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Ravel Law Offers New Way to Do Legal Research
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Ravel Law Presents: Increasing Access to American Case Law Through Technology from Ravel Law on Vimeo.

Summary: Ravel Law hopes to add something new in the legal research world.


Can Ravel Law make a dent in the big data world dominated by Westlaw and LexisNexis? That’s an exciting question spurned on by a recent profile of the business in Forbes.

Currently, Westlaw and LexisNexis are the leaders in legal data-driven research. Forbes writes that those two entities are often the starting point for legal research because of their extensive database of case details, but that their limitations are that they’re mainly search engines with little analytic value. So that’s where Ravel Law comes in.

The San Francisco-based Ravel Law was created in 2012. Co-founders Daniel Lewis and Nik Reed earned their JDs from Stanford, and they used their previous coding experience to create a new “legal search, analytics and visualization platform.”

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Ravel Law hopes to apply more sophisticated technology to help with legal searches. For instance, one of their tools — Judges Analytics — searches through particular judges’ decisions to find out who is most sympathetic to their arguments. The data’s value is further utilized with visualization. Ravel’s dashboard offers a way to spot connections and opportunities in a clean interface.

Additionally, Ravel Law has formed a partnership with Harvard Law School. Harvard aims to digitalize its library of case law and make it available to the public for free by 2017. Ravel plans to scan every page from the library and have the information converted to computer text. This means that all of Harvard’s information will be available to anyone wanting to access Ravel’s data.

Forbes reports that Ravel’s mission not only fits in with the modern landscape but can create breakthroughs in the legal world.

“Digitization and Big Data can undoubtedly bring big benefits to the legal profession. Some are obvious, such as freeing up space formerly needed to keep mountains of case files in filing cabinets, to the less obvious such as finding unexpected judgments or decisions which could swing a case in favor of a data- savvy lawyer,” Forbes writes.

Source: Forbes

Lead photo source: Ravel Law’s Vimeo channel


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