Many of you will be familiar with legal conversion courses but have you ever heard of a Computer Science one? They are specifically intended for students who hold a first degree in a different discipline and have little or no experience in computing. If, like our podcast guest Amy Conroy did, you associate a mixture of confusion and excitement with buzzwords like artificial intelligence, machine learning, and big data, a Master’s in Computer Science might be a good option for you!
Here is Amy’s story:
Why an MSc in Computer Science?
After having written her undergraduate dissertation on artificial intelligence and the right to be forgotten, Amy wanted to better understand how things like machine learning actually work.
“I wanted to throw myself in the deep end, learn to code myself , apply it to the legal tech world and learn what I could do with coding”Amy Conroy
But, you might be asking yourself: what if I’m no good at maths? Amy hadn’t done maths in years before starting her MSc! Although she struggled a little with courses like Computer Architecture (aka, how computers technically work), coding was mostly about logic.
Links to law
Amy used her newly acquired machine learning knowledge to write her thesis on automatic case summarization systems. It involved extracting the most relevant sentences from case judgments for a user’s custom summary. Amy and her supervisor wrote a paper on the work, which has even been accepted for publication. They will continue to work on the system and have even been in talks with law firms and organizations to bring the system out into the real world – cool stuff!
It would be hard to write about Amy’s legal tech journey without mentioning her co-founding Open Tenancy. It is an open-source project to help the general public with their tenancy rights. Amy and her co-founder observed how time consuming it is to go through the hundreds of articles out there in order to really figure out what your rights are. What if those could all be summarized into one, comprehensive decision tree? Well, with the help of Open Tenancy contributors writing and coding the decision paths, they can!
“Open tenancy can hopefully be the Google of figuring out your rights and taking away the annoyance of bouncing between websites.”Amy Conroy
In her discussion with Annabel, Amy explains how you can get involved with Open Tenancy, whether you have coding experience or not. She also discusses her current role at the legal tech startup Avvoka in detail and closes it off with some valuable advice for students interested in entering the field of legal tech. You can find out more about legal automation too here. But shhhhh…you’ll have to listen to the episode below to find out!
The Wired Wig explains helps to plug in Digital and Technology Law into businesses. It explains technology concepts and informs business leaders and students how the Law could respond to innovation.