Dr. Ralf Biedert Principal Engineer, Tobii AB

Professional Experience

2016 - presentTobii AB Principal Engineer
2013 - 2016Tobii Dynavox Senior Engineer
2011 - 2012University of California, Berkeley Visiting Scholar
2009 - 2012German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence Researcher
2006 - 2007RICOH Japan Intern
2000 - 2008Freelancer Software Developer


2013Dr. rer. nat. (PhD), TU Kaiserslautern - Magna Cum Laude (1.0)
2008Diplom Informatik (M.Sc. CS), TU Kaiserslautern - Very Good (1.1)

Technology I used professionally

8+ years
  • Full time since 2016
  • ML
  • Networking
  • Game Engines
  • Reached 1M+ readers
8+ years
  • Lead engineer
  • 3 products
  • 5 major demos
  • XR SDK
  • Work featured in news
15+ years
  • Invented Text 2.0
  • Dozen papers
  • 100's citations
15+ years
  • Integrated ML into 3D, Video, HCI
  • Authored FFSVM
  • PhD at DFKI
15+ years
  • Gaze
  • Speech
  • Touch
  • Gestures
  • Work Featured in News
5+ years
  • Headed Tobii's Unity Team
  • Did high-performance C#–Rust interop
20+ years
  • Frontend
  • Backend
  • TypeScript
  • Node
  • HTML
  • CSS
  • WASM
  • Did it all …
5+ years
  • Wrote Linux drivers
  • GSM-R middlewares
  • Some trains run my code
5+ years
  • Cloud backends for 100k's devices
  • AWS used weekly
  • Security research at UC Berkeley
10+ years
  • Extensively used PyTorch
  • Matplotlib
  • NumPy
  • Processing.py
  • 5+ years
    • Wrote multiple Android Apps
    • Used 1.4 to SE 7


    Foveated Rendering

    For desktop-based eye tracking systems I researched the reduction of artifacting and signal latencies around VRS-based foveated rendering in UE5.

    Unreal Engine DirectX C

    Video Intelligence

    Kickstarting a new project, I was responsible for R&D around online deployment of ML models, with special focus on high throughput, low latency systems.

    Rust Machine Learning PyTorch Vulkan


    Ocumen Studio

    I was responsible for Ocumen Studio, a scientific XR viewer for interactive real time data (think VLC for XR), and authored most high-performance code.

    XR Rust C Python Unity CUDA NVENC


    Foveated Transports

    I coordinated and led our foveation projects, investigating how real time gaze data can lead to better video compression, giving a >30% compression advantage over static foveation, low obtrusiveness and realistic implementations. (Download Paper)

    VR Codecs Eye Tracking OpenGL DirectX

    Ocumen I/O

    For our VR products I architected and led the implementation of Ocumen I/O, a high performance, cross platform video and data streaming format written in Rust with bindings for C# and Python (think MKV for multimodal interaction data).

    VR Codecs Rust C C# Python

    Various Projects


    XR SDK

    I was responsible for our XR SDK, a set of cross-device APIs and components, integrating low-level libraries, tooling, samples, demos, documentation and marketing material.

    XR Unity

    Watch Dogs: Legion

    I co-authored a Rust-based DLL that improved eye tracking gameplay in the game Watch Dogs: Legion. This may be have been one of the first uses of Rust in a AAA title.

    Rust Machine Learning Eye Tracking


    Object Mapping

    I headed the training and productification of a low-latency machine-learned object mapping technology, giving a significantly better XR developer experience and interaction performance, and became the foundation of Tobii's XR SDK.

    Machine Learning Eye Tracking Rust C XR


    • I acted as interim Product Manager for XR SW, doing profitability planning and strategic roadmaps for various XR products and activities.


    Rust Language Cheat Sheet

    I authored cheats.rs, a 50+ pages (when printed) Rust learning resource for experienced programmers with 1M+ readers and 1k+ GitHub stars one year after release.

    Rust HTML / CSS

    The Hub

    I was responsible for The Hub, an acclaimed VR demo exhibited at CES. The demo contrasts various interaction paradigms to pinpoint how eye tracking can augment both VR and AR user interfaces.

    XR Eye Tracking




    I led the development of Mirrors, X-Team's 'game changing' GDC debut, highly praised by the 1000's of developers, journalists and visitors who tried it at countless events over the following years.

    VR Unity Eye Tracking

    FFSVM - Really Fast Support Vector Machines

    I implemented an allocation-free SIMD-based libSVM-compatible library in Rust for use in game engines and XR, that can evaluate small, dense models 10x faster per core and easily supports embarrassingly parallel operation, and even made it into a real game.

    Machine Learning Rust



    I started as Principal Engineer at Tobii AB, tasked with creating X-Team. Originally a VR / AR research team, we continued to produce 100's of demos, numerous inventions; supplied software to major studios and XR companies over the following years.

    Leadership XR


    Statistics Infrastructure

    I architected and rolled out a privacy-aware big data statistics infrastructure based on heuristic sampling, capable of ingesting, processing and visualizing billions of data points for custom HCI studies with real-world data.

    TypeScript HTML / CSS AWS


    I created Vapor, an in-house application showcase ('Vapor is not Steam') to facilitate innovation sharing, allowing employees to publish their experiments, and comment, rate and download them.

    TypeScript HTML / CSS AWS



    I led and architected ERGO, Tobii Dynavox's first general-market ergonomics software for users with RSI or carpal tunnel that could effectively reduce the number and duration of key strokes, pointer movement and keyboard-mouse transitions.

    WPF C# Ergonomics


    Tobii Dynavox

    🇸🇪  I joined Tobii Dynavox R&D, researching and prototyping various assistive technologies for upcoming products.

    Research Assisstive



    As part of my research at UC Berkeley I co-authored Touchalytics, classifying unique swipe patterns on smart phones to continuously authenticate users, stop imposters, and improve device UX. The paper subsequently got over 500 citations.

    Security Biometrics Machine Learning Java Python

    Finished PhD

    I submitted my PhD thesis (formally a German Dr. rer. nat.) and received a magna cum laude (1.0). I also started to sleep much better.



    University of California, Berkeley

    🇺🇸  I was a visiting scholar in Dawn Song's lab where I did biometric security research together with Ivan Martinovic and Mario Frank, and gave a guest lecture.

    Research Security Biometrics


    Text 2.0

    I published the Text 2.0 paper, basically asking: What if text knew that it is being read? On an individual level this could mean smarter reading aids on the fly; on an aggregate level better texts.

    Eye Tracking Machine Learning Reading HCI


    German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence

    I joined DFKI (German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence) under Andreas Dengel for my PhD.

    Machine Learning HCI


    Context Sensitive Dashboard (Diplom)

    Under supervision of Sven Schwarz I created a context-sensitive dashboard, taking into account user activity, to present the most useful information sources for the current task; finishing my Diplom (BSc + MSc) with a final grade of 1.1 (very good).

    Machine Learning Java


    RICOH, Tokyo

    🇯🇵  I did an internship at RICOH, Tokyo, using computer vision and machine learning to design gesture- and attention-based user interfaces for office equipment.

    Computer Vision OpenCV C++ Python

    2000 - 2008


    As a freelancer I worked with customers in the railway industry. I wrote software, drivers and GSM-R communications used on the locomotives BR 145, Bombardier TRAXX, did defensive network security, and ported code between operating systems.

    C++ Security


    Charity Work

    Using assembly and SoftICE I made sure my friends at school could play games if they lost their CDROMs — free of charge.


    More information some might find useful:

    • Press — Interviews I have given, or articles about work I was directly responsible for.
    • Students — Internships, Bachelor's or Master's I supervised.
    • Papers — Publications I (co-)authored.
    • FAQ — Questions that come up once in a while.

    Interviews I have given, or press reports about work I was chiefly responsible for.

    Thesis students and interns I supervised.

    Tobii AB

    • Yasmeen Mahmoud - VR
    • Andreas Linn - VR
    • Ludwig Sidenmark - VR
    • Yuchen Qiu - VR
    • Xu Han - Power Saving

    Tobii Dynavox

    • Antonios Kouzoupis - Tobii Statistics Infrastructure
    • Jonas Holgersson - Dyslexia visualization
    • Gigi Ho - Assistive calibrations
    • Philip Hammar - Software Testing Internship
    • Meng Su - (in progress)
    • Germán Leiva - Gaze-supported pointing input devices for day-to-day computer interaction
    • Simon Cicek - Gaze Assisted Ergonomics
    • Pelle Axelsson - Text input rate enhancement for Tobii AAC products
    • Arthur Onoszko - Text input rate enhancement for Tobii AAC products

    University of California, Berkeley

    • Eugene Ma - Development & Evaluation
    • Arman Boehm - Development & Evaluation

    German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence

    • Mostafa El Hosseiny
    • Mahmoud Sakr
    • Christoph Käding
    • Robin Arnold
    • Lucal Lötterle
    • Florian Pelz
    • Thomas Litzel
    • André Hoffmann
    • Arman Vartan
    • Farida Ismail
    • Mohamed Sharaf-El-Deen
    • Nikhil Kapur
    • Paritosh Aggarwal
    • Parth M. Saxena
    • Oxana Isaeva
    • Thomas Lottermann
    • Julian Kallenborn
    • Nathaniel Egwu
    • Eugen Massini
    • Roya Parvizi
    • Johannes Korz


    • Alexey Bezugly, Dennis Rådell and Ralf Biedert A Lightweight Foveation Codec for VR Tobii White Paper 20211201-FOV (PDF, feel free to give this a read, it's not as bad as white paper sounds, pinky promise).


    • Ralf Biedert Gaze-Based Human-Text Interaction — Text 2.0 Doctoral thesis, TU Kaiserslautern. Published with Verlag Dr. Hut.


    • Jörn Hees, Mohamed Khamis, Ralf Biedert, Slim Abdennadher and Andreas Dengel Collecting Links between Entities Ranked by Human Association Strengths In 10th Extended Semantic Web Conference (ESWC 2013)
    • Mario Frank, Ralf Biedert, Eugene Ma, Ivan Martinovic and Dawn Song Touchalytics: On the Applicability of Touchscreen Input as a Behavioral Biometric for Continuous Authentication IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics and Security (2013). Also best poster award at the Intel SCRUB retreat


    • Ralf Biedert, Mario Frank, Ivan Martinovic, Dawn Song Stimuli for Gaze Based Intrusion Detection 6th International Symposium on Digital Forensics and Information Security (DFIS 2012)
    • Ralf Biedert, Georg Buscher, Andreas Dengel Gazing the Text for Fun and Profit Gaze Tracking in HCI, Y. Nakano (Ed.), Springer
    • Jörn Hees, Thomas Roth-Berghofer, Ralf Biedert, Benjamin Adrian, Andreas Dengel BetterRelations: Collecting Association Strengths for Linked Data Triples with a Game Search Computing 2012, Springer
    • Ralf Biedert, Christoph Käding, Andreas Dengel Universal Eye-Tracking Based Text Cursor Warping Seventh ACM Symposium on Eye Tracking Research & Applications (ETRA 2012)
    • Ralf Biedert, Georg Buscher, Arman Vartan, Andreas Dengel Reading and Estimating Gaze on Smart Phones Seventh ACM Symposium on Eye Tracking Research & Applications (ETRA 2012)
    • Ralf Biedert, Mostafa El Hosseiny, Georg Buscher, Andreas Dengel Towards Robust Gaze-Based Objective Quality Measures for Text Seventh ACM Symposium on Eye Tracking Research & Applications (ETRA 2012)
    • Ralf Biedert, Georg Buscher, Jörn Hees, Andreas Dengel A Robust Realtime Reading-Skimming Classifier Seventh ACM Symposium on Eye Tracking Research & Applications (ETRA 2012)


    • Georg Buscher, Andreas Dengel, Ralf Biedert, Ludger van Elst Attentive Documents: Eye Tracking as Implicit Feedback for Information Retrieval and Beyond. Journal ACM Transactions on Interactive Intelligent Systems (ACM-TiiS), special issue on Eye Gaze in Intelligent Human Machine Interaction
    • Jörn Hees, Thomas Roth-Berghofer, Ralf Biedert, Benjamin Adrian, and Andreas Dengel BetterRelations: Detailed Evaluation of a Game to Rate Linked Data Triples In First International Workshop on Ordering and Reasoning held in conjunction with ISWC'11, 10th International Semantic Web Conference (ISWC 2011)
    • Farida Ismail, Ralf Biedert, Andreas Dengel, Georg Buscher Emotional text tagging Proceedings of the 2nd Workshop on Eye Gaze in Intelligent Human Machine Interaction held in conjunction with IUI 2011
    • Mostafa El Hosseiny, Ralf Biedert, Andreas Dengel, Georg Buscher The eyePad - Tom Riddle in the 21st century Proceedings of the 2nd Workshop on Eye Gaze in Intelligent Human Machine Interaction held in conjunction with IUI 2011


    • Georg Buscher, Ralf Biedert, Daniel Heinesch, Andreas Dengel Eye Tracking Analysis of Preferred Reading Regions on the Screen In CHI '10 extended abstracts on human factors in computing systems. Atlanta, USA
    • Georg Buscher, Ralf Biedert Usability testing: affective interfaces In journal "Informatik-Spektrum"
    • Manuel Möller, Patrick Ernst, Michael Sintek, Ralf Biedert, Andreas Dengel and Daniel Sonntag Representing the International Classification of Diseases Version 10 in OWL In Proceedings of the International Conference on Knowledge Engineering and Ontology Development (KEOD), 25 – 28 October 2010, Valencia, Spain.
    • Ralf Biedert, Georg Buscher, Sven Schwarz, Manuel Möller, Andreas Dengel, Thomas Lottermann The Text 2.0 Framework - Writing Web-Based Gaze-Controlled Realtime Applications Quickly and Easily In proceedings of the International Workshop on Eye Gaze in Intelligent Human Machine Interaction (EGIHMI) held in conjunction with IUI 2010
    • Ralf Biedert, Georg Buscher, Sven Schwarz, Jörn Hees, Andreas Dengel Text 2.0 In CHI '10 extended abstracts on human factors in computing systems. Atlanta, USA
    • Ralf Biedert, Georg Buscher, Andreas Dengel The EyeBook - Using Eye Tracking to Enhance the Reading Experience In journal "Informatik-Spektrum"


    • Ralf Biedert, Sven Schwarz Designing a Context-Sensitive Dashboard for an Adaptive Knowledge Worker Assistant In Fifth International Workshop on Modelling and Reasoning in Context, Delft. Netherlands
    Common Can I buy your domain? No. Can I call you? Yes, but I prefer Signal. Just send an intro mail and include your (Signal) number, I'll get back to you. Work Do you still do consulting? Not right now. Could I ask you about X ...? Generally yes, however, please do not send me support requests about my job, use the official channels instead. Can you (co-)supervise my thesis or internship? It depends on how much time I have, send a short mail and include your CV. Note, I generally only supervise students who work full-time. Can you review my book / project plan / grant application? You can try, but if I need to sign an NDA the answer is probably no. Site What is XR? These days Extended Reality, any wearable computing device that somehow meshes with your (3D) environment and provides you with additional information (Augmented Reality), or replaces 'your reality' altogether (Virtual Reality). How did you get that domain? Believe it or not, I got it before XR was a thing, or that I knew I'd be working on it. I just wanted a cool email address ... What framework do you use? The site is statically generated with Zola, but pretty much everything else is 'hand crafted' HTML or CSS. Where do you host? Self-hosted, behind Cloudflare CDN. I found a typo. Please tell me!