What I’ve Been Up To This Past Year

July 27th, 2012

For those of you who wish to know, I’ve kept quite busy during the past year I’ve been clerking with Judge Boggs.

First and foremost, I am now an Assistant Professor at the South Texas College of Law in Houston.

Second, I wasn’t just writing blog posts. I also continued to publish (no surprises here):

In addition to these published pieces, I also wrote several works-in-progress that should be coming soon to a law review near you.

And, in case you weren’t paying attention, the Supreme Court decided a case about the Affordable Care Act last month.  I am writing a book about the challenge to the law, tentatively titled “Unprecedented.” Take a shot, Randy. I am working with a literary agent, shopping around the proposal–which I had to ferociously rewrite after the Court’s doozy of an opinion.  I will be elaborating on my views of this case shortly, but if you are a glutton for instant gratification, all of my previously-undisclosed posts are here. I am also working on a law-review version of this book, which I will be presenting at several conferences this fall at Georgetown, Loyola, and tentatively elsewhere.

Third, beyond blogging and publishing, I have continued to work on Assisted Decision Making, and building electronic tools that bridge the gap between Bg Law and Big Data. After clerking in the federal courts for three years, I have gained a pretty good sense of how federal litigation proceeds from the electronic-filing perspective. All federal pleadings are stored in a massive, tedious, and expensive database known as PACER. I, along with a team of developers, am working on a new App, Harlan.co, that analyzes the events in PACER not as mere text entires, but understands how each event relates to other events, and can, in effect, digitally recreate the flow of litigation. A prototype of Harlan.co is available here. I will have much more to say about this exciting project in the near future. You can watch a presentation I gave about Harlan.co at the London Law Tech Camp last month. Our work on Assisted Decision Making has been featured prominently in Law Technology News, the ABA JournalYahoo! News, and elsewhere.

Fourth, FantasySCOTUS.net continued in my absence. The league now has over 13,000 members. Our prediction tracker was quite accurate. With respect to the ACA case, our results were too close to call, and were not statistically significant. In other words, we weren’t sure (that may reflect the judgment of a certain Chief Justice). I will break down the results from this Term in a co-authored article shortly. We have some cool plans for the upcoming term, as we refine the prediction market algorithm, and put more weight in the predictions of those who consistently get cases correct.

Fifth, the Harlan Institute continues to flourish. This past year, FantasySCOTUS.org, our educational Supreme Court Fantasy League, reached over 1,000 students in hundreds of classes nationwide. The winners of this season wrote excellent blog posts about the cases before the Court, and offered deep insights into their views of constitutional law. Congratulations to them all. I sincerely thank all of the dedicated members of the team at the Harlan Institute for their diligent work in supporting our organization during my absence.

So that’s where I’ve been. Now, you ask, where am I going.