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Tencon 2011 in Bali

Last week, Indonesia hosted some regional events: SEA Games, ASEAN Blogger Conference, ASEAN Summit. These days, the IEEE Region 10 (Asia Pacific) carries out its official annual conference IEEE TENCON on Sanur Beach, Bali. This conference has been prepared since a couple years ago, starting by submitting the proposal from Indonesia to the IEEE Region 10, bidding, recording in the IEEE, and the processes that include the calls for papers, paper reviews, event planning, and event organising. The whole process has involved senior academics in various parts of the earth. The event is organised by the IEEE Indonesia Section and University of Indonesia. Two IEEE society chapters are also involved as technical sponsors: the Comsoc Chapter and the MTT / AP Joint Chapter. Since the event is held Denpasar, Udayana University sends some volunteers to support the conference. Busy days :).

I jumped from Jakarta to Denpasar last Sunday. I saw the valley in the vicinity of Mount Ijen, Bali Strait, 10 minutes southwest coast of sunny, clear, sloping, sandy white, soft, and wavy beaches, and then finally the Ngurah Rai airport. Apparently ASEAN Summit still left some activities, so we had to revolve around Bali’s southeast coast for 40 minutes before landing. Then travel overland to Sanur Beach: Inna Bali Beach Hotel.

Unlike 2009, this year I can not seem up to enjoy the magnificent nature and culture of Bali. Representing IEEE Comsoc Indonesia Chapter, I had to prepare a tutorial session, then assist the event organising. Even today! 🙂

The tutorial was held on Monday, November 21 at 10:00 sharp. Prof Dadang Gunawan opened the session; then I took over to deliver a lecture on Digital TV and IPTV. My presentation focused on the network architecture, standards, how-it-works, services and content, and to the issues of convergence. Quite a lot, considering the time the tutorial was quite long. The next tutorial session was then filled by Mr Satrio Dharmanto Ms Agnes Irwanti, with emphasis on migration into DigitalTV.

The conference was officially commenced on 22 November. As the organising chair, Dr. Wahidin Wahab open the conference with his typical fun and exciting speech. The plenary session was then filled by four keynote speakers, with two moderated by Mr. Arnold Djiwatampu (himself the general chair of the event), and two by me.

The theme of the keynote speakers were very interesting. Prof. Nurul Sarkar discussed a breakthrough in engineering education strategies. Prof. Ke Wu explored IC Substrate (SICS) that are applied for future electronics and photonics in GHz and THz scale. Prof. Rinaldy Damini detailed energy scenarios taken by various countries after the Fukushima nuclear disaster. And Prof. Jong-Hwan Kim explained and demonstrated the robot-that-thinks (RTT). More than that implied by the titles, each presentation provided interesting inspirations. Prof. Ke Wu, for example, explained by pictures the history of waveguides: metals, coax, intrachip waveguide, etc. Meanwhile, Prof. Kim, who is also called the Father of Robot Football, explained the philosophical level of how the minds are recomposed by contextual info, fuzzy logic, and social intelligence.

After the photo session, the conference was splitted into seven rooms, each with its specific focus. I chose Room 5, which is focusing on the architecture, traffic, and other aspects of the wireline and wireless networks. In Room 5, dozens of papers are presented in several sessions from Tuesday to Thursday (today). Each presentation sets out in 20 minutes, followed by questions and answers. The theme is no longer a matter of philosophy or research direction, but instead the details of research results. The presenters are researchers, engineers, geeks, etc, so you can imagine how their presentations are. Just totally like me 😀

There was a dinner session, for networking while observing a small part of Balinese culture. There were a couple minutes (only) to walk to the Sanur beach not far from the hotel. But the rest are continuous controlling on the event.

Hopefully IEEE Tencon will result well, improving the good reputation for Indonesia that is capable to organise an international academic event almost with no sponsor, improving the interests for the Indonesian academics and engineers to consistently do the researches, and transforming Indonesia to be a respected technology innovation and development country.

The next Tencon will be carried out in Cebu and Mactan islands in the central part of the Philippines. See you next year in Lapu-Lapu city!

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IEEE Day in Jakarta

Since 2010, the IEEE celebrates its own IEEE Day in October. This year the celebration day is on October 6th 2011. So this week we planned, arranged, and carried out the event titled IEEE Day Lectures on LTE Development. The organisers are the IEEE Indonesia Section and the IEEE Comsoc Indonesia Chapter, supported by IEEE Student Branch University of Indonesia and IEEE Student Branch Telkom Institute of Technology.

The venue was at @America. @America is a public room owned and managed by the US Embassy in Jakarta. Located in a business centre just in the centre of Jakarta, it is a high-technology cultural centre where people can explore, experience, and express their interests in fresh and exciting ways. In its physical and virtual spaces, the visitors can experience cool and cutting-edge technology, interactive games, and live events designed to generate interest and create communities.

Since my chairmanship at Comsoc Chapter, we have carried out a series of lectures, seminars, and technical meetings discussing the aspects of 4G Mobile Networks. This year, some network providers have started to implement some of the technologies discussed. The IEEE Day Lectures was to open the discussion of current implementation of technologies related to 4G Mobile in Indonesia. It would start a series of discussion about many aspects, including the LTE Deployement, WiMAX positioning, IPTV implementation over 4G, cognitive radio, policies on spectrum, context-aware applications, etc.

The IEEE Day Lectures itself presented the speakers:

  1. Kuncoro Wastuwibowo, Introduction to IEEE, and 4G Mobile Technology
  2. Anto Sihombing, Digital Video Broadcast over LTE Network
  3. Hazim Ahmadi, Lesson Learnt from LTE Trial in Indonesia
  4. Arief Hamdani Gunawan, Regulatory and Industry Aspects of LTE

The attendance number is about 50. Attendees include those who come from universities, government, operators, consultants, and other parties who have interests in LTE and its implementation. Thank you for @America, for the IEEE volunteers, the attendees, and the speakers. We have celebrate the IEEE Day quite successfully!

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Kyoto: Comsoc AP-RCCC

This year the IEEE carried out the annual ICC conference in Kyoto, Japan. As usual, this greatest infocomm conference is accompanied by a couple of technical and organizational meetings, held by the IEEE or IEEE Comsoc. Representing the IEEE Comsoc Indonesia Chapter, I had to be present in Comsoc AP-RCCC. I got the invitation on April, so I had enough time to renew my passport, prepared the visa, airline tickets, hotels, etc. However, these are also the busiest month here at Multimedia Division of Telkom. I could not find enough spare time to relearn hiragana, katakana, kanji, and basic Japanese expressions, or to prepare the social visits.

I got the most affordable airline. It took me from Jakarta to Tokyo via Kualalumpur, and landed at Haneda Airport around midnight. I took the first Shinkanzen super-express train from Shinagawa to Kyoto. I reached Kyoto on June 8th at 9 o’clock. After reporting my attendance to the organiser, I took a couple hours to explore Kyoto.

ICC and the other meetings were held at KICC, a quite vast resort in north-east end of Kyoto. Apparently this place is well prepared to carried out international scale conferences and summits. I did not attend any ICC sessions more than some workshop sessions. But the AP-RCCC I attended was held in the same place.

Last March we had conducted the IEEE Region 10 Meeting in Yogyakarta, which was the highest annual organizational meeting of the IEEE in the Asia Pacific region. IEEE Comsoc AP-RCCC is the annual organizational conference of the IEEE Communications Society in the region. Focusing on the issues in Asia Pacific region, the meeting was attended by President of the IEEE Communications Society, the VPs and directors, a representative of both North America and South America, and the chairmen or other representatives of the Asia-Pacific Comsoc chapters.

Comsoc President, Byeong Gi Lee, keynoted by describing the current challenges in the field of communications field. The convergence has been passing some stages in the digital information, and now we are in the middle of the convergence of digital services and management. The convergence is not just among the fields of communications and computing, but extends also to consumer electronics, media, and other areas. Comsoc has anticipated this with various approaches: educational approach and content, industrial approach, and the standardization approach. This is also trailed by restructuring the organization of IEEE Comsoc. Various aspects relating to further convergence has sparked fairly interesting discussions.

Then, some VPs and directors presented some reports and guidances. And each chapters presented their reports, plan activities, and other things. The first chapter to deliver the report is Indonesia. From Indonesia, I delivered a report, exploring the chapter’s activities that are still focused on technical and organizational campaigns, including our supports in the formation of the first four IEEE student branches in Indonesia, serial roadshows, and other approaches. Our plan ahead includes the preparation of a larger conference (more than the current form of thematic seminars or lecturing). However, it would require assistance and support from the Region 10 and neighbouring chapters. Also presented are the preparation of TENCON in Bali in November 2011, and our request for distinguished lecturer & distinguished speakers on recent progress in the field of infocomm. Some officers expressed their support for IEEE Comsoc activities in Indonesia.

After the conference, I returned to the Kyoto centre by the MRT with Prof. Hsiao-Hwa Chen of IEEE Comsoc Tainan Chapter. I know this gentlemen even before the conference. Last year we made some correspondence to arrange a seminar in Singapore. But in MRT, he showed his other side: an avid culture observer. After talking about chapter management and infocom platform management, we spent the time to talk about the history of Japan, Kyoto, etc. He suggested me to spend more days to explore Japanese cities and cultural centres.

So the next day I spent my time to pay a visit to historic areas: Nara (the first capital of Japan as an emerging imperial), Kyoto (the capital of Japanese Imperial for 1000 years), before finally returned to Tokyo (the capital of Japan since the Meiji Restoration). In Kyoto, I got the opportunity to visit the Imperial Palace for about 1 hour. An excellent palace, I must admit. Also I visited Tokugawa shogunate palace.

I know I should now spend more time to report my cultural journeys. Indeed I have written them in my travelling blog, koen.cc, but only in Indonesian. I guess I will someday translate them and put them here.

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Yogya: IEEE Region 10 Annual Meeting

Apparently, our campaign last year (in Lapu-Lapu City, Philippines) in proposing Yogyakarta as the host of IEEE Region 10 Annual General Meeting this year, had been a success. So, last week (March 5th – 6th), Indonesia hosted the Region 10 AGM, with a venue in Sheraton Hotel, Yogyakarta, only some kilometres from the peak of Mt Merapi, that suddenly flew the hot lava those days :).

This annual meeting presented the President-Elect of the IEEE, Gordon Day; Director of Region 10, Lawrence Wong; the leaders of divisions, councils, sections, and chapters, and other representatives from almost all countries in Asia Pacific, including Indonesia. Indonesia representatives were led by IEEE Indonesia Section Chair, Muhammad Ary Murti. I myself represented the IEEE Comsoc Indonesia Chapter.

The meeting was held in accordance with Robert’s Rules of Order, which is widely used in the parliaments of many countries. Chairman Lawrence Wong commenced the meeting with a Call to Order, followed by Roll Call and some reports. Was interesting to see that the sequence of these activities can be done on time by the minute. Regardless of their position, all presenters could give only a 5-10 minute presentation. In his report, Gordon Day recalled the transformation that is still continuing within the IEEE. Expanding from the world of electrical engineering, IEEE now includes the fields of aeronautical, biomedical, electrical, electronic, computer, information technology, mathematics, physics, telecommunication, automotive and biological engineering. The number of members has reached 407 thousand. However, this number is only less than 10% of the engineers working in the fields of the IEEE. In the US, only 7.5% engineers in these fields are members of the IEEE. In Indonesia, only 0.5%.
Using a new tagline advancing technology for humanity, the approaches taken by IEEE are to strengthen the organisation to serve the new generations of engineers, particularly in new fields that will further improve the human life. IEEE is also directed to become more global, embracing the technological widespread throughout the world, and enhance its role and leadership. Economic, social, and cultural changes that are happening more quickly at this moment motivate the organisation to strategically improve the use of technology to support a better human life, individually and socially. The engineers must always be reminded that they still have a professional responsibility to support better life in the following centuries. Lawrence Wong continued by showing the uniqueness of the Asia Pacific region: this is the region with the largest number of members in the IEEE, and with the highest growth, especially among students and young engineers. This reflects the characteristics of this region which is the world’s most dynamic area of technology. What to do in this region is to increase the synergy between regions, especially with the Internet.

VP of MGA Howard E. Michel detailed that rather than taking care of membership, the IEEE will put more focus on its members: how to Inspire, Enable, Empower and Engage the members of the IEEE. One example is to use the IEEE Center for Leadership Excellence (CLE) to build members’ leadership. VP of Educational Activities Tariq Durrani explained several initiatives to develop engineering education before the university stage, for example with TISP, TryNano, TryEngineering, as well as other approaches such as accreditation, certification, WiE (women in engineering), etc. The meeting also discussed the report TENCON 2010 in Fukuoka, TENCON 2011 that will be held this year in Sanur (presented by TENCON 2011 Chairman Dr Wahidin Wahab), and TENCON 2012 plan in Cebu. And … hmm … many many more :).

The participants, which reached around 150 people, were also invited to visit Prambanan Temple and Yogyakarta Sultan’s Palace (Kraton), to understand deeper the local culture. Dinner  was also served in the Sultan’s Palace. In addition, some participants independently took visits to other interesting places, such as Borobudur Temple, and Malioboro Street. Yogyakarta was really successful as a host to the IEEE Asia Pacific. Thank you, Yogya:)

Related:

  • Prof Gordon Day’s note about this meeting
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IEEE Region 10 Meeting

Cebu Island. Its name immediately reminded of my teacher in junior high school who taught history with such enthusiasm. She told us about the exploration of Fernão de Magalhães, a Portuguese sailor who had reached Malaka with d’Albuquerque, and then served Isabel the Spanish Queen, and explored to the west to prove that the earth is round. The mission was accomplished quite successfully. But from the hundreds of sailors, only a dozen could return to Spain, led by Juan Sebastian Elcano. Magellan (that’s how his name is spelled in English) was too busy conquering the islands around Cebu. But at the beach of Mactan, Magellan was killed in a battle against the leader of the Mactan tribe: Lapu-Lapu. Of course at last Spanish conquered the islands, which was later called the Philippines. Spanish colonialism was replaced by the United States, and is now replaced by the local rich people. Mactan has become an integral part of Cebu, which is connected with two major bridges. Cebu Airport was located in Mactan. In the city of Lapu-Lapu :).

At a resort at one end of Lapu-Lapu City, only about 5 minutes walking from the location of the Battle of Mactan, the IEEE Region 10 Annual Meeting was held last week. Indonesia Section sent 2 representatives, plus 1 from Indonesia Comsoc Chapter, and 1 from the organiser of TENCON 2011 (that will be held in Bali in 2011). The conference was quite comprehensive. In addition to the Officers of Region 10 and the entire Sections below, also attended the IEEE President Elect Moshe Kam, and a representative from Region 8 (Europe Africa) Joseph Modelsky.

Interesting to listen to Kam’s presentation. The IEEE is the result of the merged AIEE and IRE. AIEE was a classical organisation occupied by an electrical engineers; while IRE was the organisation that possessed the young engineers who focused on electronics technology. Just like NEFO and OLDEFO, haha. Both had a growing number of members; but IRE grew much faster than AIEE. The mergers in 1963 to form the IEEE could overcome the problem of dualism. Then the societies, regions, sections, etc were formed. The IEEE is now recognised as the authority holder in various fields of science and engineering. From 20 most referred journals in electrical engineering, 16 is from the IEEE. From 20 most referred journals in telecommunications, 15 is from the IEEE. And so on. But from 20 most referred journals in medical informatics, only 2 is from the IEEE. And from 20 most referred journals in nanoscience, none is from the IEEE. Kam concluded: IEEE could have become the established power as the AIEE before the merger; white the life science develops in the direction that is favoured by young scientists and engineers, just like the IRE before the merger. Then he delivered the BOD mandate: the IEEE must be directed to the relevant technology. IEEE is not just an association of the learned, but an organisation of engineers and professionals. Related to it, Region 10 launched programmes that lead to increased benefits to members and the community through the development of the organisation, profession, and technologies that are relevant to the present.

 

What is the benefit IEEE membership? This is a question that was examined even since I was an Associate Member. I stay here long enough, with my own reasons. But I don’t think my personal reason could effect the same to my colleagues, or make the other engineers interested in and participate actively in the IEEE. Some interesting things often mentioned include: access to engineering knowledge, increased professionalism, networking opportunities, community service, career opportunities, and others. But for the engineers in Indonesia, maybe they are not enough, especially since this organisation apply an ‘attractive’ annual fee. So we in Indonesia Section (and the Communication Society Chapter I am managing now) wish to create more benefits: opening new opportunities for networking, increasing professional image of IEEE members (technical expertise combined with the human communication expertise), and arranging a series of activities to share knowledge.

These strategies, and others, were explored and discussed those days, to form a breakthrough in the development of organization, profession, and technologies. Other things include the concerns over the lack of role of women engineers, and has been embodied in the Women in Engineering (WIE). Also the necessity to increase the role of new engineers (GOLD – graduation of the last decade). IEEE philanthropy-wing is also in development by the HTC (humanitarian technology challenge). And many other ideas.

BTW, I like Cebu. The people is friendly. They speak English quite well, but they speak Cebuanos among themselves, with some similar vocabularies to Indonesian. Haha. Almost all essential information is written and printed in English. Unlike other cities in South-East Asia; Mactan and Cebu sprinkled with warm sunshine all day, with almost no clouds. The sea sent cool breeze all day. The atmosphere of the city is a bit like small cities in Indonesia, with various types of public transportation (the Jeepney), the food sellers on the edge and in the middle of the streets, the taxi drivers who charged with no rule.

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UPH Seminar on 4G Technologies

I spent two weeks discussing the infrastructures for network services & contents in Gegerkalong Campus, the Learning Centre of Telkom. On the last day, almost without break, I had to fly to Surabaya for preparing a seminar. This seminar is a part of the seminar series Opening The Gates to 4G Mobile Technology that we have carried out in Jakarta, Bandung, and Yogyakarta. In Surabaya, the seminar is hosted by Universitas Pelita Harapan (UPH Surabaya). It was held at Hotel Mercure Surabaya on 20 February 2009.

The seminar was coordinated directly by Vice Rector of UPH, Prof John Batubara. Unlike the previous seminars in this series, this one was attended by the IEEE Indonesia Section Chair, Mr Arnold Ph. Djiwatampu, and the Rector of UPH Jonathan Parapak. The presenters, in succession:

  • Arnold Ph. Djiwatampu (IEEE Indonesia Section Chair), Opening Speech
  • Jonathan Parapak (Rector of UPH), Welcome Speech
  • Muhammad Ary Murti: Introduction to the IEEE, societies, Indonesia section, chapters, membership.
  • Kuncoro Wastuwibowo (IEEE Comsoc Indonesia Chapter Chair): 4G Mobile Technologies, network & service aspects, cognitive radio, 4G candidates
  • Arif Hamdani Gunawan (IEEE Indonesia Section Vice Chair): LTE -> evolution, features, architecture
  • Prof. Dr. Dadang Gunawan: IEEE Student Branch
  • Arif Hamdani Gunawan: LTE -> radio access, OFDMA & SCFDMA, implementation plan
  • Kuncoro Wastuwibowo: WiMAX II -> evolution, features, architecture

Participants came from UPH Surabaya and other campuses around Surabaya, as well as some professionals who study the field of mobile telecommunications. And just like the way I came — i.e. with almost no break — I also had to leave Surabaya the same way. Signed the certificates, and run for the flight under a heavy rain under Surabaya sky. But I was delighted — it was a very successful seminar. Thank you, UPH Surabaya :).

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IEEE Seminar on Digital TV

This year IEEE Indonesia Section and its chapters plan to intensify seminars & lecturing in several cities in Indonesia. Since last year, its Communication Society (Comsoc) Chapter had conducted a seminar series on 4G Mobile Technology. While still running it, now we start another series in parallel (series in parallel, haha). So today we carry out a seminar in the new series: Digital TV. As the previous series, this one also commenced in Bandung; this time in the Hotel Nalendra, Cihampelas.

The seminar is still going on now. It is amazing to see the participants who attend the seminar today. From Mrs. Kusmarihati of Mastel (previously, she was Telkom’s Director of Development, CEO of Telkomsel, and Chairperson of BRTI), some Heads of Department and officials from Universities (Universitas Hasanuddin, Universitas Ahmad Yani, Maranatha University, ITENAS, IT Telkom), the representatives of the operators & providers (Telkom, XL Axiata, DAAITV, Nasio), and several other professionals. Heavy enough:).

The materials in this seminar:

  • Muhammad Ary Murti, IEEE as a Professional Organization
  • Arief Hamdani Gunawan, Digital TV & IPTV Network
  • Kuncoro Wastuwibowo, Video Coding, Compression, & Formats
  • Prasetya Irwan Gunawan, Quality of Service & Quality of Experience
  • Satrio Dharmanto, IPTV Implementation in Several Countries

I guess it is because of the weather of Bandung, with a combination of warm sunshine over chilly air, the discussion took place very warm. Or hot. We were not only arguing about business implementations and engineering decisions, but also the decision to select some mathematical formula. Why do we use DCT instead DFFT? Haha. Funnily I had an answer for that one :D.

This seminar is also supported by Multikom as a sponsor. Next Digital TV discussion will be delivered in the form of lecturing at Bina Nusantara University next weekend.

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WiMAX II

On November 21st, the IEEE Comsoc Indonesia Chapter will conduct a seminar to introduce the aspects of 4G Mobile Communications. The seminar will be carried out in Horizon Hotel, Bandung. You might visit Comsoc’s website to see the detail information. I will start the discussion by exploring the necessity of the items mentioned in 4G requirements. Then we will discuss the candidates of the 4G platforms: the LTE, the UMB, and WiMAX II. But we know UMB has been revoked by Qualcomm who then chose the LTE way :). I have blogged LTE a couple times in my other blogs. But it is Arief Hamdani who will explore LTE in details then. My duty is to describe WiMAX II.

You might have known the standard IEEE 802.16e, a.k.a. the Mobile WiMAX. This is the standard for the first mobile broadband access solution that enables the convergence of mobile & fixed broadband network through a common wide-area radio access technology and flexible network architecture. The OFDMA transmission is used for both downlink and uplink. WiMAX II, or  the incoming standard IEEE 802.16m is the amendment to develop an advanced air interface to meet the requirement of ITU-R / IMT-Advanced for 4G systems. The data transfer rates will reach 1 Gb/s, but it must have full backward compatibility with existing Mobile WiMAX. The protocol stacks of WiMAX II is as follows:

WiMAX II Protocol Stack

The objectives and advantages of WiMAX II are, among others:

  • Multi hop relay architecture
  • Self configuration
  • Advanced single-user / multi-user multi antenna schemes and interference mitigation techniques
  • Enhanced multicast broadcast service
  • Increased VoIP capacity
  • Improved cell-edge user throughput
  • Support of vehicular speed (? 500 km/h)

To discuss deeper on the issue, I invite you to attend the seminar. Visit the IEEE Comsoc site :).

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