Docracy: Legal Docs As Fungible Goods

TechCrunch is wrapping (has wrapped) up its 2011 TechCrunch Disrupt conference and, for sure, some cool apps and tools have come out of the mix. One of these is Docracy, a crowd-sourced legal document database, with e-signing. The idea is that users will add the documents to the site in an open-source, crowd-sourced kind of relationship. Documents may include wills, contracts, trusts, non-competes, etc. I am not certain if it will be possible to download docs – it looks like the founders Matt Hall and John Watkinson appear to be intending users to compare their own documents against the Docracy docs to make sure their own docs are not rife with unusual, out of the ordinary terms. Hall and Watkinson see the need to be filled as those small legal matters that don’t necessarily warrant the cost of a lawyer but still could use a touch of due diligence.

Of course, there is the necessary caution that should be exercised when considering using a form document and the sense that “one size fits all” doesn’t necessarily work with legal documents across the fifty states. Nonetheless, you have to give the guys some credit for seeing a hole and attempting to fill it.

Docracy is not quite up yet – put your name on their mailing list to get the good word when the site goes live.


LinkedIn Connection Timeline – Just For Fun

LinkedIn Labs, probably all jovial and such from the success of LinkedIn’s recent IPO, has a new fun tool you can use to visualize your career timeline in a very Memolane sort of way: LinkedIn Connection Timeline. Using semantic information contained with your Profile connections, this little hack creates a visual representation of your connections, your career points and the strength of those connections at a given point in time. Why do it? LinkedIn developer Gordon Koo explains the why of it:

A few months ago, I found myself thinking about my connections and the nature of my LinkedIn network. There was an “aha!” moment where I realized that LinkedIn has a unique characteristic which others lack — it is three-dimensional. The first dimension is the actual connection. The second is the implicit grouping of connections which tie the social graph together. Many social networks have these first two dimensions, but what makes LinkedIn’s network special is its third dimension: time.

Curious as to what your professional life in 3D looks? Check out the tool – it’s live on LinkedIn right now.