Migrated from eDJGroupInc.com. Author: Greg Buckles. Published: 2010-05-21 06:30:03Format, images and links may no longer function correctly. While at the recent EDRM 2010 Kickoff meeting, I was able to get a guided tour of the newly released Relativity Six from Andrew Sieja (CEO) and his team.  Having  several clients who have standardized on the kCura platform in the last year, it was definitely interesting to see the new features and product direction. I will not try to walk through every new bell and whistle here, as your favorite sales rep is more than happy to dive into that level of detail. Instead, I will try to give you the high level points. Andrew’s goals for this release included improving the analytics integration, review workflow, ‘ECA’ functionality, and to extend the platform with a new API. Calling out ‘Early Case Assessment’ drew a spirited round of critical debate on the dubious validity of the term in light of the overuse in the discovery market. Despite the call from George Socha to ban the term from the sales cycle, I can see how cKura’s new Relativity Pivot feature supports many of the typical scope and liability assessment scenarios. The overall goal seems to be a more integrated and mature interface for case managers and power users to automate workflow and extract collection profile characteristics.

This release includes a new 64-bit compliant architecture with a claimed 250% increase in loading, search, and export performance. They have tuned the full text index and the services that run them for better performance and to support the Pivot facets in memory to enable dynamic data grids and charts. This new Pivot functionality does not require additional processing or fees, unlike their integration with Content Analyst. It is not concept clustering, but it seems a lot more transparent and useful to me than a bolt-on black box technology. Excel is as close as we get to a universal reporting format in legal and the new architecture enables users to group on almost every field and dynamically tally across other fields.  The resulting grids can be used to navigate down/up through the data, effectively building search criteria while viewing your result sets or even interactive charts (bar, line and pie charts). They have not yet enabled tiered sorting from the Pivot grid or transforming the navigation criteria into a saved search.

Relativity Six includes a new document comparison feature that does a much better job of color coding differences across docs. This still relies on open source code, but unlike many sole product companies, kCura has put itself through a licensing audit to ensure that it is complying with open source requirements.

From the case manager’s perspective, there are several noteworthy advances. Saved searches can now be used to create new aggregate or differential saved searches within a case. You still cannot copy searches across cases, but that is more of a corporate usage scenario. They have implemented Auto Batch workflow rules that can be used to automate the creation and workflow of first, second, etc. review. This is pretty advanced, but should be a great benefit to the large number of service providers who are hosting large, multiparty reviews. New Domain analysis and search hit reports are meant to support relevance definition and scope negotiations. They require some time to execute, but deliver information critical to making inclusion/exclusion decisions.

This release is a good example of the new crop of former hosted platforms making the transition to true in-house applications. Their hosted/SaaS origin makes them more nimble and responsive to customer feedback than the traditional providers with large, entrenched customer bases. Most of the new Relativity Six features cater to the project manager or technically sophisticated counsel. Appealing to the decision maker makes sense when you are breaking into direct software sales, but they cannot forget the reviewers. Within the constraints of a short demo, I did not see any radical new ways to speed up the actual review, only improvements in organizing the collections and cutting down the items to be reviewed. I keep waiting for someone to break the mold with a new review interface or mechanism. I am betting that it will come from one of the new generation players like kCura.

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