I recently discovered a new legal research engine and I’m hooked. Ravel, founded by two Stanford law grads, Daniel Lewis and Nik Reed, allows researchers to view and organize case law in a beautiful interface that creates a unique and visual research experience. I must admit, beautiful and unique are not words often used in the same sentence as legal research, but in this case, I think they are appropriate descriptors. In their own words:
We are focused on making legal research radically easier, faster, and more intuitive. Our goal is to be your first stop for case research, giving you tools to quickly identify the most relevant and important cases, understand how they should be interpreted, and collaborate with your peers. We are aggressively expanding the coverage of our case opinion database, and applying strict standards to ensure the integrity and comprehensiveness of our data and search results.
Although Ravel is only available in beta and is somewhat limited (for now), it is a great tool for law students and is very helpful in understanding the precedential value of cases through visualization. I am very excited to see what the “new view” on legal research has to offer in the future and will continue using Ravel throughout law school and hopefully in my career.
Note: Ravel is optimized for Chrome and Safari