Chair’s Message, January 2021

Happy New Year to all. I hope it was a healthy and somewhat joyful one, given the pandemic. My son’s friend had this to say about New Year’s Eve, “Hindsight is 2020!” Let’s all bid good riddance to a year we will remember as one of life’s worst. However, 2021 does bring with it new plans for the Section and a return to the old ways, although somewhat later than usual.

It bears repeating that the Microwave and Power Electronics Symposia will be on the calendar again and the Awards Banquet will host the recipients of awards for 2019 and 2020, so it should be a memorable evening. There are new plans afoot as well. As usual, increasing membership in the section is the primary goal of the Executive Committee and to that end, under James Colotti’s leadership, the Circuits and Systems Chapter will be kicking off a student design competition. Winners will receive a plaque at the Awards Banquet. In addition to this effort, Bill Wilkes has organized sessions of Raspberry Pi programming. We look forward to more of these and a greater outreach among the membership to take part.

With many of us telecommuting, the line between working at home and indulging in extracurricular projects becomes blurry. I would like to initiate an effort to involve teams of members in some design challenges that can be both rewarding and challenging. An example of such might be any challenge put forth on Kaggle. Many problems in machine learning are tractable on google’s collaboration site. I suggest that if members have a problem that needs solving or an idea that needs implementing, they form a team and tackle it as a group. I will be making a more formal call for teams and tasks in the near future.

There is also in this issue a technical article that I have submitted. To make the Pulse more than just a monthly letter from the chair and a mass of advertising, it is necessary to make it more utilitarian. I am asking members to submit articles on topics that are useful to working engineers, be they hints or techniques you find useful or any similar subjects. I have started with the first submission, as editor, I have accepted it ;). I have at least one or two more in stages of completion. We do need more, however.

Lastly, the Pulse is still in need of an editor. I have been editing pro tem, but I would like someone else to take over. Please contact me if you are interested. Stay safe and healthy everyone,

Arnold Stillman
IEEE Long Island Section Chair, 2020