This page contains information regarding IEEE History Center's special projects.
The IEEE Electromagnetic Compatibility Society (EMC-S) celebrated its fiftieth anniversary in 2007. Dan Hoolihan headed the EMC-S anniversary committee. The IEEE History Center worked with the Society to research, document, and publicize the history of the Society and the history of its technical field. Ten oral-history interviews, of pioneers in electromagnetic compatibility, were conducted. These interviews were transcribed, edited, and made available on the IEEE Global History Network. Using these interviews, as well as published articles and unpublished materials, staff of the History Center wrote the text of anniversary booklet. Center staff also prepared a small exhibit on the history of the Society and the field; displayed at the IEEE conference center in New Jersey and at the Society's annual meeting in 2007.
The IEEE Oceanic Engineering Society and the IEEE History Center collaborated on a historical project to support the OE Society's 25th Anniversary celebrations leading up to 2008. The IEEE History Center provided a historical article which will be a sequel to Ivan Coggeshall's 1985 article in the IEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering, to bring the history of the OE society and its technologies up to the present.
The History Center is conducting a pilot program of a series of three lectures at a local high school on the importance of science and technology in history. These 9th grade students are bring presented an audio-visually rich presentation in PowerPoint™ format, materials which emphasize the role of technology and engineering at different places in global history that the students cover over the course of a year.
The first lecture - on the role of the magnetic compass and other navigational technologies - was presented in November 2005 by Center Post Doc John Vardalas to great acclaim. Subsequent lectures (in March and May 2006) on the industrial revolution and on the telecommunications revolution of the late 19th century were given by Center Staff Director Dr. Mike Geselowitz and Center Senior Research Historian Dr. Rik Nebeker. In addition to the PowerPoint™ presentations, the Center is leaving behind instructional materials such as glossaries and further references, including tie-ins to the IEEE Global History Network. If the pilot program is successful, it may become possible to create additional lectures, and to distribute them to a broader audience.
The International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP) sponsors frequent events in computing history. "Perspectives on Soviet and Russian Computing," held 3-7 July 2006 in Petrozavodsk, Russia, was the first time such an event happened. This historic conference had two phases. The first phase consisted of a discussion on the history of Soviet and Russian computing. The second phase of the conference focused on the future of computing in the region as seen by computing pioneers and by industry and commercial innovators.
Computing in the Soviet Union had faced significant challenges such as rapidly evolving technologies, globalization, changing demographics, and different opportunities associated with schooling and higher education. This conference investigated the transitions that had taken place in the Soviet Union between 1950 and 1990, particularly before the pervasive use of the internet had taken place. Information and communication technology played a significant role not only within the Soviet Union, but also throughout the rest of the world. The conference attempts to view introspectively the current evolving transitions of ICT in the region and explore how these changes might affect the region in the future.
The IEEE History Center was a technical co-sponsor of the Petrozavodsk conference, and Dr. Rik Nebeker, Senior Research Historian presented a paper entitled "The importance of oral history in researching the development of computers". In addition, IFIP held two other conferences on computing history, "History of Computing in Education" [Santiago, Chile, 20-25 August 2006], and "Pioneering Software in the 1960s in the Netherlands, Germany, and Belgium" [Amsterdam, Netherlands, 2-4 November 2006]. For more information on these conferences and other Computing History Events, go to Comphist.org.
On the occasion of the 150th Anniversary of Nikola Tesla's birth and proclamation of 2006 as The Year of Nikola Tesla in Croatia, the Croatian Academy of Engineering is preparing Scientific and Professional Meeting "The Life and Work of Nikola Tesla" took place on June 28-29, 2006 in Zagreb, Croatia. The Meeting was organized under auspices of the Croatian Parliament and in cooperation with the Ministry of Science, Education and Sports of the Republic of Croatia, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing, University of Zagreb, Energy Institute Hrvoje Pozar, Ericsson Nikola Tesla, Inc., Koncar Group, Inc., Hrvatska elekroprivreda, Inc., Technical Museum Zagreb and Croatian Association of Engineers.