Technology and the changing practice of law: An entrée to previously inaccessible information via TRAC

Authors: Roberge, L.1; Long, S.1; Hassett, P.2; Burnham, D.3

Source: Artificial Intelligence and Law, Volume 10, Number 4, 2002 , pp. 261-282(22)

Publisher: Springer

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Abstract:



The proliferation of electronic databases is raising some important questions about how the evolving access to new or previously inaccessible information is likely to change the practice of law. This paper discusses TRAC, an interesting electronic source of previously inaccessible information that is currently used by members of the media, public interest groups, lawyers, and the federal government. Summaries, reports, and snapshots of TRAC's data can be accessed through a series of public web sites. TRAC's subscription service allows users access to the data warehouse and data mining tools (see http://tracfed.syr.edu/info.html for more information). Additionally the paper examines how AI can be employed to assist for the legal profession in utilization of TRAC's data. Finally, it speculates about how TRAC and other new electronic data sources may impact the practice of law.

Keywords: Freedom of Information Act; U.S. Government; automated case advisor; data mining; data warehouse; statistical information

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: TRAC School of Management, Syracuse University, USA E-mail: lroberge@syr.edu; suelong@syr.edu 2: College of Law, Syracuse University, USA E-mail: phassett@law.syr.edu 3: S. I. Newhouse School of Communications, Syracuse University, USA E-mail: burnham@epic.org

Publication date: January 1, 2002

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