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Knowledge Mosaic, Legal Research, and the Coming Deluge (Grab a Life Jacket!)

August 16, 2011

Photo by Kevin Utting, Some rights reserved.

Today, almost all large law firms in North America maintain a subscription to the Knowledge Mosaic research platform and current awareness service.  This post explores some reasons why.

(What? Sounds like bland marketingspeak, you say?  Okay, then skim the first few paragraphs and read the last two.)

Historically, Knowledge Mosaic has had a strong presence in firms that practice securities, transactional, corporate, and related fields of law.  For nearly a decade, we’ve offered a comprehensive database of SEC EDGAR filings and SEC agency releases.   And we continue to enhance our offerings in that area.

Moreover, we’ve greatly expanded our coverage over the years — both vertically and horizontally.  Vertically, in that we’ve added layers of current awareness and guidance on top of our foundation of primary data.  We have a database of almost 100,000 law firm memos, an immensely popular Knowledge Mosaic News Service, and in January we’ll unveil a brand new, state-of-the-art, customizable alerting system.

Horizontally, in that we now offer a breadth of coverage rivaled only by much more expensive providers like Westlaw and Lexis Nexis.  Take a look at our data directory to get a sense of how fully we cover the federal regulatory landscape.  As a result, we’re valuable to attorneys in a diverse range of practice areas, including energy & environment, communications & technology, labor & employment, and more.

But here’s the kicker.  Such tidy compartments diminish our vision.  So do metaphors of vertical and horizontal.  We see things not in terms of traditional labels, or of a two- dimensional axis, but holistically and synthetically.  And what does that mean?  It means we are making a bet about the direction of legal research.  It is a truism that in the 21st century, electronic accessibility and hypertextuality are revolutionizing data and culture.  That revolution has already begun to transform the practice of law.  The floodgates of knowledge have opened, and the deluge is already beginning to compromise the walls of so-called practice areas.

In other words, the interconnectedness of legal knowledge will become an expectation of clients in the future.  We see ourselves at the forefront of this exciting (and inevitable) new paradigm in legal research.    Our platform is designed for the legal practitioner whose research must cross boundaries.

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