An Interview with Prof. Karl Friston

Karl Friston is a theoretical neuroscientist and authority on brain imaging. He invented statistical parametric mapping (SPM), voxel-based morphometry (VBM) and dynamic causal modelling (DCM). These contributions were motivated by schizophrenia research and theoretical studies of value-learning, formulated as the dysconnection hypothesis of schizophrenia. Mathematical contributions include variational Laplacian procedures and generalized filtering for hierarchical Bayesian model inversion. Friston currently works on models of functional integration in the human brain and the principles that underlie neuronal interactions. His main contribution to theoretical neurobiology is a free-energy principle for action and perception (active inference).

In this interview, we have the honor of having the Godfather of Neuroscience, Prof. Karl Friston as our guest. Many thanks to Prof. Jamshid Ghasimi for helping me design high-quality questions.

00:01 A brief introduction of Prof. Friston

00:51 What is the Free-Energy Principle?

09:13 Model evidence optimization (can brain OVERFIT?!) and how BRAIN selects the actions with minimum expected surprise!

28:23 The double-descent phenomenon in over-parametrized models (Including our brain) and WHY these models DO NOT overfit?

40:37 Active Inferencs vs. Perceptual Inference and how to they work together for US to LEARN!

52:10 The difference between Active Inference and Reinforcement Learning

01:08:32 How ‘Abstract Knowledge’ generation (Creativity) in brain can be explained?

01:19:45 The ARCHITECTURE of your Nervous System describes the ENVIRONMENT you are living in!

01:31:48 Will we ever FULLY understand how the brain works and how far have we come?

01:35:00 The Goodbye

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