This Teenager Made a Free Robot Lawyer to Fight Parking Tickets
British 19 year old Joshua Browder programmed a robot lawyer that will help anyone fight a parking ticket, and automatically generate an appeal letter - for free.
As computers get smarter and cheaper, and robotic automation puts more and more people out of jobs, some experts predict our society is headed for mass unemployment. While technology-fueled unemployment isn't quite the dramatic robot apocalypse that Hollywood and science-fiction writers are so fond of, it's a very real concern, and will likely shape much of the economic and political landscape of the coming century.
Many people think that robots will only take the jobs of laborers, but imagine that more advanced professions like medicine and law will remain the province of humans exclusively. But Browder's lawyer bot suggests these professions might not be as safe as we think.
The prospect of hiring a lawyer to fight a parking ticket is often impractical, as the cost of the lawyer alone is likely more than the fine for the ticket. But using Browder's bot is completely free, and it has so far helped successfully appeal $3 million worth of tickets.
When a user signs in, the bot prompts them with series of questions, much like standard chat program. But you aren't chatting with a person, you are chatting with an program that has a vast database of legal knowledge at its disposal, as well as evolving conversation recognition algorithms to understand you.
Though the bot obviously can't replace a true human lawyer to represent someone in court, it can analyze the facts of a simple case like a parking ticket. If it finds a legal reason to invalidate the citation, it will automatically generate an appeal letter the user can then send in to the court to hopefully have their case dismissed.
The current iteration of the bot is programmed for laws in the UK, but he is working on a version for New York City's laws, and plans to add more cities in the future.