November 14, 2004

Boreal Sloth

I am going out of town for a few days, since I'm giving a talk Tuesday on CSSR and related work at the Department of Computing Science of the University of Alberta. I'll be very curious about what they have to say, both about the main work and our application-in-progress to neuronal systems. I'm also curious about Edmonton, having never been to Alberta before this summer, when Kris and I went to Banff to present our work at UAI and part of ICML, and were suitably enchanted. (I realize Edmonton and Banff are hundreds of miles apart.) Of course, I would be remiss if I didn't mention that giant ground sloths once roamed the North American plains, including Alberta...

I'm being hosted in Edmonton by the Reinforcement Learning and Artificial Intelligence group, which is the current home of the great Rich Sutton (of Sutton and Barto fame), where they're doing very interesting work on predictive state models (coincidentally, one of the first things I blogged about). They are also (though this is not how Sutton would put it) reviving logical positivism as a research program for AI. I find this appealing, not just because logical positivism began (in Carnap's Logical Construction of the World) as a kind of proto-AI, but because I have always felt that the logical positivists were on to something important, even if they were never quite able to make it work. I half-suspect that things like TD networks [PDF] are steps to making it work.

This seems like as good a time as any to mention this: My current post-doc, as planned, ends with the academic year. I'd appreciate hearing about any good post-doctoral or tenure-track positions in areas related to my research, especially ones starting from the spring of 2005 onwards. Hire me, eh?

Self-centered; Complexity; Enigmas of Chance

Posted at November 14, 2004 19:10 | permanent link

Three-Toed Sloth