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University of Cambridge >  Engineering Department >  Information Engineering  >  Computational and Biological Learning Lab  > Carl Edward Rasmussen

Carl Edward Rasmussen

Professor of Machine Learning
Department of Engineering
University of Cambridge

Cambridge University
Adjunct Research Scientist
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics
Tübingen, Germany

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I'm a Lecturer in the Machine Learning Group of the Computational and Biological Learning Lab in the Division of Information Engineering at the Department of Engineering in Cambridge.


I have very broad interests in probabilistic inference in machine learning, covering both unsupervised, supervised and reinforcement learning. I'm particularly interested in design and evaluation of non-parametric methods such as Gaussian processes and Dirichlet processes. Exact inference in these models is often intractable, so one needs to resort to approximation methods, such as variational techniques or Markov chain Monte Carlo.

Gaussian Processes

I have co-authored a book with Chris Williams, entitled Gaussian Processes for Machine Learning, MIT Press, 2006, online version. Gaussian processes are a principled, practical, probabilistic approach to learning in kernel machines. The book describes Gaussian process approaches to regression and classification. It also discusses methods for hyperparameter tuning and model selection. Detailed algorithms are given, and demonstrations and a matlab implementation allowing very general covariance structures are available at the book web site. I gave a tutorial lecture on Gaussian processes at the NIPS 2006 conference. I also maintain a web site on Gaussian processes. Gaussian Processes for Machine Learning cover

Reinforcement Learning

I'm interested in how to speed up reinforcement learning by using a model-based approach with probabilistic models. See a short demo.

Students and Postdocs

Marc Deisenroth
Hannes Nickisch, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tübingen
Yunus Saatçi
Ryan Turner


Lehel Csató (postdoc), University of Babes-Bolyai, Romania
Dilan Görür, Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit, University College London
Malte Kuss, Booz Allen Hamilton
Tobias Pfingsten, OC&C Strategy Consultants
Joaquin Quiñonero Candela, Microsoft Research Cambridge


1BP7 Part 1B Paper 7, Probability and Statistics (Lent 2008)
4f13 Machine Learning


Tutorial on Gaussian Processes at NIPS 2006, slides, pdf.


At the moment, my publications can be found here (or see the Department Publications Database, which is currently under construction).

Some worthwhile things on the Web

The book Sustainable Energy - without the hot air, facts about sustainable enery by David MacKay.
What is Science?, by Richard Feynman, 1966.
Inconsistent Maximum Likelihood Estimation: An "Ordinary" Example a simple illustrative example from Radford Neal's blog.

Contact Information

Department of Engineering
Trumpington Street
Cambridge, CB2 1PZ, UK
voice +44 (0) 1223 748 513 NOTE: new phone number
fax +44 (0) 1223 332 662
email email address
PGP public key

My office is on the fourth floor of the Baker Building room number BE451.

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Information provided by Carl Edward Rasmussen (cer54)
Last updated: Aug 22nd 2008