Lab Members

  • William Edward Hahn, Ph.D.

    Research Scientist & Co-Director MPCR Lab

    William Edward Hahn graduated from Guilford College in 2008 with a B.S. degree in Mathematics/Physics and research focus in neural networks/particle swarm optimization. After Guilford, William researched artificial intelligence and immune systems at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro before joining the Center for Complex Systems and Brain Sciences at Florida Atlantic University in 2011. In 2014, William co-founded the Machine Perception and Cognitive Robotics Laboratory with the purpose of building a team of creative scientists, programmers, and engineers to develop novel hardware/software environments that allow the exploration of the intersection of perception, computation, and robotics. In the Summer of 2016, William received a Ph.D. for his work in Sparse Coding and Compressed Sensing, and in the Fall 0f 2016 was hired as Research Scientist to continue his work in the MPCR Lab.


  • Elan Barenholtz, Ph.D.

    Associate Professor & Co-Director MPCR Lab

    Elan Barenholtz is an associate professor in the Department of Psychology and the Center for Complex Systems and Brain Sciences at FAU. Elan earned his Ph.D at Rutgers University/New Brunswick in Cognitive Psychology in 2004 , followed by a postdoc at Brown University in Cognitive Science.  He joined FAU in 2007 as director of the Visual Mind Lab, which conducts behavioral and computational work in vision science, learning and memory.  More recently, he co-founded the MPCR to begin an interdisciplinary effort to investigate the basic computational principles underlying cognition and behavior using a platform of artificial neural networks that control robotic agents behaving within a natural environment. The long-term goal of this initiative is to begin developing a unified computational theory of embedded cognitive function.


  • Michael J. Kleiman, M.A.

    Graduate Researcher
    Michael J. Kleiman is a graduate student attending Florida Atlantic University, pursuing a doctorate in Experimental Psychology. He works closely with Dr. Elan Barenholtz and Dr. William Hahn to pair high precision eye movement tracking with the latest developments in machine learning and deep neural networks to predict presence and progression of attention and functioning disorders among clinical populations. Michael belongs to the Visual Mind Laboratory where he examines eye fixation behavior, as well as the Machine Perception and Cognitive Robotics Laboratory where he works on utilizing machine learning to predict and discriminate classifications based on eye movement data. He has a dual Bachelor’s Degree in Biological Science and Psychology from Florida State University, as well as a Master’s Degree in Psychology from Florida Atlantic University.
  • Taran Knowles

    Undergraduate Researcher, 3D Camera & Animus

    Taran Knowles is a Management Information Systems major at Florida Atlantic University. He is also an Eagle Scout and Petty Officer 2nd Class in the United States Naval Sea Cadet Corps. In his many years with both organizations, Taran has acquired numerous leadership and public speaking skills that he plans to utilize throughout MPCR, furthering their message in both the technology and business worlds. Taran is currently co-team leader of the 3D Camera Team, and co-team leader of the Animus Team. His plans with MPCR involve implementing neural networks in the personal fitness community to help reduce the risk of injury and ensure maximum body strength development.

  • Shawn Martin

    Autonomous Rover Team Leader, President of the MCPR Club

    Shawn is an undergraduate dual-enrolled high school student in his third year pursuing a bachelor’s in Computer Science. In 2015, he joined the Machine Perception and Cognitive Robotics Laboratory to engage closely with machine learning algorithms, computer vision, and high-performance computing. During his first semester of research with the MPCR lab, his team worked on a reinforcement learning approach to solving a simple “rover-in-a-box” task using a Theano-based implementation of Google DeepMind’s Deep Q-Learning algorithm as well as computer vision techniques for state-space reduction.

    More recently, he has been working on his own research with self-driving autonomous rovers, and is currently the team leader for the Autonomous Rover Team. Working with various data manipulation techniques, data collection, and different neural network architectures. his team is working to provide better autonomous driving results in many different environments. For future research, his team intends to instill a mental state of curiosity and saliency into a rover, using neural networks, dictionary learning, feature mapping, LCA, and sparse modeling.

  • Nicolas Tutuianu

    Undergraduate Researcher, Rover & Animus

    Nicolas Tutuianu is an undergraduate dual-enrolled high school student in his third year pursuing a Bachelor’s in Computer Science at FAU.  In 2015, Nicolas joined the Machine Perception and Cognitive Robotics Laboratory to conduct research projects while implementing various machine learning techniques.  As part of a group of 5 undergraduate students, his team implemented a Q-Learning based rover framework that simulates the way a real-life brain would learn to solve a simple task.  More recently, Nicolas has been working with deep neural networks to build an open source machine learning training platform that allows toy cars to drive autonomously.  He is also Co-Team Leader of the Animus Team who are currently working with 3D cameras to recognize various types of exercise movements.


  • Marcus McGuire


    Marcus McGuire is a dual enrollment student from FAU High School. He has spent the last two years studying computer science full time at FAU. His research interests include Machine Learning and Computer Vision. Following the completion of his bachelor’s degree, He intends to pursue a graduate degree in one, or both, of these topics.

  • Washington Garcia

    Computer engineering major.


  • Paul Morris


    Masters in Computer Science candidate

  • Godson Fortil

    Undergraduate Researcher

    Godson Fortil is an undergraduate Computer Science student in the college of Computer Science, an undergraduate researcher, a member of the Machine Perception & Cognitive Robotics Lab as well as a member of  the Innovation Leadership Honors Program.  He never ceased to be astonished by new and disruptive technologies. In fact, Godson is currently conducting research on Parallel Programing, and also Blockchain with the Genesis Blockchain team of the MPCR Lab — two new, promising and disruptive technologies. Thanks to his Haitian heritage and education, Godson speaks multiple languages such as Creole, French, English and Spanish. He also shows great interest in a wide range of domains including Home design, photography, fashion, music, sports, agriculture, food and else. Soon, Godson wishes to apply his knowledge with the goal to optimize human productivity, fight poverty, diseases, and crimes with the use of technology.