Ray Kurzweil was the principal developer of the first omni-font optical character recognition, the first print-to-speech reading machine for the blind, the first CCD flat-bed scanner, the first text-to-speech synthesizer, the first music synthesizer capable of recreating the grand piano and other orchestral instruments, and the first commercially marketed large vocabulary speech recognition. Ray has successfully founded, developed, and sold four AI businesses in OCR, music synthesis, speech recognition, and reading technology. All of these technologies continue today as market leaders.
received the $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize, the world's largest award
in invention and innovation. He also received the 1999 National Medal
of Technology, the nation's highest honor in technology, from President
Clinton in a White House ceremony. He has also received scores of other
national and international awards, including the 1994 Dickson Prize
(Carnegie Mellon University's top science prize), Engineer of the Year
from Design News, Inventor of the Year from MIT, and the Grace Murray
Hopper Award from the Association for Computing Machinery. He has received
ten honorary Doctorates and honors from three U.S. presidents. He has
received seven national and international film awards.