INVENTOR RAY KURZWEIL
TO SPEAK AT FARFEL LECTURE
Ray Kurzweil, principal developer of the first CCD
flat-bed scanner and numerous inventions, will deliver the 2007
Farfel Distinguished Lecture at 7 p.m., April 4 in Cullen Performance
Hall. The lecture is free, but R.S.V.P. is required. Call 713-743-2255
or visit www.advancement.uh.edu/farfel
Kurzweil has been described as “the restless
genius” by The Wall Street Journal and by Forbes as “the
ultimate thinking machine.” Inc. magazine ranked him eighth
among entrepreneurs in the United States, calling him the “rightful
heir to Thomas Edison,” and PBS included him as one of 16
“revolutionaries who made America,” along with other
inventors of the past two centuries.
As one of the leading inventors of our time, Kurzweil
was the principal developer of the first omni-font optical character
recognition system, the first print-to-speech reading machine
for the blind, the first text-to-speech synthesizer, the first
music synthesizer capable of recreating the sound of the grand
piano and other orchestral instruments, and the first commercially
marketed large-vocabulary speech recognition system.
Among Kurzweil’s many honors, he is the recipient
of the $500,000 Massachusetts Institute of Technology-Lemelson
Prize, the world’s largest prize for innovation. In 1999,
he received the National Medal of Technology, the nation’s
highest honor in technology. In 2002, he was inducted into the
National Inventors Hall of Fame.
Kurzweil has received 13 honorary doctorates, as
well as honors from three U.S. presidents. He has written five
books, including four national best sellers. “The Age of
Spiritual Machines” has been translated into nine languages
and was the No. 1 best-selling book on amazon.com in science.
His latest book, “The Singularity is Near,” was a
New York Times best seller.
The Farfel Distinguished Lecture series is UH’s
most prestigious lectureship. Designed to bring provocative thinkers
in every field to the university and to the Houston community,
it is endowed through a gift from the family of philanthropists
Aaron and Esther Farfel in their memory. Aaron Farfel served on
the UH System Board of Regents for 16 years and was chairman from
1971 to 1979.
For more information about UH visit the universitys
Newsroom at www.uh.edu/admin/media/newsroom.