Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Professional Certificate from MIT

Hello Everyone,

As professionals, we are always looking for opportunities to update our skills and acquire new ones. MIT is offering an exciting opportunity to keep us abreast in the field and earn a Professional Certificate. The track consists of 4 courses. You can take individual classes if a course interests you.
For your convenience, I have included the link below. Registration starts on June 1. The courses start in the fall,
Happy studying everyone.


International Science and Engineering Fair 2016

International Science and Engineering Fair 2016

It is enough to restore anyone’s faith in the future: 1600 high school students from over 60 countries around the world demonstrating their ingenuity and insights in a wide variety of engineering and research projects.  Two members of the SF Bay Area Chapter of INCOSE, Dorothy McKinney and Shazad Contractor, served on the 2016 team that INCOSE sent to the International Science and Engineering Fair to review projects and award a prize to the project which best exemplified the application of systems engineering.

INCOSE has awarded a $1500 prize for the best systems engineering project at the ISEF for the past 9 years, as well as awarding Honorable Mention certificates to additional students.  This year, a second place award of $500 was also made, funded by our SFBAC judges.  The two winners were:

·         Alex Cristian Tacescu of Fresno, CA won first place for his Project Maverick: An Omni-Directional Robotic Mobility System.  Alex’s mobile platform can move its standing or sitting passenger in any direction (literally 360 degrees), directed by a 6-axis 3D controller, which provides simple and intuitive control.  The drive system uses 4 wheels and 8 motors. Each wheel module has 2 independently-controlled motors – one for steering and one for driving – to provide maximum maneuverability.  The system also has an infrared collision detection/prevention system and autopilot capability which allows the user to navigate through narrow hallways and doorways with no problems.  The system design is modular, and feasibility of mass production was a cornerstone of the design.

·         Megan Guinn O’Briant of Arligton, VA won second place for her project Power of Touch: Challenges in Designing Haptic Sensing and Feedback for Neural Controlled Bionic/Prosthetic Hand.  Her inspiration was her best friend, who was born missing one hand.  She designed not one but a family of plug-and-play prosthetic hands; the user can plug in the one needed for the task h=at hand, choosing between a light hand which is comfortable to wear for long periods, and a heavier one needed when heavy lifting and a strong grip is essential.  These prosthetic hands include haptic (touch) feedback, so the user can literally feel what the hand is touching.

Honorable Mention awards went to:

·         Jalicia Azzalyna Desiree Smalley of Lorain Ohio for Sleep Tight, a project which developed a device to detect nocturnal hypoglycemia (which can be fatal to diabetics).  In her testing, one patient actually experienced a life-threatening incident, and the device enabled the patient’s care-giver to detect the problem quickly enough to rush the patient to the hospital, where the patient’s life was saved.  The testing of the device also demonstrated that care-givers’ sleep improved dramatically (since they did not have to remain alert to the patient’s status throughout the night).
      Simone Braunstein of New York, NY for A Novel Haptic Actuator for Robotic Surgery: Utilizing Soft Robotic Pneumatic Networks, a Closed Loop Control System, and an Electro-Pneumatic Control Board to Accurately Restore an Operator’s Sense of Touch.  This invention adds the power of touch feedback to the kind of robotic surgery devices currently in wide use.
      Alexander Frederick Wul of Skaneateles, NY for CastMinder: Embedded Smart Sensors and Companion Software to Detect the Onset of Conditions Associated with Cast and Splint Complications and to Promote Patient Healing in Orthopedic Casts and Splints.  This system literally speeds bone growth for healing, as well as providing pain-decreasing treatment and sensors for conditions (such as infection) that would require a doctor to remove a patient’s cast.
      Samuel Ferguson of El Cajon, CA for The Other Side of Me: An Arduino Based Game for Bilateral Integration in Autism Spectrum Disorder.  This project provides a “therapist on a box” – literally a box with game-like materials a child can interact with, connected to a computer gaming-like system, which provides the same kind of feedback therapy that a trained therapist provides to autistic children to help them integrate the operation of the two sides of their brain (the lack of bilateral integration is a major problem caused by autism).
      Syamantak Payra of Friendswood, TX for Brace Yourself: A Novel Electronically Aided Leg Orthosis.  This leg brace provides active assist, so the devoce can literally bend the knee for the user in cases where the user’s miscle control is lacking.  Bill Mackey, an INCOSE Fellow and one of the judges, wanted to order one of these for his own use on the spot!
      Matthew Hileman of Colorado Springs CO for Reflected Laser Communications for Small Satellites.  This project developed a way for very small satellites to use reflection and modulation so they can use laser communication without having to have any laser equipment on board the satellite.  Matthew won the INCOSE first prize two years ago.
      Drew Prevost of Huntsville, AL for Development and Systems Integration of a Modular Power Factor Corrected Pre-regulator, LiFePO4 Battery Charger, DC Motor Controller, and Battery Monitoring System.  Drew’s system provides a very scalable solution to battery monitoring, power factor correction charging and motor control.  To understand the impact of his innovation, consider that tesla currently offers only a few different battery sizes for their electric cards, and each size requires a different power control design.  Drew’s design can be used across a very wide range of battery packs with no change.  He actually took an electric-powered pickup truck (which had been developed in a prior year by another science fair project participant0, and modified it to use his design, demonstration the practical application.
      Russell W. L udwigsen of Albuquerque, NM for Passive Reduction of Involuntary Arm/Hand Tremors, Phase III.  This project developed a light, low-cost brace which a patient with Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, traumatic brain injuries, or even an adverse reaction to a medication can use to reduce tremors when performing fine motor tasks, such as writing.
·         Vidur Tenali Prasad of Kettering, OH for Traffic Camera Dangerous Driver Detection (TCD3): Contextually Aware Heuristic Feature & OFA Density-Based Computer Vision with Movement Machine Learning Analysis of Live Streaming Tra c Camera Footage to Identify Anomalous & Dangerous Driving.  This project uses computer analysis of video images to detect unsafe driving.  Cameras were installed near intersections which had high accident rates.  The system has actually been used by his local police department, and has been effective in alerting police officers to drunk drivers before any accident occurred.
      Muhammad Shahir Rahman of Portland, OR for A Smart Burn and Spill Proof “SAFE” Microwave that Spares the Salad: Novel Application of Levenberg-Marquardt Algorithms in Bayesian Analysis for Real-Time Numerical Thermodynamic Modeling.  This project added sensors to a microwave oven to allow the oven to adjust the heating to the specific foods inside.  The ability to heat meat and potatoes while leaving a green salad on the same plate cool was a dramatic demonstration of the value of this approach.
      Rahul Ramesh of Chandler, AZ for A Novel Algorithm for Detection of Plasmodium falciparum Parasites in Digitized Blood Samples (Malaria).  This project developed an algorithm to automate the identification of malaria in blood samples, which otherwise requires a highly trained technician (and such trained technicians are not available in many under-developed countries).  This technique is also applicable to other blood-borne pathogens.
      Eshika Saxena of Bellevue, WA for A Portable Optoelectronic Molecular Identification and Spectral Analysis System for Assessing the Quality, Safety, and Composition of Food and Pharmaceuticals Using Machine Learning.  This project developed a spectrometer that can be used with a smartphone to detect adulteration in medicine and foods.  It can potentially be extended to do non-invasive medical monitoring, such as blood sugar levels or internal injury detection for hemoglobin.  This student was inspired to develop this on a trip to visit family in India during which she got sick from contaminated food, and was advised to avoid medicine because of possible adulteration.

These students, and dozens of others from around the world,

Chair, INCOSE Fellows

Friday, May 6, 2016

[INCOSE San Francisco] INCOSE SFBAC May 09 Meeting - Primate, Projects, and Prussians.

Why does work sometimes seem like such hard work?

Are we racing ahead or to the bottom?  Why is one man's methodology another man's madness?  Are our prejudices impairing our productivity?  This Monday, Andrew Webster will present Primate, Projects, and Prussians, which proposes pragmatic principals to get to the heart of it all.  This will be a fun and enlightening presentation, and we hope to see you there!

Monday Evening Monthly Program - May 9
5:30 - 6:00 PM   Social half hour and Networking
6:00 - 7:00 PM   Presentation

Place:  Rinconada Library, Embarcadero Room
            1213 Newell Rd.
            Palo Alto, CA 94303
            Map to Library

Virtual Attendance Details:

Join as GUEST
Meeting Details Web Address:  https://incose.pgimeet.com/GlobalmeetSeven
Access Number:  1-719-234-7872
Guest Passcode:  529 771 4673

Speaker:  Andrew Webster
Over the last 18 years, Andrew Webster has worked in software product development in the UK, Australia, Alabama, and California.  He's seen large and small projects both fail and succeed.  Prior to 2004, most of the work he was involved in followed either a heavyweight process or no process at all – and typically failed.  In 2004, he was introduced to Agile thinking.  This taught him to pay close attention to aligning how people work with how their work works.  This helped him to have huge success in Australia with projects in banking, heavy engineering procurement and construction, environmental engineering, and government.  In 2009, the love of a good woman brought him to America, initially to Alabama, where his wife-to-be was studying neurobiology.  There, he became a Certified Scrum Master with renowned Scrum trainers and coaches Brian Rabon and Tom Mellor.  He immediately applied his experience to the most difficult, resistant, and awkward transformation of his career: BBVA Compass's struggling data warehouse.  His work improved the team's effectiveness by an order of magnitude within 3 years.  His wife graduated and they moved to California in early 2013, where Andrew joined the V.Me team at Visa as a Senior Program Manager and Senior Scrum Master.  Recruited by Solutions IQ later that year, he proudly joined their team as an Agile Coach as part of the enormous Agile transformation program at PayPal, one of the largest transformation efforts on the planet.  Now well versed in the history of work and the variety of ways to approach the many disciplines within software engineering, Andrew coaches and trains for PayPal in San Jose, London, and Berlin, and is pursuing his own work as a speaker and budding author here in the Bay Area.

INCOSE SFBAC is on LinkedIn.
Join at http://www.linkedin.com/e/vgh/2909560/

Read INCOSE SFBAC's current and past newsletters at http://incosesanfranciscobayarea.blogspot.com/
INCOSE is a not-for-profit membership organization founded to develop and disseminate the interdisciplinary principles and practices that enable the realization of successful systems. The SFBAC presents thought-provoking monthly programs for its members and their guests.
Learn more about SFBAC at:     http://www.oldsite.incose.org/sfbac/SFBACwelcome.html.  Learn more about INCOSE at:   http://www.incose.org/

Thank you,
Robin Reil