DALL-E drawing of a librarian looking over lots of documents.

There is obviously a ton of hype and buzz going on right now with ChatGPT and other AI tools, including this week’s Geek in Review podcast. I wanted to see if there’s something that I could do that was a practical use of GPT in my job as a law librarian. I think I’ve found something that might fit that bill. Summarizing text.

Law Librarians are great at finding good information and getting that quickly into the hands of lawyers, legal professionals, judges, pro se representatives, etc. However, we don’t always have a lot of time to read all of that information and create a summary for the person we are working with. It’s not uncommon for a firm to have 100 – 300 attorneys for each librarian. Any tool that would help librarians synthesize information in a useful way is a welcome tool for us all. I put GPT 3.5 (the paid version) to the test to see how it could be that electronic assistant in summarizing information quickly.

It is early in my experiment, but I’m impressed with what I’ve seen so far.

The Current Process

I wanted to try something that I personally set up for myself that is “good” but not “great.” And that is tracking BigLaw Podcasts as they come out. What I have now is an RSS feed (yes, that is still a thing!) that follows AmLaw 100/200 firms’ websites and lets me know when a new episode comes out. I have that RSS feed set up in my MS Outlook folders. I’m using LexisNexis’ NewsDesk to set this up.

Right now, it looks like this:

This works fine, but it really doesn’t give me a lot of information on the podcast. I’d really like to see more of a summary of the podcast before I make a decision to click through and listen.

The Idea

I’ve got the basic information from the RSS feed, but now I want to expand that information. I’m a former programmer from “back in the day” but I haven’t done any serious programming in a long time. But, I know that Python is a great tool for processing text, so my top-of-the-head idea was to have Python look at my RSS output and see if it could get me more information. Actually, I wanted to see if Python might be able to summarize the RSS information directly. This is where the ChatGPT tool came in handy.
Continue Reading What a Law Librarian Does with AI Tools like ChatGPT – Organize and Summarize

There is a lot of buzz around ChatGPT and GPT 3.5, but is it really the next Tesla, or is it the next IBM Watson? We talk with HyperDraft’s Tony Thai and Ashley Carlisle about OpenAI’s popular tool and why, lawyers at least, shouldn’t be ready to go all in on this specific technology. While there are great examples of how GPT 3.5 impressively handled things like Bar Exam questions, there are still a lot of unknowns from this resource from a company that started out as Open Source and non-profit, but has released a product that is neither.
While the conversation focused a lot on the short comings of ChatGPT, there is a lot of promise in the technology, even if it may be years before it can handle the complex issues that lawyers and the legal community handle on behalf of their clients. Are we going to reach The Singularity in 2023, or is it decades away? Can AI plug the Access to Justice gap, or will it cause more issues than it solves? Will this specific AI tool continue to improve as it devours more data and leverages millions of users, or will it become corrupted by bad actors who discover how it inputs its data?
Can society use this to better ourselves, or will it become another way to play upon our short attention spans?
We cover all of this and more in a roundtable discussion. We’d love to hear your thoughts on what value you see in ChatGPT and GPT 3.5 in the legal industry. So reach out to us on Twitter or give us a call!

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Twitter: @gebauerm, or @glambert
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Jerry David DeCicca

Continue Reading ChatGPT – If It Sounds Too Good To Be True… – Tony Thai and Ashley Carlisle (TGIR Ep. 185)