Company Uses Prof. McKeown's Research to Win Startup America/DEMO Competition
Kathleen R. McKeown
Research developed by Kathleen R. McKeown, Henry and Gertrude Rothschild Professor of Computer Science, underlies the core of eBrevia, a startup that is commercializing natural language processing technology to analyze, extract information from, and summarize legal documents. After winning a Startup America Partnership regional competition in Connecticut this summer, eBrevia was selected as one of four national winners at DEMO Fall 2012, the celebrated pitch event/launch conference Oct. 2 in Santa Clara, Calif.
“Law has many possibilities for the use of natural language processing,” says McKeown. “Text is a primary data source for review and there is usually lots of it.”
A recent Columbia Portfolio Company, eBrevia uses McKeown’s natural language processing software, which incorporates machine learning techniques, to enable law firm attorneys, in-house counsel, and business professionals to perform legal tasks more efficiently, accurately, and cost-effectively. The company’s products have applications for due diligence, document management, and document drafting.
eBrevia’s team includes former corporate attorneys and friends from Harvard Law School who designed the product to address many of the challenges they faced in document review themselves, as well as a current master’s student in Columbia’s natural language processing group.
“Columbia University is an unquestionable leader in academic natural language technology, but in recent years the experts have taken a strong interest in the practical challenges being faced by the next generation of digital startups,” says Calvin Chu, senior technology licensing officer, Columbia Technology Ventures. “Our technology is more relevant than ever as legal businesses grow into the cloud.”
The Startup America Partnership is a growing national movement of thousands of founders, experts, and resources providing startups access to the corporations, investors, and services they need to grow. Launched at the White House in early 2011, the Partnership brings together startups and local champions from around the country focused on creating successful networks for young, high-growth companies to thrive. AOL co-founder Steve Case chairs the Partnership and the Kauffman and Case Foundations are its founding partners.
DEMO is a launchpad for emerging technology and trends. Each year over 2,500 people from around the globe attend DEMO to experience innovation at its birth. At each DEMO event, a select group of new products is introduced to the media, investors, corporate acquirers, strategic partners, and buyers. For over 22 years, DEMO has built an unmatched track record of selecting, coaching, promoting, and making successful some of the most game-changing products the world has ever seen. Past DEMO participants include companies like Salesforce, WebEx, and TiVo.
— by Holly Evarts
Posted:Oct 19 2012