I wonder. I generally do my own research but I have a very specialized practice that does not lend itself to deligation of those type of tasks. I couldn’t imagine having Chappy research some esoteric issue of law that it could do any faster than a well designed term-search on LEXIS or WESTLAW.
BTW, I wrote book review in 1991 for the Rutgers Computer and Technology Law Journal (Vol 12 # 2) that reviewed Phillip Lieth’s book titled “Formalism in AI and Computer Science.” It addressed precisely this issue. From what I recall of the article, Leith was of the opinion that AI was a threat to future lawyer’s job security and I was of the opinion that there was no need to worry. I wonder who was right?
Unfortunately very dated. They didn’t guess back then that computers could have the exact full text of all the books that he could ever own, and much more (e.g. video records of trials and such). So unless he’s divining some legal information from the smell of the ink on the pages, channeling ancient lawyers via osmosis as he fondles the covers, or something else supernatural there’s nothing gained from his dead tree library.
Au contraire - if you watch the video snippet he proclaimed the computer did have every bit of legal knowledge - what most folks, even many lawyers minted since the late 80’s, don’t understand the aesthetic part of legal research - being able to have multiple physical books open so you can compare the stylistic and tiny details of the holdings in similar but factually different cases - or often the different way different courts interpret the same statutory or administrative phrase. You just can’t get that even with multiple monitors - its just not the same.
Now that I’m solo, Lexis is even more important because of the volume and breadth, but I REALLY miss my reporters…
You young whipper-snappers! University of Texas only had Westlaw, and it was reserved EXCLUSIVELY for faculty and their TA’s - us peons hit the stacks daily. But I really am glad I had that experience even if it is antiquated today.
PS - it was priced BY THE MINUTE back then - there wasn’t even a per search fee option. Of course, law schools got discounts but again geared to faculty use.
I can’t help but think that during the transition from scrolls to bound books there were scholars decrying the change saying that it can’t compare with being able to unroll multiple large scrolls side-by-side, covering tables with them, instead of having to deal with those limited pages… or the transition to printing and oh, the beauty and nuance of hand written manuscripts compared to the cold heartless printed page… you can’t get the feeling from modern books!
Sorry - I was just musing - no one hardly has the books anymore unless you are near a law school. Even county law libraries rarely have more than the local state reporter and maybe fed cases and statutes. I’m not hung up about it; just bemoaning the lost art and literally fun of the hunt.
This made me laugh. My second summer in law school was spent at a large firm where we were not allowed to use computer research, were not allowed to type our own memos, etc. , and were forced to dictate all of our writing and correspondence. They felt that their way was more efficient. I couldnt wait to get back to school that fall.