Mind Reading

It may the closest thing to mind reading we’ve seen yet. Starting today, Loopt is offering a new service called Pulse, which claims to be able to provide you with an extraordinary array of helpful information as you move around town:

Pulse produces a personalized and ever-changing list of recommendations based on where you are, the time of day and Loopt’s own data on where you and your friends have been. It shows editorial descriptions and reviews from the partner sites and averages the ratings a business has received.

In other words, before you can formulate the query, Pulse offers some pertinent answers.

So here’s my question for you:  once your internal clients get used to this level of service and convenience in their leisure lives, how long will they put up with the clunky, outmoded, painful-to-use technology provided in too many law firms?  And, how long will those folks be willing to use a knowledge management system that can’t pull off the neat trick of appearing to read their minds?

It’s a race against time.  Have the knowledge management and IT personnel in your law firm found the starting block yet?

[Photo Credit:  sunny laid back L.A.]

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5 thoughts on “Mind Reading

  • November 4, 2009 at 2:33 am
    Permalink

    This sounds very similar to the “I want it to be just like Google” arguments from several years ago. People grow used to a basic service and have difficulty switching to a different way of doing things. It would be nice if we could provide this to them — assuming that the advantages of the service make sense in the new situation. There's the rub.

  • November 4, 2009 at 9:26 am
    Permalink

    You're right, Jack. The frequent requests for a Google-like search often
    masked a desire for simplicity (and good results, of course) in the face of
    embarrassingly bad search tools within the enterprise. However, the folks
    asking for Google at work didn't always understand exactly what it took
    Google to deliver simplicity and good results — millions of dollars spent
    keeping their algorithms state of the art. That's an investment most firms
    are unwilling to make. Nonetheless, the insistence on having Google at work
    has led several in the law firm world to work with vendors to create search
    tools that provide amazing results via a simple interface. I suspect that
    the lawyers in the firms that have adopted this approach don't ask for
    Google anymore.

    Once services like Pulse become more common, I expect users within the
    Enterprise will begin to insist that they receive work related information
    in the same intuitive way. Search tool vendors will have to deliver.

    – Mary

  • November 4, 2009 at 9:52 am
    Permalink

    I don't recall the name of the services, but forms of this idea have been around a while. Even Microsoft's beloved Clippy was a form of this: I see you are doing X, here are some recommendations for assistance. or I see you have been doing Y, I've focused your search on that topic.

  • November 4, 2009 at 2:26 pm
    Permalink

    You're right, Jack. The frequent requests for a Google-like search often
    masked a desire for simplicity (and good results, of course) in the face of
    embarrassingly bad search tools within the enterprise. However, the folks
    asking for Google at work didn't always understand exactly what it took
    Google to deliver simplicity and good results — millions of dollars spent
    keeping their algorithms state of the art. That's an investment most firms
    are unwilling to make. Nonetheless, the insistence on having Google at work
    has led several in the law firm world to work with vendors to create search
    tools that provide amazing results via a simple interface. I suspect that
    the lawyers in the firms that have adopted this approach don't ask for
    Google anymore.

    Once services like Pulse become more common, I expect users within the
    Enterprise will begin to insist that they receive work related information
    in the same intuitive way. Search tool vendors will have to deliver.

    – Mary

  • November 4, 2009 at 2:52 pm
    Permalink

    I don't recall the name of the services, but forms of this idea have been around a while. Even Microsoft's beloved Clippy was a form of this: I see you are doing X, here are some recommendations for assistance. or I see you have been doing Y, I've focused your search on that topic.

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