President’s Message

Remembering the Past – Acting Now- Planning for the Future
Ruth Dyer

During this past summer, my spouse and I had the distinct opportunity to spend time visiting both the Museo Galileo in Florence, Italy, and the Galileo’s World Exhibits at the University of Oklahoma in the USA. Needless to say, we were able to view only a portion of the entire set of exhibits in each location, but in both cases we came away with a renewed appreciation of the genius, perseverance, and inventiveness of a very long line of scientists and engineers, many
of whom were Italian, in the field of instrumentation and measurement (I&M). It was fascinating to view the craftsmanship and elegance of the huge number of instruments on display at the Museo Galileo from Giovanni Amici, Giuseppe Campani, Egnazio Danti, Felice Fontana, Galileo Galilei, Ferdinando II dé Medici, Edward Nairne, Leopoldo Nobili, Antonio Santucci, Evangelista Torricelli, Lorenzo della Volpaia, Alessandro Volta, and many others.

One of the most impressive aspects of the displays was the recognition of the impact of the many connections among art, astronomy, engineering, math, music, and science on the various versions of instruments that were developed, the measurements made with those instruments, and the interpretation of the measurements by the scientists and engineers who made them. The solid mathematical and engineering foundations developed by those in the Renaissance period have allowed subsequent generations of followers to continue to build upon them, and we owe much of the work being implemented today to those important foundations.

I think there is an important parallel between the work of scientists and engineers and the construction of the resplendent Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore in Florence, Italyor Il Duomo di Firenze (the Duomo of Florence), as it is ordinarily called. The Duomo was constructed over a 142-year period, and the large majority of those who helped build the cathedral never saw it finished. However, they faithfully and conscientiously contributed their individual parts—some evident, some hidden—to this majestic structure. Similarly, as scientists
and engineers, we often provide contributions through our work to a particular specialty in science or engineering and are not always able to see the final result or impact of our work after it has been combined with the collective contributions of others over the years. I will not be so bold as to say we are building a cathedral together. However, I think it is important to recognize that we are each contributing to the I&M field in ways that not only build upon the foundations and work of those who have gone before us, but also will provide the basis for contributions of those who will follow us.

One of the most important benefits the I&M Society provides to its members is the opportunity to easily learn more about the work of others through our publications of the IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement and the IEEE I&M Magazine. In addition, you can participate in our conferences and workshops, be involved in one of our Technical Committees, or engage in a local I&M Society Chapter. Access to information about all of these opportunities is on the IMS website, at http://ieee-ims.org/. We also have recently implemented a Video Tutorial project, and the first set of videos is now available on both our website, at http://ieee-ims.org/evts/tutorials, and on the IMS Section of IEEE TV, at https://ieeetv.ieee.org/channels/ ims. We hope you will consider submitting a proposal for your own video tutorial. Please visit the IMS website, actively engage with us, and share what you have learned.

Another great opportunity to share and learn about the most current advances in the I&M field is our upcoming 2017 International Instrumentation and Measurement Technology Conference (I2MTC), which will be held May 22–25, 2017 in Torino (Turin), Italy. Information about the  conference is available at http://2017.imtc.ieee-ims.org/. I encourage you to consider submitting a paper and attending the conference, and it would be the perfect occasion to take a side trip to Florence and visit the Museo Galileo. I hope to see you in Torino this May!

Ruth A. Dyer

 

ATI Industrial Automation

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Virginia Panel Corporation

Robotdalen

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Pickering Interfaces Inc.

RADX Technologies, Inc.

Zurich Instruments AG

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