Tuesday, September 26, 2017 — 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM EDT

Blake Richards
Department of Cell & Systems Biology
University of Toronto

Deep Learning with Pyramidal Neurons

Deep learning has led to significant advances in artificial intelligence, in part, by adopting strategies motivated by neurophysiology. However, it is unclear how deep learning could occur in the real brain, due to the difficulty of performing credit assignment without backpropagation. Here, we show that deep learning can be achieved in a biologically feasible simulation by moving away from point neuron models and towards multi-compartment neurons. Like neocortical pyramidal neurons, neurons in our model receive feedforward sensory information and higher-order feedback in electrotonically segregated compartments. Thanks to this segregation, the neurons in different layers of the network can coordinate local synaptic weight updates to achieve global optimization. As a result, the network can take advantage of multilayer architectures---the hallmark of deep learning. This work demonstrates that deep learning can be achieved using segregated dendritic compartments for feedforward and feedback information, which may help to explain the dendritic morphology of neocortical pyramidal neurons.

Location 
PAS - Psychology, Anthropology, Sociology
Room 2464
200 University Avenue West

Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1
Canada

Waterloo researchers among top in Canada

Chris Eliasmith writing on a whiteboardChris Eliasmith, Director of the Centre for Theoretical Neuroscience, received the prestigious John C. Polanyi Award  and is also an inaugural member of the Royal Society of Canada's College of New Scholars, Artists, and Scientists.

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How to Build a Brain

Chris Eliasmith’s team at the Centre for Theoretical Neuroscience has built Spaun, the world’s largest simulation of a functioning brain. The related book is now available and for the full article Waterloo Stories.

Nengo

This is a collection of coverage of work with Nengo (Neural Engineering Objects) that has appeared in the popular press recently.