Experience
Education
Bio
Garrison W. Cottrell was born at a very early age. Despite starting life quite young, and being brought up by the family collie, Tippy, who herded him around the backyard, he managed to attend Woodstock. While he was not "influenced by the Russians" at Cornell, as his mother believed, he did spend a great deal of time protesting the war and had his constitutional rights violated by the Nixon administration. Upon graduation from Cornell University in 1972 with a double major in Mathematics and Sociology, Cottrell was surprised to find that the revolution had not occurred. Desperate for something to do, and unable to leave Ithaca, he immediately enrolled in the Teaching Masters program, and eventually obtained an MAT in Mathematics and a permanent teaching certificate for high school math, grades 7-12 in New York State. After years of school bus driving, ice cream scooping, and rough carpentry, he decided to return to the Academy, eventually obtaining a Ph.D. in Computer Science in 1985 from the University of Rochester under James F. Allen. His thesis concerned a connectionist model of word sense disambiguation that accounted for human data on lexical access. He then became a Postdoctoral Researcher with David E. Rumelhart at the Institute of Cognitive Science at UCSD. His work at this time was on image compression using back propagation. In 1987, he joined the Computer Science and Engineering Department at UCSD. He is currently the Director of the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Program in Cognitive Science at UCSD, as well as the Temporal Dynamics of Learning Center, an NSF-sponsored Science of Learning Center. He is also a founding member of the Perceptual Expertise Network. Professor Cottrell's main interest is Cognitive Science combined with a Computer Science salary. With his students, he has built working models of cognitive processes and used them to explain psychological or neurological processes. In recent years, he has focused upon visual salience, visual attention, and face processing (including face recognition, face identification, and facial expression recognition). He has also worked in the areas of modeling psycholinguistic processes, such as language acquisition, reading, and word sense disambiguation. His most well-known work, however, is probably in the area of Connectionist Dog Modeling, or Dognitive Science, as well as his work on the Connectionist Air Guitar. Many of these have been published in the Humour (sic) section of the journal Connection Science.