News and information useful to Cleveland-Marshall College of Law students, faculty and staff.

Archive for the ‘Apps/Technology’

More Tools to Improve Your Writing

Did you miss last week’s post about Grammarly? Here are two more editing tools that can improve your writing. Lawyers are often known for their verbose writing. That’s not necessarily a good thing. WordRake is a software add-on for Microsoft Word and Outlook that edits your documents for clarity. As the name implies, the program rakes through your document, eliminating unnecessary words and suggesting tighter, more cogent language. This program is subscription-based, but a free trial is available. You may also check out the WordRake blog and free writing tips.

Another option is PerfectIt by Intelligent Editing, a proofreading tool that checks your documents for abbreviations, style consistency, spelling, typos, lists, and tables. Specifically for legal writing, PerfectIt checks Bluebook citations, legal-specific typos, and terms of art. PerfectIt is also subscription-based and offers a free trial. You may find some helpful tips in the Legal Editing section of the Intelligent Editing blog.

Improve Your Writing Skills with Free Online Tool

grammarly logoIf your summer internship has highlighted the need to improve, or at least be more mindful of, your professional writing and communication skills, check out Grammarly. Powered by AI, Grammarly checks your writing for grammar, spelling, punctuation, word choice and style mistakes. Featuring a free browser extension for Chrome, Firefox, Edge, and Safari, Grammarly will correct your writing in an email, social media posts, and other web content. You can also copy and paste text into Grammarly’s online grammar checker, or you may download Grammarly for Microsoft Office. In addition to correcting your mistakes, Grammarly explains the reasoning behind each correction, helping you learn and improve. These tools are all free to use.  The Grammarly Handbook is also available for free and provides guidance on grammar and style. A Premium version is available, offering extra tools and features.

For other resources on writing, check out our two guides: Scholarly Writing Resource Guide and Scholarship Technology.

Space Law Resources at the Law Library

International Space Station orbiting EarthInterested in legal issues that are “out of this world?” (Sorry, couldn’t help it.)

C|M|Law’s Global Space Law Center (GSLC), directed by Professor Mark Sundahl, is dedicated to the study of space law and training next-generation space lawyers. GSLC is the only law school center in the nation focused on the law of outer space. Space law is made up of a variety of international agreements, treaties, conventions, and United Nations General Assembly resolutions as well as rules and regulations of international organizations. These documents address numerous issues such as settling disputes, liability for damages caused by space objects, preserving space and Earth environments, and the use of space-related technologies.

The GSLC offers an online summer class, Space Law: A Global View, covering a range of space-related topics including international treaties, domestic regulations of new space companies, jurisdiction issues, and asteroid mining. The GSLC also contains a Research Council that develops material to influence domestic and international regulations and legislation.

Are you taking the Space Law class this summer? The Law Library has numerous resources available such as The Politics and Perils of Space Exploration and The Handbook of Space Law. Journals on the topic include Air and Space Law and Journal of Space Law. Check out the Library’s Space Law Research Guide. Don’t forget, you can also schedule individual research consultations with a law librarian by contacting

Tech News: More on AI in Legal Research

drawing of human brain, half circuitboard and half artistic swirlsCasetext, a free online legal research platform known for its subscription-based artificial intelligence (A.I.) research tool called CARA, has launched an updated and enhanced version. The updated version, known as CARA A.I., does not just analyze citations anymore. It is now a robust legal research engine. New features include seamless integration of CARA A.I. with Casetext research. Additionally, users can upload litigation documents containing no citations to CARA A.I., and the program will analyze the documents and generate a list of authority based on the issues, facts, and jurisdiction present.

For more about AI in legal research, Thomson Reuters has this breakdown, and has teamed up with Above the Law to produce Law2020,  a series on AI in the legal field.

Machine Learning and AI have many applications beyond the law. For a humorous take, check out SkyKnit and the full archive.

Dead or Broken Link? The Wayback Machine Can Help

Have you ever come across a link for something interesting and been disappointed because the document is not found when you click on it? We at C|M|Law Library have had this happen several times of late working with patrons—one time a student was trying to cite check a law review article and another a patron was looking for a document cited in the Federal Register.

Websites change often and sometimes in the process of changing they may no longer have the information that the website once displayed. Link rot is a term sometimes used to apply to these situations where hyperlinks point to web pages, servers, or other resources that have become permanently unavailable. In these cases, The Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine may be able to help. The Internet Archive is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to “universal access to all knowledge.” The Internet Archive has numerous books (visual and audio), music, documentaries, and music among other things, including the Wayback Machine. The Wayback Machine is a digital archive of the World Wide Web and other information on the Internet. Simply paste your URL into the Wayback Machine and it will reveal its content as it existed on certain days in the past.