morgan, I want it made by hand. But for a workaday car, I want it cheap and fault free, and automation done properly can deliver that.

Ledswinger Silver badge

Re: Henry VI, Part 2!

I'm the IT manager for a law firm, and that is a straw man argument....

You should have yourself checked for lawyeritis.

You make a point about the complexity of wills. But given that there are a series of laws, rules and precedents that dictate how inheritance will work by default, and what is permissible to achieve a client chosen outcome, then we don't need AI, we just need a moderately complex algorithm. Relying on the memory of a human to fully understand the complexity of inheritance law when writing wills is Victorian. A computer can resolve these problems that are (at heart) just very basic algebra far faster, far better. You need people who really understand the law to write the algorithm, but you don't need that "personal touch" that's used to justify often outrageous fees.

In a subsequent post you make the point that if you pay more and your lawyer knows the process, things can be done very efficiently. But why should ALL conveyancing not be done quickly and efficiently? Given that customers are already paying a hell of a lot for something barely above administration, why should they have to pay even more for an adequate service? I have worked for a major law firm (on KM and business development), and in my view the sector is rankly inefficient, the major law firms pad their invoices something chronic, they charge full rate to recycle work they've done and been paid for before, and their commercial objectives are often diametrically opposed to that of their clients. And that seems to hold true for the top ten law firm I worked for right down to high street lawyers writing will, doing conveyancing. I suspect probate, divorce law services and the like are similarly poor value for customers, but luckily I've not had the need to find out.

Spazturtle Silver badge

Re: Henry VI, Part 2!

"If we could have done so, don't you think we would have done?"

I'm sure somebody said this in 1963 when people suggested creating the internet to link together all the separate computer networks. Or in 1961 when Kennedy said that man would walk on the Moon by the end of the decade.

Daniel von Asmuth Bronze badge

Who needs justice anyway?

Court cases can be decided with Divine Intelligence, such as tossing a sterling coin. Heads up, the defendant hangs, tails, he is not guilty.

Voland's right hand Silver badge

Re: Henry VI, Part 2!

Conveyancing is another area ripe for automation - all those crappy, expensive, painfully slow manual land searches and the turgid sale bureaucracy for housing is utterly unnecessary in this day and age

It is significantly more automated at present than you think. The entire land register has been electronic for a few years now.

It was if memory serves me right a EU requirement and it was done across all countries. As I actually own my house (not the bank owning it), I got the notice that all paperwork is destroyed and converted to electronic form. Can't remember when this was, but it was a while back in the UK. For the properties I own outside the UK it was 4+ years ago. I suspect that as you most likely do not have your title deeds (the bank has them) you never got it.

The planning register is now also fully electronic and publicly accessible (at least where I live).

There is in fact very little of the old bureaucracy left in both and searching is indeed done in minutes.

Peter2 Silver badge

Re: Henry VI, Part 2!

You make a point about the complexity of wills. But given that there are a series of laws, rules and precedents that dictate how inheritance will work by default, and what is permissible to achieve a client chosen outcome, then we don't need AI, we just need a moderately complex algorithm. Relying on the memory of a human to fully understand the complexity of inheritance law when writing wills is Victorian. A computer can resolve these problems that are (at heart) just very basic algebra far faster, far better. You need people who really understand the law to write the algorithm, but you don't need that "personal touch" that's used to justify often outrageous fees.

Oh, have an XKCD:- https://xkcd.com/1831/

My point is that I have written a highly complex algorithm and it fails to work adequately in all but the most basic usage cases as human affairs are simply to complex and individual to deal with this way. 80% of cases are exceptions to the rule, hence why I point out that it only works in practice for very simple cases where you have a relatively young couple.

Having actually done this with due respect I think my experience trumps your opinion that you could do a better job. If you think you can do better than me, then write your own and prove me wrong and we'll join the several thousand other firms paying you license fees to use it.

In a subsequent post you make the point that if you pay more and your lawyer knows the process, things can be done very efficiently.

Everything is done very efficiently. Your on about doing it quickly. Two different things.

If your willing to pay for expedited services to jump the que with search providers etc then information can be provided very quickly to progress things.

But why should ALL conveyancing not be done quickly and efficiently? Given that customers are already paying a hell of a lot for something barely above administration,

All conveyancing is done efficiently in a streamlined way via case management systems these days. If everybody paid more then conveyancing would be done faster. At the moment you can get it done faster by jumping the que to get yours done faster at the expense of other people. Pay more, and the search company can hire more people to do the job faster, to pick one example.

You've heard the old thing of "Price, speed, quality. Pick two."?

In this case quality of legal work is pre picked by the law firm, as skimping on this to earn an extra £25 means they lose £250,000. That leaves you with a choice of Quality & Price, in which case you get a cheap but slow service or Quality & Speed, in which case you get a fast service that's not cheap.

I have worked for a major law firm (on KM and business development), and in my view the sector is rankly inefficient, the major law firms pad their invoices something chronic, they charge full rate to recycle work they've done and been paid for before, and their commercial objectives are often diametrically opposed to that of their clients.

If the work is done on an hourly basis then yes, the firm would have an incentive to take as long doing the work as possible.

What would happen to those incentives you raise if the work was done on a fixed fee basis? Pretty much all work is done in the legal sector is done on a fixed fee basis these days, by the by.

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

take paper-based processes that clerks

first they came for the court clerks.

oiseau
WTF?

Ideas

Hello:

"The Lord Chief Justice (LCJ) of England and Wales thinks there is a place for articifial intelligence in the judicial process ... " " ... mulled the idea that AI could "perform some, if not all" of the functions of him and his peers."

And I thought I'd heard it all, only to be proven wrong once again.

Judging from the content of LCJ's ideas I cannot but think that there's a place for the poor chap in a some far away retirement home, where he should be taken -well medicated of course- ASAP, before he makes a further fool of himself.

AI indeed ...

I tell you, one of these days the gods will give up and punish us all.

O.

Peter2 Silver badge

Re: Ideas

Lord Burnett then addressed the thorny question of AI in the courtroom, cautiously welcoming it while reminding his audience that "we are in the foothills, rather than the uplands" of its development.

"There is every reason to suppose that it will develop to be useful in giving indicative decisions and maybe help facilitate early settlement" in civil court cases, he said, continuing: "There are those who suggest that AI, buttressed with careful safeguards, could perform some, if not all judicial functions. I have my doubts but would not discourage debate."

Note he says "in civil court cases", almost all of which are absurdly simple cases. Ie; "I bought item A, the seller hasn't sent it to me and I want my money back.". You have a stack of proof from the person bringing the claim, the person on the receiving end doesn't even respond to the court letter. Simply, for this particular application you could say "no defense received by <virtual> court date, found guilty by default and the court orders that a full refund be given. If not done so by <date> then the person bringing this can apply to make the person bankrupt"

That, I would agree you could probably get a existing script driven "AI" to do today without any real risk of any miscarriage of justice, especially if recourse to a human is possible.

I think I can also agree with him that by extension that AI's stand no hope of ever dealing with criminal law cases.

Ken 16 Silver badge
Big Brother

Anything that eliminates lawyers is a good thing in my book

Anything!

Voland's right hand Silver badge

Re: Anything that eliminates lawyers is a good thing in my book

I beg to differ. That will leave just court and prosecution.

1. Nobody qualified to check if the evidence has been collected legally and is indeed representing what it is supposed to represent. The temptation to "adjust the evidence" to get a conviction is HUGE. Just look at USA with their psychological torture and arm twisting to get "plea deals" or Russia where the same process is very physical "Magnitski style".

2. Nobody qualified to check if there are multiple conflicting laws or there is a priority ladder (law, constitution, international treaties)

3. Nobody qualified to check if the accused has been allowed to have access to all of the evidence.

Lawyers are a necessary evil I am afraid and so far we have not learned how to live without them. In fact all experiments on living without them have ended with large groups of people being walked down a corridor painted in institutional green finishing with a wall with a lot of pockmarks in it. As someone who has had 95% of his relatives (up to 3 degrees distant) on the mother's side end up in front of such wall at some point in history I have to disagree with you.

Ken 16 Silver badge
Paris Hilton

Re: Anything that eliminates lawyers is a good thing in my book

By that logic, the US should be the most just country in the world, having 1 lawyer to every 1.6 people in prison. New Brunswick must be a veritable police state compared with New York, having only 1/8th the number of lawyers per capita.

Voyna i Mor Silver badge

Re: Anything that eliminates lawyers is a good thing in my book

Ken 16 - interesting Germans are actually more litigious than Americans, having more court cases per head. But, owing to their rational legal system, far fewer lawyers are needed to run it.

Intractable Potsherd

Re: Anything that eliminates lawyers is a good thing in my book

@Voyna - rational=inflexible. I'll stick with the inherently flexible common law system rather than the inherently one-size-fits-all code system.

Being a law lecturer in Europe must be really boring.

Ken 16 Silver badge
Paris Hilton

Is there a place for Blockchain in the judicial process?

AI+Blockchain>IoT

JimmyPage Silver badge
Stop

Yawn ...

come back when we have any AI to talk of.

Alan Bourke

Of course we bloody won't.

This AI bollocks is surpassing even the blockchain bollocks in terms of utter bollocks.

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Are they sure AI is really up to this? If the legal AI is as good as the ones powering the various autonomous vehicles being tested out there, or those that supposedly make purchasing recommendations on ecommerce sites, I can imagine the words "miscarriage of justice" will be heard before too long.

macjules Silver badge

Artificial Intelligence?

In this modern age we are expected to take advice on AI from a man who normally wears a 17th Century powdered wig, a red dress and gown, tights and buckled shoes?

Real stupidity beats artificial intelligence every time.

~ GNU Pterry.

Daniel von Asmuth Bronze badge

Re: Artificial Intelligence?

The 17th Century was the apex of the modern era. The start date of the postmodern era is disputed; I wouuld suggest around 1970.

Voyna i Mor Silver badge

Re: Artificial Intelligence?

He doesn't. Nowadays it's special occasions only.

But I do think a useful cost saving could result from replacing wigs with hard hats. You'd still know who was who, and with the sort of people you get in public galleries nowadays, H&SE would probably approve.

Voyna i Mor Silver badge

Re: Artificial Intelligence?

"The 17th Century was the apex of the modern era"

You mean it was all downhill after that? It explains a lot.

Ledswinger Silver badge

come back when we have any AI to talk of.

A good pointy, in relation to heavyweight lawyering and matters involving judgement based on complex facts.

But given that the term AI applies to any programme these days, I'd draw the net a bit wider. Much (maybe most) legal work doesn't involve judgement - it is very transactional and very procedural, and doesn't need AI. All it needs is a carefully constructed algorithm that applies the same tests and creates the same outcome as a workaday lawyer would farm out to their trainee.

I've worked for a major law firm, and most have had fairly competent knowledge management systems for years. These contain all digitally created work done before, every bit extensively indexed to help the juniors be more productive and make fewer errors. Aside from litigation, huge swathes of expensive legal advice or complex document drafting are nothing more than a big and very expensive cut'n'paste. That's ripe for greater automation.

Totally not a Cylon
Terminator

What could possibly go wrong?

It's all based on precedence anyway, so use an 'Expert System' to look it up....

Bonus: we could use the same system in Westminster; just add the following:

what?

I'm confused.

Where's the tea?

Voland's right hand Silver badge

Do not think so

There are existing trials in several other countries for software assistants to prepare the drafts for the court decisions and opinions. Several Eu countries(*) and Russia are all testing systems, some of them are at least few years old. These are the ones I know of, I would not be surprised if similar initiatives exist in the Far East.

The common denominator there is that they all practice Napoleonic law so you can have the laws expressed in a easily digestible form for an algorithm to chew on. In fact, the process can be mostly algorithmic with AI handling only the corner cases.

British law is the mother of all tests for AI. It is precedent based and some precedents are dating back to the 16th century. It starts as the mother of all problems in language processing - it is not just English (much more difficult to work with compared to languages with hard grammars), it is English dating back 5 centuries. Then there is the legal aspect of it. Then there is the "sanity" check. Expecting AI to do well where humans with 40 years of qualifications is overly optimistic.

As good example is this year in Parliament. With the government comfortably sleeping on whatever legal opinion it was provided that it does not need to release anything the Parliament pulled out a 17th century law to force it to spill the beans. I do not see an AI being capable of doing that.

(*)I personally know some of the people who write the software for them, they also do work for the UK Parliament by the way

StuntMisanthrope Bronze badge

You'll make the bench lad soon.

Next week. You've got promise, but week in and week out. Let's see what you can do. Keep the work up and you might make the first team. #viz

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Short-term memory

Funny that Burnett should forget he said completely the opposite about the interpreters who work in his courts...

https://www.lawgazette.co.uk/practice/computers-will-make-interpreters-obsolete-lord-chief-predicts/5066416.article

JimmyPage Silver badge
Stop

Turing test ?

Might be time to make passing this a precondition of calling something "AI".

Could any commentards help by filling in the names of systems that have passed it in reply to this comment, please. That way we can have a neat summary of the state of AI in 2018.

.

.

.

.

Voyna i Mor Silver badge

Re: Turing test ?

"Could any commentards help by filling in the names of systems that have passed it in reply to this comment, please."

Me for one. Nobody has spotted that I'm a bot yet.

(Serious point; when Turing wrote about that test, we still thought that human intelligence was the only kind of intelligence. It's now obvious that parrots and dolphins are intelligent but not necessarily in a human like way, and that some aspects of human behaviour are distributed fairly randomly among the animals - dogs are good at communicating with people but not as good at abstract thought as ravens, say. So the Turing Test isn't really appropriate any more, because of its anthropocentric assumption.)

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

the Turing Test isn't really appropriate because of its anthropocentric assumptions

Would be relevant, except the entire article was about using "AI" in an anthropocentric environment.

Turing still rules.

Voyna i Mor Silver badge

Re: the Turing Test isn't really appropriate because of its anthropocentric assumptions

"Would be relevant, except the entire article was about using "AI" in an anthropocentric environment."

Fair comment, I suppose. But the question still remains whether a system designed to evaluate evidence in court cases and interpreting the law should do something resembling human reasoning. The massive cost of litigation and the unsatisfactory outcome of many cases may be a simple artefact of people being what they are, but it may be that the brains evolved to look for food and sex and shout at other apes may not be the best way to deal with the complexities of a modern society.

Pedigree-Pete Bronze badge
Joke

Re: Turing test ?

Vonya. Intelligence. Don't forget the Octopi. I always feel guilty when eating Calamari. You wouldn't eat Dolphin. PP

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

The Register - Independent news and views for the tech community. Part of Situation Publishing