AI for Impact


Hi, I'm William Falcon. If you're searching for me, start here. I'm a startup founder and deep learning PhD researcher. I focus on developing biologically inspired deep learning and reinforcement learning techniques with applications to neuroscience, NLP and computer vision.


Hi, I'm William - a startup founder (1 exit), AI researcher and AI writer for Forbes. I ‘m also the creator of pytorch-lightning, the PyTorch Keras for AI researchers. I’m passionate about using AI for social impact.

After the acquisition of the last startup I founded, I’m now taking time off from building companies!

For the next few years, I’ll be working on a Ph.D. in AI at New York University (NYU). My Ph.D is funded by Google Deepmind and the NSF Foundation. My advisors are Kyunghyun Cho and Yann Lecun at NYU CILVR Lab. My research interest is in the intersection of AI and neuroscience. I focus on biologically inspired fundamental research in deep learning and reinforcement learning with applications to social problems, neuroscience, and NLP.

Previously I worked on neural decoding from the brain and retina at Columbia University's Center for Theoretical Neuroscience advised by professor Liam Paninski. I received my BA from Columbia University in Computer Science and Statistics, with a minor in Math.


I Co-Founded (and was CTO, CAIO) of AI startup NextGenVest (acquired by Commonbond) to help students finance college over SMS. I was also a software engineer at Goldman Sachs and developed over 8 iOS apps as a product manager and iOS engineer.

I started my career as a naval officer undergoing US Navy SEAL training (BUD/S class 277) where I was injured and finished my military service as an Intelligence Officer at NSW Special Reconnaissance Team One (SRT-1).



Jul 2019 - Released the PyTorch Lightning framework.

May 2019 - Started PhD Internship at Facebook AI Research.

Apr 2019 - Awarded NSF fellowship to fund PhD.

Dec 2018 - Accepted internship offer at Facebook AI Research in NYC for Summer 2019.

Dec 2018 - NextGenVest, the startup I co-founded, was acquired by Commonbond.

Nov 2018 - Hosted data science track for DataEngConf. Panelist in technical founders panel.

Sep 2018 - Began PhD at NYU Center for Data Science in Deep Learning.

Aug 2018 - Panelist for NYAI #23. (Using Cognitive Neuroscience to Create AI).

Jul 2018 - Awarded fellowship to fund PhD by Google Deepmind.

Jul 2018 - Became a contributing writer for Forbes about AI.

May 2018 - Presented poster at ICLR 2018.

May 2018 - Graduated Columbia University (magna cum laude). B.A in CS and Stats, Math minor. (finally??).

Apr 2018 - Gave NextGenVest Demo at 2018 NY Empire FinTech Conference.

Apr 2018 - Became Co-founder and Chief AI Officer at NextGenVest (previously Co-founder and CTO).

Dec 2017 - Presented work at NIPS 2017 (poster, spotlight talk).

Oct 2017 - Gave technical talk at DataEngConf in NYC (reducing student loans with bot-powered humans).

May 2017 - Closed $3.9 million seed funding round for my startup NextGenVest.

Dec 2016 - Partnered with Kelly Peeler to work on NextGenVest as Co-Founder and CTO.

Sep 2016 - Joined Liam Paninski’s neuroscience lab at Columbia University as a research assistant.

Jul 2016 - Joined Bonobos as the iOS lead to build out iOS team and the first iOS app.

Jul 2016 - Launched iOS app Poke Prism - Pokemon map using machine learning for Pokemon GO. (solo dev).

Jun 2015 - Joined Goldman Sachs. Marquee team (Goldman’s secret sauce).

May 2015 - Finished leading development for Tablet Hotels flagship iOS app. (PM, iOS lead, contractor).

Apr 2015 - Launched iOS app Sharebite. (PM, iOS lead, contractor).

Mar 2015 - Launched Hushfeed iOS app (Tinder for unfollowing on Facebook) (techcrunch). (solo dev).

Nov 2014 - Launched iOS app Flic (Contractor). (PM, iOS lead). (Techcrunch).


Neural Networks for Efficient Bayesian Decoding of Natural Images from Retinal Neurons
Nikhil Parthasarathy, Eleanor Batty, William Falcon, Thomas Rutten, Mohit Rajpal, E.J. Chichilnisky, Liam Paninski
NIPS 2017 (main conference poster, spotlight), CCN 2017 (talk)

Predicting Floor-Level for 911 Calls with Neural Networks and Smartphone Sensor Data
William Falcon, Henning Schulzrinne
ICLR 2018 (main conference poster)

Cenozoic Antarctic DiatomWare/BugCam: An aid for research and teaching
Wise, S. W., M. Olney, J. M. Covington, V. M. Egerton, S. Jiang, D.K. Kulhanek, S. Ramdeen, H.Schrader, P. A. Sims, A. S. Wood, A. Davis, D. R. Davenport, N. Doepler, W. Falcon, C. Lopez, T. Pressley, O. L. Swedberg, D. M Harwood
Online Proceedings of the 10th International Symposium on Antartic Earth Sciences