Luke Hutchison

Computational biologist

Fellows class

TED2011

About Luke

Bio

TED Fellow (Long Beach 2011). I am a computer scientist and computational biologist from New Zealand. I grew up programming computers, and completed a PhD in computer science and computational biology at MIT and a postdoc at Harvard Medical School. I speak Chinese and Korean, and have traveled several times to China and North Korea to study human rights, human trafficking and freedom of information. I spend a lot of time thinking about P vs. NP, the Goldbach Conjecture, how 3 billion base pairs of DNA in your genome turn into 100 trillion cells in your body, and how to build flying cars.

Languages

English, Chinese (Simplified), French, Korean

Education

  • MIT; Computer science and computational biology, 2005 - 2011

Job Titles

researcher in big data, AI, computational biology and parallel computing.

About Luke Hutchison’s work

As a Korean and Chinese Speaker who has lived in South Korea for two years and traveled into North Korea twice, as well as throughout the border regions of China to interview native North Koreans and Chinese about the refugee and human trafficking issues there, I am nigh-obsessed with the wellbeing of the North Korean people, and in particular with the issues of freedom of information. I believe that free access to information will do more to improve quality of life and the state of human rights in North Korea than anything else. I have traveled to North Korea to donate Wikipedia and Open Courseware content to universities there, and hope to continue to find other ways to try to help North Koreans constructively engage with the world while improving the lives of their people.

Companies and organizations

TED Fellows; Google

Uploaded photos

Projects

Information freedom for North Koreans

As a Korean and Chinese Speaker who has lived in South Korea for two years and traveled into North Korea twice, as well as throughout the border regions of China to interview native North Koreans and Chinese about the refugee and human trafficking issues there, I am nigh-obsessed with the wellbeing of the North Korean people, and in particular with the issues of freedom of information. I believe that free access to information will do more to improve quality of life and the state of human rights in North Korea than anything else. I have traveled to North Korea to donate Wikipedia and Open Courseware content to universities there, and hope to continue to find other ways to try to help North Koreans constructively engage with the world while improving the lives of their people.

Decoding the structural blueprint of an organism

For my PhD and postdoctoral research, I have been searching for the structural fractal pattern language that is used to encode an organism's macro-scale structure in its genome. I am convinced that the principles of information theory (in particular algorithmic information theory, or Kolmogorov complexity) indicate that such a structural pattern language must exist. (This flies in the face of biological orthodoxy, which indicates that organism structure is the result of a long series of cascading events and many, many layers of nested emergent complexity.) My research is ongoing.