WMU News

WMU hosts international technology conference in Chicago

June 2, 2000

CHICAGO -- When members of the world's leading technical organization meet in Chicago next week to discuss the future of information technology, the event will have a pronounced Western Michigan University tone to it.

The 1st IEEE Electro/Information Technology Conference will be held June 8-11 at the Chicago Marriott O'Hare and will attract more than 100 world leaders in the development of wireless communication technology and telemedicine. WMU officials are organizing and will host the new event, which is an official function of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. IEEE, with more than 300,000 members, is the largest professional society in the world.

Dr. S. Hossein Mousavinezhad, chairperson of WMU's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, is the general chairperson for the conference and has been working for more than two years to make the event a reality. Dr. Daniel M. Litynski, dean of WMU's College of Engineering and Applied Sciences, is vice chairperson of the conference, and WMU President Elson S. Floyd will be leading one of the planned sessions. Several other WMU engineering faculty members also have been playing key roles in the organization of the conference.

"This is a very fluid, fast-changing field," says Mousavinezhad of the conference topic. "To some extent, this was a very risky and challenging conference to organize because of that fact. But this is such a hot area, we decided to claim it and get this conference established."

He says response to the conference has been strong and more than 80 papers will be delivered at the conference by technical experts who will travel from such places as Germany, the United Kingdom, Singapore and the Philippines. Representatives from U.S. universities will include researchers from Georgia Tech, the Illinois Institute of Technology, Penn State and the University of Michigan.

With a focus on wireless applications of technology and digital signal processing, topics addressed at the conference will include telemedicine, data transfer and wireless communication as well as quality of service, intelligence systems and ethical issues in information technology.

Keynote speakers will include: Martha Sloan of Michigan Technological University, who is an IEEE past president; Mark J.T. Smith, of Georgia Tech, who is an IEEE Fellow; and Lotfi A. Zadeh, a professor in the Computer Science Division of the Graduate School at the University of California-Berkeley.

WMU's Floyd will lead a session devoted to the future of information technology in higher educationand will act as moderator to a panel that will include representatives of industry, Wayne State University, the National Institutes of Health and WMU.

Among other WMU faculty members helping to organize the conference are: Dr. Johnson A. Asumadu, assistant professor; Dr. Dean R. Johnson, associate professor; and Dr. John W. Gesink, associate professor; all in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Cheri Lay of WMU's Conferences and Seminars is the conference coordinator.

Sponsors of the event are IEEE Region 4, MathSoft, Microsoft, National Instruments, RGBSI, IEEE West Michigan and WMU's College of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

Mousavinezhad says that after this year, the conference WMU launches will continue as a staple of IEEE's professional offerings, with next year's event already scheduled. It will be held in Rochester, Mich., June 6-9, 2001.

For more information, visit the conference Web site at <www.ewh.ieee.org/reg/4/eit2000.htm>.

Media contact: Cheryl Roland, 616 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

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