Expert Systems: Preface
-By James F. Polk
When I was 6 years old, I would write my 10 sentences one letter at a time vertically because I thought it was the most efficient way, and I figured I should focus on just one letter at a time. I would go from top to bottom, then bottom to top all the way to the punctuation mark at the end. I hated homework. When I was 9 years old, my dream was a 20-foot container box that would magically appear when I pressed a button and that would have a whole set of boxes of paperwork with the next paper I needed to turn into some adult at the top of the stack at the front of the box by the door. Then when I was 10 years old, I read “Tom Swift and the Telephoto Express” where he had this little telegraph like apparatus where he could transmit a signal that would develop a negative of the image transmitted in a little tray of chemicals.
Now we have so many technological advancements that have all occurred since I first began to struggle with documents as a 6-year-old kid in 1985. The biggest hurdle to legal industry technology has been social acceptance, legal principles pertaining to the software niche and law cases initiated by bar associations and prosecutors’ offices across the nation. We now have a very clear foundation for building expert systems and the battles have been fought for the most part. 2019 is a way different world than the one we lived in when I was given my first Apple IIE with a Green Screen in 1990. Can you imagine
2040 and people looking back at our current technology like the way we do with Green Screens? Let’s jump into the history of technology in our Country.
I am going to start with the 1st Amendment. The reason being is the fact that the Federal Trade Commission considers software to be the same as a book as far as it being categorically a human expression of self. Books sit on shelves until we pick them up and read them. The authors can have been deceased for centuries. With a book that was written centuries before the current reader was born, there is no way the author can be considered to be dispensing advice to somebody who was born centuries after they wrote. Advice is defined as the application of the unaided human intellect to the fact pattern of a situation of another and the consequent dispensation of a suggested navigating the situational terrain of the scenario. Yes, authors from the past can have written down for posterity very insightful analysis and wisdom about how to deal with situations that will always repeat themselves and are common to mankind, but it is still not de facto advice. It is wisdom and information. Valuable yes. Advice no.
So, since a Software Programmer writes the code of their program it is the same as a book in a legal sense. Once written, a software program sits on a computer waiting like a book on a shelf for somebody to pick it up and read it. Software can never be advice. Software is information. Software is static even when it is dynamic. Software is written like a book written by a human mind, it is not the application of the unaided human intellect to a fact pattern. The same is true of software that you use to interact with other people when it is in a modified form, modified by you the user prior to the end user interacting with it.
You yourself can encode a law process into a conditional logic contact form like the FREE Contact Form I have put together for this very purpose on www.DocupletionForms.com. The second part of a full expert law system is an automatic document selection and completion utility which is connected conditionally to the questions asked of the end user client. You and I both can build a logic tree, decision tree that ends with 1-many different several paragraph explanations that we would say to somebody if they answered a set of questions in a specific way. These types of prewritten several paragraph explanations can be among the set of documents that a full expert law system utility selects from along with the documents that are selected and filled in with the appropriate information. This is still not advice. It is required however that you SAY TO THE PERSON INTERACTING WITH YOUR EXPERT ENCODING OF THE LAW THAT THE PROGRAM IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE AND DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY CLIENT RELATIONSHIP, whether or not you are or are not an Attorney.
This is the essence of an Expert Law System and this is where I started studying “Expert Systems” after finishing my Paralegal Training Program Studies with the University of San Diego. An Expert Marketing System and an Expert Document System are both distinctly different from an Expert Law System, but they all 3 share several very interesting similarities. This is my PREFACE and we will start the book with the basic differences between the 3 types of systems, then an expanded explanation of the similarities, and then an expanded explanation of the differences and need for all 3 utilized in an integrated fashion.
James F. Polk, Founder of DocupletionForms.com