clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Stephen Hawking looking for technical assistant to help maintain and improve his speech system

New, 29 comments
Stephen Hawking Wheelchair Computer
Stephen Hawking Wheelchair Computer

If you're proficient at repairing customized hardware and want to work side-by-side with one of the greatest living physicists, there's job opening at the University of Cambridge that might interest you. Stephen Hawking is looking for a new graduate assistant, though the job posting notes this postion might be better described as "technical assistant," as the main functions are to help Hawking function as a public speaker and professor. While there's a number of more mundane tasks such as maintaining travel schedules and preparing lecture graphics, there's also the noteworthy task of "develop[ing] and maintain[ing]... Professor Hawking's communication and speech systems."

Hawking's "black box" computer system consists of a Windows XP laptop attached to his chair, powered by the wheelchair's batteries. It also has a 3G card for constant Internet access, and remotes designed for home automation: Hawking can open his doors, turn on lights, and control his home theater. Applicants will need to service this complicated setup on-the-fly without any sort of documentation or guidelines, so a high degree of electronics knowledge and computer literacy are required. While the job hasn't been officially posted, Professor Hawking's website is letting prospective candidates pre-submit information; it doesn't count as an official application but may help filter qualified candidates from the flood of applications that are sure to come.