INCF/OCNS Software WG: Software highlight: Michalis Pagkalos: Dendrify

Michalis Pagkalos will introduce and discuss Dendrify, a framework for incorporating dendrites to spiking neural networks, in this session.

The abstract for the talk is below:

Current SNNs studies frequently ignore dendrites, the thin membranous extensions of biological neurons that receive and preprocess nearly all synaptic inputs in the brain. However, decades of experimental and theoretical research suggest that dendrites possess compelling computational capabilities that greatly influence neuronal and circuit functions. Notably, standard point-neuron networks cannot adequately capture most hallmark dendritic properties. Meanwhile, biophysically detailed neuron models can be suboptimal for practical applications due to their complexity, and high computational cost. For this reason, we introduce Dendrify, a new theoretical framework combined with an open-source Python package (compatible with Brian2) that facilitates the development of bioinspired SNNs. Dendrify allows the creation of reduced compartmental neuron models with simplified yet biologically relevant dendritic and synaptic integrative properties. Such models strike a good balance between flexibility, performance, and biological accuracy, allowing us to explore dendritic contributions to network-level functions while paving the way for developing more realistic neuromorphic systems.