"Engineering's Simple Problems That Never Go Away"
Kim Fowler, the Junior Past President of the IEEE Instrumentation and Measurement Society for 2012 and 2013, will address some simple problems within engineering that never seem to go away. These are "low-tech" problems that plague many projects; they include incorrect installation, broken cables, and poor power conversion and distribution. Almost always these are problems that have been solved for more than 100 years, but they continually reappear in everyday projects.
Kim will explore examples of these simple problems and how they afflict our projects. He will also explain some of the reasons for the continuance of these problems. The first and most important factor is to recognize that these are human problems. The second factor is that we ignore the big picture perspective of how systems, subsystems, and people interact. The third factor is that we trivialize both solved problems and problems in other disciplines, which leads us to overlook them to our detriment. Kim will wrap up his talk with suggestions for overcoming these simple, "low-tech" problems.
Kim Fowler has spent 30 years in the design, development, and project management of medical, military, and satellite equipment. His interest is in the rigorous development of diverse, mission-critical, embedded systems.
Kim co-founded Stimsoft, a medical products company, in 1998 and sold it in 2003. He also has worked for JHU/APL and Ixthos, a company now part of Curtiss-Wright Embedded Computing that built digital signal processing boards.
Kim has been President of the IEEE I&M society for 2010-2011, an adjunct professor for the Johns Hopkins University Engineering Professional Program, and lectures internationally on systems engineering and developing real-time embedded products.
Kim has published widely, written seven textbooks and is working on an eighth. He has 18 patents - granted, pending, or disclosed. Kim currently consults in technical product development for both commercial companies and government agencies.
The Instrumentation and Measurement Administrative Committee