For full documentation about canonical fields, including a list of canonical fields, searching with canonical fields, and implications of this new release for existing searches with metadata fields, click here.
With this first release of 2016, we’ve focused on one of those unglamorous-but-important aspects of Everlaw: metadata.
Specifically, we’re releasing a feature we call canonical metadata. This feature takes all of the disparate metadata fields you see in a collection of documents, compares them to figure out which ones actually mean the same things, and normalizes them into a smaller set of common fields.
This makes it much easier to search and organize that data, because you no longer have to imagine all of the ways those fields may be labeled in the dataset. For instance, if you want to find documents by custodian, you don’t have to wonder if you’ll find those documents under the metadata field “Custodian” or “Custdn” or “CUST” or some other variation; you can simply search the “Custodian” field and trust that all possibilities are contained within it. Canonical metadata is especially important for cases containing productions from different parties, sent at different times with different conventions, which often contain dozens or even hundreds of distinct but semantically-related fields—all of which are greatly simplified by this new feature.
All of your existing metadata-based aliases will be preserved with this update. Metadata columns you added to your results table will likely be removed, however, so you’ll need to add those back manually. If you have any questions, or would like a correlation table showing the relationships between the original and new canonical fields, please don’t hesitate to contact your account representative or firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is a particularly exciting release because it lays the groundwork for exciting future features. Stay tuned for more on that as the year progresses, and let us know if you have any questions in the meantime!