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IEEE COVID-19 FAQs

Answers to your questions about IEEE products, services, projects, and policies

12 min read

CORPORATE ACTIVITIES

IEEE FOUNDATION

How is the IEEE Foundation responding to COVID-19?

To support our current situation and to ensure continuity in a time where needs are shifting, the IEEE Foundation launched a designated fund, the IEEE Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund, which is ready to accept donations. Philanthropic investments will ensure that funding is available to support IEEE resources, programs, and initiatives affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

What is the goal of the IEEE Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund?

The IEEE Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund will ensure that funding exists to support IEEE resources, programs, and initiatives affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The fund will:

  • Drive global innovation in response to the COVID-19 crisis through collaboration and the sharing of knowledge
  • Enhance public understanding of engineering and technology, and pursue the practical application of engineering and technology pertinent to the COVID-19 crisis
  • Be a trusted source of educational services for educators, families, and learners practicing social distancing and provide resources to support life-long learning
  • Provide opportunities for virtual career and professional development throughout the COVID-19 crisis
  • Inspire the IEEE worldwide audience by providing relief from the myriad repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic and by supporting communities that advance technical interests, inform public policy, and expand knowledge pertinent to the current state of global affairs

I want to help. What can I do to support IEEE programs during the pandemic?

Consider donating to the IEEE Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund today.

How do I make a donation to the IEEE Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund?

Visit the dedicated IEEE Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund donation page.

IEEE HUMANITARIAN ACTIVITIES

How is the IEEE Humanitarian Activities Committee (HAC) responding to COVID-19?

IEEE HAC and IEEE SIGHT (Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology) are enabling IEEE member efforts to contribute to their local communities during this unprecedented time. HAC and SIGHT have launched a Special Call for Proposals related to COVID-19. The committee will provide expedited review of project proposals that have a strong potential for immediate impact in the fight against COVID-19. Ideally, projects will have good connections with local IEEE organizational units and engage a significant number of IEEE members. Full details may be found here.

What level of funding is possible?

Given the rapidly evolving situation and expedited review, HAC and SIGHT will make awards of up to US $5,000 per project. Successful projects may apply for additional funding. If you have an initiative that requires significantly more support, please contact HAC at hac-projects@ieee.org

What is the deadline and when will I receive a decision?

Applications may be submitted at any time between now and 1 June 2020 through the IEEE HAC Online Funding Opportunities Portal. Decisions are generally made within one week of receiving the submission.

What additional resources are available?

The IEEE Humanitarian Activities Committee (HAC) Education Forum, found on Facebook Groups, is a dedicated, interactive space for IEEE members and staff to gather virtually and learn about topics related to humanitarian activities, sustainable development, and how technology and technically trained individuals can contribute.

The forum is designed to accompany IEEE HAC’s free online educational curriculum, which can be found on the IEEE Learning Network. This is an opportunity for those who take the online courses to discuss and explore the topics further with their peers and skilled IEEE volunteers.

IEEE HISTORY CENTER

Where can I access interesting resources and information focused on the history of technology?

The Engineering & Technology History Wiki is a one-stop global record for preserving and sharing the history of technological innovation. Resources include articles, firsthand accounts, oral histories, landmarks, and IEEE Milestones.

Where can I preserve my memories of a technological innovation I helped to make possible?

IEEE members are invited to share their firsthand history on the Wiki.

Are there online resources to help parents and teachers of preuniversity students that explore the relationship between technology and history?

Yes, the IEEE REACH (Raising Engineering Awareness through Conduit of History) provides free lesson plans, primary and secondary resources, hands-on activities, and multimedia material.

IEEE NEW INITIATIVE COMMITTEE (NIC)

Is the NIC program currently accepting and reviewing proposals?

Yes, the committee is. Learn more here.

IEEE AWARDS ACTIVITIES

Is the nomination process for the 2021 IEEE Medals and Recognitions proceeding as usual?

Yes, you can nominate innovators who are advancing technology for the benefit of humanity. Nominate a colleague for an IEEE Medal or for an IEEE Recognition.

How are the 2020 IEEE Medal and Recognition recipients being recognized now that the the IEEE Vision, Innovation, and Challenges Summit and Honors Ceremony is not being held?

IEEE is still honoring the 2020 IEEE Medal and Recognition recipients even though the 2020 IEEE Vision, Innovation, and Challenges Summit and Honors Ceremony will not be held this year. The recognitions will take place through a series of specialized online promotions that will span the next few months. These promotions will showcase the recipients’ contributions and their role in advancing technology for the benefit of humanity. Our valued awards sponsors will also be featured during these promotions. The online promotions are scheduled to begin on 15 May. Updates will be provided here.

Are the presentations of the 2020 IEEE Technical Field Awards still taking place?

IEEE Technical Field Award recipients are normally recognized at IEEE conferences throughout the year, but many conferences scheduled to be held from March through August have either been postponed or are being conducted virtually. Some of the recipients will be acknowledged at the virtual conferences, and in other cases the IEEE conference organizers and recipients have mutually agreed that the presentation of the awards will take place during a conference held in 2021. Exceptions have been made on a case-by-case basis to accommodate requests by the recipients to receive their awards in 2021. You can view the list of recipients who will be receiving their awards in 2021.

EDUCATIONAL ACTIVITIES

Where can I find a list of free educational webinars I can take while working from home?

There are a number of free webinars for preuniversity science, technology, engineering, and math educators; university faculty; and practicing engineers looking for continuing professional education. Links to upcoming webinars, as well as recordings of past events, can be accessed on the IEEE Innovation at Work site.

Does IEEE offer online courses that I can use while teaching my university class?

There are online eLearning courses that are part of the eLearning Library subscription, available on the IEEE Xplore Digital Library as well as the IEEE Learning Network (ILN). Contact the individual responsible for your university's IEEE Xplore subscription to determine what access you may have to IEEE eLearning courses.

Are there discounts available for content on the ILN?

IEEE has reduced the price of most courses by up to 70 percent.

Can I still earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and Professional Development Hours (PDHs) when I take courses on ILN?

Yes, upon successful completion of many of the courses, learners earn certificates that include CEUs and PDHs.

Are there any online resources that IEEE offers for teachers and parents of preuniversity students?

There are a number of at-home online learning resources. Visit IEEE TryEngineering to discover a variety of learning resources from IEEE and other select providers.

Can my IEEE Eta Kappa Nu (IEEE-HKN) chapter continue operations even if my university has switched to distance learning?

Yes. IEEE-HKN chapters can still continue operations. Consult its Resources for Virtual Operations page for additional details.

IEEE-USA

Is IEEE-USA still working with the government through this crisis?

Yes. We continue to advocate for U.S. IEEE members on Capitol Hill. We are pushing to ensure they get the help they need from Congress during this difficult time. IEEE-USA government relations director Russ Harrison is also providing weekly updates on the situation from Washington, D.C., including how to access newly available government resources.

What is IEEE-USA doing in Washington, D.C., to help IEEE members?

IEEE-USA is working directly with decision makers to address the concerns of IEEE members. For example, it is working with federal agencies to modify the terms of federal research grants to adjust for the current situation. It is also working with Congress to augment those grants with additional resources to account for unexpected costs incurred during the shutdown. IEEE-USA is also working with Congress on the next COVID-19 relief bill to address the unique challenges faced by the technology sector.

Are IEEE-USA ebooks being offered for free?

Yes. We have offered our catalog of more than 150 ebooks on topics such as careers, leadership, and public policy free to all IEEE members.

Are IEEE-USA webinars still being held?

Yes, and new ones have been added to the schedule for the coming weeks, with subject experts on topics of particular interest to help our members during this current climate. These free webinars—including more than 225 from our archives available on demand—are designed to help members hone their skills, assess their value and brand, and gain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

Will IEEE-USA still be sponsoring conferences this year?

Many conferences scheduled to take place in the next few months have been canceled, postponed, or have gone virtual. We look forward to seeing you at those that have been rescheduled.

Where can I go if I need more help dealing with this situation?

IEEE-USA has collected some helpful resources and tips on its website, and will keep the page updated throughout this situation. Check back often for the latest news and information.

MARKETING, SALES, AND DESIGN

How is IEEE providing resources to help with the crisis of the global pandemic?

IEEE has identified articles and standards in its IEEE Xplore Digital Library that can help advance efforts in areas including global health and safety, research, infrastructure, communications, and more during the pandemic.

Content in this collection is now free to access, with additional rights for all types of reuse, including full text and data mining, and analysis.

Of the 5 million documents in the digital library, all relevant research has been made available at no cost. We are continually monitoring the developments and will update the content of this page periodically as the situation develops.

With so many universities around the world shut down, are customers still able to access their institutional subscriptions remotely?

Yes. If your organization has an institutional subscription to IEEE Xplore and you need to work remotely due to school and workplace closures, you can still access the digital library and continue your work and research while offsite. See resources below:

What about access to the IEEE Member Digital Library?

IEEE is providing enhanced access to the IEEE Member Digital Library (MDL) subscribers during the global health crisis.

For the next 90 days, IEEE is doubling the number of monthly article downloads available to MDL subscribers.

MDL, brought to you via the IEEE Xplore Digital Library, provides instant access to all IEEE journal articles, magazines, and conference papers—the most essential information in technology today. MDL offers two flexible options designed to meet the varying needs of IEEE members that offer up to 25 article downloads per month.

IEEE subscribing members are provided with increased flexibility while working remotely to access the research they need to drive innovation forward during the global health crisis.

To get started, simply visit IEEE Xplore and log in, find the articles you are interested in, and start using your free downloads.

Where can I learn more about what IEEE and its members are doing during the pandemic?

We encourage you to follow IEEE’s social media channels to learn about the great work and expert insights that IEEE members are producing during this time.

Facebook

Instagram

LinkedIn

Twitter

MEMBER AND GEOGRAPHIC ACTIVITIES

How can IEEE Women in Engineering (WIE) Affinity Groups connect virtually with local members during this time?

We encourage the groups to use the WebEx Web conferencing tool to conduct virtual local activities. Webex is designed for real-time online meetings, webinars, training, demos, and presentations.

The groups can also connect through the Women in Leadership Community in IEEE Collabratec.

What is the status of the 2020 IEEE Women in Engineering International Leadership Conference (WIE ILC)?

The safety and well-being of all conference participants is of paramount importance to IEEE. We have been continuously monitoring the global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and decided that the conference, previously scheduled to be held 19-20 May in San Diego, will now be held as a virtual conference. Information on the virtual program will be confirmed in the coming weeks and made available on the IEEE WIE ILC website.

Will IEEE.tv continue to live stream events during the pandemic?

Due to travel and meeting restrictions put into place by governments around the globe, there are no in-person events to cover at this time. As travel restrictions ease up and large groups of people are allowed to gather again, IEEE.tv will begin streaming the keynotes and plenary sessions from the most popular IEEE conferences around the world.

How can members find virtual meetings or virtual activities that their sections and chapters are holding?

Use vTools Events to locate all virtual activities being hosted by sections and chapters worldwide. You can also visit IEEE Collabratec to see all upcoming virtual events that sections and chapters are holding as well as virtual IEEE conferences.

PUBLICATION SERVICES AND PRODUCTS

How can I access my institution’s IEEE Xplore Digital Library subscription from home?

Follow these tips to log in to IEEE Xplore remotely.

What is IEEE doing to contribute to COVID-19 research?

IEEE has identified articles and standards in IEEE Xplore that may help researchers understand and manage different aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic and technologies that can be leveraged to combat it.

All content in this collection is now free to access, with additional rights for all types of reuse, including full text and data mining and analysis.

We are continually monitoring the developments and will update IEEE Xplore content accordingly.

Is IEEE accepting new submissions in their journals and magazines?

Yes, IEEE journals and magazines are accepting new submissions as usual. Visit the IEEE Author Center for information about publishing with IEEE journals and magazines and to access article templates and author tools to help you prepare your article for submission.

Are IEEE journals and magazines still being published?

Yes, our journals and magazines are still publishing high-quality content. New articles appear regularly in IEEE Xplore. Print publications are still being mailed but they may be delayed in certain parts of the world due to local mail safety guidelines.

If you have any issues accessing your online subscription or receiving your print publication, please contact us at onlinesupport@ieee.org.

Is Wiley-IEEE Press accepting book proposals and publishing books during this time?

Yes, Wiley-IEEE Press is accepting book proposals and continues to publish high-quality books. If you are interested in publishing with it, visit the IEEE Press website or contact pressbooks@ieee.org for more information.

I ordered a Wiley-IEEE Press book through Wiley and am experiencing a delay/have not received it. Whom should I contact?

Please go to https://support.wiley.com/s/article/contacting-wiley-customer-support and select your country for Wiley customer support in your area.

What should I do if my institution is closed and I need to pay Article Processing Charges (APCs)?

When you receive the payment email from CCC-Rightslink, click on Pay Charges Now/Raise an Invoice button. Unless prompted to seek funding approval, you can pay APCs by credit card or pay by invoice to signal payment is intended as staff/funding is made available. This will stop the reminder emails and record your acknowledgment to pay.

How can IEEE help me collaborate online?

Sign up for a free IEEE Collabratec account to network with professionals in your field, discuss publishing in the AuthorLab community, collaborate with colleagues in a workspace, or collect files in your personal library.

You can also share and get feedback on your preliminary research drafts by posting them on the preprint server TechRxiv.

I’m an IEEE reviewer. Can I get an extension on my review deadline?

Yes. Please contact the publication’s editorial office or editor in chief to request an extension. Include the manuscript reference number for faster assistance.

I submitted my paper to an IEEE conference, but now the conference is not taking place as originally scheduled. How do I know what the status of my conference paper is?

All conference-related questions should be emailed to eert@ieee.org.

STANDARDS ASSOCIATION

How is the IEEE SA contributing resources to help with the crisis of the global pandemic?

It is providing no-cost public access to relevant IEEE standards used by technologists, engineers, scientists, manufacturers, and others as they respond to the global COVID-19 public health emergency. Go to “Access Standards” on the IEEE SA website to learn more and to download PDFs of the standards.

How is IEEE supporting standards development groups during this time?

To meet the need for increased virtual meetings as standards work continues to progress, the IEEE SA is accelerating a change in its standards development communities remote meeting platform. The IEEE SA is now offering WebEx accounts to its standards committees and working group officers. The current teleconference software, Join.Me, will continue to be provided until 3 May.

If you are a standards committee officer or a working group officer and choose to use an IEEE SA-provided WebEx account prior to the JoinMe use end date, you may do so. The IEEE SA will provide accounts to any existing JoinMe user account that has been used within the last 12 months. Automated notices have been sent out by WebEx to IEEE standards committee officers and working group officers. If you did not receive a notice and still need a WebEx account for your working group, click here. Once you have submitted the account request form, your information will be verified by IEEE staff and an account will be provided within three to five business days.

What is the current status of IEEE SA Governance meetings, including the IEEE SA Standards Board?

At this time, the IEEE SA Board of Governors, to be held 15–16 May, and the IEEE Standards Board, to be held 1–3 June, will be virtual meetings. More details will be available on the IEEE SA Governance website.

What types of IEEE SA Open Source projects can individuals or entities explore or start that are focused on addressing the global pandemic?

IEEE has an Open Source program called IEEE SA Open. The platform provides new communities of technology collaboration that harnesses the power of familiar open-source development tools with IEEE’s member network, technical expertise, and resources with a goal to accelerate innovation and enable technological advancements. The platform enables independent software developers, startups, projects, academia, foundations, and industry organizations to create, test, manage, and deploy projects. The platform is freely available and supported for communities to come together and begin open projects that respond to the crisis or to be used in this time of social distancing.

Getting started is easy. First create an IEEE Account, then log in, read and accept the terms, then find and fork a project or start a new personal projector. Or you can apply to create a new group-based project by sending an email to opensourceopps@ieee.org.

TECHNICAL ACTIVITIES

How are IEEE societies, technical councils, and technical communities contributing resources to help with the crisis of the global pandemic?

A number of societies have introduced new fast-track review procedures for COVID-19 pandemic-related content in Open Journals.

IEEE DataPort has made pandemic-related data sets freely available to the research community.

How is IEEE Technical Activities supporting technical communities during this time?

Many societies, technical councils, and technical communities are providing no-cost access to content, online courses, and other resources to enable them to remain connected and technically current during this period.

In addition, societies, technical councils, technical communities, and the Technical Activities Board have shifted leadership and general membership meetings to virtual delivery to maintain momentum, dialogue, and focus.

How can I ensure that I am using IEEE best practices when communicating with society members and technical community participants during the pandemic?

IEEE has developed a marketing communications tool kit to assist in formulating and communicating during this time. The tool kit offers best practices, copy that can be leveraged for your communications, and access to staff support in reviewing the communications within one business day. Here are some helpful emails.

  • Conferences: eert@ieee.org for assistance with any IEEE conferences, meetings, or events.
  • COVID-19 marketing strategy and positioning: corporate-communications@ieee.org for information regarding public relations, social media, IEEE-approved positioning, and best practices.
  • COVID-19 marketing support: CovidCom@ieee.org to reach a cross-IEEE team of individuals prepared to provide support, guidance, and encouragement. They will also assist in supporting messages that are sensitive, on brand, and leverage the resources where practical. As always, content creation and communication remains in your hands.

The Lies that Powered the Invention of Pong

A fake contract masked a design exercise–and started an industry

4 min read
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Pong arcade game in yellow cabinet containing black and white TV display, two knobs are labeled Player 1 and Player 2, Atari logo visible.
Roger Garfield/Alamy

In 1971 video games were played in computer science laboratories when the professors were not looking—and in very few other places. In 1973 millions of people in the United States and millions of others around the world had seen at least one video game in action. That game was Pong.

Two electrical engineers were responsible for putting this game in the hands of the public—Nolan Bushnell and Allan Alcorn, both of whom, with Ted Dabney, started Atari Inc. in Sunnyvale, Calif. Mr. Bushnell told Mr. Alcorn that Atari had a contract from General Electric Co. to design a consumer product. Mr. Bushnell suggested a Ping-Pong game with a ball, two paddles, and a score, that could be played on a television.

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