AI Everywhere at TLTF Summit 2023
TLTF Summit 2023 is still the best legaltech networking of the year and probably the best place to get a read on the fast-changing legal technology market
Would TLTF Summit 2023 be as good as the inaugural 2022 event? Well, yes, as it turns out. A little different, but still the best legaltech networking of the year. And probably the best place to get a read on the fast-changing market of legal technology offerings. It was bigger than last year (400+ up from 200+) but still small enough to work well. Any bigger and you might start to feel lost in the crowd.
The startup showcase provides a great snapshot of the new and emerging companies tackling problems in the world of legal services. As I did last year, I've attempted to capture the essence of all the startups in a one-page summary, so you can quickly get a sense of who's who. This is very much a personal impression and may not position everyone perfectly, but it's hopefully a good launch point if you want to dig deeper into each company.
After a year of GPT-inspired Generative AI frenzy, it's not surprising that AI is a dominant theme of most of these startups. So I made a note of the small number who seemed not to be AI-centric (in orange). Two of these are keeping the blockchain dream alive, with solutions to make life better for NFT die-hards. For almost everyone else, AI was front and center.
The five finalists are marked in blue: HData, Justpoint, NLPatent, SimpleClosure and Streamline AI. This seemed to be driven by in-the-room voting, but I was surprised that Abstract missed the cut (that was my highest rated pitch). I decided to sort everything by ICP focus, broken into 3 big buckets: outside counsel, in-house counsel, or business users & consumers.
The Summit opened with a good recap of 2023, the year of LLMs, by Dan Katz, and an interesting chat with Damien Riehl, who seems to be having fun with side projects to disrupt vexatious copyright and patent litigants. The mood was one of AI opportunity and optimism, but with a realization that success will come from solving real-world problems, not by slapping an AI badge on a flaky use case.
What followed was two days of panels, meals, roundtables and pitches, but most of all, meetings and connections. Zach Posner makes no secret of the fact that skipping sessions and making connections is one of the best ways to get value from this event.
For a more complete review of the Summit, Bob Ambrogi's article is the best place to start. If you get a chance to go next year, I highly recommend it. You might even sneak in a visit to Miami Art Week when you're done.