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Frank Rudzicz


Associate Scientist, Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute; Scientist, Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, UHN; Associate professor (status), Department of Computer Science, University of Toronto; Co-Founder and President, WinterLight Labs Incorporated; Faculty member, Vector Institute

The coolest things I've done in my career are:

I started a company, WinterLight Labs, with two of my students based on research in our lab, and brought a robot, Ludwig, into a retirement home to converse with its residents.

If i could have a superpower it would be:

The Power of Love by Huey Lewis and the News

I'm a "closet" fan of:

Mystery Science Theater 3000 and bad movies generally. Also, Nintendo.

The nerdiest thing I do in my spare time is:


Three things still on my bucket list are:

  1. Camp in Canada’s Far North

  2. Go to Warp 9 on the Enterprise

  3. Go to Warp 9.5 on the Enterprise


My past experience includes:

I’m a scientist at the University Health Network, an associate professor of Computer Science at the University of Toronto, co-founder and President of WinterLight Labs Inc., faculty member at the Vector Institute, and President of the international joint ACL/ISCA special interest group on Speech and Language Processing for Assistive Technologies.


I am the recent recipient of the Young Investigator award from the Alzheimer's Society of Canada, the Early Researcher award from the Government of Ontario, the Excellence in Applied Research award from the National Speech-Language & Audiology Canada, and the Connaught Innovation Award. 


Significant contributions include:

  • the TORGO database of disordered speech

  • the first speech recognition system for people with speech disorders that models physical speech articulation

  • subsequent communication aid software that modifies hard-to-understand speech signals to be more understandable to the typical listener

  • design of the speech interaction for hitchBOT, the hitch-hiking robot, and LUDWIG, the caregiver robot, and

  • state-of-the-art machine learning software that can assess cognitive disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, by analyzing short samples of speech.


I’m currently commercializing several of these contributions.

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