Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Is Law a Branch of Computer Science?

I studied Law as well (as Science) early in my University career before relinquishing it on account of near-terminal boredom during Contracts (the content of the first third of which ironically proved quite useful to me subsequently).

I remember a visiting lecture by a Government draftsperson, whose job it was to draft legislation. He also happened to be blind. Aha, I thought, this is why legislation is so appallingly structured. That was undoubtedly unfair.

Later I came to the view that lawyers should study programming in order to learn how to structure large descriptions about processes and contingencies.

Now, Dave has come along with this brilliant comparison of legal language and programming languages. It is funny because there are several truths in there.

So, perhaps in the 21st century it is time to include a compulsory "programming for lawyers" unit, along with "legal process" as an introductory subject?

This would extend the wider view of Computer Science as a Natural Science, to cultural endeavours such as Law.

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