Volume 3, Number 4

Welcome to RASeNews, the IEEE RAS email newsletter. RASeNews is limited to short announcements of RAS Conferences, RAS society 'action items', breaking news, and time-sensitive issues. Send comments, queries and news items to r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

 

1. Upcoming RAS Conferences

  • 13-15 August RO-MAN 2005: 14th IEEE Int'l Workshop on Robot and Human Interactive Communication. Nashville TN USA.
  • 29 August-01 Sept MMAR2005: 11th Int'l Conf. Methods and Models in Automation and Robotics. Miedzyzdroje, Poland.
  • 11-14 September ISARC05: Int'l Symposium on Automation and Robotics in Construction. Ferrara Italy.

2. Imminent Deadlines

  • MEMS2006 Istanbul, Turkey January 22-26. Submissions Due: AUGUST 16.
  • ICRA2006, Orlando FL, USA. May 15-19. Submission Due: September 16. NOTE: Major changes have been made in the submissions process this year. See www.ieee2006.org BEFORE preparing your submission. The submissions website is now open.

3. RAS Adcom Nominations; Due August 15!

See www.ieee.org/ras for details! If you are interested in serving on AdCom, contact Paolo Dario, Nominations Chair, dario@mail-arts.sssup.it. Candidates included on the ballot for vote by the RAS membership include those chosen by the Nominations Committee and any RAS member (Associate level or above) who submits a petition with 25 or more qualified signatures (IEEE member numbers are required).

4. RAS needs you!

Our Call for Volunteers is still going on. See www.ieee.org/ras for ways you can participate in the activities of RAS and send us an email with your interests (conferences, technical committees, student activities,etc.), your technical interests and a copy of your resume.

5. Call for Nominations

Chair, IEEE Robotics and Automation Student Activities Committee. All applications are due by September 20, 2005.

6. ICRA 2006 Special Paper Category

Undergraduate/Masters Student Education Papers: Experiments, tools, and ideas related to improving education and training of students in R&A.

7. RIA Announces New Robotics Research Equipment Award (Applications Due August 15)

Universities and technical institutions conducting robotics research are now eligible to apply for the new Robotics Research Equipment Award sponsored by Robotic Industries Association (RIA). One or more universities or technical institutions, selected by a panel of RIA members, will receive new and/or used robots plus accessory equipment for 24 months in order to conduct research on topics of interest to the RIA membership. For more information, contact Jeffrey Burnstein, burnstein@robotic or call 734/994-6088.

8. IEEE Transactions on Robotics Now Accepting Multi-Media Submissions

The IEEE Transactions on Robotics now also considers multimedia material (typically, videos) accompanying the submission of a paper. The Transactions on Automation Science and Engineering and Robotics and Automation Magazine will begin accepting multi-media files in the near future. See www.ieee.org/t-ro for submission details.

9. George Bekey to Receive 2006 IEEE R&A Technical Field Award

Professor George Bekey has been named the third recipient of the IEEE R&A Technical Field Award for contributions to research and education in biologically inspired and intelligent robots. Bekey, who is emeritus professor of computer science and electrical engineering at the University of Southern California, was a founding member of the Robotics and Automation Society, founding editor-in-chief of its Transactions, society president in 1996-98, and is a current member of the administrative committee. The IEEE TFA award is the latest in a long string of the most prestigious awards offered in research and academe which Bekey has received, including Fellow of the IEEE, Member of the National Academy of Engineering, and Fellow of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science.

10. Calendar/Calls for Papers

http://www.ncsu.edu/IEEE-RAS/RAS/RAScalendar.html. All IEEE Meetings can be found at www.ieee.org/conferencesearch.

 

 

 

 

Volume 4, Number 4

Welcome to RASeNews, the IEEE RAS email newsletter. RASeNews is limited to short announcements of RAS Conferences, RAS society 'action items', breaking news, and time-sensitive issues. Send comments, queries and news items to r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

 

1. ICRA07 Deadline September15-www.icra07.org

To ensure that there is time for thorough review, the submissions deadline will be strictly enforced. Contributions are considered in the following categories: Contributed papers (possibly accompanied by short video clips), proposals for Invited Sessions, proposals for Tutorials and Workshops, and Video submissions (a separate self-contained video without a paper). All Contributions must be submitted electronically through PaperPlaza.

2. 3RD IEEE-RAS/IFRR School of Robotics Science—Deadline Extended—RAS Fellowships

August 15 is the extended deadline for applications for the new School of Robotics Science. The School, sponsored by the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society and the International Federation of Robotics Research on the topic of “Haptic Interaction", will take place in Paris, September 25-29, 2006. Initial details, particularly the application procedure, are available at the following URL: http://www.cim.mcgill.ca/~haptic/summerschool/index.html The Robotics and Automation Society will provide $US 20,000 to fund fellowships for RAS student members who attend the School. Awards will be handled through the normal application process detailed on the school web site. Professors Vincent Hayward, McGill University, and John Hollerbach, University of Utah, who are experts in the field of haptics, have been appointed as this year's co-organizers.

3. IEEE T-RO Spec. Issue on on Human Robot Interaction

IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ROBOTICS Special Issue on Human Robot Interaction. Guest Editors: Profs. Cecilia Laschi, Cynthia Breazeal, and Yasushi Nakauchi. Submissions due by September 30, 2006. www.ieee.org/t-ro

4. IEEE T-ASE Spec. Issue on Drug Delivery Automation

Special Issue on Drug Delivery Automation. Submissions Due by 1 January 2007. Guest Editors: Mingiun Zhang, Liwei Lin, Channing Robertson, Chiming Wei, T.C. Yih, Babak Ziaie. www.ieee.org/t-ase.

5. IROS 2006--Make your travel plans!

It’s time to make travel plans and reservations. Most applicants will also need to obtain visas to visit Beijing. The conference is offering several post conference tours for IROS participants. See the IROS webpage www.iros2007.org.

6. Nominations-Petitions for RAS AdCom Candidates

Nominees (including self-nominations) may be recommended to the nomination committee or petition (via a web based petition on the IEEE website) to be included on the ballot. IEEE regulations state that candidates who submit petitions with 97 valid signatures (equal to 2% of the RAS voting membership) will automatically be on the ballot. All candidates with at least 25 valid signatures will be considered by the nominations committee. Candidates may submit a paper petition or a web-based petition. See http://www.ncsu.edu/IEEE-RAS/#petitions for details.

7. RA-M Theme Issue on Walking and Running Biped Robotics

IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine Theme Issue on Walking and Running Biped Robotics. Submissions due by 1st of December 2006. Guest Editors: Eric R. Westervelt and Carlos Canudas-de-Wit.

8. RAS VP-Elect Nominations

At their October 2007 meeting the AdCom will elect vice presidents elect for Finance, Member Activities, Publication Activities, Industrial Activities, Conference Activities, and Technical Activities. Send nominations to Art Sanderson, Nominations Corresponding Co-chair, acs@ecse.rpi.edu.

9. ICRA 2006 Proceedings for Sale

If you were unable to attend ICRA 2006 you may still purchase copies of the ICRA Conference Proceedings DVD. The DVD includes the regular papers, posters, and video proceedings. To order, send a request with a bank check or money order to the ICRA Conference Treasurer for $100.00 per copy. A few copies of the Workshop materials CD are also available for $45.00 each, plus shipping for outside US/Canada. Those outside the United States or Canada must add an additional $20.00 for shipping. We regret that we are unable to accept credit card orders. Send orders with payment to Prof. T.C. Steve Hsia ICRA 2006 Treasurer 3332 Oyster BayAve. Davis CA 95616 USA

10. RAS Ad-Hoc Committee for Robotics Competitions and Challenges

Call For Volunteers! The 1st meeting will be held in Beijing during IROS 2006. The role of robotic competitions of different kinds in attracting interest and enthusiasm to our discipline, and to catalyze its development, is widely acknowledged. Many of our members are active in organizing or participating in such competitions, and RAS is often requested approval, endorsement, or sponsorship of competitions. While there is enthusiasm in many members, RAS has not as yet developed a coherent policy towards competitions, addressing questions such as what criteria should be met by a competition in order for RAS to endorse it, allowing e.g. the use of its logo, and whether RAS could financially support competitions run locally, for instance by IEEE chapters. Another important question is whether RAS should have an official, society-wide competition, perhaps connected to one of its major annual conferences. These questions are multifaceted, as they involve issues related to the multidisciplinary nature of our discipline and the international dimension of our society, the right technical level for competitions and challenges, etc. To study the matter in detail, the RAS Membership Activities (MA) Board has decided to launch an Ad-Hoc Committee on Robotic Competitions and Challenges. If you are interested in participating in the discussion and/or the committee, please send an email to RAS vice president for MA, Antonio Bicchi (bicchi@ing.unipi.it). A first meeting of the Ad-Hoc Committee is planned to be held during IROS'06, October 9-15, in Beijing, tentatively on Thursday, October 12.

11. IEEE Graduate Student Membership Grade

The IEEE has established a new Graduate Student Membership Grade (GSM). Details: *Dues: GSMs pay the same dues as undergraduates *Privileges: GSMs can vote in IEEE and Society elections and may hold offices in Sections, Chapters and Affinity groups. *Conditions: GSM must meet the requirements for regular IEEE membership. *Combined SM and GSM membership is limited to eight years. However the first year as a regular Member has reduced dues.

12. New Category of IEEE Fellow

In 2003, the IEEE Board of Directors made significant changes to the Fellow Nomination Bylaws and instructions to encourage the nomination – and election - of Application Engineer / Practitioners, those whose careers involve the application of technology, to the distinguished level of IEEE Fellow. These changes came into effect for the 2005 Fellow class. The category “Application Engineer / Practitioner” was added as a formal fourth category for IEEE Fellow. The other three – which existed, and are continued – are “Research Engineer / Scientist,” “Technical Leader,” and “Educator.” See www.ieee.org/fellows for details and nomination kits. Nominations are due March 1 2007.

13. IEEE TV

On 15 August, IEEE is launching the Beta release of IEEE.tv, an internet-based broadcasting network that will produce and deliver prerecorded, special-interest programming for engineers and technologists. A collaborative effort of IEEE volunteers, members and staff across the organization, the new service will initially be available only to members only through the myIEEE web portal, (www.ieee.org/myieee). It will expand to provide select content intended for the general public starting in September.

Volume 4, Number 5

Welcome to RASeNews, the IEEE RAS email newsletter. RASeNews is limited to short announcements of RAS Conferences, RAS society 'action items', breaking news, and time-sensitive issues. Send comments, queries and news items to r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

1. Error in RAS AdCom Election Ballot-new ballots to be sent

One of the candidates for RAS Adcom was inadvertently omitted from the ballot which was mailed in October to RAS voting members (higher grade members and graduate students). Because of this error it will be necessary to send out new ballots. Votes made on the faulty ballots will be discarded, so even if you have already voted, please look for the revised ballot and submit your vote again. The revised ballotwill be printed on colored card stock to make it stand out and to avoid confusing the original and revised ballot. The new ballots will be mailed on November 27 and must be returned by Janurary 8, 2007. Results will be announced by January 15, 2007. We apologize for the inconvenience and urge all eligible members to vote. The slate of candidates to serve a three year term beginnin in January 2007 includes: # Asama, Hajime # Chatila, Raja # Dillmann, Ruediger # Fu, Li-Chen # Fukuda, Toshio # Henderson, Thomas # Kumar, Vijay # Laumond, Jean-Paul # Orin, David # Siegwart, Roland # Snyder, Wes # Wang, Michael For the bios and statements of the candidates, see http://www.ieee-ras.org/news

2. New RAS VP Elects

At the October 14, 2005 meeting of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Administrative Committee the following individuals were elected to serve as Vice Presidents-Elect of the Society during 2007. They will begin their terms as Vice President beginning January 1 2008.

  • John Hollerbach, University of Utah, USA: Conference Activities
  • Peter Luh, University of Connecticut, USA: Publications Activities
  • Alicia Casals, Technical University of Catalonia, Spain: Membership Activities
  • Alex Zelinsky, CSIRO, Australia: Industrial Activities
  • Ken Goldberg, University of California-Berkeley, USA (reelected): Technical Activities
  • Ian Walker, Clemson University, USA: Financial Activities

3. RAS Society Awards Nominations Due March 1

The RAS Awards Committee is soliciting nominations for seven IEEE Society Awards Nominations must be submitted to RAS Awards Chair Katsuchi Ikeuchi . by March 1, 2007.

Two new RAS awards were approved by IEEE Technical Activities Board in 2006:

  • IEEE Inaba Technical Award for Innovation Leading to Production.
  • IEEE Invention and Entrepreneurship Award

Nominations are also solicited for the following RAS Society Awards:

  • Pioneer Award
  • Early Government or Industry Career Award
  • Early Academic Career Award
  • Distinguished Service Award
  • Chapter of the Year Award

IEEE Fellow Nominations

IEEE Fellow Nominations must be submitted to the IEEE by March 1, 2007. Information and Nomination kits are online at the IEEE Fellows Page.

If you are considering nominating a friend or colleague for election to Fellow, please contact Awards Committee Corresponding Co-Chair Katsushi Ikeuchi, who can assist you with assembling the materials for the nomination and obtaining the required references.

For more information see 2007AwardsCall.

4. George Nicholas Saridis: November 17, 1931- October 29, 2006

George N. Saridis, Founding President of the IEEE-Robotics and Automation Council/Society, died October 29 in his home in Athens, Greece. From 1981 until his retirement, Prof. Saridis was Professor of Electrical, Computer, and Systems Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He was also Director of the Robotics and Automations Lab at RPI. Prior to coming to RPI, he taught for many years at Purdue University. He received the Dipomal in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens in 1955 and the MSEE and Ph.D from Purdue University in 1963 and 1965 respectively. Prof. Saridis was a Life Fellow of the IEEE and a Member of the Academy of Athens as well as being a member of the ASME, SPIE, and SME. He authored or co-authored six books and approximately 400 technical papers. Prof. Saridis continued to participate in RAS society activities as long as he was physically able to do so, regularly attending the society's administrative committee meetings and actively joining the debate on issues under discussion.. Many of his students, (who called him "Chief" at Purdue and "Boss" at RPI) and his 'grand-students' have followed his example to become leaders in both RAS and the wider technical community of robotics and automation. Prof. Saridis is survived by his wife Youla.

5. 2007 RAS IEEE Fellows

Congratulations to the following members of the Robotics and Automation Society have been elected to Fellow of the IEEE. The IEEE Grade of Fellow is conferred by the Board of Directors upon a person with an extraordinary record of accomplishments in any of the IEEE fields of interest. A brief citation is issued to new Fellows describing their accomplishments and the total number selected in any one year does not exceed one-tenth percent of the total voting Institute membership.

People elevated to Fellow through RAS (i.e., the nominees requested that RAS evaluate their nominations):

  • Nikolaos Papanikolopoulos
  • Alessandro De Luca
  • Zeungnam Bien Seth Hutchinson
  • Michael Wang
  • Jean-Paul Laumond
  • Charles Thorpe
  • Shigeki Sugano

RAS members elevated to Fellow through other societies

  • Jun Wang, CIS
  • Toshiharu Sugie, Control Society
  • Mo-Yuen Chow, IE
  • Ning Xi, ITS
  • Xiaohong Guan, PE
  • Mu-Der Jeng, SMC
  • C. Philip Chen, SMC

Nominations for 2008 Fellows are due March 1, 2007 and must be submitted online via the IEEE Fellows website.

6. Requicha to Head IEEE T-Nanotechnology

Ari Requicha will become Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Nanotechnology effective January 1, 2007. "My most important and immediate action will be to establish a new type of manuscript, called a Research Letter, which will be limited to 3 pages and published very rapidly, typically within 4-6 weeks of submission," Requicha said. " As nanotechnlogy is evolving swiftly, timely publication is essential to ensure that authors will submit their best work to the journal." Requicha is the Gordon Marshall Professor of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering at the University of Southern California, where he also directs the Laboratory for Molecular Robotics (LMR).

Requicha is a longtime member of the Robotics and Automation Society and is a Co-Chair of the RAS Technical Committee on Micro and Nano Robotics. He is a Life Fellow of the IEEE and was cited by Thomson Institution of Scientific Information (ISI) as "one of the worldwide 282 Computer Scientists listed in the ISI Web of Knowledge as highly cited researchers for the decades 1980-1999."

T-Nanotechnology, established in 2002, ranked number 7 in citations among electrical engineering journals, according to the 2004 Journal of Citation Reports, published by the Thomson ISI.. The IEEE Nanotechnology Council sponsors the Transactions. The Council comprises 18 IEEE Societies, including the Robotics and Automation Society, which was one of the Council's founding societies.

 

Volume 5, Number 1

Welcome to RASeNews, the IEEE RAS email newsletter. RASeNews is limited to short announcements of RAS Conferences, RAS society 'action items', breaking news, and time-sensitive issues. Send comments, queries and news items to r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation
April 10-14 2007, Rome Italy

ICRA ONLINE REGISTRATION IS UP AND RUNNING www.icra07.org

Online conference registration is now open. Advance registration fees apply until March 10, 2007.

ONLINE RESERVATIONS FOR ROME ACCOMMODATIONS ONLINE

A number of rooms in hotels of different categories have been reserved in advance for ICRA'07. These rooms must be reserved through the conference secretariat. If you wish to use this service, please proceed right away. The ICRA'07 website provides information on a variety of accommodations ranging from Bed and Breakfasts to 5 star hotels.

FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR RAS STUDENTS AND AUTHORS

RAS is providing a number of travel awards to selected RAS students as well as some financial support to assist authors of papers to be presented at ICRA'07. More information and the application forms are available on the conference web site http://www.icra07.org. The deadline for applications is FEBRUARY 15.

PLENARY SPEAKERS

We are proud to announce the three outstanding ICRA '07 plenary speakers:
1. Wednesday, April 11, Alain Berthoz, College de France, Paris, France "Simplifying Principles for Perception, Action, Locomotion and Navigation. A Common Problem for Brains and Robots "
2. Thursday, April 12, Ken Goldberg, University of California, Berkeley, USA "Putting the Turing into Manufacturing: Automation Science and Recent Developments in Feeding and Fixturing "
3. Friday, April 13, Katsushi Ikeuchi, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan "Programming-by-demonstration: From Assembly-plan Through DancingHumanoid "

ICRA SPECIAL EVENTS

GOLD LUNCH FOR YOUNG PROFESSIONALS - Wednesday, April 11

The RAS Technical Activities Board invites ALL Graduates Of the Last Decade (GOLD) ICRA'07 participants to meet for lunch. Free box lunches will be provided for the first 200! See the ICRAwebsite for details.

RAS OPEN FORUM - Wednesday, April 11

If you have any questions about what the Robotics and Automation Society does, or why we do things the way they do, this is the opportunity to meet the officers who will answer your questions and listen to your suggestions.

WOMEN IN R&A LUNCH -Thursday, April 12

Attendees at ICRA'07 are invited to an informal RAS "Birds of a Feather" lunch, at which robotics and automation researchers will lead a discussion of the status, retention, and recruitment of women in this field. See http://www.nada.kth.se/~danik/woman.html for more information.

IEEE/IFR INDUSTRY FORUM ON INVENTION AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN ROBOTICS AND
AUTOMATION - Tuesday, April 10

In the first part of the forum outstanding entrepreneurs will present their stories of the genesis of a successful innovative product in robotics and
automation from its very inception to the final state of commercialization. The second part of the forum is a workshop on the "Robotics and Automation Industry of the Future: Perspectives from Commercial, Research and Policy Sectors. In a series of six talks from distinguished speakers from industry, academia and governmental organizations the future of robotics and automation will be presented and discussed from the different perspectives of industry, research and policy makers.

We look forward to seeing you in Roma!

1. ICRA Online Registration is up and running!

Online conference registration is now open. Advance registration fees apply until March 10, 2007. http:www.icra07.org

2. Online Reservations for Rome Accommodations Online

A number of rooms in hotels of different categories have been reserved in advance for ICRA'07. These rooms must be reserved through the conference secretariat. If you wish to use this service, please proceed right away. The ICRA'07 website provides information on a variety of accommodations ranging from Bed and Breakfasts to 5 star hotels.

3. Financial Support for Authors at ICRA 2007

RAS is providing a number of travel awards to selected RAS students as well as some financial support to assist authors of papers to be presented at ICRA'07. More information and the application forms are available on the conference web site http://www.icra07.org. The deadline for applications is FEBRUARY 15

4. Plenary Speakers at ICRA 2007

We are proud to announce the three outstanding ICRA '07 plenary speakers:
1. Wednesday, April 11, Alain Berthoz, College de France, Paris, France "Simplifying Principles for Perception, Action, Locomotion and Navigation. A Common Problem for Brains and Robots "
2. Thursday, April 12, Ken Goldberg, University of California, Berkeley, USA "Putting the Turing into Manufacturing: Automation Science and Recent Developments in Feeding and Fixturing "
3. Friday, April 13, Katsushi Ikeuchi, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan "Programming-by-demonstration: From Assembly-plan Through DancingHumanoid "

5. RAS Gold Lunch for Young Professionals-Wed Apr 11 2007

The RAS Technical Activities Board invites ALL Graduates Of the Last Decade (GOLD) ICRA'07 participants to meet for lunch. Free box lunches will be provided for the first 200! See the ICRAwebsite for details.

6. RAS Open Forum- Wednesday, April 11

If you have any questions about what the Robotics and Automation Society does, or why we do things the way they do, this is the opportunity to meet the officers who will answer your questions and listen to your suggestions.

7. Women in R&A Lunch- Thursday April 12

Attendees at ICRA'07 are invited to an informal RAS "Birds of a Feather" lunch, at which robotics and automation researchers will lead a discussion of the status, retention, and recruitment of women in this field. See http://www.nada.kth.se/~danik/woman.html for more information.

8. IEEE/IFR Industry Forum on IERA*

* Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Robotics and Automation

In the first part of the forum outstanding entrepreneurs will present their stories of the genesis of a successful innovative product in robotics and
automation from its very inception to the final state of commercialization. The second part of the forum is a workshop on the "Robotics and Automation Industry of the Future: Perspectives from Commercial, Research and Policy Sectors. In a series of six talks from distinguished speakers from industry, academia and governmental organizations the future of robotics and automation will be presented and discussed from the different perspectives of industry, research and policy makers.

The Award for Invention and Entrepreneurship in Robotics and Entrepreneurship will also be presented.

 

Volume 5, Number 2

Welcome to RASeNews, the IEEE RAS email newsletter. RASeNews is limited to short announcements of RAS Conferences, RAS society 'action items', breaking news, and time-sensitive issues. Send comments, queries and news items to r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

 

1. RAS AdCom Election Results

Congratulations to the following RAS members who have been elected by the membership to serve on the Robotics and Automation Society Administrative Committee.


At-Large Members

  • Toshi Fukuda, Nagoya University, Japan
  • Roland Siegwart, Swiss Fed. Institute of Technology-Zurich, Switzerland


Geographical Region 1 (Americas)

  • Vijay Kumar, University of Pennsylvania, USA


Geographical Region 2 (Europe, Middle East, Africa)

  • Ruediger Dillmann, Karlsruhe University, Germany
  • Jean-Paul Laumond, LAAS-CNRS, France


Geographical Region 3 (Asia, Australia, Oceania)

  • Hajime Asama, University of Tokyo, Japan

Volume 5, Number 3

Welcome to RASeNews, the IEEE RAS email newsletter. RASeNews is limited to short announcements of RAS Conferences, RAS society 'action items', breaking news, and time-sensitive issues. Send comments, queries and news items to r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

 

1. RAS WIKI is up and running!

The new RAS Webpage now has its own WIKI, which already contains news of employment and research oppportunities, BoF groups meeting in Rome, at ICRA2007, workshops, tutorials, special sessions and other events at ICRA, and information about an Open Source Grand Challenge. The RAS WIKI is open to the public to view, but only registered RAS members may post. If you have not already registered on the new webpage, send your name and IEEE number to the RAS Administrator, who will register you and send you login information. Please note: This is DIFFERENT from the login info for the IEEE webpage. The RAS WIKI has been developed as a joint effort of the RAS Electronic Products and Services Board (Stefano Stramigioli, chair) and the Student Activities Board (Surya Singh) with the assistance of our invaluable web designer, Olaf van Zandwijk. They will all be at ICRA and welcome your suggestions. DEFINITIONS (for those who are neither Gen X, Gen Y or the Millennium Generation) WIKI: "The simplest online database that could possibly work. Wiki is a piece of server software that allows users to freely create and edit Web page content using any Web browser.

2. One Month Til ICRA07 Roma

Preparation of ICRA'07 is proceeding smoothly. As of 10 March (deadline for advance registration), more than 1200 have registered, for a record in the ICRA history. A special panel event on Thursday 12 April from 17:20 to 18:30 has been finalized. It will focus on the "Future of Robot Operating Systems" and will be co-chaired by Ken Goldberg and Bruno Siciliano. The panelists will be Tandy Trower from Microsoft Research, who will present the new Robotics Studio, to be followed by Herman Bruyninckx (KU Leuven and new EURON Coordinator), Gian Paolo Gerio (Comau Robotics), Hirohisa Hirukawa (AIST) and Paolo Pirjanian (Evolution), who will spark the discussion about the issues/ implications of the new product, and solicit Q&A from the audience. Besides the three plenary talks, and the full three-day parallel technical sessions, the program is completed by two days of interesting workshops and tutorials, to which 350 people have already registered. 25 exhibitors will display the latest technologies and publications in the field. All details about the program, workshops and tutorials, social events, last-minute accommodation and local information that can be found on the web site http://www.icra07.org. Attendees are reminded of the cool "My Program" feature available in Paperplaza, which helps planning one's schedule. Another new feature of ICRA is the Activities Wiki http://wiki.ieee-ras.org/icra2007:index where you can find additional information posted by RAS Members.

3. Web Survey on the Use of Robots Capable of Lethal Force in Warfare

The Mobile Robot Lab at the Georgia Institute of Technology is undertaking an opinion survey on the Use of Robots Capable of Lethal Force in Warfare. This important research project, under a grant from the Army Research Office, seeks to find out how acceptable the use of such military robots is to people like you*. People of all nationalities are invited to participate. This is an on-line survey that can be completed at your leisure, from your home or workplace, and won't require any interaction with others. The survey is privacy-protected and voluntary, and any personal information you may provide will be used for research purposes only. Your participation is very important to us, because this is the only way we can obtain your opinions on this matter and your input will be greatly If you are interested in participating, and would like your voice to be heard, please turn to the following website, which contains further directions: www.cc.gatech.edu/projects/robotsurvey/opinion.html. Alternatively, you can contact the survey administrators for further information at robotsurvey@cc.gatech.edu. * You must to be least 18 years old to participate.

4. RAS Online Member Directory

The RAS webpage http://www.ieee-ras.org now has an online member directory. It currently contains about 300 officers, committee chairs and other active volunteers, but will soon include all RAS members. RAS members can login to obtain contact information for their colleagues, edit their own personal profiles and set privacy levels as they desire. The RAS login and password may be also used to enter postings on the RAS wiki. IMPORTANT: The RAS website uses a different login and password from the IEEE web account. Members will be notified when the directory is complete, but if you wish to register now, Contact the Society Administrator r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

5. The RAS webpage http://www.ieee-ras.org now has an online member directory.

VP Technical Activities Ken Goldberg encourages RAS Technical Committees and other interest group to set up informal 'Birds of a Feather (BoF) meetings. Use the RAS WIKI (http://www.wiki.ieee-ras.org) to help organize and publicize your group.

6. RAS 5 Year Review

The final report from the IEEE-Technical Activities Board (TAB) Society Review Committee on RAS has been completed and approved, with a number of favorable reports about RAS. Each IEEE Society, Council, and Publication undergoes a review every five years which covers every aspect of the entity's organization and operations, both financial and technical. The RAS publications received their reports from the IEEE TAB earlier this year and also received many compliments.

7. RAS Open Forum

All RAS members, especially those who would have questions or suggestion about how the society operates are encouraged to attend the Open Forum at ICRA on Wednesday, April 11, at 18:20 (after sessions) in Aula Minor, The Angelicum.

8. Conference Software Questionnaire

The Steering Committee for Technical Programs (SCTP) is circulating an on-line questionnaire to authors, reviewers, and program committee members for ICRA 2007 regarding their experiences in using the conference software system Paperplaza. A similar questionnaire was circulated to participants of IROS 2006 for the START V2 conference software system. The goal is to recommend a consistent choice of conference software for every ICRA, in view of the services offered by the software, satisfaction by users, and cost considerations.

9. Conference Imminent Deadlines

-IROS (29 Oct-2 Nov, San Diego CA USA) March 29 -ICMA (5 Aug-8 Aug, Harbin China) April 1 -IEEE CASE (22 Sep -- 25 Sep, Scottsdale AZ) April 30 -MMAR (27-30 August, Szcezecin, Poland) March 19 -ICAR (21-24 August, Jeju, Korea) March 18

10. RAM Special Issue Call

We are pleased to invite you to submit an article to the upcoming Special Issue of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine on the topic of the Design, Control, and Applications of Real-World Multi-Robot Systems. Our intent is to use this Special Issue to highlight experimental results of innovative work in the field of multi-robot systems. We welcome articles from any application area and across the domains of land, sea, air, and space. A full copy of the Call for Papers can be found on the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society web site at: http://www.ieee-ras.org/. The deadline for submissions is June 1, 2007. Guest editors:Chris Kitts, Santa Clara University, ckitts@scu.edu Magnus Egerstedt, Georgia Institute of Technology, magnus@ece.gatech.edu

Volume 5, Number 4

Welcome to RASeNews, the IEEE RAS email newsletter. RASeNews is limited to short announcements of RAS Conferences, RAS society 'action items', breaking news, and time-sensitive issues. Send comments, queries and news items to r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

 

1. ICRA Travel grants for female graduate students

Last Minute ICRA Travel Grants On April 3 the ICRA committee was informed that Microsoft Research will provide $5000 for travel grants for female grad students to attend ICRA and the Women's Lunch/BOF. Microsoft Research wants the awards to go to students that would not otherwise be able to attend. For more information, contact Nancy Amato, amato @ cs.tamu.edu.

2. RAS Open Forum at ICRA 2007

At their October 2006 meeting, the AdCom voted to have the Open Forum be comprised of reports from the major committees and boards that would normally be given to the AdCom at their formal meeting after ICRA. This will give members a chance to see in detail what the AdCom does and provide inputs to the AdCom regarding decisions and initiatives which the Adcom will consider on Sunday, April 15. (All RAS members who wish to attend the AdCom meeting are welcome.).

This year the Open Forum will feature the President's report, reports on our Publications, the Conference Editorial Board and the Electronic Products and Services Board. The Forum will be held beginning at 6:20 p.m. (18:20, immediately after the last technical session) on Wednesday, April 11 in Angelicum A, Aula Minor. Please plan to attend.

3. Petition for IEEE-RAS AdCom Election

The slate of candidates for the RAS Administrative Committee is normally chosen by the AdCom nominations committee, currently chaired by Art Sanderson (sandea@rpi.edu), Toshio Fukuda (fukuda @ mein.nagoya-u.ac.jp) and Kazuo Tanie (ktanie@cc.tmit.ac.jp).

However, a candidate who submits a petition with the signatures of at least 2 percent of RAS voting members (Graduate Student, Members, Affliate, Senior and Fellows) he/she is automatically included on the ballot. Petitions must be received by August 15 to be guaranteed a place on the ballot. To obtain a petition form and more information, contact the RAS Society Administrator (r.g.snyder@ieee.org). Also, according to the RAS Standing Rules, the Nominations Committee will seriously consider any candidate who obtains at least 25 signatures on his/her petition. The nominations committee welcomes nominations, including self nominators.

4. IROS 2007 Submissions Deadline Extended

Due to a number of requests, the Program committee of the Intelligent Robots and Systems Conference has extended the submissions deadline to 9 April. http://www.iros2007.org

IROS 2007, San Diego. 29 Oct- 2 Nov

5. Other Imminent Deadlines

CONFERENCES

PUBLICATIONS

 

Volume 5, Number 5

Welcome to RASeNews, the IEEE RAS email newsletter. RASeNews is limited to short announcements of RAS Conferences, RAS society 'action items', breaking news, and time-sensitive issues. Send comments, queries and news items to r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

 

1. IEEE-RAS New Initiatives--Proposals Due June 1!

May 23, 2007 Less than two weeks to submit RAS New Initiatives proposals !! (2nd CALL) As a result of a new IEEE policy that, for the first time, allows the Robotics and Automation Society to use some of the unspent funds from 2006 in 2007, we are able to consider funding a modest number of initiatives that would benefit society members in general, providing that the initiative can be completed and the funds spent in calendar 2007. Approximately $100,000 in total is available. We hope to be able to fund several initiatives.

Members are invited to submit proposals for initiative to the RAS administrator Rosalyn Snyder r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

In accord with our Business Plan, requests are to be reviewed by one of the following major Boards of the Society, which, except for EPSB, are chaired by their respective vice presidents:

  • Conference Activities Board is Chaired by T.J. Tarn
  • Industrial Activities Board is Chaired by Sukhan Lee
  • Member Activities Board is Chaired by Antonio Bicchi
  • Publications Activities Board is Chaired by Bill Hamel
  • Technical Activities Board is Chaired by Ken Goldberg
  • EPSB is Chaired by Stefano Stramigioli.

The Boards will prioritize the requests and send them to the Financial Activities Board, which will review them and forward them to the AdCom, which will make the ultimate funding decisions.

In order to allow time in 2007 for conduct of the initiatives, proposals must be received by June 1, 2007. We hope to obtain AdCom approval in time for a July 1 start date for successful proposals.

2. Submissions of 2007 New Initiative Proposals

Proposals must be submitted in plain text (no attachments!) and less than 1000 words total. Proposals must include, in the following order:

  • Most relevant RAS Board (Membership, Industry, ...) who will Evaluate
  • Proposed Title of New Initiative
  • List of PIs with contact info
  • Short description of idea and impact on members
  • Short plan for sustainability beyond initial seed funding
  • Total funding requested in US Dollars
  • Sources of matching funds (if any)
  • Proposed use of funds*
  • Proposed timeline for project (funds must be spent in 2007!)
  • Short plan for administration of funds by proposers


*Note that IEEE is a volunteer organization and funding cannot be used to pay members fees or salaries.

All proposals and related questions should be directed to:
Rosalyn Graham Snyder
Administrator
IEEE Robotics and Automation Society
http://www.ieee-ras.org
rgsnyder@nc.rr.com
T +1 919 851 3603< br> F + 1 919 882 9734

3. Evaluation Criteria for RAS New Initiative Proposals

Priorities on which proposals will be preferred for funding will be conducted according to the following criteria:

High priority characteristics:

  • highest priority for those that directly impact members
  • those that seed self-sustaining activities
  • those that impact more members than just a few
  • those with cost sharing
  • those that leverage volunteer efforts
  • those that have high impact to cost ratio
  • those that provide travel or meeting support in a program area
  • programs providing student support
  • workshops in emerging areas
  • potential to increase membership or involvement in RAS activities
  • those that develop RAS activities in emerging regions or technical areas
  • those providing service to the R&A community
  • those that have a strong vision for the future
  • those that clearly identify one of the boards to administer, develop and evaluate the program.

Low priority characteristics:

  • those whose activities are of peripheral interest to society
  • those for funding to individuals
  • those restricted to a geographic region, especially not an emerging region
  • those for funding of technical research
  • those containing extensive funding of staff salaries
  • ong term activities
  • those with low impact to cost ratio
  • those particularly complex to execute

Volume 5, Number 9

Welcome to RASeNews, the IEEE RAS email newsletter. RASeNews is limited to short announcements of RAS Conferences, RAS society 'action items', breaking news, and time-sensitive issues. Send comments, queries and news items to r.g.snyder@ieee.org.

 

1. IEEE 2007 New Initiative Grants

On April 2007 the Society was informed by IEEE that $100,000 of unspent funds could be allocated for unbudgeted new initiatives, providing the funds were spent by December 31, 2007. Despite the short notice, we were able to publish a call for proposals to which received 39 responses. The Vice Presidents, chairs of the relevant committees and the AdCom carefully reviewed the proposals and chose ten which seemed to provide the greatest benefit to society members and could be completed within the constraints of the IEEE financial board.

A Call for Proposals for 2008 Society Initiative Grants (subject to availability of funds) will soon be issued. Proposals for the 2008 Initiative Grants will be due December 31, 2007.

The ten programs funded under the 2007 initiative grants are as follows:

 

A Website for Literature Review Dissemination ($2.9K)

This website will allow researchers (faculty members, students, industry members, others) to upload research reviews they have conducted. These will be uploaded in the form of a table or document that summarizes the literature review. These reviews will be accessible for others to download. Users of the website will be able to see any of the uploaded reviews once they are registered and logged in. The registration and use of the system will be free of charge.
Submitted by: Imad H. Elhajj, American University of Beirut.

Ph.D. Fellowship for Women in Robotics and Automation ($12,500)

This grant will provide a one-semester doctoral fellowship for a female PhD student majoring in robotics or automation. (The original proposal was for a one year proposal, which would not fit the constraints of the funds available this year).

A call for submission was issued via email to all RAS members. 40 application were received by the September 10 deadline.The recipient will be announced shortly.

Submitted by: George Bekey (University of Southern California) and Allison Okamura (Johns Hopkins University)

Teaching Robotics Everywhere: A Repository of Robotics Teaching Materials ($24,900)

This grant will support development of an open repository of robotics course materials similar to MITs Open Course Ware (OCW) initiative (ocw.mit.edu), integrated into the new RAS Web Portal', thus providing much needed educational content to RAS web presence. This repository will contain a suite of robotics materials for teaching all aspects of robotics, ranging from undergraduate introductory course to project courses and graduate courses. Example materials for each course will include syllabi, lecture notes, laboratory specifications, exercises, assessment materials, and reading materials. The web site will be searchable, browsable, and open for downloads. The Web site will be open but moderated for contributions so that anyone can contribute materials.

Submitted by: Daniela Rus and Aaron Dollar, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Paolo Fiorini, University of Verona

ICRA 2008 Robotics Challenge ($8,000) This grant will provide seed funds for the ICRA2008 Robot Challenge to ensure that the initial event is well publicized and well attended and will be positioned to become the premiere yearly showcase of research robotics in the world. It will provide a venue for competition and collaboration, for setting the collective goals of the field, and for influencing funding agencies.

Submitted by: William Smart, Washington University in St. Louis

Latin American Robotics Council ($13,000)

The goal of the current proposal is to create an IEEE RAS Latin American Robotics Council that will unify, coordinate and strengthen robotics activities in the region, while encouraging further RAS membership, individual and chapter, both at the professional and student levels. The activities to be funded by this proposal include regional meetings, symposia, summer schools, robotics competitions and professional and student activities that will bring together chapter chairs, professionals and students across the region to encourage further membership and chapter creation. Information about the activities in the website http://ewh.ieee.org/reg/9/robotica/

Submitted by: Javier Ruiz del Solar, Chair RAS Chile Chapter, and Alfredo Weitzenfeld, Chair RAS Mexico Chapter

2007 Open Source High-Fidelity Simulation Framework and Competition ($10,000)

The U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), in cooperation with the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society, is starting a new University outreach effort that is aimed at introducing robotics and automation to students and faculty. We believe that researchers with interests in the areas of multi-agent cooperation, mapping, communications networks, sensor processing and general robotics will be interested. Accepted participants from regional universities (Greater Washington area) will attend a 2-day workshop at NIST and leave with all of the hardware and software necessary to simulate autonomous vehicles operating in a factory environment and to participate in a factory automation regional competition.

Submitted by: Stephen Balakirsky, Raj Madhavan and Chris Scrapper, U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology, and RAS Washington DC Local Chapter

. IEEE ASIA-Pacific Robotics and Automation Development Council ($6,000)

Funds from this grant will be used to enhance the knowledge and skills in Robotics and Automation (RA) for underdeveloped regions in Asia-Pacific countries and cities by developing the curriculum, by introducing training programmes and by organizing technical seminars and workshops on Robotics and Automation.

Submitted by: Professor S. G. Ponnambalam and S. M. N. Arosha Senanayake, Monash University Sunway Campus, Malaysia and Malaysia RAS Local Chapter.

Establishing IEEE/RAS Points of Presence and Initiatives in Second Life (SL)

Linden Lab's Second Life (SL), www.secondlife.com, is a social network that, differently from others, efficiently implements the idea of a full 3D environment where users are identified with avatars able to move in this environment.

The project consists of setting up a permanent location in this virtual environment, in the form of a building, with poster-like material and videos presenting the aim and services of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society. This information will be periodically updated to advertise ongoing events and initiatives of the RAS community. This project will evaluate the possibility of broadcasting in the SL world live events, such as plenary talks, workshops or lectures.

A further objective of this project is that of reproducing in SL simplified behaviors of real world robots and auto-responding desk assistants. This will be very important to populate the SL building of the IEEE RAS.

Submitted by: Domenico Prattichizzo, University of Siena

Student Exchange Program for Cross-Disciplinary Fertilization ($5000)

This grant will allow non-engineering graduate students in haptics to visit engineering laboratories and vice versa in order to create a forum for cross-disciplinary fertilization within the Haptics community as a whole.

Submitted by: Hong Z. Tan, (Purdue Univ.), Roberta L. Klatzky, (Carnegie Mellon Univ.), and Susan J. Lederman, (Queen’s Univ., Canada), and RAS Haptics Technical Committee.

Non-Engineering Haptics Community IEEE-RAS Membership Drive ($1000)

These funds will cover on an introductory basis a portion of the IEEE Membership fee for members of the RAS Technical Committee on Haptics who are not already IEEE members and are not currently in an engineering department or holding an engineering position. The initiative is intended to encourage haptics researchers in non-engineering fields, such as psychology and neuroscience, to join IEEE.

Submitted by: Allison Okamura, Johns Hopkins Univ. and RAS Haptics Technical Committee.

2. LAST CALL FOR NOMINATIONS: IROS Harashima Award for Innovative

This award, honoring Prof. Fumio Harashima, founding chair of the Intelligent Robots and Systems conferences, is jointly sponsored by IEEE Robotics and Automation Society, IEEE Industrial Electronics Society, the Robotics Society of Japan, and the Society of Instrument and Control Engineers, beginning this year, the 20th anniversary of IROS.

The recipient of the Harashima Award, which includes a $2000 honorarium and a plaque, must have created a new research area and/or technology for intelligent robots and systems. The recipient must have presented his or her contribution in (a) past IROS Conference(s).

To propose a candidate, please submit a letter of recommendation, which should summarize the candidate's qualifications for the award, to the nomination committee chair:

Kazuhiro Kosuge, Professor
Department of Bioengineering and Robotics
Tohoku University
kosuge@ irs.mech.tohoku.ac.jp

3. IEEE Election Ballots Mailed to Members It is time to vote in IEEE elections! All eligible members should have received their election materials by email or postal mail. They are also available on the web at http://www.ieee.org/web/aboutus/corporate/election/2007candidates.html.

Of particular interest to RAS members is the election of the Division X Director Elect. The candidates are RAS President Richard Volz, President and Thomas Wiener, Past President of the Oceanographic Engineering Society and of the IEEE Systems Council. Their statements and bios are on the website above.

The societies and councils of the IEEE are divided into 10 technical divisions and the Directors represent their Divisions on the IEEE Board of Directors.

RAS Members will also have the opportunity to vote for IEEE President Elect, Vice President for Technical Activities, and those in Regions 1, 3, 5, 7, 8 and 9 will elect Directors Elect for their geographic area.

4. RAS AdCom Elections--Coming Soon!

It is time to vote in IEEE elections! All eligible members should have received their election materials by email or postal mail. They are also available on the web at http://www.ieee.org/web/aboutus/corporate/election/2007candidates.html.

Of particular interest to RAS members is the election of the Division X Director Elect. The candidates are RAS President Richard Volz, President and Thomas Wiener, Past President of the Oceanographic Engineering Society and of the IEEE Systems Council. Their statements and bios are on the website above.

The societies and councils of the IEEE are divided into 10 technical divisions and the Directors represent their Divisions on the IEEE Board of Directors.

RAS Members will also have the opportunity to vote for IEEE President Elect, Vice President for Technical Activities, and those in Regions 1, 3, 5, 7, 8 and 9 will elect Directors Elect for their geographic area.

5. IEEE Robotics and Automation Award

The IEEE Robotics & Automation Award is an IEEE institute-level award sponsored by the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society. The 2008 award will be presented to the following co-recipients “for contributions to robotics enabling effective autonomous operations of science investigations under extreme conditions on the planet Mars.”

The recipients are Paul G. Backes , Eric T. Baumgartner, and Larry H Matthies

ERIC T. BAUMGARTNER (Non-Member)
Dean, T.J. Smull College of Engineering
Ohio Northern University
Ada, OH, USA

As a JPL employee (1996–2006), Dr. Baumgartner initially contributed to a number of robotic technology projects that were aimed at advancing JPL’s capabilities with respect to autonomous planetary rovers and robotic manipulation systems. In particular, he was the lead engineer on the Sample Return Rover project and the FIDO rover project. In 2000, Dr. Baumgartner joined the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) project as the lead systems, test and operations engineer for the MER Instrument Positioning System. This system was responsible for the robotic deployment and placement of 4 in-situ instruments onto the Martian surface through the use of a 5 degree-of-freedom robotic arm. The successful operation of the MER Instrument Positioning System has contributed significantly to the scientific discoveries made by the two rovers, Spirit and Opportunity. After the MER project, Dr. Baumgartner became the project element manager for the robotic sample acquisition system for the Mars Science Laboratory project.

He left JPA in 2006 to become Dean of the T. J. Smull College of Engineering at Ohio Northern University.

LARRY H. MATTHIES (A’IEEE)
Supervisor, Computer Vision Group
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Pasadena, CA, USA

Dr. Matthies’ research interests have focused on vision systems for autonomous navigation. While at CMU, he developed the first accurate visual deadreckoning algorithm for robot vehicles. In 1990 at JPL, he achieved a breakthrough in algorithms for real-time 3D perception with stereo vision. Both of these capabilities were incorporated in the 2003 Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission and are now in demand for applications on Earth. His group developed a Descent Image Motion Estimation System (DIMES) for the MER landers that used feature tracking to estimate horizontal velocity in the last 2 km of descent to control retrorocket firing. He leads research to extend descent image processing to include landmark recognition and hazard detection to enable autonomous safe and precise landing. This work spun off software to detect rocks in orbital imagery that was used to pick the landing site for the 2007 Mars Phoenix mission.

The award will be presented at the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation in May 2008 in Pasadena, California.

6. Bejczy to Receive AIAA Space Automation and Robotics Award

Charter RAS member Antal (Tony Bejczy), former Technical Manager at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, has been selected by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) to receive the AIAA 2007 Space Automation and Robotics Award.

The Space Automation and Robotics Award is presented for leadership and technical contributions by individuals and teams in the field of space automation and robotics, and unstructured environment.

The award will be presented on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2007, during the AIAA SPACE 2007 Conference and Exposition at the Long Beach Convention Center in Long Beach, California.

The citation reads "for establishing the foundation of robotics for space applications and pioneering the development of key enabling techniques to overcome the special challenges of communication delay, operation feedback, and unstructured environment."

7. Kazuo Tanie Memorial Fund

A memorial fund has been established in honor of RAS Past President Kazuo Tanie, who died last month. Members from Japan may contact the Tanie Memorial Event Office at Waseda University.
Email: nfujiwara@kurenai.waseda.jp

Members from the United States who wish to contribute may send checks to the
Tanie Memorial Fund, Citibank Tellers
- Attn: Beau Wallace
2717 Texas Ave. So.
College Station, Texas 77840

Include the account number 9785728019 on the memo line. This account will be closed on September 30.

Others should contact Shigeki Sugano.

8. IEEE Fellow Nominations Due March 1, 2008

Nominations for IEEE Fellow class of 2009 are due at the IEEE on March 1, 2008. The grade of Fellow recognizes unusual distinction in the profession and shall be conferred by the Board of Directors upon a person with an extraordinary record of accomplishments in any of the IEEE fields of interest. Nominees must be Senior Members of the IEEE. For information see http://www.ieee.org/fellow.

9. Apply for Elevation to IEEE Senior Member

Acceptance as a Senior Member of the IEEE is recognition of a member’s experience and accomplishments as an established professional in his field. Senior Members of the IEEE are engineers, scientists, educators, technical executives or originators in IEEE-designated fields.

Candidates shall have been in professional practice for at least ten years and shall have shown significant performance over a period of at least five of those years. At least three letters of recommendation from IEEE Senior Members or Fellows are required. We encourage those members who are eligible to apply for elevation to Senior Membership. Those accepted will also receive a voucher for a one year additional society membership. http://www.ieee.org/web/membership/senior-members/guide.html

10. Imminent Deadlines/Calls for Participation

September Deadlines

September Meetings

11. How can I find Jean Whatshisname from Paris I met at IROS?

RAS Member Directory Search Tool

If Jean is an RAS member, you may be able to locate him in the RAS Member Directory with just that much information.

RAS now offers help to name-challenged members through an enhanced search function on the RAS Member Directory. If you now search for somebody on the http://www.ieee-ras.org/people/browse.php page (or use the search plugin for Firefox or IE7), the search term you enter there is used to search in these fields:

  • Name
  • First name
  • Affiliation
  • Department
  • IEEE number
  • Email
  • City
  • State
  • Province
  • Website

All people who match (part of) the search are returned in the result set. Multiple search terms can be separated by a space. For example, searching for "r.g. Raleigh" will now return Rosalyn Snyder.

Thanks to our web designer Olaf van Zandwijk!

Note: Access to the RAS Member directory is restricted to RAS Society members who have established accounts (separate from IEEE web accounts), and members may establish privacy levels to restrict access to contact information. To request an RAS web account click "contact us" on the RAS webpage http://www.ieee-ras.org

Volume 5, Number 10

1. Call for Nominations: RAM Associate Editors

IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine is soliciting nominations for two new Associate Editors, to serve a 3-year term beginning in January 2008. Please send nominations, including self-nominations to Stefano Stramigioli, s.stramigioli [at] ieee.org.

2. Candidates for RAS AdCom

RAS members will elect six new members of the Society's Administrative Committee. The newly elected members will serve a three-year term beginning in January 2008. Members can serve a maximum of two consecutive terms. Voting will begin in October after ballots and candidate information are sent to all members. This year, for the first time, the election announcement, ballot and candidate information will be sent via email to all members with valid email addresses. Those without valid email addresses (including those whose announcements bounce) will be notified by postal mail and sent traditional paper ballots. The candidates are listed below. Note: Members may vote for candidates from any area, but may cast votes for no more than six candidates.

a. Area 1 The Americas (IEEE Regions 1-6, 7, and 9)

  • Dave Orin, The Ohio State University Bio
  • Nikos Papanikolopoulos, University of Minnesota Bio
  • Lynne Parker, University of Tennessee-Knoxville Bio
  • Wes Snyder, North Carolina State University Bio

b. Area 2 Europe, Africa, Middle East (IEEE Region 8)

  • Alessandro DeLuca, University of Rome-La Sapienza Bio
  • Stefano Stramigioli, University of Twente Bio
c. Area 3 Asia, Australia, and Oceania (IEEE Region 10)
  • Peter Corke, CSIRO Bio
  • Li-Chen Fu, National Taiwan University Bio
  • Sukhan Lee, SungKyunKwan University Bio
  • Shigeki Sugano, Waseda University Bio
  • Satoshi Tadokoro, Tohuku University Bio
  • Michael Yu Wang, Chinese University of Hong Kong Bio

Thanks to Art Sanderson and Toshio Fukuda, co-chairs of the nominations committee, for their efforts.

3. CFP: IROS 2008 http://www.iros.org The 2008 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems will be held September 22-26, 2008 in Nice, France. The conference theme is "Robots for the planet", reflecting the growing development of robots use in all aspects of human life and their increasing diversity but also to emphasize the necessity of managing the co-existence of robots and humans within a sustainable development scheme.

General Co-Chairs are Raj Chatila (LAAS) and Jean-Pierre Merlet (INRIA). Program Chair is Christian Laugier (INRIA.

Deadline for contributed papers: 11:59 PM, France Time, February 22, 2008

All papers must be submitted electronically in PDF format through the PaperPlaza system and must contain no information to identify authors and must contain a maximum of 6 pages, including Figures although 2 additional pages are allowed at a charge of 200 Euros per page.

4. RAS Fellowship Awarded to Rachel Gockley

The RAS Fellowship for Women has been awarded to Rachel Gockley, a graduate student at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA USA. Honorable Mention certificates will be awarded to Christine Stubbs also of Carnegie Mellon University, Emma Brunskill of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA, Shumei YuMilanka Ringwald of ETH, Switzerland.

The Fellowship is one of the proposed projects approved by the adcom for funding under the New Initiatives Grant Program.

According to George Bekey and Allison Okamura, cochairs of the Fellowship Review Committee, there were 36 applicants for the Fellowship, despite the short application time imposed by the constraints of the New Initiatives Grant program.

The Fellowship Committee is seeking industry sponsors to grant additional fellowships.

5. 2008 IEEE-CASE: http://www.ieee-case.org

The fourth annual IEEE Conference on Automation Science and Engineering (IEEE CASE 2008), sponsored by the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society, will be held from August 23 to 26, 2008 in Washington DC, U.S.A. The conference goal is the broad coverage and dissemination of foundational research on automation among researchers, academicians, and industry practitioners. The focus is on scientific methods for automated machines and systems operating in structured environments over long periods, and also on the explicit structuring of environments. The deadline for submissions is 1 February, 2008.

6. The ICRA 2008 Robot Challenge: http://icra.wustl.edu/

A new robot event is being introduced at the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, starting at ICRA 2008. The event will consist of a number of specific challenges with the overall theme of "space robotics". Our goal is to make this competition accessible to all members of the ICRA community, to integrate it tightly with the technical aspects of the conference, and to encourage as many participants as possible to bring their robots and compete.

We are currently working on finalizing the rules and the structure of the events, and are looking for input from the community. If you would like to contribute your opinions and experience to the discussion, please join the discussion mailing list. As the details of the Challenge solidify, they will be posted on the web site. To be informed of new developments, please join the the announcement mailing list .

Important Dates

  • 15 Sep 2007: Initial event announcement
  • 15 Oct 2007: Second draft of rules released, based on feedback
  • 31 Oct 2007: Final version of rules released
  • 1 Nov 2007: Information session at IROS 2007
  • 1 Jan 2008: Registration deadline for teams
  • 14 Feb 2008: Deadline for travel funding requests
  • 1 Mar 2008: Travel funding announcements sent
  • 19-23 May 2008: Competition at ICRA 2008
For more information, contact the Challenge Chairs

Challenge Chairs
Bill Smart
Department of Computer Science and Engineering
Washington University in St. Louis
Phone: +1 (314) 935-4749
Fax: +1 (314) 935-7302
Email: wds (at) cse (dot) wustl (dot) edu

Paul Rybski
Robotics Institute
Carnegie Mellon University
Phone: +1 (412) 268-7417
Fax: +1 (412) 268-5571
Email: prybski (at) cs (dot) cmu (dot) edu

7. 2008 RAS New Initiative Grants: Tentative CFP

As a result of a new IEEE policy, the Robotics and Automation Society anticipates being able to use some of its 2008 budget to fund a modest number of initiatives that would benefit society members in general. We expect approximately $90,000 to be available to support initiatives. We hope to be able to fund several initiatives in the range of $5000 to $24,900. While we cannot make a firm call for proposals at this time because IEEE will not approve our 2008 budget until mid-November, we are making a tentative preliminary call now because the time for proposal preparation after IEEE approves the 2008 budget will be too short. We do expect our budget to be approved. When it is, a final call for proposals will be issued to confirm what is contained in the Tentative Call for Proposals.

Members are invited to submit proposals for initiative to the RAS administrator Rosalyn Snyder r.g.snyder at ieee.org.

In accordance with our Business Plan, proposals will be reviewed by the following major Boards of the Society, which, except for EPSB, will be chaired by their respective vice presidents in 2008:

  • Conference Activities Board (CAB) VP: John Hollerbach
  • Industrial Activities Board (IAB) VP: Alex Zelinsky
  • Member Activities Board (MAB) VP: Alicia Casals
  • Publications Activities Board (PAB) VP: Peter Luh
  • Technical Activities Board (TAB) VP: Ken Goldberg
  • EPSB Chair (not formally a VP) Stefano Stramigioli.

The Boards will prioritize the requests and send them to the Financial Activities Board, which will review them and forward them to the AdCom, which will make the ultimate funding decisions.

Timeline:

  • December 31, 2007 – Deadline for proposal submission
  • March 15, 2008 – Funding decisions disseminated
  • November 30, 2008 – Final report due
  • November 30, 2008 – Deadline for invoice

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