One legal tool which is not machine operated but is helpful in the study of computer technology and its applications to law is symbolic logic. But this tool is also helpful to the attorney who is not at all interested in computers; it will help improve his understanding of the profession's basic tool: the English language.
When examined as a tool useful for lawyers, symbolic logic is perhaps best viewed as a language. It can be regarded as a carefully and precisely constructed language that has been expressly designed for explicit purposes, rather than one that has evolved haphazardly through time in the manner of the natural languages. As a language that is, by careful design, better in some respects for some purposes than natural languages are, it can help fulfill some of the communications functions of language more effectively than is likely to be the case when natural languages alone are relied upon. To the extent that language is important in law, symbolic logic has a corresponding pervasiveness. To the extent that language is important in the expression and communication of ideas, symbolic logic can help improve that expression and communication. To the extent that language is required in thinking, symbolic logic can help improve the quality of thought. To the extent that language is involved in the storage and retrieval of information, symbolic logic can help improve the effectiveness of that process.
Publication Information & Recommended Citation
Allen, Layman E. "Logic-Language-Law." In Computers and the Law: An Introductory Handbook, edited by R. P. Bigelow. New York: Commerce Clearing House, 1966.