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

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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.