DESI VI was held at the University of San Diego. The workshop on Discovery of Electronically Stored Information was attended by an enthusiastic and fairly technical crowd that included professors, grad students, industry researchers, lawyers and practitioners. I won’t go into details about the talks because full papers (and sometimes slides) are available at the workshop’s website. The slides from my presentation are here. You can find my full set of photos from DESI here, and photos from nearby Presidio Park here.
Various topics were discussed over lunch and discussion leaders summarized the discussions at the end of the day. I’ll provide my notes on those discussions. On the topic of what clients want from service providers, they are interested in hot documents that are unforseen, benchmarks on the service provider’s work, transparency on how the service provider did it, and development of a narrative for the case. There was a feeling that there should be standards for deduping. Attorneys need to know what metadata to ask for. On the topic of natural language processing, there is concern about how to incorporate knowledge from depositions into the process, and how to recognize that “take me out for tea” might be an encoded solicitation or offer of a bribe. Stories and context are important, and they may not be captured by a single document. On the topic of classification, it was noted that categories can change over time. Should the user adapt to the system or vice versa? It was mentioned that technology can make you a better lawyer because it allows you to know the case better than your opponent.