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Past Events - 2015

Issues Involving the Leap Second

Our past Section Chair, (Dr Mansoor Shafi) compiled a brief set of notes to explain the issues involved in deciding how and when to insert a leap second into the way that we keep time, As you will learn from these notes, the issues involved are not straight-forward and are currently being discussed at the international level. Learn more by following this link.

 Dr Mansoor Shafi - Central Section Chair 2014 - 15
Dr Mansoor Shafi - Former Central Section Chair 2014 - 15

Central Section Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting for the IEEE Central Section was held on 2nd December 2015 as follows:

Date: Wednesday 2nd December 2015
Time: 5:30pm – 8:00pm (Refreshments and canapes with Networking commenced at 5:30pm and panel talks began at 6pm)
Venue: Intercontinental Hotel

The AGM included refreshments and two speakers formed a panel to discuss topics of interest to members and guests. Our panel consisted of Mansoor Shafi and Donald Bailey. Details of their talks are given below:

Talk by Dr Mansoor Shafi - "The outcomes of WRC 15

WRC 15 is a spectrum regulatory conference, it occurs every four years. There were a number of agenda items. Amongst the key ones were: Additional spectrum for IMT-2000 was a new agenda item for IMT 2020 ( aka 5G) to be discussed by WRC 19   This talk reviewed the outcomes of that WRC.

Talk by Professor Donald Bailey - Image Processing using FPGAs

Agenda for AGM

  1. 5:30pm - Networking with welcome drinks and canapes
  2. 5:45pm - Panel member presentations
  3. Welcome to the Section AGM
  4. Apologies
  5.  Minutes of the last AGM
  6.  Chairman's annual report
  7.  Financial report
  8.  Election of officers
    • Chairman
    • Deputy Chairman
    • Secretary
    • Treasurer
    • Web Coordinator
    • Membership Development Coordinator
    • Student Activity Coordinator
    • Newsletter Coordinator
    • Additional Committee Members
  9.  Other Business (Please advise)
    •  Young Professionals activities
    •  Student Chapters and ongoing subscription reimbursement
  10.  Close of Section AGM

The Section Chair report for 2015 can be accessed through the following link. Also the financial report from our Treasurer presented at the AGM and the Treasurer as discussed at the AGM is available through the following link.

Confirmed minutes from 2014 are now available from the Minutes page of this site. Draft minutes for the 2015 AGM (to be confirmed at the next AGM in 2016) are also available through this Minutes page.

The newly elected committee for 2016 is now available on the Committee page.

9th International Conference on Sensing Technology

Massey University along with The University of Auckland, New Zealand is pleased to announce that the 9th International Conference on Sensing Technology (ICST 2015) has been held from December 8 to 10, 2015 in Auckland, New Zealand. ICST 2015 and provided a common forum for researchers, scientists, engineers and practitioners throughout the world to present their latest research findings, ideas, developments and applications in the area of sensing technology. ICST 2015 included keynote addresses by eminent scientists as well as special, regular and poster sessions. All papers were peer reviewed on the basis of a full length manuscript and acceptance were based on quality, originality and relevance. Accepted papers are to be published in the conference proceedings with an IEEE catalog number and ISBN number. The original call for papers can be located on this link.

The proceedings will be submitted for publication in IEEE Xplore and indexing by EI Compendex.

Women in Engineering Event - 19-20 December, 2015

IEEE Women in Engineering has organised the first international Women in Engineering conference on Electrical and Computer Engineering. The call for papers can be viewed by following this link. The registration fee was minimal when compared to other major conferences, especially for IEEE members in Region 10, as it was only $USD120.

Computational Intelligence Events

On Wednesday 16 September and 18 September, the CI chapter had two more talks, viz:

• "Medical Data Mining and Innovative Applications", presented by Prof Yanchun Zhang on 16 September,
• "Introduction to Evolutionary Multi-objective Optimisation", presented by Dr Yi Mei and Dr Bing Xue on 15 September.

Both were held in Room CO350 of the Cotton Building, Victoria University at 4:10-5:30pm.

Joint Institutions Breakfast Event - 10th September 2015

The Joint Institutions Breakfast event was held on 10
th September, 2015.
All members and guests of the IEEE Central Section, IET Wellington Network and IPENZ Wellington Branch were welcomed to this special event, hosted by all three institutions on the morning of 10 September 2015 in Central Wellington. The guest speaker for this event was David Havercroft, Chief Operating Officer of Spark New Zealand, who spoke on the topic of DISRUPTION from a Telecommunications and IT industry perspective.

It was attended by approximately 50 members and guests of the three Institutions and was a most enjoyable event.

David Havercroft

When: 7:15am for 7:30am on 10 September 2015
Where: Travelodge Hotel Wellington, 2-6 Gilmer Terrace, Wellington, 6011 (Half way up Plimmer Steps)

Full details were available from the following link.

A copy of the slides presented at this event is available to IEEE Members only and is password protected. Central Section members will receive a separate email with the required password or contact the webmaster of this site for access details.

IEEE Distinguished Lecturer - Professor Carlos Coello Coello

Prof Carlos Coello Coello visited the Computational Intelligence Chapter, IEEE NZ Central Section during the period 3 - 6 September 2015.

Research Interests:

Multi-objective optimization using metaheuristics, bio-inspired metaheuristics for optimization (e.g., evolutionary algorithms, artificial immune systems, particle swarm optimization, etc.).

Date:04 September 2015
Venue:CO350, Victoria University of Wellington, Kelburn Campus
Title:Recent Results and Open Problems in Evolutionary Multiobjective Optimization
Speaker:Prof Carlos Coello Coello, CINVESTAV-IPN (Mexico), IEEE Fellow, IEEE Distinguished Lecturer

Abstract: Evolutionary algorithms (as well as a number of other metaheuristics) have become a popular choice for solving problems having two or more (often conflicting) objectives (the so-called multi-objective optimization problems). This area, known as EMOO (Evolutionary Multi-Objective Optimization) has had an important growth in the last 15 years, and several people (particularly newcomers) get the impression that it is now very difficult to make contributions of sufficient value to justify, for example, a PhD thesis. However, a lot of interesting research is still under way. In this talk, we shall review some of the various research topics on evolutionary multi-objective optimization that are currently attracting a lot of interest (e.g., handling many objectives, hybridization, indicator-based selection, use of surrogates, etc.) and which represent good opportunities for doing research.  Some of the challenges currently faced by this discipline will also be delineated.

Biography: Professor Carlos Artemio Coello Coello received a PhD in Computer Science from Tulane University (USA) in 1996. He is currently full professor with distinction at CINVESTAV-IPN in Mexico City, Mexico. He has published over 400 papers in international peer-reviewed journals, book chapters, and conferences. He has also co-authored the book "Evolutionary Algorithms for Solving Multi-Objective Problems", which is now in its Second Edition (Springer, 2007) and has co-edited the book "Applications of Multi-Objective Evolutionary Algorithms" (World Scientific, 2004). His publications currently report over 28,000 citations, according to Google Scholar (his h-index is 67).

He received the "2007 National Research Award" (granted by the Mexican Academy of Science) in the area of "exact sciences" and, since January 2011, he is an "IEEE Fellow" for "contributions to multi-objective optimization and constraint-handling techniques." He is also the recipient of the prestigious "2013 IEEE Kiyo Tomiyasu Award" and of the "2012 National Medal of Science and Arts" in the area of "Physical, Mathematical and Natural Sciences" (This is the highest award that a scientist can receive in Mexico). He also serves as associate editor of the IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation, Computational Optimization and Applications, Pattern Analysis and Applications, Journal of Heuristics, Evolutionary Computation and Applied Soft Computing.

He has served as Vice-Chair and Chair of the IEEE CIS Evolutionary Computation Technical Committee and is currently the Chair of the IEEE CIS Distinguished Lecturers Committee. He was also the General Chair of the 2013 IEEE Congress on Evolutionary Computation, which took place in Cancun, Mexico.

A short report on this meeting can be obtained from the following link.

Engineering Festival - Announcement and Call for Participation (4th August, 2105)

A series of seminars is being prepared on the topic of Zero Net Energy Buildings for New Zealand, which should be of interest to IEEE members. The first two talks in the series give an architectural perspective in order to provide an introduction to the topic. Future seminars are being planned to include the intelligent building using fibre optic access together with Internet of Things technologies and the renewable energy aspects of modern buildings. The IET would appreciate interest from IEEE members in presenting talks on any of these topics. We know that we have members at both Victoria and Massey Universities with an interest in this topic, so please identify the relevant individuals and prompt them to participate in this very relevant topic area. The New Zealand Central Section will be supporting this Engineering Festival as a joint activity with the IET and we hope that we can contribute some good speakers to support the programme over the next few months. If you or a colleague wishes to participate and/or contribute a talk could you please contact Dr Murray Milner or any of the NZ Central Committee members to register your interest?

A brochure providing information about the initial seminars by Dr. Michael Donn and Dr. Fabriccio Chicca on the topic of "The Architect's Dream" that was held on the 4th August can be downloaded through this link.

IEEE R10 Student, Young Professionals and Women in Engineering Congress

The IEEE R10 Student, Young Professionals and Women in Engineering (SYWC) congress was held in Sri Lanka, Colombo from 9th - 12th July. The congress was well attended by many R10 sections and provided an excellent platform for learning, networking and sharing ideas. The congress had a number of interesting and very informative tracks, some of which included:

  • Rejuvenating Young Professionals (YP)
  • YP Brainstorming Session · Member Benefits
  • IEEE SIGHT/Humanitarian Activities · IEEE Collabratec
  • IEEE Xtreme
  • IEEE Academic
  • IEEE Day

A detailed report has been provided by Sudhir Singh Young Professionals Chair of our NZ Central Section. It is available through the following link.

An Introduction to Computational Intelligence - June 4th 2015

Time: 3:10-4:00pm

(4:00-5:00pm: IEEE CI Chapter meeting;
5:00-5:30: Pizza and soft drinks were provided.)

Venue: CO350, Victoria University of Wellington, Kelburn Campus

Title: An Introduction to Computational Intelligence

Speaker:Kay Chen Tan, National University of Singapore, IEEE Fellow, IEEE Distinguished Lecturer

Abstract: The rapid development of CI research in recent years is a response to the evolution of machine intelligence in systems and to the acceleration in the use of learning and intelligent technologies in the conception and design of systems. This talk will provide an introduction to various CI technologies including evolutionary algorithms, neural networks, and fuzzy systems. Practical applications of computational intelligence in solving scientific optimization and machine learning problems, such as decision-making, control and classification, will also be highlighted.

Biography: TAN Kay Chen is actively pursuing research in computational and artificial intelligence, with applications to multi-objective optimization, scheduling, automation, data mining, and games. He has published over 100 journal papers, over 100 papers in conference proceedings, co-authored 5 books and co-edited 4 books. Dr Tan has been an Invited Keynote/Plenary speaker for over 40 international conferences. He served in the international program committee for over 100 conferences and involved in the organizing committee for over 50 international conferences. Dr Tan is the General Co-Chair for IEEE World Congress on Computational Intelligence 2016 in Vancouver, Canada. Dr Tan is currently an elected member of AdCom (2014-2016) and is an IEEE Distinguished Lecturer of IEEE Computational Intelligence Society (2011-2013; 2015-2017).

Dr Tan is the Editor-in-Chief of IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation. He was the Editor-in-Chief of IEEE Computational Intelligence Magazine (2010-2013). He currently serves as an Associate Editor / Editorial Board member of over 20 international journals, such as IEEE Transactions on Cybernetics, IEEE Transactions on Computational Intelligence and AI in Games, Evolutionary Computation (MIT Press), European Journal of Operational Research, Neural Computing and Applications, Journal of Scheduling, International Journal of Systems Science, etc.

Dr Tan is a Fellow of IEEE. He is the awardee of the 2012 IEEE Computational Intelligence Society (CIS) Outstanding Early Career Award for his contributions to evolutionary computation in multi-objective optimization. He also received the Recognition Award (2008) from the International Network for Engineering Education & Research (iNEER) for his outstanding contributions to engineering education and research. He was felicitated by the International Neural Network Society (INNS) India Regional Chapter (2014) for his outstanding contributions in the field of computational intelligence.

A report on this event is available through the following link.


The 2015 IEEE Congress on Evolutionary Computation

The 2015 IEEE Congress on Evolutionary Computation was held on 25-28 May 2015 in Sendai Japan. The IEEE NZCS CIS Chapter presented 12 accepted papers at the conference, and we had seven people from the Computational Intelligence Chapter attending the conference. In particular, one of our chapter papers (Harith Al-Sahaf, Mengjie Zhang, Mark Johnston and Brijesh Verma, entitled "Image Descriptor: A Genetic Programming Approach to Multiclass Texture Classification".) got the "Overall Best Paper Award" from over 700 submissions.

Region 10 Meeting Report Dhaka Bangladesh, March 7-8, 2015

Region 10 Director Ramakrishna Kappagantu opened the meeting, describing the challenges of increasing student memberships and in obtaining membership renewals. Goals for this year include (i) enhancing membership benefits, (ii) creating deeper connectivity between industry, research and academia to enhance value for students and young professionals (iii) enhancing the quality of leadership in geographical units. Vice President MGA Lawrence Wong followed by describing future challenges of delivering an “exceptional membership experience” as well as the need for strengthening volunteer capability and demonstrating value to Young Professional members.........

Region 10 banquet

A full report on this meeting has been prepared by Terence Betlehem of our Section Committee and it is available via the following link.

April 17 – Dr Koyama – Audio signal processing (SP/IT)

The IEEE New Zealand Central Section is excited to welcome Dr. Shoichi Koyama from the University of Tokyo in Japan.

Title: Sound field recording and reproduction and its extension to super-resolution
Date: Friday 17th April
Time: 11:00am
Venue: Room CO350, Cotton Building
Location: Victoria University of Wellington.

Abstract: Physical reproduction of a sound field enables us to construct more realistic audio systems. Since large scale audio systems are becoming more feasible because of the recent development of acoustic sensors and transducers, these kinds of technologies have attracted attention in recent years. In sound field recording and reproduction, a way to convert signals received by microphones into driving signals of loudspeakers is important. I introduce a method using wave field reconstruction (WFR) filter and its application to a real-time sound field transmission system. Since the quality of the reproduced sound field depends on intervals between array elements in current methods, a lot of microphones and loudspeakers are required to achieve highly accurate reproduction. Recent advances indicated that higher reproduction accuracy can be achieved above the spatial Nyquist frequency when there are fewer microphones than loudspeakers, i.e., super-resolution in sound field recording and reproduction. Two approaches to super-resolution are introduced, which are based on a prior information on sound sources to be reproduced and a sparse signal representation.

Speaker Bio: Shoichi Koyama received the B.E., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Tokyo, Japan, in 2007, 2009, and 2014, respectively. He joined Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation (NTT) in 2009 and started his career as a researcher in acoustic signal processing at NTT Cyberspace Laboratories (currently Media Intelligence Laboratories). In 2014, he joined the Graduate School of Information Science and Technology, the University of Tokyo, as an Assistant Professor (Research Associate)

A report on this meeting prepared by Terence Betlehem is available via this link.

ICASSP Conference - Brisbane 19 - 24 April

We were privileged last month (19-24 April) to have the IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech and Signal Processing, the world's largest signal processing conference, as close as Brisbane: the last time it was anywhere near as close was in Adelaide in 1994. In total nearly 1800 people registered for the conference, which was hosted at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre.

 A more detailed report prepared by Paul Teal is available via this link.

ICARA – 17-19 February 2015 in Queenstown.

2015 ICARA Conference – 17-19 February 2015 in Queenstown. (IEEE NZ Central Section, Technical sponsor)

A report on this event is available through this link.

1st Wellington SDN Workshop (WSW) 2015

Victoria University of Wellington ran the 1st Wellington SDN Workshop (WSW) 2015 on 18 and 19 February. The workshop was a mix of presentations on SDN itself and the progress of projects exploring the application of SDN as well as tutorials where the participants had the opportunity to explore the capabilities of a simple SDN controller and network. It provided an excellent introduction to the state of the art and for those who have heard a lot and theorised about it, an opportunity to make it more practical and concrete. The tutorials were especially effective in demonstrating just how easy it is get to started with experimentation. The presentations were also effective in showing that there is already interesting work being done at least in the academic circles within New Zealand that could be expanded on. In addition, it was a valuable opportunity to network with like minded people from New Zealand industry, academia and government.

This report was prepared by Mike Hamilton-Jenkins (Consulting Network Architect) and Mansoor Shafi (Telecom Fellow - Wireless) of Spark Connect.

A Competition of Interest to Members? C-Prize is live!

Callaghan Innovation has just launched a competition which may be of interest to our NZ IEEE members. It involves engineering skills to solve some problems associated with Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. On the 8th April, Callaghan Innovation launched New Zealand’s first C-PRIZE competition, an incentivised challenge that aims to advance the commercialisation of innovative technology. The New Zealand screen industry's reputation for cutting-edge filmmaking is recognised around the world. At the same time, directors are increasingly using unmanned aircraft to capture new perspectives and tell their stories. Combining these factors with our open airspace and progressive regulations presents an awesome opportunity for New Zealand innovators to commercialise “next generation UAV technology for the screen industry”. The competition includes three key technical challenges concerning UAV flight stability, object tracking, and audio recording. Six finalists will be awarded $10,00 each to develop prototypes and one grand prize winner will win $50,000 and an expenses paid trip to exhibit at the 2016 NAB trade show in Las Vegas.

Please see the competition website ( for more information showing the finalists and dates for the prize giving events.

Engineering Festival - Second Seminar in the Series (Tuesday, 3 November 2015)

All members of the IEEE Central Section, IET Wellington Network and IPENZ Wellington Branch are welcomed to this event, hosted by all three institutions during lunchtime on Tuesday 3 November 2015 in Central Wellington. This is the second of a series of seminars being sponsored by the three Professional Engineering Institutions in Wellington to focus on the evolution of building design to achieve minimal environmental impact through the use of leading edge technology solutions. This seminar will focus on the use of smart sensors and computational capability to create intelligent buildings which manage their own environment. The guest speakers for this event are Professors’ Mukhopadhyay and Guesgen from Massey University who have been undertaking research in this field over several years and will provide us with their perspectives on the technologies being used and the vision for intelligent buildings in the future.

Prof Subhas Mukhopadhyay             Prof Hans Guesgen

Wireless Sensor Nodes, Smart Homes and Intelligent Buildings: From sensors to computing
Presented by
Prof. Dr. Subhas Chandra Mukhopadhyay
Prof. Dr. Hans W. Guesgen

When: Tuesday, 3 November 2015 at 12 noon for light refreshments
Where: Travelodge Hotel Wellington, 2-6 Gilmer Terrace, Wellington, 6011 (Half way up Plimmer Steps)
Cost: Free to members of any of the three hosting institutions
RSVP: Essential to (numbers are limited so first in first served for registrations)

A brochure providing information about this second set of seminars by Prof. Dr. Subhas Chandra Mukhopadhyay and Prof. Dr. Hans W. Guesgen is available through this link.

Brief Report:
Approximately 20 members from the sponsoring organisations attended this event. Dr Murray Milner coordinated the session and introduced the speakers.

Professor Subhas Mukhopadhyay began his presentation by discussing the need for wireless sensors in the homes of elderly or individuals who are living alone at home and require appropriate monitoring. He described some of the different types of wireless sensor and the types of measurements that they are able to achieve. In particular, he showed examples of sensor devices for obtaining data from household appliances, beds and utility services in order to build up a picture of standard behaviours from which to deduce abnormal events such as falls that can trigger alarms for appropriate authorities to assess and act upon. He briefly mentioned a new "Wellness Protocol" that was being created by one of his PhD students to support the information gathering process. This protocol was presented by his student at our recent Postgraduate Presentation Day highlighted elsewhere on this website.

Professor Subhas Mukhopadhyay

Professor Hans Guesgen

Professor Hans Guesgen discussed the software and associated theoretical background to monitoring in smart environments. He explained some of the difficulties encountered in trying to assess normal versus abnormal events taking place at the subject's location and efforts to overcome these difficulties.

Following the two talks there was a lively Q & A session in which the issues relating to privacy and security of the information being gathered was needing to be protected. The advances in wearable technology such as health monitoring straps and smart watches and phones have meant that previously developed technologies which were not suitable for subjects being monitored could be discarded and new opportunities are arising.

At the conclusion of the session, Dr Milner expressed a desire to continue holding such seminars in the near future or early in 2016 that provide the membership with ongoing information relating to advances in smart home and building technologies. IEEE support for this event is part of the IEEE philosophy of Advancing Technology for Humanity"

Postgraduate Presentation Day 2015 - Massey University

Massey University Student Branch organised the annual IEEE Post Graduate Presentation Day on 20th October 2015 at the Palmerston North (Manawatu) campus. The details of this event and the presenter regulations are given below:

Hemant Ghayvat Chair. IEEE Student Branch Massey University Palmerston North

IEEE Postgraduate Presentation Day at Massey University

Venue: Room RCB 1.62 at Massey University (Manawatu Campus) Palmerston North
Room RCB 1.62 is located in the Riddett Complex on the first floor. A map of the campus showing the Riddett Complex is available through this link.
When: 20th October 2015
Time:10.30 am to 5.00 pm

Time Details
10.30 am - 11.00 am Welcome address by Prof.Donald Bailey, followed by snacks and tea
11.00 am - 1.00 pm Presentation Time (12 Participants)
1.00 pm - 2.00pm Lunch
2.00 pm - 4.30 pm Presentation Time (18 Participants)
4.30 pm - 5.00 pm Prize distribution and Closing Ceremony

Last Date of Title Submission: 18th October 2015 via e-mail to (Hemant Ghayvat)
Duration of Presentation: 6 minutes for presentation; 3 minutes for Q & A.

A report and a link to a photo album for this event can be found on the Student Branch page.

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