Advisory Board

Professor Jay Friedenberg

Jay Friedenberg, Ph.D. is Chair and Professor of the Psychology Department at Manhattan College, where he directs the Cognitive Science program. His academic interests are in the areas of visual perception, cognitive science, and artificial intelligence. His vision research includes symmetry perception, the center of mass estimation, and aesthetics. He is interested in factors that affect our perception of the beauty of basic shapes that he tries to express as an artist and painter as well.

Jay earned his Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology in 1995 at the University of Virginia and has been Professor and Chair since then at Manhattan College, where he manages a department of nine psychology faculty members and does research in visual aesthetics.

He founded and directs the Cognitive Science Program at the college. He served as Department Chairperson for over a decade.

Jay is interested in both vision and the philosophy of the mind and teaches courses in physiological psychology, learning and cognition, sensation and perception, and cognitive science.

He is a vision researcher and has published articles on symmetry detection, the center of mass estimation, and empirical aesthetics. In addition, Jay has written a number of science books. These include undergraduate texts in cognitive science, artificial intelligence, and non-linear dynamics.

Jay has published several articles on visual estimation of the center of mass. His current research projects include investigating image statistics, picture perception, and the aesthetics of geometrical shapes. He has published books on artificial intelligence, chaos theory, and psychology.

Jay is the author of Cognitive Science: An Introduction to the Study of Mind, Humanity’s Future: How Technology Will Change Us, The Future of the Self, Artificial Psychology: The Quest for What It Means to Be Human, and Visual Attention and Consciousness.

In his Cognitive Science book, Jay provides a comprehensive introduction to the field from multiple perspectives. He focuses on a particular area in cognitive science, exploring methodologies, theoretical perspectives, and findings, then offers the critical evaluations and conclusions drawn from them.

The Future of the Self looks at the progression of self from the biological to the technological. Today we live in the digital age where our sense of self and identity has moved beyond the body. Cyborgs, online representations in social media, avatars, and virtual reality extend our notion of what it means to be human.

His book Visual Attention and Consciousness explores major visual phenomena related to attention and conscious experience ― including filling-in processes, aftereffects, multi-stability, forms of divided attention, models of visual attention, priming effects, types of attentional blindness, and various visual disorders. For each phenomenon, the biological and cognitive level research is reviewed. Themes touched upon throughout are the relation between consciousness and attention, automatic vs. willful processes, singularity vs. multiplicity, and looking without seeing.

In his book Artificial Psychology, Jay asks the question Is it possible to construct an artificial person? He describes how close we are to recreating many of the capacities that make us human. These abilities include learning, creativity, consciousness, and emotion. The book covers traditional topics like perception, memory, and problem-solving. However, it also describes recent advances in the study of free will, ethical behavior, affective architectures, social robots, and hybrid human-machine societies.

Jay is a member of The International Association of Empirical Aesthetics since 2011, The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology since 1996, an Associate Member at The Psychonomic Society since 1996, and of the Vision Sciences Society since 1999, among others. Previously, he was a member of the New York Academy of Sciences (2002–2004) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (2000–2004).

Jay’s interests are widely cross-disciplinary. He has training in both fine art and science. Within the arts, he is an accomplished pastel landscape painter, digital photographer, and graphic designer. Jay recently received two awards, including First Place in the 2015 Contemporary Art Gallery Online Cityscapes Contest and was awarded a Finalist showing at the 2016 Exhibitions Without Walls Competition.

He has been a member of several galleries in the New York City region including the 440 Gallery in Park Slope Brooklyn, Studio 26 Gallery in the East Village, and the Tivoli Art Gallery in the Hudson River valley, where he has curated and exhibited regularly. He is a member of the American Impressionist Society, the Pastel Society of America, and the Connecticut Pastel Society.

Articles about his work have appeared in The Poughkeepsie Journal and The Greenwich Times. His artwork has been published in The Pinyon Review and Cyberwit.net.

Along with Jacob Roesch, he has published a book on symmetry designs. In addition, he has published four separate books on graphics design topics. These include Surface Pattern Design, Geometric Tile Patterns, Geometric Wallpaper Patterns, and Geometric Border Patterns. His most recent graphic design project is Tattoo Patterns From Around the World and Across Time, which includes examples of tattoos from ancient cultures.

Jay also has an affection for short-form literature and has written three books in this category. The first is titled Aphorisms from A to Z: A User’s Guide to Life and consists of philosophical statements on multiple topics from a rationalist perspective. The second is One Rock Out of Place, a collection of his haiku on city and country themes. The third is a book of short humorous poems and accompanying cartoons and is called Rhymes and ‘Toons, coauthored with Lori Esposito.

Read Jay’s Introduction to Cognitive Science: An Introduction to the Study of Mind.

Visit his Academic Page, Personal Homepage, LinkedIn profile, ResearchGate profile, Amazon page, and Google Scholar page. Follow him on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, andTwitter.