December Newsletter

IEEE-MSN Newsletter


Madison Section

Newsletters are archived online at

Vol. 20, No. 11 Serving
IEEE Members of South Central Wisconsin
December 2017
  • Upcoming Events

    • December
      ECN Meeting: “Bring Your Hi-Tech Toys”

        High Tech Toys

      • Entrepreneurs and Consultants Network Meeting
      • Professional Meeting
      • Date:  Thursday, December 7th at 11:30 AM
      • Fee:
        • Location: 
              2100 Winnebago Street
              Madison,  WI
      • Snacks and Drinks are available at Sector67
      • Please Register at the IEEE-Madison 
        event page
      • Non-member guests are always welcome.

        Talk: The Holiday Season is just around the corner.
        What Hi-Tech consumer items have impressed you? Bring your
        favorite one and be prepared to discuss it’s technical merits.
        Also, be prepared to give give a brief introduction to what
        you do (“Elevator Speech”).  This is your opportunity to
        discuss your company, or your consulting expertise while
        having fun.  Note: Tom Kaminski will bring the latest
        Turtlebot 3 robot and his Daydream VR goggles.

    • December
      Section Meeting: “Election/Volunteer Appreciation Social Event”

        Bring Your Toys

      • Social/Election Meeting
      • Date:  Tuesday, December 19th at 6:00 PM until 8:00 PM
      • Note:  Evening Meeting on Tuesday
      • Fee:
        Free Appetizers, Cash Bar
        • Location: 
              Brasserie V
              1925 Monroe Street
              Madison,  WI53711
      • Election of 2018 Officers (See Newsletter Below)
      • Please Register at the IEEE-Madison 
        event page
      • Non-member guests are always welcome.

        Event: The meting will be a social event to honor the
        IEEE-Madison Volunteers who have helped make this past year
        for all IEEE Section members.  It will be preceded by a
        short election for the officers for 2018.  The event will
        feature free appetizers with a cash bar available for all.
        Volunteers will also get free drinks. Plan to attend for a bit
        of fun and camaraderie and to thank the volunteers who help to
        make the section work for you. Bring a guest and have fun!

    • January
      LMAG Meeting: “On Stock Trading Algorithm Research ..”

        Control Algorithms

      • Talk: On Stock Trading Algorithm Research
                 Based on Adaptive
        Feedback Control Loops
      • Speaker: Professor B. Ross Barmish, UW-Madison ECE
      • Date:  Wednesday, January 3rd at 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
      • Fee: 
        Meal Donation (Suggested): Members: $5, Guests:
        $10, Students: Free
        • Location: 
              Sequoya Library
              4340 Tokay Blvd.
              Madison,  WI53711
      • Please Register at the IEEE-Madison 
        event page
      • Non-member guests are always welcome.

        Talk: This talk will provide an overview of my
        research on the development of new stock-trading algorithms.
        The most salient feature of the work is that no model of any
        sort is used for the underlying stock-price dynamics. Instead,
        the size of the time-varying stock position is determined
        using some simple ideas involving the adaptive power of
        feedback control loops. This approach is said to be “reactive”
        rather than predictive and amounts to assigning high priority
        to sound money management. Our emphasis in this talk will be
        more on the application than the theory. To this end, after
        explaining the key ideas driving this work, I will describe a
        number of software implementations which are used for
        back-testing simulations using historical data with attention
        paid to practical considerations such as transaction costs,
        leverage and margin.

        Speaker: B. Ross Barmish is Professor of Electrical and
        Computer Engineering at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
        Prior to joining UW in 1984, he held faculty positions at Yale
        University and the University of Rochester. From 2001-2003, he
        served as Chair of the EECS Department at Case Western Reserve
        while holding the Nord endowed professorship. He received his
        Bachelor’s degree in EE from McGill University and the M.S.
        and Ph.D. degrees, also in EE, from Cornell University.
        Throughout his career, he has served the IEEE Control Systems
        Society in many capacities and has been a consultant for a
        number of companies. Professor Barmish is the author of the
        textbook “New Tools for Robustness of Linear Systems” and is a
        Fellow of both the IEEE and IFAC for his contributions to
        robust control. He received two Best Journal Publication
        awards, each covering  a three-year period, from the
        International Federation of Automatic Control and has given a
        number of keynotes and plenary lectures at major conferences.
        In 2013, he received the IEEE Control Systems Society Bode
        Prize. While his earlier work concentrated on robustness of
        dynamical systems, his current university research involves
        building a bridge between feedback control theory and trading
        in complex nancial markets. In addition to this academic
        pursuit, in his capacity as CEO of Robust Trading Solutions,
        his work involves transition of stock-trading algorithms from
        theory to practice and government sponsored research on the
        NASDAQ Limit Order Book.

    • Section News

      • Section

      • Vote in Person: IEEE
        Madison officers are up for re-election and because of problems
        with the email voting process, we are forced to have a vote at the
        last Section meeting of the year on Tuesday, December 19th. 
        After the vote, the meeting will be open as a social event,
        honoring the volunteers who have worked for the semester. Please
        show up for the meeting and vote!  Current slate of officers
        on the ballot (this will be opened for additional nominations
        prior to the vote) is: Chair: Tom Kaminski, Vice Chair: Nate Toth,
        Treasurer: Charles Gervasi, Secretary: Steve Schultheis, with
        Clark Johnson, Dennis Bahr, San Rotter, and Craig Heilman running
        for Member at Large.

      • Meeting

        November Life Member
        Affiliate Group Meeting
        :  (Review by Charles
        Kime) The November LMAG Meeting featured a presentation,
        Back to the Future: Emulating Classic Audio with 21st
        Century Technology, by Steve Schultheis, the Secretary of
        the IEEE Madison Section, a musician, producer and audio
        engineer. A brief history of instruments including the,
        piano, Hammond Organ and Moog synthesizer, served as an
        introduction illustrating mechanical, electromechanical, and
        electronic instruments. Today these instruments from the
        20th Century have significant disadvantages for the
        purchaser compared to virtual music alternatives and in many
        cases are no longer manufactured as new products. Although
        audible perception of music by the listener is highly
        subjective, simply distinguishing between recordings of
        physical instruments compared to software emulations is
        impossible, even for many musicians. With this background,
        the remainder of the presentation covered the many steps of
        musical production from composition to distribution dealing
        with both 20th century traditional instruments and 21st
        century virtual instruments that use only hardware and
        software. Examples included a review of microphone
        technology and software emulations for different microphone
        types. Similarly, emulations provide the capability for
        virtual instruments such as the grand piano and the Hammond
        Organ. A major challenge for these latter virtual
        instruments is the potential for significant time delay,
        i.e. latency, arising from both hardware and software. Total
        delays can easily exceed 20ms, whereby it becomes impossible
        for humans to maintain synchronization with recordings and
        each other. One approach to dealing with latency is the use
        of two computers with a synchronizing clock sent from the
        first to the second computer. The mastering step for CDs is
        especially complicated because 24-bit master recordings must
        often be dithered and resampled, reducing audio quality. In
        contrast, streaming audio is not subject to these
        limitations, and offers the potential for increased audio
        quality over CDs as emerging standards are implemented. As a
        final highlight, Steve offered a brief piano performance to
        an enthusiastic audience using a very inexpensive virtual
        music technology to demonstrate high quality sound
        achievable at low cost. A printed copy of Steve’s
        Presentation is available here
        and a short take of Steve playing is available at
        Google Docs here.

        Dr. Jim Smith Talk 

        November Joint EMB/UW-Madison Student Chapter:
        This was a joint UW-Madison IEEE Student Branch and
        IEEE-Madison Engineers in Medicine and Biology Chapter
        meeting. Dennis Bahr presented his up-to-date research on
        how to utilize the Raspberry Pi Zero, a “System on a Chip”
        selling for $10 in single quantities as a “bare metal”
        system. Dennis explained a bit about the architecture of the
        system and how to utilize the Graphics and Floating Point
        processors without the benefit of an operating system. 
        He then explained how to use the GNU cross-development tools
        to build an application in “C” and generate a downloadable
        image in “bin-hex” format.  His goal is to use this
        powerful processor in a low-power, battery-operated blood
        pressure system with a useful time of about 10 hours between
        was able to give the audience good tips on building
        digital filters for real-time signal processing by
        using Matlab to design the filters.
        also explained how to build a simple real-time operating
        system to support the digital signal processing applications
        required for the product. Dennis is willing to share the
        code he has developed with the students.
        Joint UW-Student Branch

    • Upcoming Meetings

      December ECN Meeting:
      This is an opportunity to pitch your consulting/entrepreneur
      skills while having fun discussing your favorite current
      technology. You might just get a few ideas for the upcoming
      “giving” season.  Bring your own Brown Bag lunch and your
      elevator pitch.

      December Section Meeting/Social Event: Please attend this
      event and vote for the officers that will represent the Madison
      Section for the next year.  Vote first then socialize and
      enjoy appetizers on the Madison Section.  Cash bar for
      general membership and guests.  Note:  Tuesday
      Evening time
      . Please do register so we can order the proper
      amount of food.

      January Life Member Affiliate Group: Professor Barmish will
      be discussing how control theory can be used to manage stock
      portfolios.  Kick off the new year with a bang and hopefully
      some insight on how to manage your investments.

    • Regular Meetings

      • Section Meetings

        The third Thursday of January through May, and September through
        December is reserved for a meeting to provide recent research,
        developments, trends and/or innovations in one of our membership’s
        technical areas.

      • Life Member
        Affinity Group

        The first Thursday of January, March, May, September and November
        is reserved for a meeting on a topic selected from a broad range
        including such areas as technology, science, history, culture and

      • IEEE-MSN-ECN
        Networking Meetings

        • Purpose: Presentations, Discussions, networking
        • Date: First Thursday of even-numbered months
        • Time: 11:45 AM to 1:00 PM
        • Location: Sector67, 2100 Winnebago Street (East Side of
        • Parking: Park in lot or on Winnebago Street.
        • Process: Members are encouraged to make introductions,
          describe endeavors, and make request for: contacts in target
          companies, needs, resources.
    • Membership Upgrades

    • Those interested in upgrading their IEEE membership level should send
      their resumes or other information showing five years of significant
      performance in an IEEE-designated field to Charles J Gervasi via email
      at cj(at) Madison Section Board will attempt to find
      Senior IEEE members knowledgeable in the applicant’s area of practice
      who may be able to provide references. You are invited to attend the
      informal networking portion of the monthly Section meetings (starting
      at 11:30am) to meet the Section Board members and discuss intentions.

    • About IEEE

      • DrLipoThe
        Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers or IEEE (read
        Eye-Triple-E) is an international non-profit, professional
        organization dedicated to advancing technology innovation and
        excellence for the betterment of humanity. IEEE and its members
        inspire a global community through IEEE’s highly cited publications,
        conferences, technology standards, and professional and educational
        activities. It has the most members of any technical professional
        organization in the world, with more than 300,000 members in around
        150 countries. The IEEE consists of 38 societies, organized around
        specialized technical fields, with more than 300 local organizations
        that hold regular meetings. Discover what IEEE Member Discounts can
        offer you. The Member Discounts portfolio consists of insurance
        products and programs for the home, office and travel, all at
        excellent group rates and reduced pricing. Visit IEEE Member
        Discounts to see what’s available in your location and enjoy the
        savings. For more information, please visit: IEEE.ORG.

    • Madison IEEE Section

      The IEEE-Madison Section of the IEEE is a section in Region 4 of the
      IEEE-USA organized to serve IEEE members in the Madison, WI area
      with over 600 members. The 2017 Officers and Board Members are Tom
      Kaminski – Chair, Scott Olsen – Vice Chair, Charles Gervasi –
      Treasurer, Steve Schultheis – Secretary, Nate Toth – Webmaster, Tom
      Kaminski – ECN Chair, Dennis Bahr – Engineering in Medicine and
      Biology Chapter Chair,  Chuck Kime – Life Member Affinity Group
      Chair, Charles Cowie – Life Member Affinity Group Vice Chair, David
      Jensen – Life Member Affinity Group Secretary, 
      Members at Large: Clark Johnson, Craig Heilman, Dennis Bahr,
      Sandy Rotter.

    • Job Openings

      Check out
      for electrical engineering jobs in Madison and the surrounding
      region. This site is maintained as a service for electrical
      engineers. Jobs are displayed starting with the most recent postings
      first. You can filter results by location and job type. If you are
      hiring an electrical engineer in our area, for full-time or contract
      work, you can post the job in the Contact
      on the site.

    • Sponsored Content

      Streamlined Wireless Testing


    • Contact Us

      The IEEE-Madison Section has a number of volunteer positions open
      if you are interested in helping out. Please direct any questions
      or comments to Tom Kaminski (Newsletter Editor) via email to

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