Alex, I’ll Take eDiscovery Terms and Concepts for $200


The game show Jeopardy started syndication of its 37th season yesterday and Alex Trebek has continued to host the show (and amaze us all in doing so while defying his diagnosis of stage 4 pancreatic cancer last year). So, in honor of Jeopardy and Alex, we thought we would provide our own Jeopardy super-sized category of eDiscovery Terms and Concepts. See how many of these you know! 

In true Jeopardy format, “answers” are below with the “questions” to respond to the answers at the end of this article. But, no looking until you’ve tried to answer the questions on your own! Or is it “question the answers”? Regardless, don’t forget to put your responses in the form of a question!

  1. An advanced search, developed by an 18th century mathematician and clergyman, that utilizes statistical probability rules to compute the likelihood that a document is relevant to a query;
  2. Unsupervised machine learning in which thematically similar files are grouped together based on the text of the individual files;
  3. A compressed file containing multiple files; used to minimize the size of the original files for storage and/or transporting;
  4. Often confused with another similar term, it’s the process of separating possibly relevant electronically stored information from nonrelevant electronically stored information using both computer techniques, such as date filtering or advanced analytics, and human-assisted logical determinations at the beginning of a case;
  5. Data that exists for a very brief, temporary period and is transitory in nature, such as data stored in random access memory (RAM);
  6. AN ISO standard that formally specifies an Information Security Management System (ISMS), a suite of activities concerning the management of information security risks. The ISMS is an overarching management framework through which an organization identifies, analyzes, and addresses its information risks;
  7. Common words (e.g., all, the, of, but, not) that are purposefully excluded from a search index when it is created in order to make the index more efficient;
  8. The percentage of documents of a search’s null set that were missed by the search, usually determined with review of a random sample of the null set;
  9. Use of machine learning to analyze data, using training examples that have been coded by humans, such as categorization;
  10. A mathematical algorithm that calculates a unique value for a given set of data, similar to a digital fingerprint, representing the binary content of the data to assist in subsequently ensuring that data has not been modified.

And, no Jeopardy game would be complete without a Final Jeopardy answer!  So, here’s one of those for you, as well (feel free to hum the Jeopardy tune in your head while responding):

When describing search results, it’s the number of true positives retrieved from a search divided by the total number of results returned.

How did you do? Needless to say, there are a lot of terms and concepts related to eDiscovery and management of electronically stored information to know and understand. How many? Literally, hundreds of them. The Sedona Conference® Glossary, eDiscovery & Digital Information Management, Fifth Edition is almost 130 pages of nearly 800 definitions related to eDiscovery and related topics and the latest edition was released back in February of this year.  It’s where we got the “answers” above to the terms and concepts we used in our Jeopardy exercise.  You can download the Glossary here from The Sedona Conference – it’s free to download!

Of course, simply knowing the terms and what they mean is one thing – putting those terms and concepts into action to support electronic discovery takes experienced professionals and state of the art technology.  To manage discovery effectively today, you need talented and tenured review managers, strong technical engineers, experienced eDiscovery project managers and TAR consultants.  And, you need leading industry software and well-established workflows that enable you to effectively and efficiently execute your plan for discovery in your cases.  You need people who not only know these terms and concepts; they’ve lived them in actual discovery-related scenarios.  If you don’t have those people on your team, it may be time to work with someone who does.

As promised, here are the answers to our Jeopardy quiz: 1-What is Bayesian Search?; 2-What is Clustering?; 3-What is a Container File?; 4-What is Early Data Assessment? (which is often confused with Early Case Assessment); 5-What is Ephemeral Data?; 6-What is ISO 27001?; 7-What are Stop Words? (“What are Noise Words?” would also have been a correct answer); 8-What is Elusion?; 9-What is Supervised Learning?; 10-What is Hash Coding?.  Final Jeopardy: What is Precision?

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