In what is being billed as a world first, a "robot lawyer" will attempt to defend a client in court, reports New Scientist. Much of the details are being kept under wraps, but it will work like this: A defendant trying to get out of a speeding ticket will repeat to the judge verbatim everything a bot using artificial intelligence tells the person to say. The bot will be on a smartphone listening to the court proceedings, and it will relay directions to the defendant via an earpiece, per Gizmodo. It's being kept under wraps because the judge will not be aware of what's happening, according to the startup behind the venture, DoNotPay.
The case will be argued in February, and DoNotPay says it will take on a second speeding-ticket case that month, that one over Zoom. "The law is almost like code and language combined, so it's the perfect use case for AI," CEO and founder Joshua Browder tells USA Today. "I think that this is the biggest potential for GPT and large language model technology." The company is paying both defendants for taking part in the experiments, and it will cover any resulting fines or fees if its bot loses the case.
Phones and electronic devices are typically not allowed in courtrooms, but the company says it is getting around that in the in-person case by using an unnamed jurisdiction that allows the use of Apple Airpods for people with hearing issues. It's not the only stunt DoNotPay has in mind: It has a standing offer to give $1 million to anyone who uses its bot during Supreme Court arguments. (Meanwhile, AI is generating controversy through the chatbot ChatGPT, which is able to fool a lot of the people a lot of the time.)