CFL stands for Computational Forensic Linguistics. We use the speed and capacity of current computers to read documents in a similar way to humans, to identify similarities between them which is of evidential quality. That’s the Forensic part.
CFL Software Limited was founded in 1994 by David Woolls, who has been involved with computational forensic linguistics since the mid-1980s.
Our primary focus is now patent searching, and we have developed two products, Patent Reader and SpanMatch, to address different search requirements. Since doing so we have been an invited speaker at PIUG in Atlanta, Georgia and a ICIC in Heidelberg in 2017 and at Global IP Exchange in London and CIIPM in Cambridge in 2018.
Prior to this we have been involved in producing tools for the identification and prevention of plagiarism, collusion and infringement of copyright. The growth of the company has resulted from the interest in both the legal sector and the web community in the high precision identification of similarity required for evidential data. This has driven the development of a search engine which uses clauses, sentences or whole documents as search input and the design and implementation of real-time monitoring tools for web use.
Our primary business is the provision of consultancy services to professional, legal, governmental and research organisations in the fields of authorship attribution casework, advice on plagiarism prevention and detection, and implementation of document monitoring programs for time-critical applications.
Publications by David Woolls
The entry on Plagiarism in the Elsevier Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics 2nd Edition (2006)
The chapter Computational Forensic Linguistics: Searching for similarity in large specialised corpora in The Routledge Handbook of Forensic Linguistics (2010/2016)
The chapter Detecting Plagiarism in the Oxford Handbook of Language and Law (2012)
The chapter Who wrote this? The linguist as detective in Introducing Applied Linguistics: Concepts and Skills (2009) (with Dr Alison Johnson of the University of Leeds)
Papers in: Forensic Linguistics: The International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law (1998 and 2003); Studies in Bibliography (2003), on computer-assisted authorship identification of 18th century pamphlets, (with Professor Pamela Clemit of Durham University)
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