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Artificial IntelligenceWhat if you no longer had to go to a courthouse for hearings or trial? What if your case could be handled at any time of the day or night, from any place at all, completely online? And what if the judge presiding over your case was a hologram? That is, a 3D image that appeared on a screen—an AI hologram who could answer questions, preside over proceedings, issue verdicts and then explain them?

Are you saying to yourself, perhaps with a smirk, “not in my lifetime!”? If so, you’re wrong. It’s happening right now, in China.

China’s first AI powered court opened in Hangzhou in 2017 and has handled more than three million cases; on the auspicious date “9/9/18”, the Beijing Internet Court opened for business. In the past year, it has handled tens of thousands of cases. Estonia has announced its own plan to deploy AI judges this year or next to hear smaller cases.

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