Dave Touretzky's Page

Personal: Commercial pilot and certified flight instructor. I own a twin-engine Piper Seneca II, nicknamed "The Beast". As a volunteer pilot I occasionally transport organs or patients for local hospitals. Fly acrobatics when an acro plane is available. I'm also a parrot lover, and currently live with a yellownape amazon and a cockatiel.

I was interviewed about my robotics work by EEWeb Pulse in August, 2011. That's me with some Chiaras on the cover.

Courses and Software


Research Projects

Cognitive Robotics: a new approach to robot programming that draws inspiration from ideas in Cognitive Science. We are implementing these ideas in Tekkotsu, a robotics application framework under development in my lab for programming mobile robots.
ARTSI: Advancing Robotics Technology for Societal Impact, an alliance of 9 research universities and 17 historically black colleges and universities to recruit more African Americans to robotics research. Tekkotsu is a major component.

The Chiara, a new platform for teaching robot programming to CS undergraduates.
Computational modeling of the rodent hippocampus: investigating how space and experience are encoded and stored in the brain. (See publications list.)

The DMCA and other First Amendment Issues

NIPS Conference

I serve on the board of directors of the NIPS Foundation. Visit the NIPS web site for information about this and past years' NIPS conferences.

Lisp-Related Stuff

Ethics, Aviation, and Other Stuff

The Church of Scientology's Wacky Secrets

Sure, Scientology is a rich and vengeful religious cult based on a bizarre form of psychotherapy and a belief in reincarnated space aliens. But that doesn't mean we can't have fun with them.

See my appearance on CNN Headline News (May 23, 2007), talking about Scientology's infiltration of the Baton Rouge public schools. I also appeared on MSNBC's Countdown with Keith Olbermann on April 17, 2006 and again on July 23, 2007, explaining the Scientology cult's wacky beliefs.

  • Secrets of Scientology. Xenu the space alien, subtle thought control techniques, sacred lie detectors, and more. Everything the Church of Scientology (and Tom Cruise) don't want you to know. I am currently receiving legal threats from Scientology lawyers over this site, and was even picketed at work once.
  • Looking for Scientology's "we can kill you" release forms? Click here.
  • The Secret Library of Scientology, founded by Dean Benjamin. The books L. Ron Hubbard would not want you to read.
  • Stop-Narconon.org: protecting the vulnerable from Narconon/Scientology.
  • Amway Sucks! Includes a mirror of Amway: the Untold Story, by Sidney Schwartz. Amway/Quixtar is a multi-level marketing scam with interesting cult-like aspects. (And Scientology is often called "the Amway of religions".) Amway's lawyers have promised to sue me over this page.
  • The Gentle Wind Project is another cult that has actually poked fun at Scientology, but with their holy healing hockey pucks (designed by space aliens!), they're just as nutty.



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David S. Touretzky
Computer Science Department & Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3891
dst+@cs.cmu.edu