May 23, 2007

What's New @ IEEE

The May 2007 editions kicks off a snazzy new renovated version of the What's New newsletters. A couple of interesting items from the latest ones.

From the Libraries edition:

New Members Join IEEE Library Advisory Council

Four new representatives have joined the IEEE Library Advisory Council. They include: Jose Octavio Alonso Gamboa, Biblioteca Universitaria; David Alsmeyer, British Telecom Library; John Dupuis, York University; and Gerald Steeman, NASA Langley. The IEEE Library Advisory Council brings together international corporate, academic, and government librarians who consult with IEEE to help develop products and policies. For more information, visit here

E-Books Face Failure as Popular Alternative to Print Texts

Electronic books are fated to fail, according to an article from ComputerWorld that examines the feasibility of technology companies putting major e-books on the market in the hopes of attracting the public away from buying print books. A number of disadvantages are cited for e-books, including the high cost of hardware, the lack of discounts for books in electronic form, and the tactile sensations that real books produce in readers. Read more

As you can see from the first item, I've joined the IEEE Library Advisory Council starting this year. I'm greatly looking forward to working with my IEEE colleagues and fellow librarians from literally around the world to help make the CS community a little easier to navigate. We had our first virtual meeting last week and I'm looking forward to our next face-to-face meeting in the fall.

From the Students edition:
Computer Conference Targets Opportunities for Women

Carnegie Mellon University will host a first-of-its-kind conference focusing on computer science research opportunities for undergraduate women in October, featuring a keynote address by IBM researcher Frances Allen, the first woman to receive the nation's top computer science honor, the A.M. Turing Award. Declines in U.S. enrollments in computer science programs, particularly among women, underline the necessity of the conference, organizers say, since computer science is increasingly critical to driving discoveries in a wide variety of fields. At the conference, "OurCS" (Opportunities for Undergraduate Research in Computer Science) participants will learn about research by working in teams guided by scientists from academia and industry, and will have opportunities to present talks on their own research. According to the university, the conference will also feature female graduate students in computer science who will discuss their experiences in graduate school. Read more

Lifelong Learning Critical to Every Engineer's Career

Lifelong learning is critical to every engineer's career, IEEE-USA President John Meredith says in a Point of View column for Electronic Design magazine. "Whether you're a recent college graduate, in the middle of your career, or even counting the months until retirement, you must pursue an aggressive plan to stay on top of current technologies." He recommends that young engineers seek challenging assignments because of their learning potential. Read the column

Online Gaming: Where Dictatorships are a Good Thing

Wealth and property acquired in online games are only stable when players convert them to real-world assets, according to science fiction writer and technologist Cory Doctorow. Games like World of Warcraft and Second Life are absolute dictatorships, but trying to introduce democracy might spoil the fun, says Doctrow. Ownership of assets created or earned in the virtual world are wholly contingent upon the whims of the companies controlling the games, Doctorow says, but an online democracy, the rules of which would stabilize virtual wealth, would only be fun for the rulemakers. Much of the fun in virtual world derives from artificial scarcity, according to Doctorow when he says that the economics of online games are “basically the same economics of the music industry, but applied to every field of human endeavor in the entire (virtual) world.” Read more


Anonymous said...

Hi John,
Congrats on making the IEEE Library Advisory Council!


Anonymous said...

Thank you for the nice post.

John Dupuis said...

Thanks and you're welcome. I'm looking forward to meeting a bunch of new colleagues and contributing to the profession.