JANET BAKER
RESEARCH AFFILIATE

Janet Baker is presently a Research Affiliate in Pattie Maes Fluid Interfaces Group. With a background in neurophysiology, AI, and speech technology, she is interested in advancing human capabilities to interact effectively with their environment, computers, and each other. In recent years she has worked on creating wearable technologies, especially incorporating user-tunable HiFi capabilities for the hearing impaired. She also advises high tech start-ups and funding entities on strategy and business operations.

Janet Baker was Chairman/CEO and Co-Founder of Dragon Systems. Founded by Janet Baker and James Baker in 1982, with bootstrap financing, Dragon grew debt-free to 400 employees and $70 million/yr revenue before its stock sale in 2000 for $600 Million. Dragon Systems introduced the world's first general-purpose speech dictation/transcription software, Dragon NaturallySpeaking®. Acclaimed for its worldwide technology and market leadership, Dragon Systems also introduced audiomining, the first search engine for audio, in many world languages over diverse audio channels. Dragon's technology has been successfully incorporated globally into leading applications, incl. Apple's "Siri", IBM's "Watson", cloud-based services, automotive navigation/control systems, consumer products (spanning toys, robots, smart TVs, prosthetic devices) etc., with many millions of users.

For many years Janet has advised international government, academic, and corporate entities on entrepreneurship, high tech strategy, planning, assessment, etc. She guest lectures on entrepreneurship and innovation at major business schools (MIT Sloan, Harvard, Babson College-HEC/Paris, etc.). During the past decade, Janet has collaborated with neuroscientists at Harvard-MIT HST and Univ. of Cal., San Diego to explore how the human brain recognizes speech and language, using optimization approaches, machine learning, etc. Starting with collaborations with Prof. Lettvin (RLE) and Profs. Minsky and Papert (Project MAC), Janet has long been affiliated with MIT, across multiple departments, as well as with Harvard Medical School. She has received several international industry awards. Academic degrees include a B.S. in biology from Tufts University, and a Ph.D. in AI from Carnegie-Mellon University.

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