The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is re-engineering itself. ISO's officials want to make it more relevant to today's world markets, improve its flow of technical work, and cut the cost of producing standards. ISO President Liew Mun Leong hopes to strengthen links with the World Trade Organization. Purpose: to "build a bridge at the international level between standardization, industrial application, and regulatory requirements." Liew also wants to make agreements with industrial sectors that have been setting their own standards without waiting for the cumbersome ISO process. He wants to avoid fragmentation of standards. To encourage balanced regional participation, Liew proposes setting up ISO centers in various regions outside Geneva. ISO Secretary-General Larry Eicher says his organization is also considering a proposal to switch from a bilingual system to one that operates only in English. Another proposal involves commingling the administrative services of ISO and the International Electrotechnical Commission.
The engineers and inventors of the post WWII period turned their attention to advancements in electronics, communication, and entertainment. Breakthrough inventions range from LEGOs and computer gaming to the integrated circuit and Ethernet -- a range of advancements that have little in common except they changed our lives.
Neil Fromer is the executive director of the Resnick Institute, a program for energy and sustainability at the California Institute of Technology, working to develop new ideas and research technologies related to providing a sustainable future. He spoke to us about the severity of the current drought in California and how solar energy can help prevent such situations in the future.
From home enthusiasts to workers on the manufacturing floor, everyone's imagination is captured by the potential of 3D printing. Prototyping, spare parts creation, art delivery, human organ creation, and even mass product production are all being targeted as current and potential uses for the technology.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.