Dr. Thomas Whalen's Biography
Thomas Whalen was born in British Columbia, Canada in 1951. He
obtained a Ph.D. in experimental psychology from Dalhousie University
in Nova Scotia.
Dr. Whalen has been conducting research on the human
factors of information technologies for the Government of Canada at the
Communications Research Centre
in Ottawa since 1979. Dr. Whalen's current
research projects at the Network Services and Interfaces Laboratory address the development of new services and human
interfaces for computer networks. Most linguistic-based approaches to natural language require the
development of a grammar. In contrast, Dr. Whalen's psychology-based
approach relies on examining actual human behaviour.
Each new system
is tested on thousands of people and many thousands of sentences are
collected and analysed. His computer program, TIPS, provides ways to
store, organize, and search the important parts of these sentences.
The program won the 1994 Loebner Prize Competition.