Barney Pell



Barney Pell is a technologist, entrepreneur, and angel investor based in Silicon Valley. In the mid 80’s, as an undergraduate in Symbolic Systems at Stanford, he worked as a researcher in Natural Language Processing at SRI International. He then did his PhD research at Cambridge in AI, focused on machine learning and strategies in games.

For about a decade, Dr Pell was a technology leader at NASA, responsible for innovation in autonomous systems, human-centred computing, spoken dialog systems, search, collaboration, and the semantic web. He was Founder and CEO of Powerset, which built a natural-language based search engine that read each sentence in Wikipedia and answered user queries in plain English. Powerset was acquired by Microsoft in 2008, and Barney then spent three years at Microsoft, as Search Strategist and the Chief Architect for Local and Mobile Search at Bing.

He is Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Moon Express, a private company building autonomous robotic lunar landers; Co-Founder and Chairman of LocoMobi, a start-up company bringing advanced technology to parking and transportation industries; and Associate Founder and Trustee of the Singularity University, created to educate leaders for life in a future driven by accelerating technological change. He is also a parallel entre­preneur, and an active angel investor, advisor or board member to over 20 startup companies and nonprofits.