2017 Rockwood Memorial Lecture

INC sponsors the H. Paul Rockwood Memorial Lectureship held annually. The Rockwood Memorial Lectureship Fund was gifted to the Institute by Mr. and Mrs. Jerome Rockwood in memory of their late son's interest, studies, and work in the neural computation field.
The Rockwood Memorial Lectures are endowed by Mr. and Mrs. Jerome Rockwood in memory of their late son, Paul, who received a B.S. in Computer Science from UCSD in 1980 and then obtained a second degree B.A. in Psychology in 1981. In 1983 he started a company, Integral Solutions, to develop a universal language translation, but died tragically in a mountaineering accident before he could fulfill his promise.


Big Science, Team Science, Open Science: In the Service of Neuroscience

Dr. Christof Koch
President and Chief Scientific Officer, Allen Institute for Brain Science

Monday, April 17, 2017 - 4:00-6:00 p.m.

San Diego Supercomputer Center auditorium (Google Map)
Light reception to follow
Download Flier



Five years ago, the Allen Institute for Brain Science, a non-profit medical research organization, embarked on an ambitious 10-year initiative to understand the structure and function of the neocortex and associated satellite structures in humans and mice within a team setting. We are setting up high through-put pipelines to exhaustively characterize the morphology, electrophysiology and single-cell transcriptome of cell types ( as well as their synaptic interconnections in the laboratory mouse and in human neocortex (via a combination of neurosurgical and post-mortem tissues). We are building brain observatories to image the activities of 10,000s of neurons throughout visual cortex in behaving mice, to record their electrical activities, and to analyze their connectivity at the ultra-structural level. We are constructing biophysically detailed as well as simplified computer simulations of these networks and of their information processing capabilities focusing on how the neocortical tissue gives rise to perception, behavior and consciousness. Anybody can access this data
view our data portal without any restriction. The entire project can also be seen as an experiment in the
sociology of brain science.

Bio: Christof Koch is an American neuroscientist best known for his studies and writings exploring the brain basis of consciousness. Trained as a physicist, Koch was for 27 years a professor of biology and engineering at the California Institute of Technology. He is now President and Chief Scientific Officer at the Allen Institute for Brain Science in Seattle, leading a ten year, large-scale, high through-put effort to build brain observatories to map, analyze and understand the mouse and human cerebral cortex. On a quest to understand the physical roots of consciousness before his brain stops functioning, he published his first paper on the neural correlates of consciousness with Francis Crick a quarter of a century ago.


Organized by:
UCSD Institute for Neural Computation


Past H. Paul Rockwood Memorial Lectureships

  • 2016 Lecturer: Dr. Krishna Shenoy
    Brain-Machine Interfaces: From Basic Science and Engineering to Clinical Trials

  • 2015 Lecturer: Dr. Kwabena Boahen
    Neuromorphic Chips: Combining Analog Computation with Digital Communication

  • 2014 Lecturer: Dr. Bruce McNaughton,
    "Doughnuts in the Brain: A Toroidal Attractor Theory of the Cognitive Map"

  • 2013 Lecturer: Dr. Dmitri B. Chklovskii,
    "Can connectomics help us understand neural computation? Insights from the fly visual system "

  • 2012 Lecturer: Dr. Eugene M. Izhikevich,

  • 2011 Lecturer: Rodney Douglas,
    "Constructive Cortical Computation"

  • 2010 Lecturer: Geoffrey Hinton,
    "Deep learning with multiplicative interactions”

  • 2009 Lecturer: Josh Bongard,
    "Investigations at the Interface of Morphology, Evolution and Cognition”
    "Resilient Machines (Through Continuous Self-Modeling)"

  • 2008 Lecturer: Jeff Hawkins, Founder, Palm, Inc. Handspring, and Numenta,
    "Computing Beyond Turing: How neocortical theory is shaping the future of computing"

  • 2007 Lecturer: Tomaso Poggio, Center for Biological and Computational Learning, Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, McGovern Institute for Brain Research, Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
    "What Should Computer Vision Learn from Neuroscience?"

  • 2006 Lecturer:Harvey Karten, Department of Neurosciences, UCSD
    "Unwiring the Brain: Neuromorphic Engineering of Motion Detection"
    View Movie (Windows Media Player / 100MB): Part1 - Part2 - Part3

  • 2005 Lecturer: Jeffrey L. Elman, UC San Diego,
    "Generalizing beyond our experience: Lessons from neural networks"

  • 2004 Lecturer: Richard Gregory, University of Bristol,
    "A Periodic Table for Perception"

  • 2003 Lecturer: Stephen Wolfram, Wolfram Research, Inc.,
    "A New Kind Of Science"

  • 2002 Lecturer: Pasko Rakic, Yale University,
    "Building the Cerebral Cortex: From Stem Cells to Complex Architecture"

  • 2001 Lecturer: Michael Dickinson, UC Berkeley,
    "How Fruit Flies flap for Flight Forces: Neuro-Mechanics of a Complex Behavior"

  • 2000 Lecturer: Christoph von der Malsburg, Bochum University and University of Southern California,
    "The Learning Problem"

  • 1999 Lecturer: Dana Ballard, University of Rochester,
    "Single-Spike Models of Predictive Coding"

  • 1998 Lecturer: Geoffrey Hinton, University of Toronto,
    "Finding Structure in Ensembles of Images"

  • 1997 Lecturer: Michael Jordan, Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
    "Graphic Models, Neural Networks, and Variational Methods"

  • 1996 Lecturer: Jack Cowan, University of Chicago,
    "Geometric Visual Hallucinations, Migraine Auras, and Visual Illusions: What They Tell Us About Visual Cortex Circuitry"

  • 1995 Lecturer: Geoffrey Hinton, University of Toronto,
    "Neural Networks that Learn by Generating Fantasies"

  • 1994 Lecturer: Stephen Grossberg, Boston University,
    "Neural Networks for Learning, Recognition, and Recall"

  • 1993 Lecturer: James L. McClelland, Carnegie-Mellon University,
    "The Interaction of Nature and Nurture in Development: A Parallel Distributed Processing Perspective"



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