Intel hopes to boost Stephen Hawking’s speech to ten words per minute

Stephen Hawking FLICKR

Intel has worked on Stephen Hawking’s speech technology for over a decade; the scientist, stricken by motor neuron disease, currently selects letters one by one by twitching his cheek in time to a continually scrolling cursor. But with his condition deteriorating, Hawking can only achieve about a word a minute this way, and recently contacted Intel co-founder Gordon Moore to see if the company would be able to assist.

“We’ve built a new, character-driven interface in modern terms that includes a better word predictor.”

Speaking to Scientific American, CTO Justin Rattner said that Intel thinks it indeed can do better. Hawking can make other facial expressions, too, which could be used to speed up his speech output — two expressions…

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