Brian Spiking Neural Network Simulator

Goodman DFM, Brette R
SpringerReference (2013)
In: Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience. Jaeger D, Jung R (eds)
Abstract. Brian ( is an open source Python package for developing simulations of networks of spiking neurons (Goodman and Brette 2008, 2009). The design is aimed at minimizing users' development time, with execution speed as secondary goal. Users specify neuron and synapse models by giving their equations in standard mathematical form, create groups of neurons, and connect them via synapses. The intent is to make the process as flexible as possible so that researchers are not restricted to using neuron and synapse models already built into the simulator. The entire simulator is written in Python, using the NumPy and SciPy numerical and scientific computing packages. Parts of the simulator can optionally be run using C++ code generated on the fly (Goodman 2010). Computationally, Brian uses vectorization techniques (Brette and Goodman 2011) so that for large numbers of neurons, execution speed is of the same order of magnitude ...