- Sarah Deters Richardson
(b Queens, NY, 1948). American manufacturer of digital synthesizers, computer scientist, author, and inventor. In 1965, he built a computer that composed original melodies using pattern recognition; it analyzed patterns in musical compositions and then created original melodies based on these patterns. This invention won him First Prize at the International Science Fair and national attention. He founded Kurzweil Computer Products in 1974. The company created the first omni-font (any font) Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology, the first CCD flat-bed scanner, and the first full text-to-speech synthesizer. The three technologies were combined to create the Kurzweil Reading Machine, which was announced on 13 January 1976. This led to a collaboration with the musician Stevie Wonder, who purchased the first production unit. On 1 July 1982, Kurzweil founded Kurzweil Music Systems, with Wonder as musical advisor. The company set out to invent electronic instruments that could capture and recreate the true sounds and musical responses of acoustic musical instruments. Kurzweil created the K250 keyboard synthesizer (originally designed in late ...