What is artificial intelligence?
Team SoOLEGAL 10 May 2021

What is artificial intelligence?

As per Wikipedia Artificial intelligence (AI) is intelligence demonstrated by machines, unlike the natural intelligence displayed by humans and animals, which involves consciousness and emotionality. Artificial intelligence is the act of allowing a machine to behave in such a way that if any human being behaves in such a way, it will be called intelligent.

In 1956, John McCarthy, Invented the word "Artificial Intelligence" or A.I. Some people are of the view that mathematician AlanTuring's paper "Computing Machinery and Intelligence" (1950), along with Turing Test, were instrumentalities whichenvisaged the goal of artificial intelligence long ago.   As per Russel and Norvig artificial intelligence means the study of agents that receive percept from the environment and perform actions andthinking and acting humanly and rationally are the approaches of Artificial Intelligence. 

What does artificial intelligence need to work?

Artificial intelligence needs a lot of information or data to work. According to Luc Julia, one of the creators of the digital assistant Siri, which applies to the I-phone, if a machine could recognize a cat with 95% certainty, it would be necessary to have the images of about 100,000 cats. In this age big data or data science and computers with supercomputing powers imitating human brain is becoming reality. Generally, two sets of data, one is for building the model and another is for testing the same require huge amount of data. 

Applications and effects of Artificial Intelligence around the world:

Artificial intelligence continues to influence every aspect of human civilization and society on a daily basis and will hopefully influence you more and more.Starting from machine learning, Artificial Intelligence has now entered into the field of Deep Learning where Artificial Intelligence is showing the courage to touch human power and intelligence. As per Venture capitalist Frank Chen,"Artificial intelligence is a set of algorithms and intelligence to try to mimic human intelligence. Machine learning is one of them, and deep learning is one of those machine learning techniques."Artificial intelligence continues to influence every aspect of human civilization and society on a daily basis and will hopefully influence you more and more.The use of artificial intelligence, especially in developed countries around the world, has long since begun in the field of justice, as in other fields. 

And in this context, the American Artificial Intelligence System, COMPASS or [Correctional Offender Management Profiling for Alternative Sanctions] has received a worldwide attention for many reasons.This COMPASS has caused a great deal of controversy around the world as to whether racial discrimination is at all effective in committing crimes, and we are getting a forecast of what terrible social conditions might arise in the future if the judiciary were left in the hands of robots.Let's see how artificial intelligence, especially machine learning, can be used to administer justice.

Courts and information technology:

The judiciary has a great deal of effectiveness in administering justice in individual cases and presenting standards to society at large.However, regardless of the subject, the work of the courts and judges is to process information which the plaintiff/defendant brings to the court, the information that is converted during the process and the result that is also information or data. The word “Information” or “data” are clearly defined in our Information Technology Act, 2000. But here all of this data processing is not complex customization. Now we can see that in dealing with judicial cases, there is a huge need for processing information or with the help of information technology and here lies the application of complex algorithms which pave the way for a robust Artificial Intelligence system. Online dispute resolution can take the advantage of AI. 

Here, the court primarily adopts digital documents so that the filing party provides the data digitally, so that they do not have to re-enter manually. Again, the cases when the results are predictable, it can be conducted partially or even largely a using artificial intelligence depending on the certainty of the verdict or result.A smart and efficiently designed filing portal can help partiesto bring with the vital data of their cases before the LearnedCourt in the best possible way which provides the opportunity of application of Artificial intelligence in various ways.

What can artificial intelligence do for the court?

With a marvellous development of Artificial Intelligence or A.I. technology, legal questions are raised about on lack of human rights regulation compliances, surveillance and accountability within the judiciary. The potential for artificial intelligence has already been explored by many jurisdictions, including the judiciary, prosecution services and other specialized judicial agencies across the world for criminal trials as well as civil matters including online dispute resolution or Alternative Dispute Resolution venturing for automation process in decision-making.

Now the question is how can artificial intelligence be effective for courts and judges and what is needed to make artificial intelligence useful. Let us scan the same:

Artificial intelligence can work in different ways to meet different needs -

To Organize/Deal with data –AI will organize or deal with data in a more effective way than manual one.

  • To work for Counselling - Artificial intelligence can counsel effectively for parties in litigation and a new term has been coined in this sphere, called “Consultant artificial intelligence” for legal professionals.
  • To Predicting decisions - Artificial intelligence can provide predictive justice, which though very much controversial and challenging one.
  • Data Protection andTransparency - AI can help in protecting data security and transparency which are the need of hour in the present judicial system interacting with huge amount of data. 

       That is why the application of information technology, including artificial intelligence, is not the same in all cases.Before the European Union, the following questions are important in the judiciary at this moment:

  • Whether any form of artificial intelligence has proven fruitful?
  • How can courts and judges work with artificial intelligence in light of or in consonance withvarious European Union Conventions, especially conventions relating to human rights.

In finding a solution to the above glaring issues, the Council of European Union has come up with policy guidelines for application of AI in justice dispensation system.

What is needed to make artificial intelligence useful in court?

In some cases AI has proved its efficiency in practice but there is no evidence yet that robots can judge or capable to conscionable verdict to solve complex human problem with legal prodigy, acceptable to the society. Again, AI has been able to help organize, collect and process huge information for the use of individuals, litigation and judges. Thus in the era of ever increasing reservoir of big legal data AI can efficiently help, if algorithmed in the best way possible by the expert.

What should efficient or reliable Artificial Intelligence Guidelines: According Ethics Guidelines for Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence by European Union, artificial intelligence should be –

  1. Legal - one that respects all applicable laws and regulations.
  2. Ethical - One who respects moral principles and values.
  3. Hardworking - one that adheres to the social environment or policy from a technical point of view.

As per the above guideline, key requirements for atrustworthy AI systemare:

  • Technical robustness and protection,
  • Privacy and information management,
  • Transparency,
  • Diversity, inequality and fairness,
  • Social and environmental welfare,
  • Responsibility;

European Ethical Charter on the Use of Artificial Intelligence in Judicial Systems and their environment provides a framework of principles on the use of AIwhich can guide policymakers, legislatures and judicial professionals in their judicial work or related fields.

What is Predictive Justice?

Predictive justice is the analysis of huge data on previous judicial findings which subsequently analysed and processed by AI as designed by its algorithm in predicting the decisions, of course in some special types of cases.

Involvement of artificial intelligence can be very helpfulin:

  • Providing advanced case-law search engines;
  • In Online Dispute Resolution (ODR);
  • Providing assistance in drafting tasks;
  • In different types of analysis;
  • "Chatbots" to provide legal assistance to litigants.
  • Collecting various relevant data and making the same available for judges or legal professional.

Predictive trial software has been used experimentally in two courts conducted in 2017 at the initiative of the French Ministry of Justice in France.

Failure to "predict" criminal offenses:

In an application of artificial intelligence in the United States, blacks were often classified as high-risk, although they did not commit such crimes within two years of being convicted.

Contrary to the prediction by the AI, white people, on the other hand [who were classified as low-risk] committed crimes within the next two years. Thus, the algorithm of Artificial Intelligence proved to be failure and racially discriminative. 

Use of Artificial Intelligence by theIndian Judiciary:

In the above international situation, a landmark event took place in India a few days ago when the outgoing Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India, Hon’ble S A Bobde launched the Supreme Court Portal for Assistance in Court's Efficiency (SUPACE) for the Indian judiciary. SUPACE is the Supreme Court Portal for Assistance in Court's Efficiency. As per the report in the media, its duty is to collect relevant information including ofcourse legal information and making the same available to judges to quick justice dispensation, saving huge valuable time for the learned judges in a more efficient, cost-effective and time-bound way, but cautious enough, it is not meant to make a decision.If proven right, this AI system in our judicial system will definitely helps solving the huge pendency of litigation in various cases in various courts in India.

The following are some of the concerns we need to consider in the coming days:

  1. Concerns about unemployment or redundancy in certain positions
  2. Unemployment will increase if this system is adopted.
  3. iArtificial intelligence can never get in the way of a valuable judge's verdict.

The growing use of artificial intelligence in the justice system around the world is raising more ethical questions directly connecting with the fundamental rights still artificial intelligence if put in a right way, can probably evaluate huge data and cases and process the data and afford justice in a better, faster and more efficient way. Artificial intelligence can have a profound effect on the decision-making of lawyers and administrative public bodies, ranging from the legal profession and the judiciary. In dealing with AI, we certainly have various challenges to tackle in the days to come, for example lack of transparency, apprehension of biasness, pointless, discriminatory or lack of confidentiality and lack of value to human dignity.

Finally, a very important question remained in the mind of each of us and that is whether one day the precious judgments of our esteemed court will be delivered or driven by artificial intelligence or deep learning or robots. Only the framer of algorithms, policy makers and above all, time will tell!

Written by Adv Bivas Chatterjee, Public Prosecutor for Cyber Law and Electronics Evidence for entire West Bengal.



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