Gregory Wayne, 34
Using an understanding of the brain to create smarter machines.
Greg Wayne, a researcher at DeepMind, designs software that gets better the same way a person might—by learning from its own mistakes. In a 2016 Nature paper that Wayne coauthored, it was demonstrated that such software can solve things like graph problems, logic puzzles, and tree structures that traditional neural networks used in artificial intelligence can’t.
Wayne’s computing insights play off his interest in connections between neurons in the human brain—why certain structures elicit specific sensations, emotions, or decisions. Now he often repurposes the concepts behind those brain structures as he designs machines.