Hugo Penedones

Welcome to my homepage

About me

I am a Machine Learning researcher and engineer, currently living in the Lisbon area. Most recently, I worked at Google DeepMind, in London and Zurich. Prior to that, I worked in the Query Formulation team at Microsoft Bing and did research in Machine Learning and Computer Vision at Idiap Research Institute and École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausane, both in Switzerland. I did my undergraduate studies at Faculty of Engineering of University of Porto, in Portugal, where I am originally from.


[DeepMind's AlphaFold Nature paper] "Improved protein structure prediction using potentials from deep learning", Andrew W Senior, Richard Evans, John Jumper, James Kirkpatrick, Laurent Sifre, Tim Green, Chongli Qin, Augustin Žídek, Alexander WR Nelson, Alex Bridgland, Hugo Penedones, Stig Petersen, Karen Simonyan, Steve Crossan, Pushmeet Kohli, David T Jones, David Silver, Koray Kavukcuoglu, Demis Hassabis - In Nature journal. 15 Jan 2020. (read online)

"Adaptive Temporal-Difference Learning for Policy Evaluation with Per-State Uncertainty Estimates", Hugo Penedones, Carlos Riquelme, Damien Vincent, Hartmut Maennel, Timothy Mann, André Barreto, Sylvain Gelly, Gergely Neu - at NeurIPS - December 2019. (pdf)

"Temporal Difference Learning with Neural Networks - Study of the Leakage Propagation Problem", H. Penedones, D. Vincent, Hartmut Maennel, S. Gelly, T. Mann, A. Barreto - July 2018. (arXiv , pdf)

"Adaptive Lambda Least-Squares Temporal Difference Learning", T. Mann, H. Penedones, S. Mannor, T. Hester - December 2016. (arXiv , pdf)

"Query Diversity and Deduplication for Bing AutoSuggest", P. Mirowski, R. Evans, H. Penedones, D. Astley, A. Gulli - Microsoft Practice of Machine Learning Conference - March 2014, Redmond, US

"Improving Object Classification using Pose Information", H. Penedones, R. Collobert, F. Fleuret, D. Grangier - Idiap Research Report 2011 (pdf)

"Playground Learning for Object Detection", H. Penedones, F. Fleuret - Idiap Internal Research Report 2009 (pdf)

"Predicting Venus Express Thermal Power Consumption", H. Penedones, B. Sousa, A. Donati, J. Martinez-Heras - SpaceOps 2008 Conference Proceedings - Heidelberg, Germany. (pdf)


In 2011, I wrote a book in Portuguese, expressing my views of the world. In a collection of very small chapters, I touch a wide range of topics, such as: democracy, economy, education, entrepreneurship, transparency, sustainability, peace, etc.

If you are interested, you can read the full book in digital formats for free, or order a paperback copy.


Deep Reinforcement Learning in 25 minutes, for non-experts. This is talk I gave at Commit Porto 2018 for an audience of software developers, where I assumed no background in Machine Learning.

Real-World Reinforcement Learning - Challenges and Opportunities at DSPT day 2019.


You can read my blog, which is mostly about machine learning, artificial intelligence and other computer science related topics.

Source Code

Check my github profile to see whether I am working on something open source lately.

Curriculum Vitae

Please refer to my Linkedin profile, which is normally up to date.


Some of the people I've worked with:


I believe that micro-credit is an useful tool to alleviate poverty, so I try to give my contribution. Check my Kiva Lender page. If you are interested in effective altruism, I also recommend having a look at GiveWell. If you are more into enjoying your holidays doing some volunteering, I can recommend IVHQ (I've been only in their Rio de Janeiro program)


"Courage is not the absence of fear. It is acting in spite of it." - Mark Twain

"Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever." - Mahatma Gandhi

"Truth is what stands the test of experience." - Albert Einstein

"Laughing at ourselves brings us closer to enlightenment than anything else." - Carol Gardner

"Write programs that do one thing and do it well. Write programs to work together." - Doug McIlroy