This is my (Sean McGregor's) personal website. It contains my blog on all things machine learning, visualization, security, FLOSS non-profits, and Life.

Status Update

Sean is concurrently training neural network models to run on analog architectures, co-chairing the Partnership on AI's working group on Safety Critical AI, developing a database of incidents for the Partnership on AI where intelligent systems have brought harms in the real world, and working with the XPRIZE Foundation to structure the IBM Watson AI XPRIZE-- a $5 million contest for solving Grand Challenges with artificial intelligence.

About Sean

Short Bio

Sean defended a PhD at Oregon State University in 2017 under the direction of Thomas Dietterich. Sean's research focuses on solving real world problems with machine learning and visual analytics, including problems in wildfire suppression, heliophysics, and analog neural network computation. Outside his research, Sean serves as technical lead for the IBM Watson AI XPRIZE, chair of the Partnership on AI working group for the Safety Critical AI, and member of the Fair, Transparent, and Accountable (FTA) working group. Sean's "day job" is developing neural networks to run on analog architectures at Syntiant.

Long Bio

Sean defended his Machine Learning PhD in 2017 at Oregon State University. His research centered on reinforcement learning under the supervision of Thomas Dietterich. Specifically, Sean solved problems associated with bringing machine learning methods to public policy, including the modeling, optimization, and visualization of forest wildfire suppression policies. His most notable contributions include the first state factorization for model-free Monte Carlo, the first visual analytic system targeting the Markov Decision Process formulation, and the first successful optimization of full-fidelity wildfire suppression policies.

Continuing a penchant for interdisciplinary research, Sean spent the summer following his defense at NASA Ames with heliophysicists at the Frontier Development Lab (FDL). The team's 8 weeks of work resulted in a deep learning framework for heliophysics research, which shows promising results in the problem of solar flare forecasting.

Outside his own research, Sean is also the technical lead of the IBM Watson AI XPRIZE, a chair of the Partnership on AI (PAI) working group for the Safety Critical AI, and member of the PAI Fair, Transparent, and Accountable (FTA) working group.

Sean has extensive open source development experience as founder and lead developer for an open source non-profit that mentored 10 students through the Google Summer of Code. He continues to develop software for his "day job" at Syntiant working to run neural networks on analog architectures.

Sean is originally from San Diego and enjoys the ocean, rivers, and mountains whenever possible.


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You can find "smcgregor" in various Internet Relay Chat rooms at irc.freenode.net.