Photo credit: R. Douglas
Misha Mahowald, for whom the prize is named, was a charismatic, talented and influential pioneer of neuromorphic engineering whose creative life unfortunately ended prematurely. Her 1992 Caltech PhD thesis with Carver Mead developed the first integrated silicon retina, the AER interface, and a beautiful demonstration of collective computation in stereo vision. It was awarded the prestigious Clauser prize. Her PhD work appeared on the covers of Scientific American and Nature during her Phd (see below). Her research took place at Caltech and Oxford, and she was a founding member of the Institute of Neuroinformatics at the University of Zurich and ETH Zurich. Her novel designs of brain-inspired CMOS VLSI circuits for vision and computation have continued to influence a generation of engineers.