About Bruce Baker
Bruce Baker has turned his lifelong fascination with linguistics into a passion for helping individuals with physical disabilities.
With the Minspeak system, hundreds of words and sentences can be encoded with very few keystrokes. Although originally designed for adults, speech-language pathologists are now using the system to teach children with developmental disabilities.
"The most rewarding aspect of my work is getting to know people with complex disabilities who, though unable to talk, want to participate in life to its fullest," said Mr. Baker. "Explaining complex linguistic theory in multiple languages is perhaps the biggest challenge.”
Individuals who use the Minspeak system are now able to enjoy a better quality of life by communicating more effectively with their friends and relatives, pursuing higher education, and maintaining gainful employment.
In addition to starting Semantic Compaction Systems, Mr. Baker is the founder of a nonprofit corporation known as Support Helps Others Use Technology. The mission of SHOUT is to study employment issues for people with significant impairments.
Mr. Baker's love of language began when he was 6 years old. "I picked up a Latin textbook that my late grandmother had taught from and I was fascinated because I could read this new language," he recalled. "I said someday I'll read this language and I'll know how to speak like the Romans."
Mr. Baker earned a Bachelor's Degree in Latin with a minor in Greek in 1967 from Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana. He received a degree in French language and literature from Middlebury College in Middlebury, Vermont, in 1976. Today, he holds numerous patents and has several pending for language and command technology throughout the world.
Mr. Baker has been recognized for his work with awards from many organizations, including the United Cerebral Palsy in Washington, D.C., and the International Society for Augmentative and Alternative Communication in Toronto, Canada.
*Article taken from www.shoutaac.org