Sunday, June 8, 2014

Upcoming Membership Meeting: Innovation in Systems Engineering

Meeting Information
Speaker: Amanda Foo
Date: June 9, 2014
Time: 5:30pm to 8:00pm
Location: Room 109, Carnegie Mellon University, Silicon Valley Campus (CMU), Moffett Field, CA

A look at two distinct areas: virtual reality and modular designs which both promote change in the System Engineering paradigm. Google Glass and other 3D enhancements help us harness the benefits of Model Based Engineering and simplify complex system designs while potentially aiding us with product assurance and quality issues. When looking at impacts on System Architecture, modular phone designs like ARA project start to scratch the surface of the possibilities of predisposed systems planned for innovation and interchangeability.

Speaker Bio
Amanda Foo received a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from UC Berkeley in 2004 then began working at Lockheed Martin. Through the years, she has been a lead on Developmental Soft Tooling consoles, Principal Engineer on batteries and electronic packages, and Test Lead on Centrifuge tests.

Currently, she is the Solid Boost Motor Propulsion Manager for Fleet Ballistic Missiles Program. Over the past two years, she has pursued certifications as an Agile Scrum Master and Agile Product Owner. Additionally, she has involved herself in startup technologies including Google Glass Explorer Program and 3D Printing motor mockups.

 Ms. Foo is the current Program Director (2014) and Board Member of INCOSE San Francisco Bay Area Chapter.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

President's Message

As I look back over the past year and a half, I want to thank Dr. Martin Griss of Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) for his sponsorship of our chapter.  While there are many factors that have contributed to our chapters improved attendance and engagement of members, the facilities offered by CMU and Dr. Griss' presentation in July of last year stand out.  I also want to recognize the staff at CMU, in particular Stacy Marshall who provided assistance with planning and scheduling the meeting rooms.  As a sign of the changing and challenging economy, CMU is increasing enrollment in evening classes and will no longer able to offer our chapter the use of their facilities.  Our last meeting at CMU will be June 9, 2014 and I hope you can attend not only for the topic but to extend our thanks for their hospitality.

Looking forward, we are searching for a new venue for the monthly chapter meetings.  The search area is south peninsula for a facility that can accommodate audio/visual presentations for 30-40 members and has open internet access and telecommunication so that we can continue to master INCOSE’s GlobalMeet service to conduct meetings for members who are unable to attend in person.  The chapter is flexible on what weekday evening the meeting is held.  It would also be ideal for the use of the facility to be free.  If you know of a facility, the board of directors welcomes your support.  

The chapter's mission is to advance the process and practice of systems engineering.  To that end, the Program Committee chaired by Amanda Foo has been and will continue to find people to present related topics at our monthly meetings.  The committee welcomes membership input on what is of interest, as well as feedback on the presentations; in order to make the meetings engaging and interesting.

Through the Transformation Caucus championed by Scott Workinger, the membership can volunteer  to become directly involved in identifying issues with current practice of systems engineering that need to be addressed and in developing concepts for addressing these issues.  He has managed to engage a diverse and talented pool of individuals with which members can collaborate in contributing to projects.  In addition, he has gotten the attention of the past and current President of INCOSE and other distinguished individuals which offers contributors opportunity for recognition.

Another goal of the chapter is to develop the profession of Systems Engineering.  The Membership Committee chaired by Dean White is welcoming new members.  As president, I intend to pursue getting my SEP certification and I encourage you to, as well.  The chapter has offered tutorials on SEP certification preparation in the past and there are resources online.  Let me know if you are interested in a one weekend day tutorial and we'll start planning.  Keep in mind that the May 2015 certification will be based on version 4 of the SE Handbook.

If there are other subjects of interest to you please post a comment here on our blog for Cassi Janakos, Communications Committee Chair to share with the board and we will explore how to create the learning opportunity. 

By Rollie Olson
Rollie Olson's Bio

INCOSE SFBAC Wins INCOSE Silver Circle Award

Cal Poly Pomona Student Division Kick Off

On April 22, 2014 Dave Mason, INCOSE Assistant Director of Student Division, attended the California Poly Technical University, Pomona (CPP) the kickoff meeting of the newly formed student division. 

The kick off included presentations by Dr. Saeideh Fallah Fini, Assistant Professor at CPP and CPP Student Division Advisor; Mr. Stephen Guine, Vice President INCOSE LA Chapter; Mr. David Mason, Assistant Director INCOSE Student Division, and a variety of CPP INCOSE Officers presenting their involvement and upcoming guest speakers. The meeting was attended by multiple CPP professors and department chairs and more than 85 students in a variety of educational programs. 

The discussion focused on the value propositions the student division of INCOSE offered to the students and covered future opportunities for the student chapter. Dr. Fallah-Fini provided her perspective on the student division and the future programs. 

Mr. Mason presented not only the value of INCOSE membership but also shared an example of projects where SE was utilized as seen in the attached photograph.

More information can be found at: 

By David Mason, CSEP
INCOSE Assistant Student Division Director
David Mason's Bio

Energy-Water Nexus

On May 12, 2014 Scott Workinger led a panel discussion on ‘Complexity and the Energy-Water Nexus’, implications from a Systems Engineering and Regional Water Policy.

The panel discussion was held at the Colorado School of Mines’ Arthur Lakes Library in the Butcher Community Room under the auspices of the Front Range Chapter of INCOSE.

The moderators were:
Dr. William Good (INCOSE Colorado Front Range Chapter President)
Dr. Scott Workinger (INCOSE Complex Systems Team Lead)
Neil Snyder (Director of SE and Program Integration, NREL)
Dr. Tzahi Cath (Professor Aqwatec, Director, Colorado School of Mines)
Dr. Ron Saga (VP Energy & Environment, SCU Research Foundation)
Dr. David Olson (Professor Emeritus, Colorado School of Mines)

The discussion brought to light the synergies between the limited resources of energy and water, how each are currently being used, and how each are in demand across several domains. The discussions raised an awareness of these limited resources and the implications to the sustainment of human life. What is at the root of the problem, how are politics, social cultures, living standards, and the technology being used to deliver ‘quality consumable water’ to consumers universally set at an affordable cost.  Questions raised during the panel discussion included; what can SE do to address this wicked problem, or is the solution based on thinking beyond standard SE processes, into a transformational thinking approach?

The results from this panel have ignited not only debates on attempting to ‘address’ the problem but on an implementation to apply a selected solution on a pilot program.  As the Front Range Chapter moves forward addressing this complex issue, the Systems Engineering Transformation Caucus supports their efforts.  Initially, the caucus is contributing to a paper for an upcoming conference that discusses the nature of the energy and water policy issues and why the development of effective policy in this area constitutes a "wicked problem." 

By Scott Workinger, Ph.D.
INCOSE SFBAC Past-President