Here’s a bit of a pop quiz for you: what do the films RoboCop, Ex Machina, iRobot, and X-Men: Days of Future Past all have in common? Robots or other AI creations that take over the world and generally cause chaos! It’s a film trope that has been featured in countless award-winning screenplays, and it got the world thinking about the possibility of an AI takeover. Maybe we don’t believe that robots will rise to power, but we do have subconscious fears that we will slowly be rendered useless as technology continues to advance.
As someone deeply involved in the technology and software sector, I can confidently say that, contrary to popular belief, robots are not out to steal your jobs. AI and other technological breakthroughs should be considered friends, not foes.
When I first started working, still in the sales sector, I used to file hundreds of documents every week by hand. As a poor college kid, I was okay with that, but that doesn’t mean I thought I was using my time (or abilities) wisely. All these years later, my position at that company doesn’t exist anymore – at least not in the same capacity. The business now has programs that file for them and keep things far more organized than I, or any human, ever could. The kid who works in “my position” these days is spending their time much more wisely – maybe even getting to make some sales and build their skill set. My previous employer embraced new technology when it became available because they recognized that hiring a person solely for filing purposes was both wasteful and inefficient.
Unfortunately, not everyone is as onboard with the digital transformation. The US court systems seem to be particularly set in their ways. I distinctly remember going through my whole spiel about TrueFiling in front of several department heads in a court we were in discussions with. The “Agenda Queen” who had dedicated decades of her life to building enormous binders of meticulously organized documents wanted nothing to do with our automated agenda system. She felt as though I was pitching a solution that would make her obsolete and cause her to lose her job two years before her retirement date.
I’ve been shocked on more than one occasion by reactions like this by court people who are lacking a comprehensive understanding of AI implementation. We are not trying to steal jobs; we want to make existing jobs easier and prevent seasoned employees from performing menial tasks all day long.
Digital Evidence Management isn’t here to take over the sector; rather, it is providing courts with the ability to upload and retrieve documents almost immediately to ensure efficient practices and top-notch accessibility. There are still plenty of tasks that rely on the human component to work. After all, AI might help to organize evidence, but analyzing it and coming to a conclusion on a case is entirely dependent on the humans involved. Again, DEM is here to help, not harm.
Luckily, many companies come around to new technology once it’s implemented and in full swing. It only takes a few hours or days to start seeing the benefits. I’ve had many customers come back and say “Wow, Vince, you were right. This makes so much more sense and it’s letting our employees make better use of their time.” Funnily enough, if you were to ask some of these companies to go back to the way things were, they’d riot! It’s interesting to watch how different businesses, particularly courts, adapt to and embrace new solutions. Each case is unique, but they always end in a very happy staff.
To the kid currently working in my old position, I hope you’re doing well and getting more hands-on learning than I did. To the Agenda Queen, I hope you are enjoying your well-deserved retirement and I hope your court is thriving with some new technical solutions.
Take care, Vince
Carpe DM: Digital Evidence is Taking Over the Courts
Though virtual courts are still relatively new, there’s been a steady increase in the occurrence of digital evidence presented in hearings. Digital evidence has been making headlines for years now from the case of George Floyd in 2020 to the Boston Marathon Bombing case back in 2013. Examples of digital evidence that led to convictions and justice stretch back even further, growing more common as technology bleeds into aspects of everyday activities.
With virtual exhibits becoming more commonplace within the courts, it’s crucial to have a solid grasp of the formats included. In this first article of a two-part series, we’ll get into three of the types of digital evidence you can expect to see.
Oh, What’s Digital Evidence Got to Do, Got to Do With it?
In today’s world, we are inundated with technology that captures our everyday moments. Whether it’s a joyous event, a critical life situation or a criminal activity, these moments are captured by various digital recording devices, including cell phones, CCTV, security cameras, body-worn and dash cams. With the influx of digital, physical, biological and forensic evidence the justice community is challenged to manage, organize, access and secure the evidence while maintaining CJIS compliance requirements and chain of custody.
Listen in as two ImageSoft digital evidence veterans, Vince Hanson and Terry Chaudhuri discuss how the justice community can take a new direction, while thinking about protection to ensure their digital evidence management isn’t an old-fashioned notion.
Digital Evidence and the Justice System
According to several studies and reports, the court system is being inundated with more digital evidence than ever before. Reports also discuss the struggles that many courts and court personnel face while attempting to upload, store, manage, track, and display these new formats. From video to audio, courts are not currently equipped to process large, re-playable files. As digital evidence becomes more critical in cases, it’s paramount that courts implement management solutions and provide a comprehensive education about what digital evidence is and how to best handle it.
What Can We Do For You?
ImageSoft guides courts through the various challenges of becoming a paperless court. Our industry-leading solutions offer a component model methodology to automated workflows, improved speed and efficiency, reduced costs and proper compliance. ImageSoft is ready to help your court system reap the benefits from digital transformation.