Zdenek Straka

PhD student and researcher
Supervised by Matej Hoffmann and Tomas Svoboda
Center for Machine Perception, Vision for Robotics and Autonomous Systems, Department of Cybernetics,
Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Czech Technical University in Prague
email: straka.zdenek AT, room: KN:E-209

I am a PhD student at the CMP, CTU in Prague. I focus on machine learning (especially artificial neural networks), computational neuroscience and neurorobotics. I am particularly interested in applying neural network models to body and peripersonal space (space immediately surrounding the body) representations. The models are used for modeling the representations in humans. Another using of the models is in humanoid robotics (see the group website).


9/2016 - now ~ PhD student in Artificial Intelligence and Biocybernetics at Czech Technical University in Prague, Czech Republic on topic: Learning peripersonal space representations: from brains to robots.

2014 - 2016 ~ MSc degree (with honours) in artificial inteligence from the Czech Technical University in Prague, Czech Republic (study program Open Informatics).

2011 - 2014 ~ Bachelor's degree (with honours) in robotics from the Czech Technical University in Prague, Czech Republic (study program Cybernetics and Robotics).

Research Interests

Machine learning (especially artificial neural networks)
Body and peripersonal space representations
Computational neuroscience


B3B33KUI Cybernetics and Artificial Intelligence (labs)


Straka Z, Svoboda T, & Hoffmann M (2023) PreCNet: Next-frame video prediction based on predictive coding. IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems [to appear](DOI - IEEE Xplore)(pdf-arxiv)

Straka Z, Noel J-P, Hoffmann M (2022) A normative model of peripersonal space encoding as performing impact prediction. PLoS Computational Biology 18(9) (Open Access)

Hoffmann, M.; Straka, Z.; Farkas, I.; Vavrecka, M. & Metta, G. (2018), 'Robotic homunculus: Learning of artificial skin representation in a humanoid robot motivated by primary somatosensory cortex', IEEE Transactions on Cognitive and Developmental Systems. (IEEE Xplore)

Best Paper Award Straka, Z. & Hoffmann, M. (2017), Learning a peripersonal space representation as a visuo-tactile prediction task, in 'Proceedings of the 26th International Conference on Artificial Neural Networks (ICANN)', Springer. [award] (postprint)

Stepanova, K.; Hoffmann, M.; Straka, Z.; Klein, F. B.; Cangelosi, A. & Vavrecka, M. (2017), Where is my forearm? Clustering of body parts from simultaneous tactile and linguistic input using sequential mapping, in I. Farkas; M. Takac; J. Rybar & P. Gergel, ed., 'Kognice a umělý život XVII [Cognition and Artificial Life XVII]', Comenius University Bratislava, pp. 155-162. (pdf)

Z. Straka, "Tvorba modelu multisenzorní integrace pro reprezentaci peripersonálního prostoru pomocí metod strojového učení (Modeling multisensory integration for peripersonal space representation using machine learning)", MSc thesis, 2016. (in czech)

Z. Straka, "Tvorba senzorických map z taktilních vstupů robota iCub pomocí metod strojového učení (Learning sensory maps using machine learning methods from tactile inputs of the iCub robot)", Bachelor's thesis, 2014. (in czech)