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date: 21 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This introductory chapter to Part III examines whether there are generalizable lessons concerning law and its regulation of technology that we can learn from past experience with the law reacting to technological evolution. I suggest three insights from historical interactions between law and technological change: (1) pre-existing legal categories may no longer apply to new law and technology disputes; (2) legal decision makers should be mindful to avoid letting the marvels of a new technology distort their legal analysis; and (3) the types of legal disputes that will arise from new technology are often unforeseeable. These lessons are applicable across a wide range of technologies, legal fields, and contexts to aid in determining current and future legal responses to technological development.

Keywords: law, technology, regulation, governance, Internet, DNA typing, genetically modified, synthetic biology

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