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About

Thomas R. Bruce is co-founder and director of the Legal Information Institute at the Cornell Law School, the first legal-information web site in the world. He wrote Cello, the first Web browser for the Microsoft Windows platform.  He has been the principal technical architect for online legal resources ranging from fourteenth-century law texts, to an alternative first-year law curriculum written by seven members of the Harvard Law School faculty, to the current decisions of the United States Supreme Court.  He has been deeply involved in the national law.gov effort, with a particular interest in technical and metadata standards that will make collections of legal information not only transparent but interoperable.

Mr. Bruce has consulted on Internet matters for numerous commercial and public organizations on four continents, including projects in Sweden, South Africa, Japan, Spain, Italy, Vietnam, Zambia, Sierra Leone, and Australia. He has been a fellow of the Center for Online Dispute Resolution at the University of Massachusetts, and a Senior International Fellow at the University of Melbourne Law School.  He and the LII team have been engaged by the Library of Congress to re-think their metadata models for legislation, and are closely collaborating with the US Government Printing Office on a new version of the Code of Federal Regulations.

He is an affiliated researcher in Cornell’s program in Information Science, where he works closely with faculty and students who experiment with the application of natural-language processing techniques to legal texts. He has been member of the American Bar Association Administrative Law Section Special Committee on e-Rulemaking, and is a longtime member of the board of directors of the Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction.  He was the founding editor of VoxPopuLII,  a guest-blogging publication that serves as a cross-disciplinary meeting place for researchers in the various fields that touch on legal informatics.  In 2009, the ABA Journal named him a “Legal Rebel”, one of 50 innovators doing the most to remake the legal profession in the United States.

Bruce is a graduate of Yale College, and received the Bert Gruver Prize in Stage Management from the Yale School of Drama.  In an earlier life, he was a stage- and production manager for opera companies in (among other places) Houston, Chicago, Miami, Columbus, and Omaha; for the American Repertory Theater, the New World Festival of the Arts, and Spoleto Festival USA; for Eastern Airlines and IBM trade shows; and for an array of rock and jazz bands that would now be considered quaint at best.   His work was once hailed as “an act of artistic vandalism” by Opera News.  He spends his free time buying and selling antique tools, and occasionally makes something out of wood.

14 Responses to “About”

  1. [...] Thomas Bruce Named Legal Innovator By legalinformatics Dr. Thomas R. Bruce, co-founder of Cornell University’s Legal Information Institute, has been named a [...]

  2. [...] Bruce Shows the Value of Free Access to Law By legalinformatics Professor Tom Bruce, Director of Cornell University’s Legal Information Institute (LII), this week has powerfully [...]

  3. [...] panel about Law.gov, and featuring Tom Bruce of Cornell’s Legal Information Institute, John Joergensen of Rutgers University Camden Law Library, Stephen Schultze of Princeton, and [...]

  4. [...] Law School (LII), and the Rutgers University Camden Law Library Digital Collections, according to Tom Bruce, Director of the LII, and <a href="http://lawlibrary.rutgers.edu/librarians/joerg.shtml"John Joergensen, [...]

  5. [...] same room together we were able to really makes some plans.  On one of the days, we were joined by Tom Bruce of the Cornell Legal Information Institute.  We had both talked with Tom via various forms of [...]

  6. [...] Tom Bruce, Director of Cornell’s Legal Information Institute; [...]

  7. [...] Thomas R. Bruce, Director of Cornell’s Legal Information Institute, added, “The LII will provide the technical expertise needed to create a high-value version of the CFR, with features that significantly extend its utility beyond current offerings.” The LII has long been known for its expertise in creating lawyer-and citizen-friendly versions of the United States Code from bulk data created by GPO in older formats. [...]

  8. [...] Metadata Practices for Legislation By legalinformatics Tom Bruce, Director of Cornell’s Legal Information Institute (LII), has posted Suggested Metadata [...]

  9. [...] means of offering valuable context to nonlawyers using legal information. Kirchberger quotes Tom Bruce’s 2001 paper on the need to build flexible systems that can present legal information in a [...]

  10. [...] podcast, entitled The Law.gov Movement. On the podcast, Carl Malamud of Public.Resource.Org, and Tom Bruce of the Legal Information Institute at Cornell University Law School, speak with Bob Ambrogi, Esq. about the Law.gov [...]

  11. [...] the presentation, Tom Bruce of the Legal Information Institute at the Cornell University Law School, and Carl Malamud of Public.Resource.Org discuss these principles with workshop [...]

  12. [...] when Tom Bruce emailed me a few weeks ago and asked if I’d be interested in creating a Free Law Research [...]

  13. [...] for two perhaps non-obvious reasons. One, it’s notable for who sent it to me – none other than Thomas R. Bruce, Director of the Legal Information [...]

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