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Southern California’s Orange County ComSoc Chapter Knows How
to Draw Large Audiences
By Khoi Nguyen, Director of North America Region
Global Communications Newsletter
IEEE Communications Magazine
One of my goals as Director of the North America Region is
to promote information exchanges between ComSoc chapters so that we all can
learn from each other’s experience. The purpose of this article is twofold.
One, it highlights the success formula of one chapter although ii was founded
only recently. it is my hope that other chapters will benefit Irom the exponence
at this Southern Calilutnia chapter and achieve success on their own. Two,
it gives recognition and pays tribute to the dedicated volunteers who are
behind their chapter’s success. Without dedicated volunteers such as those
depicted in this article, no chapters can survive, let alone succeed. I
hope other chapters in the North America Region, after reading this article,
will come forward and share their own success stories, so that we all become
successful in building strong ComSoc chapters all over the globe. My sincere
thanks to Dwight Borses for his contribution to drafting this article.
How do you put together top-notch technical programs month
after month that consistently draw large audiences? The Orange County (OC),
California, Chapter of the Communications Society achieved this result by
fostering synergy across computing, signal processing, and communications
disciplines. Even with a very small core of dedicated volunteers, the OC ComSoc
Chapter regularly draws 50 to 70 engineers to their monthly meetings by working
closely with their sister organizations, the Computer and Signal Processing
The ComSoc OC Section’s newest chapter. was founded on 25 October
1995 through petition by the current Chair. With its first meeting in November
1995, held jointly with the Computer Society, on the topic of CDMA Wireless
Communications (presented by QualComrn VP Richard Kerr). the ComSoc Chapter
demonstrated it could bolster technical meeting attendance and fill the geographic
void between the Los Angeles and the San Diego ComSoc chapters.
The present OC ComSoc Excom consists of five officers: Chair
Dwight Borses, Vice-Chair Pierre Perra, Secretary Maung Nyeu, Treasurer Albin
Gess, and Programs/Publicity Chair Katherine Baum. Chapter Chair Dwight Borses
is a Member of the Technical Staff in National Semiconductor’s Field Applications
Engineering. He is the founder of the IEEE OC ComSoc Chapter and Interim
Chair of the IEEE OC Signal Processing Society. Vice-Chair Pierre Perra is
a Senior Member of the IEEE and current chair of the OC Section. He, too,
has been an ComSoc officer since its founding. Treasurer Albin Gess is a
Senior Member of the IEEF, a Fellow of the Institute for the Advancement
of Engineering, and Treasurer of the OC Computer Society. Secretary Maung
Nyeu has been an active contributor to both the Computer and Communications
Society Executive Committees for several years. Maung works as a Senior Engineer
for Standard Microsystems. Programs/Publicity Chair Katherine Baum is also
OC Computer Society Chair. Currently she is a Technical Writer at Unisys
The OC ComSoc received good support from the engineering community.
Rockwell Corporation in Newport Beach has provided Quent Cassen, who presented
two programs on Standards and Status of Personal Communications Systems, and
Michael Henderson, who presented 56K Modems last year and Splitterless DSL
this year. PairGain’s Chief Scientist, George Zimmerman, presented Delivering
High-Speed Access with xDSL, ARINC’s William Stewart presented Employing
Advanced Wireless Tcchnology for Management of Mobile and Remote Resources.
San Diego based Qualcomm Corporation has provided speakers for several meetings,
including the inaugural meeting. Audrey Viterbi presented Turbo Codes in
a meeting jointly held with the Signal Processing Society, which proved to
be a very popular session. Other meetings with signal processing and communications
focus have been led by Communications Engineering Services’ President Bernard
Sklar, on th use of the Viterbi Equalizer to Mitigate the Effects of Fading
in GSM Communications. Berkeley Design Technology’s Jeff Then on Current
Directions for DSP Processors, and Aerospace Corporations Chris Silva on
Nonlinear Techniques with application to communications.
OC ComSoc chapter meetings were well attended. Chapter Chair
Dwight Borses’ talks on TCP/IP, Cable Systems as Networks and the recent tutorial
"CDMA: Cellular, PCS, and LEO Communications" attracted almost 80 people.
But by far the most heavily attended meeting was on “ISDN — An Engineer’s
Primer,” presented by Hollander Associates President Gary Hollander, which
drew an audience of 105. In addition, ComSoc presentations are posted on the
Web. The OC ComSoc page can be accessed at http://www.comsoc.org/comsig/.
Information on current technical meetings. and details of past
meetings can be found at http://www.comsoc.org/comsig/
or http://www.ieee-occs.org. The
OC ComSoc receives a complimentary subscription to the whole line of Cornmunications
Society publications which are available on loan to its members.
The OC ComSoc currently has 408 members, compared to 214 of
the Signal Processing, and 1053 of the Computer Society. By providing technical
topics of interest across these disciplines, and by combining strength with
its sister organizations, the OC ComSoc has brought new levels of service
to its enginecring community. With a broader base of volunteers, the organization
can do even more in the years to come.