December 2nd, 2013
J. Roberto B. de Marca, 2014 IEEE President

J. Roberto B. de Marca, 2014 IEEE President

Industry engagement. Social media. Membership recruitment and retention. It would be easy, and even tempting, to become siloed in one interest area, or strategy. However, IEEE President-elect Dr.  J. Roberto B. de Marca is taking a holistic approach by combining seemingly disparate areas into one overarching vision for the organization’s future.

‘We have to face the challenges posed by social media to professional organizations,” de Marca said from the Meeting Series in New Brunswick, NJ, USA.

“It used to be that professional organizations were the only way to truly connect with your peers and learn about new research and publications. Now people can do that networking online. We have to ask ourselves, what can we deploy in our services and products that will face this challenge?”

This challenge is one that has prompted de Marca to scrutinize all aspects of IEEE, from how the organization recruits and keeps members, to engaging industry leaders, to making the organization attractive to young engineers.

But it’s from this challenge of online engagement that de Marca is taking another lesson; how necessary it is to engage industry leaders for and in the evolution of IEEE.

“Over the years, for different reasons and because the industry changed, participation in the IEEE from the industry has gone down,” he said. “Some engineers feel their companies don’t give them the necessary time to participate in volunteer activities. I’m going to meet with industry leaders to find out what we can do so that they will consider engagement with us relevant, and hopefully motivate them to allow their employees to participate in a way that will help the company, and IEEE.”

This engagement is key for the continued development of new technologies, de Marca says, something he’s made a priority for his presidential year. “We have to stay at the forefront of emerging technologies,” he said. “Investing in fostering and developing, and becoming leaders in the development of, technology like cloud computing, big data, smart cities, smart grid… That’s only possible to do if you have significant industry development. It’s not the academics who push the development of new technologies, it’s industry.”

In that challenge, de Marca is particularly eyeing a younger generation of engineers, who are having their networking needs met through platforms like LinkedIn or Facebook. He says that it’s only through pushing the development of new technologies that these young engineers will be engaged in the IEEE, and in turn, help the organization continue to innovate. “We have products and services here and there that serve young professionals, but do we have a comprehensive package that appeals to the new engineer?” he asked rhetorically.

These new engineers are now anywhere, and everywhere, in the world, as IEEE rapidly grows outside of Regions 1-6. “In my opinion, IEEE has a bigger role outside the U.S. than in the U.S.,” de Marca said. “Some of the IEEE leadership boards are mostly U.S., but when you go to other counties and see the prestige and reputation and impact we can have, our members outside the U.S. are sometimes more passionate and more active, especially the young professionals and student groups.”

De Marca is speaking from experience. He’s held visiting appointments in industry and academia on several continents, and has worked closely with students around the world. Some of his appointments have been in the U.S. at UCLA and AT&T Bell Labs; in France at Telecom Paris; in Germany’s NEC Europe Labs; in Italy at CSELT-Telecom Italia and Politecnico di Torino; in the University of Toronto and the Hong Kong Univ. of Science and Technology.

Despite turmoil in certain regions of the world, de Marca said that IEEE members share a common bond. “When you go to a region 8 meeting you see people from Israel and Iraq sitting next to each other,” he said. “When our members participate in a meeting they are politically agnostic, fighting for development, activities… Their political differences don’t have an impact.”

De Marca said one of his priorities next year will be to bring this same cooperation to the internal operations of IEEE. “One of the challenges is to get all the units to work together, even including staff,” he said.

“But we are learning how to do that through the Future Directions area. That’s an area where we have been learning how to work together with different units to achieve a goal,” he said. “We have to make sure the board can make decisions and see that those decisions are implemented in a timely way. Sometimes it’s a little slow. Of course there may be other changes we can’t know, like big changes in the societies, for instance.”

But despite any changes that may come, de Marca’s vision for IEEE is clear. He sees an efficient IEEE, one that makes the most of its existing technologies, while encouraging industry leaders in their development of new technologies. This will in turn attract new members to help IEEE continue to engage and thrive online and off.

“There’s no one without the other,” he said. “It’s all connected.”

De Marca, who previously served as Vice president of Technical Activities, President of the IEEE Communications Society, Chair of the Future Directions Board, and on the MGA Board, is on the faculty of the Catholic University in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

 

September 17th, 2013

Lee_Stogner“At the core, an IEEE member is just a kid who loves technology.”

So says Lee Stogner, the current Chair of the Transportation Electrification Initiative, and proponent of a more social IEEE. When asked about his push to have IEEE members adopt social media platforms as a means of communication, outreach and professional development, Stogner says, “It’s not really hard for us members to embrace new things or channels when they come along. “

“We’re at the very forefront of computers and networking,” Stogner says. “I like to think it’s a natural that a member who’s in his or her eighties can communicate through social media just as easily as someone who’s 16. It’s a great way to level the world, and make the next big difference in the years ahead.”

Stogner, the President of the Vincula Group in South Carolina, and a former Director of the IEEE Board of Directors, says that change doesn’t always come easy, but it always comes.  “Twenty years ago, it was challenging to get the average IEEE member to embrace email. There were some members who wouldn’t touch a computer at all,” he says. “We persevered and made it easier for them to come to the next workshop or conference and talk about the internet and how it can aid professional development, and build your network.”

That network effect is something Stogner pursues diligently, whether as people connecting to other people online, or sensors collecting data and passing it around the world.  Stogner, who has spent part of his career studying automation and industrial control, says that the “Internet of Things” is a new name for a familiar concept: efficiency. “People like me were doing ‘internet’ of things years ago before it had a catchy name,” he says. “Like a lot of computer networking, it’s gone mainstream. People see the value of interconnecting machine to machine, and especially sensor to network to make us more aware of the world around us. “

Stogner points to the farmer who can monitor crop and soil temperatures, or urban dwellers finding a local deal, or spotting and avoiding traffic delays.  “A lot of data is being collected and shared in a fairly easy and quick way so that people can take advantage of things on a daily basis, or avoid things, like when traffic is backed up,” he says.  “All of this data is being collected by sensors and moved around by real time networks, and being put in the cloud where people can look at it and see a pattern. We have more of the right data.”

How that “right data” can be utilized is especially apparent in the Transportation Electrification Initiative, which is so wide in scope it comprises 19 societies and councils within the IEEE. “The IEEE has been in the background of transportation for decades, producing a relay or motor or other electronics that makes the vehicle more effective,” Stogner says.  “And we believe we can do more for society if we are more visible in helping lead the charge in where the technology can be best used next.”

“Electric vehicle technology is here,” Stogner says. “It’s no longer a vision of the future, and it is the right time for the IEEE to get involved in transportation.”

Stogner would know. His company consults in energy management, transportation solutions, systems integration and project management. In his roles at the IEEE, Stogner is active in the IEEE Smart Grid Initiative, the IEEE Energy Policy Committee, and the IEEE Internet of Things Initiative, among others -  all natural complements to his role as Chair of the IEEE Transportation Electrification Initiative.

To increase visibility of what the IEEE can do, Stogner says the Initiative is conducting a wide-scale outreach program. “We are talking to elected officials at the local, state and national levels to be sure they know of IEEE and our contributions, not only to transportation but other initiatives we’re involved in,” he says.  “We’re talking to companies at very high levels. We didn’t use to do that; before we primarily talked engineer to engineer.”

This outreach, combined with an aggressive social media campaign, has convinced Stogner that the next big breakthrough in social media, sensors, or the Internet of Things will be the people behind them.  “The most exciting “things” end up being people,” he says.  “If you go to a typical IEEE conference, it’s always the same people. While that’s a good thing, that people have a way to come together once or twice a year and network and discuss new ideas, it can also limit you in that you’re not growing.”

The beauty of the Transportation Initiative, Stogner says, is that it allows for the opportunity to grow beyond the traditional network, to create connections that might otherwise be unmade, and to allow for its members to become a little more, well, social. Online, and off.

After all, what good is a kid with new technology without someone to play with?

Members can get involved with the Internet of Things at https://www.ieee.org/membership-catalog/productdetail/showProductDetailPage.html?product=CMYIOT736

Or the Transportation Electrification Initiative at http://electricvehicle.ieee.org

 

 

 

June 28th, 2013

IEEE Summer Schools

Many IEEE Societies and Councils offer “Summer School” events annually during summer holidays. Below is a sampling of this year’s IEEE Summer Schools selection.

Summer Schools New in 2013:

The IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society and the IEEE Signal Processing Society have, inclusively, approved the formation of three new summer schools at recent AdCom meetings. These new summer schools are as follows:

International Summer School on Neural Engineering (ISSNE)
Topic for 2013: Translational Neural Engineering

7-14 July, 2013

Shanghai, China

Sponsored by the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society

IEEE EMBS opens a new summer school, or “International Summer School on Neural Engineering (ISSNE)” starting from 2013 biennially. The ISSNE will provide a platform to have leading scientists and experts in neural engineering to give lectures and organize workshops to the graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty members who will be the next generation leading researchers in neural engineering community. ISSNE provides a unique opportunity to interact with top international scientists and to network among themselves.

The topics for ISSNE’13 will be focusing on translational neural engineering, with two subtopics: Neuroimaging, and Brain & Neural Interface. ISSNE will invite distinguished faculty members from the Johns Hopkins University (JHU), Northwestern University (NU), University of Minnesota (UMN), Politechnico di Milano, Case Western Reserve University(CWRU), Tsinghua University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) and the Chinese University of Hong Kong.  Beside the lectures and seminars, ISSNE will also offer the bedside opportunities to see the translational neural engineering techniques and applications in hospitals and research centers affiliated to SJTU.

IEEE EMBS Summer School on Emerging Technologies and Applications in Telemedicine:
Addressing the Challenges of Chronic Disease Management

26-31 August, 2013

Smolenice castle, Smolenice, Slovak Republic

Sponsored by the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society

The summer school will provide an excellent opportunity for learning, teaching and brain-storming for master and Ph.D. students, post-docs, faculty, engineers from industry and clinicians on a “closed-loop” of telemedicine covering data acquisition, data interpretation and clinical decision support. It will be an exciting and stimulating week of networking and discussions with prominent experts in the field related to biomedical signal processing, biomedical data treatment, neuroengineering, healthcare informatics, biomedical telemetry, e-p-m Health and telemedicine technologies. The focus will be on tutorial presentations where distinguished faculty will provide detailed insight into biomedical signal processing, telemedicine technology and devices, telemedicine systems and communications, data interoperability, computer aided decision making and applications of telemedicine.

IEEE SPS Italy Chapter Summer School on Signal Processing

1-6 September, 2013

Riororto (LI), Italy

Co-sponsored by the IEEE Signal Processing Society Italy Chapter

The Signal Processing summer school will feature an excellent group of eight speakers including three IEEE SPS Distinguished Lecturers, with a Special Track focused on Multimedia Forensics, with the support of the European Project REWIND.  The material of the summer school will be available through the IEEE SPS tutorial on-line portal.

School attendants will have the opportunity to interactively learn and study innovative algorithms and systems in the signal processing field: each day, after the lectures, the speakers will be available for face-to-face discussion with students. Students will have the opportunity to present their work to other participants and lecturers in a demo/poster session. Finally, in order to earn credits, the students will be given assignments from the speakers to be reviewed by the Steering Committee.

Summer Schools Returning in 2013:

Several IEEE Societies and Councils have Summer Schools that will return in 2013. A sampling of these schools is as follows:

The 2013 School of Information Theory

4-7 June, 2013

Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana

Sponsored by the IEEE Information Theory Society

The school provides a venue where doctoral and postdoctoral students can meet to learn from distinguished professors in information theory, and form friendships and collaborations. This year the school will introduce several interdisciplinary topics in the emerging field of science of information. Students will present their own research via a poster during the school. Although the focus is on information theory, interdisciplinary topics are welcome, e.g., topics related to mathematics, physics, biology, control, networking, etc.

The IEEE Magnetics Society Summer School

9-14 June, 2013

Assisi, Italy

Sponsored by the IEEE Magnetics Society

Held annually. the school is designed for graduate students studying magnetism and related areas. It consists of lectures by international experts and includes poster presentations by participating graduate students. The program covers fundamentals and advanced topics in magnetism.

10th Summer School for Advanced Studies on Biometrics for Secure Authentication
“How Biometrics Meets Forensics, Security, and the E-Society Challenges of Tomorrow”

10-15 June, 2013

Alghero, Italy

Co-Sponsored by the IEEE Biometrics Council

What are the most up-to-date core biometric technologies developed in the field? What is the potential impact of biometrics in forensic investigation and crime prevention? How can biometrics facilitate man-machine interaction? What are the most relevant issues in biometric standardization? What can we learn from human perception? What does it involve to develop or integrate a biometric recognition system?

This school follows the successful International Summer Schools on Biometrics held since 2003, but with a different target. In this 10th edition, the courses will mainly focus on new and emerging issues. The lectures will be given by 18 outstanding experts in the field, from both academia and industry.

The Fourth IEEE CASS R9 Summer School
“Wearable and Implantable Biomedical Circuits and Systems”

9-12 July, 2013

Bogota, Columbia

Sponsored by the IEEE Circuits and Systems Society

This event will provide students and researchers with a grounding in the core subjects related to Wearable and Implantable Biomedical Circuits and Systems. The topics covered will include system design, circuits and sensors, telemetry systems and regulatory aspects. The lecturers are leading researchers and industry specialists in the subject. The school is intended for students and researchers as well as industrial researchers and practitioners.

IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium Summer School
“Building a Sustainable Earth through Remote Sensing”

18-19 July

Melbourne, Australia

Supported by IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society

GRSS will be offering a world class technical program encompassing traditional IGARSS topics and new topics reflecting the theme of the 2013 Conference, “Building a Sustainable Earth through Remote Sensing”. This theme was selected to emphasize the issues that most affect the Earth’s environment, and the human impact on the planet. Both seasoned and new delegates are welcomed to Melbourne in July 2013.

ESAS Summer School on Materials and Applications on Superconductivity

29 July – 2 August, 2013

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany

Supported by IEEE Council on Superconductivity

This summer school will provide basic lectures on superconducting physics and important phenomena, state-of-the-art material development and a broad range of superconducting applications. Visits to the superconducting laboratories at the Institute of Technical Physics will be included, with opportunities to interact with the professional staff and graduate students.

This summer school will be of interest for Students (Bachelor, Diploma, Master, Ph.D.), for Post-Docs, for engineers and scientists, and for those who want to learn more about the fascination of superconductivity.

2013 SICSA International Summer School on Cognitive Computation

25-30 August, 2013

University of Stirling

Technically co-sponsored by the UKRI Section of the IEEE Industry Applications Society and IEEE Computational Intelligence Society

The vision of this summer school is to empower participants with an interdisciplinary understanding of some of the key underlying methodologies, concepts and techniques in cognitive computation, and their strengths and limitations (demonstrated by a range of case studies). Participants will also learn of future directions in this exciting multi-disciplinary field. Topics covered will include: perception, action, attention, cognitive and affective learning and memory, decision making and control, social cognition, language processing and communication, reasoning, pattern recognition, problem solving, and consciousness.

Fourth International Summer School on Screw-Theory Based Methods in Robotics

19-27 October, 2013

Federal University of Santa Catarina, Florianopolis, Brazil

Co-Sponsored by the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society

Summer Screws‘13 will gather six experts in the robotics applications of screw theory and up to 40 participants. The school will teach attendees how to apply existing methods and empower them to develop new ones in their own research. The basic theoretical notions will be introduced in a rigorous manner, with emphasis on examples, applications, and exercises.

 

 

 

June 13th, 2013

jamieson

 

Leah H. Jamieson

2013 President, IEEE Foundation
2008 IEEE President
2003 IEEE Technical Activites Vice President
Purdue University, John A. Edwardson Dean of Engineering
Purdue University, Ransburg Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering

 

 

When asked if Technical Activities has changed since she became a member of IEEE nearly forty years ago, IEEE Fellow and former President Leah Jamieson says both Technical Activities and her perspective have changed.

“In my earliest interactions through Signal Processing and Computer societies, my focus was on very specific research,” she recalls. “I went to Technical Activities conferences and publications because I had interest in particular research topics.”

Five years after completing her term as president and ten since her term as VP-TAB, Jamieson is the president of the IEEE Foundation. “Compared to when I started my career, I see much more activity at the boundaries between research areas. These are reflections of how not only Technical Activities in IEEE has changed, but how the technical world has changed.”

Jamieson says there is a growing conversation about how those boundary areas should be navigated: in IEEE, in academia, and the technical community at-large. “We grapple with how much we want students to have depth and how much we want them to have breadth,” she says. “In reality you need both, not in one person but collectively. It’s important to have strong pillars but they must be pillars and not silos so you can build bridges across them.”

Jamieson has made building bridges a priority during her time at IEEE. During her presidency, she spearheaded the Public Visibility Initiative to create greater awareness of IEEE and its works on a global level. When asked about the success of the initiative, Jamieson said, “It’s not done, and I don’t think it will ever be done. But I do get the sense that IEEE is engaging some thought leaders in ways we rarely did before. And I think the idea that people should be paying attention to the profession and the visibility of IEEE is getting more attention.”

Some of those thought leaders include voices that have been traditionally left out of the discussions surrounding technology. “One of the goals for IEEE is to advance technology for humanity. The responsibility that comes with making a statement that’s that bold is doing everything you can to achieve that goal,” Jamieson says. “If there are bright, talented, passionate people who could be contributing to the goal, and you’re not helping to make sure they are included and feel included and have a seat at the table and have a voice in the conversation, you’re not fulfilling the responsibility.”

Women in particular have been particularly left out. Jamieson, only the second female president in IEEE’s history, is aware of the statistics in the global STEM communities. “Certainly by the numbers, women are not represented in engineering, technology and physical sciences fields in proportion to women in the population. This means that there are ideas being left out the conversation, and passion being left out of our efforts to innovate.”

In IEEE in particular, Jamieson points to the scarcity of female leadership at the executive level. “We all keep trying to do things and we make some progress, but if you sit in a TAB meeting or an IEEE board meeting and look around, there aren’t too many women, especially at the leadership level.” There is no one solution, Jamieson says, and points to the struggle across all areas of STEM to include a broader range of voices, while applauding IEEE’s Women in Engineering global initiative, particularly at the student branch level. “The challenge is that no one really knows what to do. Higher ed grapples with this, professional societies, industry, everyone agrees we need to do something, but there is no silver bullet.”

Whether it’s new and emerging technologies, initiatives to bring passionate voices to the table or the board room, or an ever-shifting perspective, there is no doubt that IEEE is as always, on the cusp of change.

In envisioning the organization’s future, Jamieson says, “I think that IEEE will have a much more coherent way of thinking about not only advancing technology, but the grander goal of advancing technology for humanity. This is becoming a more pressing societal need, and is an idea that is also evolving within the IEEE. But as the world changes over the next 40 years, that connection between technology and humanity is going to have to be tighter. How to make that strong linkage is something IEEE will have to figure out, and I’m confident that IEEE will figure it out.”

March 21st, 2013

moura_jose_m_f_2008informal

The email telling Professor José Moura that he had been inducted into the U.S. National Academy of Engineering went into his spam folder.

Only after receiving multiple congratulatory emails from friends and colleagues, one of whom copied the announcement into his email, did Moura realize it wasn’t a joke. When he learned it wasn’t a hoax, Moura says, “I fell off my chair.”

“You can have some hints (that you’ll be selected) but you know it happens when you receive an email,” he says. Or in this case, an email about an email.

Moura, an electrical and computer engineering professor, and the director of the Information and Communications Technologies Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, was selected into the National Academy of Engineering for his contributions to the theory and practice of statistical signal processing. The honor is one of the highest in the engineering field.

He says one of the biggest challenges of working in the field is that, while many people may be familiar with the term “signal processing,” few people truly know what it is. “Signal processing is like Intel Inside®,” he says. “In most technologies, you find algorithms that people like me design but people don’t realize are there. The brains of what makes most technology work is signal processing.”

The lack of concrete, widespread comprehension about the inner workings of signal processing is understandable. “We work in things that get buried in technology,” Moura says. One example of his work is an algorithm that allows for reading bits of discs in high definition (HD) recordings with greater accuracy. “In the 1990s and 2000s, devices got smaller and smaller, and we were packing more bits onto smaller drives,” Moura says. “We developed an algorithm in the mid 90s that reads the bits better to reduce errors and recover more data with more clarity.” In the past ten years, 60% of all computers sold have contained this technology.

As if changing the face of technology doesn’t keep him busy enough, Moura is an active IEEE volunteer, which has also granted him the prestigious IEEE Signal Processing Society Technical Achievement Award, also for contributions to the industry. Currently, he serves on the Board of Directors, and as the IEEE Division IX Director and Delegate.

Previously, Moura served as the President of the IEEE Signal Processing Society, as well as Editor in Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing, and acting Editor in Chief for the IEEE Signal Processing Letters. He’s also served on the Education Activities Board, the Technical Activities Board, the Press Board, the TAB Periodicals, and the TAB Publications Committee, among others. He is an IEEE Fellow.

“The best job I ever had at IEEE was Editor in Chief,” he says.

When asked why he gives so much of his time for volunteer work, Moura says that some people just can’t help it. “We need to help the profession,” he says. “We feel we can contribute.”

Although he has volunteered in a myriad of positions at IEEE, Moura says his passion is volunteering with publications. “IEEE has great journals, and it’s because of its high-caliber volunteers. They preserve the quality. Many of them, because of the anonymous peer review process, are mostly invisible. I feel an obligation to be a part of it.”

Even though most volunteer positions at IEEE last one year, many people continue on in other roles year after year, which Moura finds inspiring. “While people are in a role, they’re fully committed. It’s such a great example. You just hope you can fill the shoes of your predecessor, and do as good or a better job.”

Though Moura is comfortable stepping into established roles, his role building a dual degree program with Carnegie Mellon and a university in Portugal had no precedent.

Raised in Mozambique, then a Portuguese colony, Moura maintains close connections with the Instituto Superior Tecnico in Lisbon where he was a professor in the late 1970s to mid-1980s. When he was approached about building a partnership with Carnegie Mellon and universities in Portugal, he led the charge to develop the U.S.’s first dual-degree program, ultimately resulting in seven dual-doctoral degree programs and five dual-master’s degree programs across all programs at Carnegie Mellon. “We were the first university to develop a dual-degree program,” he says. “Other universities have since adopted our model.”

Moura credits the engagement of the faculty for the program’s astonishing successes: Since the first class entered in 2007, 250 masters degrees have been awarded and 85 doctoral degrees.

Although he’s certainly earned a moment or two to rest on his laurels, Moura shows no signs of slowing down. “You think you’ll be in a role for a year and then move on,” he says. “But once you finish, there’s the next thing. You never think, ‘why am I doing this?’ It’s ‘I should be doing this.’ Most people I know, it’s what drives them.”

Intel Inside® is a trademark of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and/or other countries.

March 13th, 2013

npiFrom medicine and manufacturing to communication, defense, and energy, photonics plays an important role in the U. S. economy and the lives of its citizens. That’s why the IEEE Photonics Society partnered with four other technical organizations to support the National Photonics Initiative in Washington D.C., USA on 28 February. More than 100 representatives from government and the photonics industry gathered for the day-long event to raise awareness of the importance of photonics and to strategize for its future.

As a follow-up to the groundbreaking National Academy of Sciences report “Optics & Photonics: Essential Technologies for Our Nation,” the event consisted of two segments: a morning overview of work done by subcommittees and industry sharing their future needs, and afternoon breakout sessions covering the five key optics and photonics sectors — communication, defense, health and medicine, manufacturing, and energy. Attendees collected input and identified focus areas for a National Photonics Initiative (NPI), a key recommendation of the Optics & Photonics report.

Read more about this important event. 

February 12th, 2013

robotThe IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) has become the first IEEE society to establish a Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology (SIGHT), a program that aims to promote the mission of IEEE regarding humanitarian technology activities.

RAS-SIGHT’s mission is to contribute sustainable robotics and automation techniques to improve the quality of life in underserved and underdeveloped parts of the world. The group educates students about robotics through competitions and by collaborating with organizations like Engineers Without Borders-USA on projects. It is also identifying areas where robots can search for survivors in disasters, clear land mines, and monitor endangered species.

In a recent project held in conjunction with the African Robotics Network, RAS-SIGHT sponsored a robot design challenge for high schoolers in Africa, with an aim to get students interested in robotics while demonstrating how robotics can help boost education in the continent. The students were given the task to build affordable robots with just $10 to buy parts.

Read more about SIGHT, and how to get involved, in The Institute.

January 7th, 2013

2013 GRSS Data Fusion Contest

Recently, the IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society (GRSS) announced plans for its 2013 Data Fusion Contest. The contest, which helps connect students and researchers around the world, evaluates existing methodologies at the research or operational level to solve remote sensing problems using data from various sensors.

The contest is open to both IEEE members and non-members and will consists of two parallel competitions: the Best Paper Award and the Best Classification Award. Final results will be announced at the 2013 IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium in Melbourne, Australia, in July 2013. The winning teams will be awarded free iPads, IEEE Certificates of Appreciation during the Technical Committees and Chapters Luncheon, and an opportunity to receive free open access publication in an IEEE GRSS Journal. Contest details are available here.

Last year, roughly 1,150 people participated in the contest.  The IEEE GRSS Society awarded the winning teams with IEEE GRSS Certificates of Appreciation and monetary prizes at the 2012 IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium.

November 28th, 2012

The IEEE Robotics and Automation Society continues its missions to get students interested in the growing field of robotics through its pre-college student event at the recent IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems 2012 (IROS) in Vilamoura, Portugal from 7 to 12 October 2012. The local organizer, The Institute of Systems and Robotics of University of Coimbra, invited students from schools of the Algarve region to visit the conference on 9 October.

There was tremendous response as 40 pre-college students from nearby schools, accompanied by teachers, accepted the invitation. The program, partially supported by the Portuguese Agency for the Scientific and Technological Culture, started with a plenary session on surgical robotics by Professor Paulo Dario from the University of Pisa, Italy, and “European Robotics Research: Achievements and Challenges” by Dr. Libor Kral. The students attended robot navigation competitions and toured the exhibitors’ areas before witnessing a seminar by Paulo Menezes entitled “Robots and How to Become a Robot Creator.”

The event follows a similar pre-college program the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society held at the 2012 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) in May, which you can read about here. Both events have served as excellent forums to inspire young students to consider pursuing both engineering and, particularly, robotics, as a possible career choice.

A Women in Engineering Luncheon sponsored by the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society was also held at IROS 2012. Over 60 guests joined RAS leaders to enjoy lunch while listening to helpful insight from speaker Nancy Amato.

October 19th, 2012

We pay special tribute to IEEE Graduates of the Last Decade (GOLD) members, recently graduated IEEE volunteers working at local, regional, and global levels of IEEE. These IEEE volunteers play an important role in helping new graduates make the difficult transition to young professionals. We’re especially thankful for GOLD volunteers like Caroline Chan, GOLD IEEE Electromagnetic Compatibility Society (GOLD EMC) representative, who work with IEEE societies to bring special GOLD sessions to IEEE society events.

Ms. Chan and fellow GOLD EMC members organized some fun and educational activities at the recent IEEE EMC Symposium in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, geared at helping recently graduated students in the field of EMC expand their professional horizons. A special GOLD session took place at the conference in which GOLD members saw presentations on how to write a technical paper and establish a career in the field of electromagnetic compatibility. Afterwards they got to unwind by participating in a raffle for a free Kindle and attend a social bowling night.

When you become a GOLD member, not only do you enjoy opportunities to expand your technical knowledge and professional network, you also get to join colleagues in fun activities. Hiking, laser tag, bowling, and barbeques are just a few examples. Interested in learning more about IEEE GOLD programs or joining a GOLD program in your society? Visit the IEEE GOLD Web page, or contact your society’s GOLD representative for details.

For more information on GOLD EMC, visit the GOLD EMC Web page, or email Caroline Chan directly. You can also like the GOLD EMC Facebook page.