About Luc P. Beaudoin
- At CogZest: Founder and President,
- At Simon Fraser University, the academic home of my Cognitive Productivity Research Project: Adjunct Professor of Education, and Adjunct Professor of Cognitive Science.
- At CogSci Apps Corp.: Co-founder; president; product management.
- Co-founder of the Somnolence+ initiative.
I am author of Cognitive Productivity: Using Knowledge to Become Profoundly Effective, and of Cognitive Productivity with macOS®: 7 Principles for Getting Smarter with Knowledge (which is being published by installment).
I am working on a number of cognitive science-related R&D projects.
Longish Bio from Undergraduate Days to Today
- My undergraduate was in Psychology, with an honour’s thesis on computer modeling the evolution of vision. My supervisor was Claude Lamontagne (himself a Ph.D. in AI [vision] from the U. of Edinburgh).
- I spent the first year of my Ph.D. in Cognitive Science at Sussex University in England. I completed my thesis at the University of Birmingham (computer modelling of goal processing and motivation) with Prof. Aaron Sloman as supervisor throughout.
- I was Assistant Professor of Military Psychology and Leadership at the Royal Military College of Canada (e.g., Motivation and Performance Enhancement).
- I was an at-founding employee of Tundra Semiconductor (technical writer).
- I was the first employee of Abatis Systems Corp. (Senior Software Developer).
- These two companies created innovative solutions to significant problems for our customers. I learned an enormous amount about designing products (including businesses); about motivation, leadership, learning, knowledge building, etc.; more than I could have had I remained a professor. The combined valuation of those two companies soared to well over $2 billion in less than 5 and 3 years, respectively. This confirmed what I knew from studying with Dr. Claude Lamontagne and Professor Aaron Sloman: spectacular progress is possible when working with all-round excellent minds.
As a cognitive scientist, one of the things that struck me at Abatis was that, despite the fact that my colleagues and I had full access to technical documentation in electronic formats and the best computers and monitors, we printed reams of documentation. I became fascinated by the question: what would it take for knowledge workers to be far better able to learn deeply with technology, on screen, without needing to print?
So, after Abatis was acquired by Redback Networks, I set my sights on creating my own company (code named “Lakatosh”) and products to enhance cognitive productivity. One of my main goals has since then been to help knowledge workers turn external information into personal knowledge that is not just in the machines but active in one’s mind. I began designing products to optimize learning, mastery and remembering; products that leveraged the best of cognitive science and technology.
In 2002, I took these ideas to Prof. Phil Winne’s projects at Simon Fraser University. We developed software to enhance and research self-regulated learning. I became his research associate, leading our software development teams and helping raise millions of dollars to fund our R&D. I also used this opportunity to keep learning about how the mind can drive its cognitive productivity.
In 2010, I became Adjunct Professor of Education at Simon Fraser University, and I launched CogZest. With CogZest, my objectives are even more ambitious than “Lakatosh”: from information to all round personal excellence through cognitive productivity. Most of Lakatosh remained in stealth mode.
In 2014, I spun-off most of the CogZest intellectual property portfolio to a new startup I co-founded with Brian Shi, CogSci Apps. (We released mySleepButton in 2014 and will release a revolutionary new software product in 2018 ; it will change how people use knowledge to become more effective.) That year, I became Adjunct Professor of Cognitive Science at SFU (where I now have two appointments.)
If you’ve read and reflected about CogZest’s mission, you may have realized that an interdisciplinary background is required to accomplish it. I’ve written this page to highlight some of the background that I think is required and that I bring to the task. That includes understanding:
- Cognitive science – understanding the mind as a complex but somewhat accessible and controllable collection of virtual machines
- Affect: motivation (including goal processing), emotions, attitudes and performance enhancement
- Self-directed learning
- Interpersonal relations, values and ethics
- Research and development
- Software development and information technology
- Knowledge worker productivity
- Personality, particularly inventiveness and efficiency
- Knowledge industry and building world-class intellectual products.
I also have an active research program to better understand sleep-onset and treat insomnia. As always, I approach this from the perspective of broad, affective cognitive science.
If you’re interested in the intersection of learning, thinking, knowledge building and productivity, then perhaps CogZest will appeal to you.
Luc P. Beaudoin, Ph.D. (Cognitive Science)
Founder and President
Author of Cognitive Productivity: The Art and Science of Using Knowledge to Become Profoundly Effective and of Cognitive Productivity with macOS®: 7 Principles for Getting Smarter with Knowledge (the latter is being published by installment).
Adjunct Professor of Education at Simon Fraser University, the academic home of my Cognitive Productivity Research Project, and
Co-founder of CogSci Apps Corp., the company to which in Q1-2014 CogZest transferred the intellectual property of our cognitive productivity software for commercialization.
I was an early investor in Tundra and Abatis. I am also an angel investor in PHEMI Systems, co-founded by Dr. Paul Terry, Adam Lorant, and John Seminerio.