Documents are at the heart of any legal system—writing's the thing, ever since Hammurabi. And though legal documents do change in form and character, there's a strong impulse for things to remain "the same" or at least sufficiently similar that past experience and rulings can limn the future. That's on the surface.
The relatively recent introduction of digital documents has, perhaps paradoxically, brought about considerable and continuing change underneath. As the duck seems serene but paddles furiously below the waterline, so it is with legal "duckuments": it's all text above the waterline, but underneath there's much churning as HTML, DOC, PDF, and XML standards keep developing. One of the most significant changes currently underway has to do with the XML (extensible markup language) that allows document creators to identify important features or facets of an industry's documents and label them in such a way that computers can manipulate those documents in sophisticated ways. This is the much debated and drawn-out promise of the "semantic web."
Akoma Ntoso, an initiative of the Africa i-Parliament "Action Plan," is a system that works with a legal XML to create a documentary "'lingua franca' for the interchange of parliamentary, legislative and judiciary documents between institutions." Anyone interested in legal informatics will want to look at the Akoma Ntoso schema. And if you're simply curious about what goes on beneath the surface, have a look at the two-pane window of examples offered on the site. Clicking on one part of the text allows you to see the "duckument's" feet paddling below.
It's hard to get lawyers, judges, and legislators interested in (let alone excited by) this stuff. Their focus is on the words, not on the markup. But the markup is in fact important to law because our legal system is pretty much given over to computers to manage; if the legal profession doesn't pay attention, it will miss the opportunity to participate in the formulation of legal XML, or whatever that morphs into, and consequently will have to handle law in the future with implements designed by others.