Pentti Kanerva

Reveal Contact Info


Olshausen Lab

Current Research

Computing with high-dimensional vectors.


My life in science began in Finland where I studied forestry, which led into statistics, which lead into computers, which led into wanting to understand brains in computing terms, which led into modeling human memory, which led into the math of high-dimensional spaces, which led into computing with high-dimensional vectors–truly high-dimensional. A PhD in Philosophy from Stanford gave me the license to practice and was followed by research jobs at NASA Ames Research Center, Swedish Institute of Computer Science, Redwood Neuroscience Institute, and eventually at the Redwood Center.  I think of my work as computer science aimed at the underpinnings of cognition by coming to terms with the huge numbers of neurons and synapses in the brain’s circuits. For fun I folk-dance, fiddle, and hike.