I’ve attended Legal Tech since 1990. Legal Tech 2009 reminds me of Legal Tech 1990. 

Back then, vendors had a plethora of new software versions, almost all based on DOS (the PC operating system). The forwarding thinkers understood that Windows loomed and would likely take over the market.

Legal Tech 2009 has many evolutionary EDD technology and law developments. The distinct feel is incremental evolution, nothing dramatically new. So in this regard, it’s like 1990. Unlike 1990, however, a looming change is not so visible; I’m not sure there’s a “Windows equivalent” that will take the market by storm.

And perhaps that’s the way it should be. The current EDD 1.0 is simply Litigation Support 2.0. That is, in spite of the hoopla, e-discovery is not all that different than paper-based discovery – the volumes are higher and the technology more complex.

EDD 2.0, whatever it ends up being, likely will not be revolutionary. It will entail more sophisticated analytic software, better statistical modeling and QC, and more rigorous processes. A magic bullet would be great but we all need to prepare for a lot of hard work in the trenches to improve what we’ve got.