Monthly Archives: January 2014

A Screenshot

Designing and building stuff that exploits physics to serve a specific function, that’s what I think it comes down when you ask me about what engineering is.

Today I took this screenshot that is almost like a stereotype for what we electrical engineers do. Actually this PCB (short for printed circuit board) was not even designed by me. It was designed by a gifted colleague who did it according to my specifications.


It’s the power supply for my newest 77-GHz radar front-end, which would be the really interesting part. Sadly I can’t show you the radar, because if I would I’d not be able to publish it in any scientific journal or conference. Something like this or And publications is what the scientific engineering community also lives for.

Walks and Teleconference

Today was an idle day. Some playing portal, some cleaning, relaxing and going for walks. It’s way to warm around here, so it feel a little like walking in April.

plesch 2014

Later that night we had a teleconference for the next IEEE Region 8 Student and Young Professional Congress in Krakow, Poland – the event formally known as IEEE Region 8 Student Branch Congress (SBC). The meeting was dedicated to online promotion of the event.

I think in the end it was a good meeting, although I do feel that we are making progress too slowly. But we have still enough time left, so I’ll promise you it will be the best SYP congress ever!

There was a time when

… I was a musician. The time when I practice the piano for hours every day and the time I played at least a gig every week. Today I am an engineer with a profound understanding of music but with a lack is practice. Maybe that’s a good thing. Because there’s no pressure, no need to make a living out of music.

Today I had one of those once-or-twice-a-month gigs that I still do with a band called Bojazzl at a small bar, about an hour from Linz. Their piano player had broken his clavicle and they had asked me to jump in, which I really enjoyed. Although I would have needed more rehearsals to really make the most out of it.


IEEE JKU Linz Stammtisch

While my job as IEEE Region 8 Student Representative involves working two and sometimes three levels higher up in the IEEE geographic hierarchy, I always enjoy staying in touch with the local student branch (SB) at JKU. After all that’s the entity where my IEEE track started.

Being past past past chair is one thing, but what is really rewarding and makes me happy is to see that the SB is even more active than in my days and that they prosper like never before. Apart from many other activities they still have their monthly series of Stammtische, which are social meetings that try to bring students and industry closer together.

That is exactly where I spent today’s evening: The IEEE Stammtisch featuring Commend.

This is how it works: The SB approaches companies that might be interested in giving a presentation. A company representative joins one of those meetings in a local bar and pays for drinks, food and some extra cash for the SB. In return the SB provides the infrastructure (beamer, …) and the students.

What’s in it for the company? To get in touch with potential future employees or customers. What’s in it for the students? To get in touch with potential future employers and to learn about what’s happening outside the academic world.

What’s in it for me apart from that? Grabbing a beer with friends, getting to know the future leaders of the SB and learning about what matters to the current generation of engineering students.


Another Round of “Try something new for 30 days”

When looking at the last couple of my blog posts, you could think that I spend most of my time around computers. I guess that’s mostly because I rarely blog about other things. That’s about to change for the next 30 days.

A couple of years ago a came across this TED talk entitled “Try something new for 30 days”.

I’ll do it again and this time the challenge is to write a blog post every day, for 30 days. Many of the posts are going to be boring and are not going to be relevant to anyone, so I am not going to push them through facebook, twitter or anything else, but they will be here.