Bonn Brain 3 at caesar


Jakob will give a talk at Bonn Brain3- the first general meeting of the Bonn neuroscience community at caesar on Friday, April 25 at 9am.

Computational and Systems Neuroscience (Cosyne) 2015


We are at Computational and Systems Neuroscience conference this year. We will present a poster with the title Correlations and signatures of criticality in neural population models together with the Bethge lab. It will be presented in the third poster session on Saturday the 7th of March beginning at 7:30pm.

Hope to see you there.

Workshop Causation from Correlation?

with the Junge Akademie - 2015-02-15

How and when can we infer causal relationships from observational data? Together with colleagues, Jakob organised an inter-disciplinary workshop on this topic for the `Junge Akademie’. Jakob and Jan-Matthis will attend, and more information will be posted on the Junge-Akademie website after the workshop.

Two papers accepted at NIPS

... one of which as a spotlight! - 2014-09-14

We had two papers accepted at NIPS this year– Evan’s paper Low-dimensional models of neural population activity in sensory cortical circuits was accepted for a poster presentation, and Patrick’s, Giacomo’s and Florian’s paper A Bayesian model for identifying hierarchically organised states in neural population activity for a spotlight. There were 1678 submissions to NIPS this year, 414 of which were accepted at the conference, and 62 of which for spotlights.

Lab hike to Bad Urach


Our lab took a hike in Bad Urach. The weather was gorgeous, and much fun was had by all.


On the road...


Jakob will be travelling to Osnabrück to give a talk at OCCAM (May 7), to Basel to give a computational neuroscience lecture and seminar (May 19), to New York to give a talk at NYU (June 11), and to Tutzing to give a talk in the retreat of the Bernstein Center Munich (July 1).

Two new students


Hooram Nam and Dennis Huben, both from the Graduate School of Neural Information Processing, have started doing research in the group. Surprisingly, both of them will be working on statistical methods for neural population dynamics.

Talk at OCCAM Osnabrück


Jakob will give a talk at OCCAM Osnabrück which is taking place 7-9th of May 2014.

News Master student: Florian Franzen


Florian Franzen will do his Master’s thesis in the group, working on statistical methods for describing state-dependence in neural population activity.

New student: Giacomo Bassetto


Giacomo Bassetto has joined the group as a graduate student.

New Master Student


Marcel Nonnenmacher, who already did a lab-rotation in the lab, will return to do his Masters thesis in the lab.

Spotlight at NIPS!


Our paper “Inferring neuronal population dynamics from multiple partial recordings of the same neural circuit” with SC Turaga, L Buesing, AM Packer, H Dalgleish, N Petit and M Hausser was accepted at NIPS, and awarded a ‘spotlight’ presentation!

New paper about estimation bias published


The number of neurons that can be recorded from simultaneously keeps growing every year– as a result, the complexity of models that are needed to describe these data also grows. Therefore, these models have more parameters which need to be estimated from data, and in turn, the recording time that is needed in order to constrain these parameters also grows. If, say, the number of neurons is doubled, by how much do we need to increase the recording time? Together with Peter Latham and Iain Murray, we addressed this question in one particular case: For second order maximum entropy models, a popular class of models for describing neural population data, we calculated the size of the systematic error in the entropy (‘bias’) as a function of the recording time: Link to paper

Junge Akademie


Jakob was elected into the “Junge Akademie an der Berlin-Brandenburgischen Akademie der Wissenschaften und der Deutschen Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina”. Link

Visitor from Gatsby


Srini Turaga (Gatsby Unit, UCL) will visit the group and give a talk on Thursday, 2pm in the MRZ seminar room, on “Large scale parallel learning of image segmentation for connectomics with MALIS and gradient boosted regression trees.”

Frühlingsakademie der Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes


Together with Felix Wichmann (Uni Tübingen) and Frank Jäkel (Uni Osnabrück), Jakob will organize a workshop at the ‘Frühlingsakademie der Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes’ in Papenburg, entitled “Data Interpretation in Cognitive Neuroscience—Messages from Data or Massaging Data?”

Bernstein Conference 2013 in Tübingen


Matthias Bethge, Judith Lam, Felix Wichmann and Jakob Macke organize the Bernstein Conference 2013 in Tübingen, from September 24th till 27th 2013. Confirmed speakers include Carlos Brody, David Fitzpatrick, Alla Karpova, Adam Kepecs, Tony Movshon, Anitha Pasupathy, Pietro Perona, Alfonso Renart, Nathalie Rochefort, Pieter Roelfsema, Ruth Rosenholtz, Eero Simoncelli, Antonio Torralba and Martin Usrey.

Two Lab Rotation students


Marcel Nonnenmacher (Graduate School for Neural Information Processing Systems) and Florian Franzen (Graduate School for Neural and Behavioural Sciences) start as rotation-students in the group. Welcome!

Paper published in Nature Neuroscience


Jakob is co-author on a new study: R.M., Gerwinn S., Macke J.H., Bethge M. (2013): „Inferring decoding strategies from choice probabilities in the presence of correlated variability“. Nature Neuroscience: Jan 13, 2013 Press release: Link

New Master Student


Patrick Putzky starts as a Master-Student in the Lab. He will work on statistical models for serial dependence in psychophysical data, and will be co-supervised by Felix Wichmann.