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Issue No.01 - Jan.-March (2012 vol.5)
pp: 1-3
Published by the IEEE Computer Society
In preparing to write this editorial, I took a look back at some earlier ones. I was struck by a 2009 editorial in which I used the metaphor of a young child. IEEE Transactions on Haptics ( ToH) was, in my estimation, a toddler at the time. Apparently, the mapping from “ToH years” to “people years” is rather nonlinear! I say that because 2012 marks the journal’s fifth anniversary, and from all appearances, ToH is pretty grown up. There is a lot of evidence of maturity. For instance, our journal is now indexed by Thomson-Reuters. With this issue, the page count is 100 up from 64 at the outset. And last fall, those remaining Associate Editors who were part of the “original” group completed the second of their two-year terms. I would like to recognize these individuals, all of whom contributed significantly to the formation of the journal: Federico Barbagli, Cagatay Basdogan, Matthias Harders, Vincent Hayward, Hiroyuki Kajimoto, Astrid Kappers, Karon Maclean, and Hong Tan. As they left the editorial board, we were fortunate to welcome a number of new editors: Richard Adams, Gabriel Baud-Bovy, Wouter M. Bergmann Tiest, Knut Drewing, Sandra Hirche, Allison M. Okamura (second tour of duty!), and William R. Provancher.
Change has also happened at the management level. Overseeing ToH is a Management Committee whose members represent the sponsoring IEEE Societies: Computer Society (CS), Robotics and Automation Society (RAS), and Consumer Electronics Society (CES). This committee has been an important source of support and guidance from day one, and I am deeply indebted to them. Recent departures include Hiroo Iwata and Jon Rockne, who finished their terms in 2010, as well as Peter Luh, who finished his term at the end of 2011. Peter deserves special mention because he served as the Chair of the Management Committee from the very beginning (indeed, he has been affiliated with the journal longer than I have). Peter is the very epitome of calm, collected and clear-thinking. He has been a wonderful mentor to me and a tireless advocate for ToH. As difficult as it is to see Peter, Hiroo, and Jon depart, it is a pleasure to welcome Dinesh Pai and Grigorie Burdea to the committee, and to offer my appreciation to Reinhard Moeller, who has taken on the Chairmanship.
Reinhard is, in fact, more than just the new Chair of the Management Committee. He is also one of three Guest Editors of the Special Section on Haptics in Consumer Electronics that you will find in this issue. Reinhard, along with fellow editors Seungmoon Choi and Danny Grant, has put together a fascinating section that I’m sure you’ll want to read. Consumer applications of haptics barely existed a half-dozen years ago, but today they are quickly becoming one of the most important commercial applications of haptics technology. This is an exciting development for those who believe in the symbiosis of commerce and science.
Finally, as is our custom in the year’s first issue, it is my pleasure to announce the recipients of the Citations for Meritorious Service. The Citations recognize four individuals whose hard work and dedication exemplify the spirit of volunteerism that makes our journal a success. This year’s recipients are Astrid Kappers for her work as an Associate Editor, and Katherine Kuchenbecker, Vincent Levésque, and Volkan Patolu for their work as reviewers. Congratulations and thank you!
J. Edward Colgate
Editor-in-Chief



Richard Adams received the BS degree as a Distinguished Graduate of the US Air Force Academy (USAFA) in 1989 and the MS degree from the University of Washington in 1990. He subsequently joined the Air Force Research Laboratory, applying robust and optimal control to improving aircraft flying qualities and performance. He worked from 1994 to 1996 at the Centre d’Études et de Recherches de Toulouse, developing parameter-varying control techniques for aerospace applications. He received the PhD degree from the University of Washington in 1999 for his application of two-port network theory to the stability and control of haptic interfaces. Dr. Adams returned to the USAFA as an assistant professor in the Department of Astronautical Engineering, serving as Navigation, Guidance, and Control Division Chief and Deputy Director of the Space Systems Research Center. In June 2009, Lieutenant Colonel Adams retired from the Air Force and joined Barron Associates Incorporated, where, as a senior research scientist, he leads several efforts in tactile human-machine interfaces, aerospace controls, and diagnostics. Recognition includes the AIAA Best Paper Award, the AF Scientific Achievement Award, and the AF Research Laboratory’s General Foulois Award. His current research interests include control of haptic interfaces, haptic feedback for aerospace applications, virtual reality rehabilitation, and assistive technology.



Gabriel Baud-Bovy received the BS degree in computer science from the University of Geneva, Switzerland, in 1990, the MS degree in electrical engineering and computer science from Portland State University, Oregon, in 1992, and the PhD degree in psychology from the University of Geneva in 1999. From 1999 to 2003, he held a joint postdoctoral position in the Neuroscience Department at the University of Minnesota and the Brain Science Center at the Veteran’s Affairs Hospitals, Minneapolis. Since September 2003, he has been an assistant professor on the Faculty of Psychology of the Vita-Salute San Raffaele University in Milan and he has recently joined the the Robotics, Brain, and Cognitive Sciences (RBCS) Department at the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT). His research interests are centered on the study of the motor and perceptual processes involved in fine human motor skills and the dexterous manipulation of objects.



Wouter M. Bergmann Tiest received the MSc degree in experimental physics from Utrecht University, The Netherlands, in 1999. Until 2004, he was employed by the Netherlands Institute for Space Research, working on X-ray detectors for space applications, while getting his PhD from Utrecht University. He switched to psychophysics when he started as a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Physics and Astronomy of Utrecht University, working in the Human Perception Group of the Helmholtz Institute. He is currently a scientist in this group. His research interests include haptic searching, hand movements, cue integration, and haptic perception of distance, volume, mass, and material properties such as roughness, thermal conductance, friction, compliance, and viscosity.



Knut Drewing received the PhD degree in psychology from the University of Munich in 2001 and the postdoctoral lecture qualification (habilitation) in psychology in 2010 from Giessen University. He worked at the Max-Planck-Institutes for Psychological Research (Munich) and for Biological Cybernetics (Tübingen). Currently, he is a senior scientist and private lecturer of experimental and perceptual psychology in the Department of Psychology, Giessen University. His research is in haptic perception, multisensory integration, and human movement control.



Sandra Hirche received the diploma engineer degree in mechanical engineering and transport systems in 2002 from the Technical University Berlin, Germany, and the Doctor of Engineering degree in electrical engineering and information technology in 2005 from the Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany. In 2005, she was awarded a scholarship from JSPS (Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science) for two years as a postdoctoral researcher at the Fujita Lab at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan. Since 2008, she has been a professor heading the Associate Institute for Information-Oriented Control in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology, Technische Universität München. Her research interests include human-in-the-loop control, haptics, cooperative control, and networked control systems. She leads the multijoint action lab within the excellence cluster “Cognition for Technical Systems (CoTeSys).” She is a senior member of the IEEE. She has served as chair for Student Activities in the IEEE Control System Society (CSS) since 2009, as chair of the CSS Awards Subcommittee on CDC Best Student-Paper Award since 2010, and has been an elected member of the Board of Governors of the IEEE CSS since 2010.



Allison M. Okamura received the BS degree from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1994, and the MS and PhD degrees from Stanford University in 1996 and 2000, respectively, all in mechanical engineering. She is currently an associate professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Stanford University. She has been an associate editor of the IEEE Transactions on Haptics, an editor of the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation Conference Editorial Board, and cochair of the IEEE Haptics Symposium. Her awards include the 2009 IEEE Technical Committee on Haptics Early Career Award, the 2005 IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Early Academic Career Award, and the 2004 US National Science Foundation CAREER Award. She is an IEEE fellow. Her interests include haptics, teleoperation, virtual environments and simulators, medical robotics, neuromechanics and rehabilitation, prosthetics, and engineering education.



William R. Provancher earned the BS degree in mechanical engineering and the MS degree in materials science and engineering, both from the University of Michigan. His PhD degree from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University was in the area of haptics, tactile sensing, and feedback. His postdoctoral research involved investigating and designing bio-inspired climbing robots, focusing on creating robot foot designs for climbing vertical surfaces with compliantly supported microspines. He is currently a tenured associate professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Utah. He teaches courses in the areas of mechanical design, mechatronics, and haptics. His active areas of research include haptics, tactile feedback, and the design of novel climbing robots. Dr. Provancher received an US National Science Foundation CAREER award in 2008 and won Best Paper and Best Poster Awards at the 2009 and 2011 World Haptics Conferences for his work on tactile feedback. Research details and related publications are linked on Dr. Provancher’s homepage: http://www.mech.utah.edu/people/faculty/provancher.html.

For information on obtaining reprints of this article, please send e-mail to: toh@computer.org.

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