Alianna J. Maren, Ph.D., has been living in McLean for ten years, and moved to this area when the company that she co-founded selected McLean as its new headquarters. Her Ph.D. is in theoretical physical chemistry, and her scientific interests span multiple disciplines. She is a serial entrepreneur, and in 2008 left the company that she'd co-founded to focus on new passion: predicting the outcomes of complex systems; those that have many "moving and interacting parts" (such as demographics interacting with economic trends).
Dr. Maren has received four ground-breaking patents in the computer science area. (See the Patents page of www.aliannamaren.com for links.) Her life-long quest, though, has dealt with how humans can expand their potential capabilities. This involves questions such as: how smart can we be, and how can we get smarter? How capable and aware and astute can we be, and how can we improve these abilities? And of course: how long can we live, and how can we live longer?
Dr. Maren has also had a lifelong passion for teaching, and has developed new courses (including ones on "knowledge discovery" and cloud computing) and taught at area universities, including Georgetown, Marymount, and George Mason University.
Prior to moving to the McLean area, Dr. Maren was a pioneer in the computer science area of neural networks. (The android Data in Star Trek supposedly had a “neural network” brain.) Her first book was “The Handbook of Neural Computing Applications” (Academic Press, 1990).
While researching computer neural networks, Dr. Maren became fascinated by the neurophysiology: a complex brain system inspired her first patent in sensor fusion for the U.S. Navy.
More recently, while doing research for most recent book, “Unveiling: The Inner Journey” (www.theunveilingjourney.com), she studied neurohormonal chemistry. This added to her growing fascination with how the brain works (and how we can work with our own brains) to promote health, vitality, and long life.
For over thirty years, Dr. Maren has pursued body/mind disciplines such as yoga, T’ai Ch’i Chuan, and dance. She taught T’ai Ch’i for several years, but as her interests shifted to a more feminine art, she focused on Oriental dance (often called belly dance). She has recently reopened the Alay'nya Studio, where she teaches "esoteric belly dance" - a form of energy rejuvenation for women (www.alaynya.com).
Dr. Maren has been on the Board of Directors of The McLean Symphony for over five years. She was formerly on the Board with the Washington Academy of Sciences, and an early Board member for the International Society of Neural Networks. She's taking a hiatus from Board involvements while getting her latest company up and running.