Questions for Neuroscientist Blake Richards

  • Does the brain do backprop?

Can the brain do backprop?

I made Seb’s post above a wiki. Please add your questions there.


Blake we love the idea of ensembles BUT do you have any software that can report ensemble responses versus low level individual neuron responses? Is there any for the EU Brain Project that can be useful?


Is back-prop needed for sensory learning?

Are biologically-based unsupervised-learning methods not satisfactory for feedforward learning (ie self-organizing-maps)?

Or is the effort to find back-prop in the cortex a way to explain goal driven learning?

side note - thanks Blake, I’ve really enjoyed your talks which have inspired a different point of view to the cortex. The greater variety of perspectives the better.


Imitation/copying is a major learning mode for humans. Alice and Bob please copy the letters of the alphabet in your workbook on line one. Later. That is is good Alice, now see if you can improve fill in line two with the letters of the alphabet.