IEEE Central Coast News Volume 2, Number 1 (Summer 2000)

IEEE Central Coast News

Volume 2, Number 1
Summer 2000


The Official Publication of the Central Coast Section of the Los Angeles Council, The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc. Find us on the Web at:

Get all the latest LA area news at the IEEE Los Angeles Council Electronic Bulletin

link to Volume 1, Number 1 Newsletter
Volume 1, Number 2
Volume 1, Number 3
Central Coast Greetings
by Marty Kaliski, Section Chair

This newsletter represents the beginning of a new cycle—it reads “Volume 2, Number 1.” So a year has passed and our section continues to do well. We have had a successful year, both financially and professionally, and hope to have an even better one this year.
Given the importance of tradition in all disciplines, we are starting one of our own with this Summer newsletter—we are summarizing the professional talks of the past year.  We intend to do this each year at this time and hope that by doing so, we can send out an important message: professional activity is alive and well on the Central Coast.
During the past year we held talks in all three geographical regions of our Section and featured speakers and subjects of great variety.  We are even booked in San Luis Obispo through December of this year, so we anticipate that this trend will continue.  I want to personally thank all of the folks who took the time out of their busy schedules to talk to our Section.
Looking ahead, we anticipate doing something introspective as well— we are going to devote one of our monthly meetings in San Luis Obispo (the January one in all likelihood) to a roundtable discussion of what the very purpose of our Section is.  Why are we here and what should we be doing?  I believe that all groups need to probe this sort of thing from time to time and once we have set a date for this, I encourage you to join us in this discussion.
As always, feel free to drop by and chat the next time you are in San Luis Obispo, and let me conclude by extending my best wishes for a relaxing and enjoyable summer.

A Look Back
Remembering the Meetings of 1999-2000

Bernard J. Maxum, Ph.D., P.E. – Internet-Based Engineering Education: A Passing Fad or The Wave of the Future? – October 9, 1999 at Cal Poly: With the advent of the Internet, a whole new paradigm of distance education has been created. Dr. Maxum outlined the work he did during his sabbatical leave from Lamar University in trying to reconfigure mathematically complex engineering course materials for Internet presentation.

George Westrom, Founder and Executive Director, Future Scientists and Engineers of America (FSEA)Who Are the Engineers/Scientists/Technicians for the 21st Century? – November 2, 1999 at Cal Poly: Unless we successfully excite, motivate and inspire children starting in elementary school we will be at major risk in providing for the exploding technical needs of the 21st century. Mr. Westrom described a program, Future Scientists and Engineers of America, and what it will take for FSEA to be a major factor in the solution of an impending 21st century educational crisis.

Kevin Sites, Lecturer, Journalism Department, Cal PolySpeed of Light: The Digital Journalist in the New Millennium – December 7, 1999 at Cal Poly: Former network news producer and Cal Poly Broadcast Journalism lecturer Kevin Sites discussed where new technology will take TV news.

    Neal O. Fenzi, Vice President of Engineering, Superconducting Technology IncorporatedHigh Temperature Superconductors for the Telecommunications Industry – December 9, 1999 at UCSB: This talk summarized the state-of-the-art in High Temperature Superconductors (HTS) and cryogenic temperature electronics for the telecom industry.

George O’Clock, Visiting Lecturer, Electrical Engineering Department, Cal PolyThe Impact of Chemistry and Semiconductor Materials/Device Science on Communication Systems and Radar – January 4, 2000 at Cal Poly: Dr. O’Clock presented an overview on the reasons why his industrial career and consulting efforts took him on a journey from satellite communication systems to RF/microwave/millimeter wave components and subsystems to semiconductor materials, and finally to surface science and surface chemistry.

Walter Bremer, Department Head and Professor, Landscape Architecture Department, Cal PolyGeographic Information System (GIS) Technology: A Brief Overview – February 1, 2000 at Cal Poly: Geographic Information System (GIS) technology is rapidly evolving today as a mainstream application. This presentation provided a brief overview of GIS technology, what it is, and where it’s going.  The uses of GIS in different disciplines and applications to varied types of issues. were also discussed.

Brad Paden, Department of Mechanical and Environmental Engineering, UCSBA Magnetically Levitated Left-Ventricle Assist Device – February 8, 2000 at UCSB: Dr. Paden described the unique geometry of the mag-lev left-ventricle assist device and its design. Key features of this LVAD concept are the passive radial suspension and active voice-coil thrust bearing.

Dean S. Engelhardt, Specialist, Child Earthquake SafetyThe Great Upcoming Earthquake –
February 15, 2000 in Lompoc: This presentation summarized some recent information on the upcoming “great” earthquake in Southern California.  Topics covered a prediction of the location of this event, and how and why it may give warning of its coming. More serious dangers to the population, especially children both at and away from home, were explained.

Hermann Buitkamp, Director of Engineering, Scientific Technologies, Inc. – Light Curtains for Safeguarding, Profiling, And Part Ejection Verification – March 7, 2000 at Cal Poly: Light curtains are commonly used in standard manufacturing environments. This presentation discussed critical light curtain features for different applications. It also explained how light curtains work, how they are installed, and how they are used as an integral part of the manufacturing process.  An ongoing project to develop a measuring light curtain as a joint effort between the Electrical Engineering faculty at Cal Poly and Scientific Technologies Inc. in Fremont, California was also described.

    Eric Richardson, Manager, Network Planning and Engineering, Pacific Bell Engineering Telecommunications Networks – April 4, 2000 at Cal Poly: Mr. Richardson focused on the evolution of data communications, globalization, and products in the marketplace. The discussion was a general overview of information systems, the merging of technologies, and corporate business needs for aspiring engineers.

Pete Holmes, Telecommunications Market Development Manager, Ziatech Explosive Growth of Communications Market Creates Demand for Computing Solutions – May 2, 2000 at Cal Poly: Expansive growth in the telecommunications and data communications market has led to a demand for new, enhanced services, which is creating a range of opportunities for equipment providers. Most of these opportunities call for computer-based solutions. This presentation discussed the market, technologies, and opportunities for providers of equipment and software in this dynamic market.

Werner Paster, Managing Partner, EUROCONSULT, Inc.European Compliance and CE Marking
June 6, 2000 at Cal Poly: The most important European Directives, European norms (EN) and International Standards (IEC) were discussed and their complexities were addressed. Enforcement of CE marking and liability of a company was also addressed. Focus was placed on the design of one model for all world markets and the international marking with IEC and ISO symbols.

The Auto Club is now offering a 14% discount on auto insurance for IEEE Members. Call or visit your local AAA for a no-obligation quote.
 Lompoc            Santa Maria            SLO
735-2731               922-5731         543-6454

Central Coast Section Treasurer’s Report
by Jerry Skarnulis, Treasurer

We have adopted a budget for the Year 2000. The section is in excellent financial condition. We are looking forward to an interesting and rewarding rest of the year.

Keeping You Informed
by John Armstrong, Computer Chapter Chair/Central Coast Representative and
Dick Griffiths, Santa Barbara Member at Large

Computer Society News from John Armstrong, Computer Chapter Chair

 To help get Chapter meetings going, Jerry Skarnulis uncovered the Computer Society Distinguished Visitors Program.  They  pay the airfare for world-class speakers to speak at local events. If you think one or more of these speakers would be worth inviting here to speak, let me know at The full list of speakers and topics is at, but here is a sample:

Doris Carver - CS Dept., Louisiana State University
Software Evolution & Knowledge Discovery
Reengineering Legacy Code

Mary Harper - EE Dept., Purdue University
Integrating Speech Recognition and Natural Language Processing
Grammar Prototyping Using Constraint Dependency Grammars
Natural Language Processing: Why is it Important Today?

Ajay Kshemakalvani - EE/CS Dept., University of Illinois at Chicago
Programming Language Support for Distributed Application
Nonintrusive Monitoring & Debugging of Distributed Systems
Consensus & Agreement in Distributed Systems: Theory to Practice

Shahram Latifi ECE Dept, University of Las Vegas
An Overview of Data Compression & Its Standards
Processing Compressed Image Data
Norman Schneidewind - Naval Postgrad School, Pebble Beach
Measuring & Evaluating the Development Process Using Reliability, Risk, & Test Metrics
Integration of Software Reliability Predictions, Risk Analysis, & Testing Strategies
Client-Server Software Reliability Prediction

Lotfi A. Zadeh - EE Dept., U. C. Berkeley
Recognition Technology: A Technology Whose Time Has Come
The Roles of Soft Computing and Fuzzy Logic in the Conception, Design, and Deployment of Intelligent Systems
From Computing with Numbers to Computing with Words
Information Granulation & Its Centrality in Human & Machine Intelligence
What is Fuzzy-Logic? What Are Its Applications?

Los Angeles Council News from John Armstrong

    Most of the funding for the LA Council Bulletin, and half of the section’s financial support, comes from the “profit” from WESCON, the electronics trade show and convention. We are calling for increased attendance in Anaheim on September 19-21, but we need volunteers to encourage attendance at each company & college in the Southern California area. If you can help, contact James Sakamoto at (800) 877-2668, Ext 222 or More information is at

    Simultaneously, at the nearby Disneyland Hotel is the Aerospace Test Systems conference AUTOTESTCON, so you can see two shows with one trip. More information is at
Santa Barbara News from Dick Griffiths

As the new Member at Large for Santa Barbara, I enjoyed meeting the officers at our recent meeting in Solvang. My contribution to the Section will be to arrange for stimulating speakers and challenging topical presentations in Santa Barbara. I look forward to meeting my professional neighbors.

Meet Millennium Medal Winner Charlie Radaz

    F.C. (Charlie) Radaz earned his BSEE degree in 1956 from Lamar State College of Technology (now Lamar University) Beaumont, Texas.  Throughout his professional career, he worked in aerospace systems design,development, test and evaluation, and operational applications.  Charlie served as a flight test engineer with General Dynamics on the B-58 aircraft and associated missile systems. He also held various engineering, business and program management positions with Lockheed Martin on Titan/Atlas missile/space boosters, special programs, spacecraft, and ballistic missile development. Charlie retired in February 2000 after over 40 years in the aerospace field.

    While in college, Charlie joined and was active in the American Institute of Electrical Engineers (AIEE) and the Institute of Radio Engineers (IRE) as a student member. Upon graduation, he continued these memberships until the two organizations combined to form the IEEE.  Charlie has served as Chairman of the Vandenberg Section, Chairman of the AES Chapter and Member-at-Large of the Los Angeles Council IEEE.  Charlie states: “I am proud to be a Life Member of IEEE and pleased  with IEEE’s increasing membership internationally. Our ideas and recommendations from West Coast members have been utilized over the years by IEEE to better serve all members more effectively. I am very satisfied with the creation of the Central Coast Section and confident that our 900 plus IEEE members will be much better served with the unity this new section brings!”

IEEE Monthly Meetings at Cal Poly
The following speakers are scheduled for Central Coast Section meetings through December 2000; more details on the November and December talks will appear in the Fall newsletter:

October 3, 2000:  Kip Haggerty, Ph.D., P.E. on “Practical Applications of Systems Theory.”

November 7, 2000:  Ron Alers of EMAT Ultrasonics Inc.

December 5, 2000:  John Lindsey, marine meteorologist.

If you are interested in speaking at a Central Coast section meeting 
please contact Marty Kaliski at:
(805) 756-2781

Meetings are held the first Tuesday of each month from 7-8 p.m. in Engineering East Faculty Office Building 20, Room 206 at Cal Poly unless otherwise specified. Refreshments are available around 6:30 p.m. Meeting information will be announced via e-mail. Please notify Carol Erickson at if you are not receiving these announcements and  you would like to.

Publishing Information

IEEE Central Coast News is published quarterly by the Central Coast Section of the Los Angeles Council, The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc. in San Luis Obispo, California. Inquiries, comments and submissions may be e-mailed to Carol Erickson at or mailed to the address below. Circulation: 1017

IEEE Central Coast Section
c/o Martin Kaliski, Section Chair
EE Department
Cal Poly State University
San Luis Obispo, CA 93407