If you look at Volume Global’s website expecting to find an ‘about us’ or ‘products’ section, you won’t find it. The website – Volume’s ‘Digital Concierge’ – is one of the UK’s few commercial cognitive websites that is being trained to answer questions, backed by IBM Watson. You can ask the Digital Concierge what Volume is, what it does, or who the management team are, and it will tell you in natural language.

Volume describes itself as a global provider of digital content, technology and innovation – it is changing the way companies (such as Virgin Media Business) present their products and services to clients using smart machines. In June 2015, led by chief executive Chris Sykes, it set up Volume.XO, a centre of excellence for cognitive computing, artificial intelligence and machine learning, to help businesses deliver “cognitive innovation.”

Volume.XO uses IBM APIs such as natural language classifier, which interprets content to understand its meaning; and Dialog, which allows applications to use conversation to interact with users in natural language, storing the context of users previous interactions and using that to interpret subsequent requests.

The creation of .XO followed Volume’s certification as an IBM ecosystem partner, since when it has become one of the few companies globally to have three ‘With Watson’ verified applications in-market.

How is this relevant to the legal sector? Skyes tells Legal IT Insider: “Our traditional sector focus has been IT and industrial, however we have early stage AI opportunities in the health, education and legal sectors.

“We are focussed on ‘optimising human performance through smart machines’, essentially automating first touches and extending the self-serve cycle, while moving employees to higher value interactions. i.e. more fulfilling tasks for employees and a better experience for the customer.”

The site was first flagged to the Insider when we wrote about Janders Dean’s new AI chatbot Amy, which is used to arrange meetings and has fooled many a client and PA (and maybe one legal technology journalist) into thinking she is a real person.

Writing a comment on our site, David Gilroy, sales and marketing director at Conscious Solutions, which helps law firms build new brands and new websites, said: “If you like Amy, have a look at this – www.volumeglobal.com”.

Do look. Just don’t ask the Digital Concierge what the meaning of life is, we’ve tried and it doesn’t know (yet).

See www.volumeglobal.com/rethink/xo/ebook for more information