Steve M. Potter, PhD

BME Logo

Removing the A from AI

Steve holding an MEA

Adjunct Associate Professor and Consultant

(with tenure, semi-retired)
Laboratory for NeuroEngineering
Coulter Dept. of Biomedical Engineering
Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University School of Medicine


The Potter Group created the field of “Embodied Cultured Networks” in Pasadena at Caltech around 1999, and then continued to innovate in Atlanta, GA, where I was an Associate Professor in the Laboratory for NeuroEngineering from 2002-2015. The NeuroLab is a collective research unit within the Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering shared between Emory University and the Georgia Institute of Technology. I was also proud to be part of Emory University’s Neuroscience Graduate Program.

Schedule high bandwidth interactions by email, or catch me at a conference.  stevepwork at gmail

How to Motivate Your Students to Love Learning
My book on project-based learning with real-world projects

Click the link to see my book on Amazon: 

“How to Motivate Your Students to Love Learning”

Here is my consulting page.

Here is my CV

Here are several interviews I have given in the past few years.

My Page is a good place to peruse our publications.

Another good place is ResearchGate: Follow me on ResearchGate

My Google Scholar Profile has the latest citation counts, h-index, etc. for our papers.

My Linkedin profile has a corporate-style listing of my work.

My Maker Sabbatical has morphed into a Maker Lifestyle!

I am continuing to participate in the MAKER MOVEMENT, and am teaching maker workshops in Ireland. I am now an Adjunct Associate Professor at Georgia Tech and have closed my research lab. To all my alumni, collaborators and colleagues world-wide: I thank you all for your work and support in making my lab so successful!

My life outside of the ivory tower involves making and selling lovely and useful things with woodworking and electronics, programming of gadgets, paid consulting, mentoring, public speaking, and book writing. I wrote a book about REAL-WORLD TEACHING approaches that have been tremendously successful in my classes. It is called How to Motivate Your Students to Love Learning. It is now available at Amazon and other booksellers: Go to my book’s Amazon page. This poster provides a visual summary of the key points of the book:

SFN 2011 poster on Real World Teaching 23.12, ZZ11 Sat-Wed, Nov. 12-16

If you were hoping to join my lab, sorry, it no longer exists. I am sure you can find another lab in the Laboratory for Neuroengineering to join. There are many exciting things going on with my former colleagues there!

TEDx talk: “NeuroEngineering: Neuroscience – APPLIED”

Here I define the word “neuroengineering” and explain how it is poised to fundamentally transform humankind, hopefully for the better…


Closing the Loop book cover

Our edited volume on Closed-loop Neuroscience:

Download the FREE eBook from Frontiers in Neuroscience here.

Courses Taught at Georgia Tech

  • BMED/BIOL 4752 Introductory Neuroscience (syllabus)
  • BMED 4400 Neuroengineering Fundamentals (syllabus)
  • BMED 8813 Hybrid Neural Microsystems
  • BMED 1300 Problems in Biomedical Engineering

See more on my Teaching Page!

To see Google Scholar’s most current list of my papers, including how many times they have been cited, click here.
For a complete list of papers and abstracts, see our Publications page or, which has a nice interface for browsing abstracts.

At Caltech, I worked jointly in the labs of Scott Fraser and Jerry Pine. Jerry was a professor of Biophysics in the Physics department. Scott (now at USC) was the head of the Caltech Biological Imaging Center. In 1994, we put together one of the first 2-Photon laser-scanning microscopes. This type of optical microscope allows viewing of living specimens for longer periods with less photobleaching and less phototoxicity than with other fluorescence microscopes.


Other Interests

I am interested in many fields related to brains and thinking, such as:

Essays, book reviews, etc., by Steve M. Potter

The Group Mind

For two years while at Caltech, I led a reading group on books about the mind, at Pasadena’s premier independent bookstore, Vroman’s (

Books we read and discussed:

  • A Mind So Rare: The Evolution of Human Consciousness, by Merlin Donald
  • The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence, by Ray Kurzweil
  • Descartes’ Error: Emotion, Reason, and the Human Brain, by Antonio Damasio
  • Metamagical Themas: Questing for the Essence of Mind and Pattern, by Douglas Hofstadter
  • Kinds of Minds: Towards an Understanding of Consciousness, by Daniel C. Dennett
  • Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind, by V. S. Ramachandran and Sandra Blakeslee
  • Being There: Putting Brain, Body, and the World Together Again, by Andy Clark
  • Evolving Brains, by John Allman
  • The Meme Machine, by Susan Blackmore
  • The Cultural Origins of Human Cognition, by Michael Tomasello
  • The Society of Mind, by Marvin Minsky
  • A Universe of Consciousness: How Matter Becomes Imagination, by Gerald Edelman and Giulio Tononi
  • Figments of Reality: The Evolution of the Curious Mind, by Ian Stewart and Jack Cohen
  • Consciousness Explained, by Daniel C. Dennett

Potter Group Publications and Abstracts

Fisheye hubcap art cars photo


I have dabbled in a variety of activities, including bicycling, hang gliding, racquetball, hiking, reading, thinking about thinking, woodworking, collecting rocks and other heavy objects, remote-control sailplane flying, photography, fixing and building things, creating unusual art, and body-surfing.

I also enjoy supporting my wife’s creative endeavors. Check out her hand-made greeting cards!

Wood Keyboard Instructable