May 31, 2019

Summer of Working Groups

I am happy to announce that this Summer I will be advising/mentoring two research groups of Google Summer of Code (GSoC) students and applicants. Thanks to INCF for sponsoring our applications and applicants again this year. The first group (DevoWorm), based in the OpenWorm Foundation, is interested in image segmentation and Machine Learning. GSoC applicants Asmit Singh and Ujjwal Singh (currently attending IIT Delhi) are working on extracting quantitative data to construct a digital model for organisms in the diatom genus Bacillaria. The GSoC student (Vinay Varma, currently attending Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham University) is working on developing a method for Semantic Segmentation based on microscopy of the embryogenetic process, focusing on the biology of Caenorhabditis elegans.

The other group is based in the Orthogonal Research and Education Laboratory, and is focused on creating a methodology for developmental Braitenberg Vehicles. This involves simulating the formation of a brain (neurons and connectome) in a simple body that continuously interacts with its environment. The GSoC student in this group (Stefan Dvoretskii) is developing such a model using Genetic Algorithms and the open-source SimBrain platform. The GSoC applicants (Ziyi Gong, Jesse Parent, and Ankit Gupta) are working on a variety of unique approaches that will aid in our
understanding of this complex system. These alternative approaches range from biologically-inspired (Ziyi) to a cybernetic architecture based on the Every Good Regulator Theorem (Jesse).

The hybrid education/research working group is something I started with last year's Orthogonal Lab GSoC group. There is a good chance that this Summer's discussions and work periods will produce awesome, cutting-edge science. Follow us on Github (DW group, BV group) and YouTube (DW group, BV group) for more!