MARCH 2001
San Francisco
Roy Trumbull - Editor
Bill Dempster - Artist
Advertisers for this month's newsletter are:

Zack Electronics - (800) 998-3947
Advanced Marketing - Frank A. Santucci - (650) 365-3944
Belden - Steve Lampen - (415) 440-8393
Orban - Rick Sawyer - (360) 715-1913
MARCOM - Martin Jackson - (408) 768-8668
William F. Ruck, Jr. Broadcast Engineer - (415) 995-6969
Audio Accessories - Rosie Alexander - (510) 787-3335
RF Specialties of California - Bill Newbrough - (888) 737-7321
Hammett & Edison, Inc. - Dane E. Ericksen, P.E. - (707) 996-5200
LeBLANC - David A. Hill - (650) 574-4600
Gentner Communications - Kelly Hanning - (800) 879-9317
Improbable Missions Fource - Mike Schweizer - (888) 4-ISDN4U
Econco - George Badger - 650-327-7599
Kathrein (Scala Division) - Michael Wm. Bach - (541) 779-6500
Harris - John Briskie - (650) 593-1837
ADC - Russ Erickson - (877) 440-7877
Enco Systems - Steve Rooney - 800-ENCO-SYS

Babes/SBE Luncheon on Wednesday Mar 28th

This month our featured speaker will be Richard Altopiedi of Dialight. I don't know if you've noticed those traffic lights that appear segmented when you see them close up. They are high intensity LEDs. It's now possible to do tower lights with LEDs.

As usual, our luncheon will be at Sinbad's just south of the Ferry Building on the Embarcadero near the foot of Mission St. We meet at 11:30 and are seated at 12:30.

Claude Shannon Dies (1916-2001)

There are only so many geniuses per century and Shannon was one of them. His 1948 masterpiece "A Mathematical Theory of Communications" gave birth to the science of Information Theory. He was the first to view the communication channel independently from message content.

In 1950 he demonstrated Theseus, a mechanical mouse that could learn a maze courtesy of a 100 relay memory.

He was fond of doing something just because he found it interesting. He and a grad student investigated blackjack and found it could be beaten. Indirectly, he is the father of card counting.

He was the only one at Bell Labs who rode a unicycle down the hall while juggling.

For more details about his life see:

New SBE Address
There is a new address for the National SBE office in Indianapolis. Effectively immediately use: 9247 Meridian St. Suite 305, Indianapolis, IN 46260. The phone number is 317-253-1640. Linda Emerick is the Certification Chair and her email is

Chapter 40, Inc.
There has been a model in place for some years to take an SBE chapter through all of the steps to incorporation as a non-profit organization. We finally did them. Incorporation offers some protection for officers from lawsuits and also paves the way to once and for all settle tax status. SBE National advises all chapters to incorporate and chapter 40 has finally done it. Congratulations to Dane Ericksen for putting it all together.

SBE Certification Test Dates
Exam Dates         Application Deadline
June 8-18, 2001    Apr 30, 2001
Aug 17-27, 2001    Jul 9, 2001
Nov 9-19, 2001     Sep 28,2001
Although an exam window is shown, in practice, the test is usually given on one of the Saturdays within the range.

Obtain the application form for certification from the national office in Indianapolis.

Ennes Workshop at NAB on Networking Technology
Terry Braun, of Criterion Broadcast Services, will give a tutorial on Broadcast Networking Technology at NAB on Saturday April 21 at the LVCC room N249/250 from 9AM to 3PM. It will be followed by the CPBE exam. Pre-register with headquarters if you wish to participate. You must be registered for the full NAB conference to attend (A vendor supplied badge won't do it.).

The poster on this page was done by Bill Dempster in the late 1950s.

Glasses Required
I was reading a bunch of short items in a newspaper and I came across a story about a researcher at a university who believes he has linked the blindness of 5 men to the use of a certain highly publicized blue pill. My mind leapt to the punchline of a joke known to teenage boys. If the research is correct, it brings a new meaning to: "Can I do it until I need glasses?"

Speaking of Glasses
A few years ago I complained about needing to raise my glasses so I could look through the bifocal when working on a piece of equipment or doing wiring in a rack. My optometrist suggested making a set of glasses in which there was a bifocal at the top and at the bottom. I got them. They're weird, but they work.

If you have an email address, please contact Warren Reese at Warren is in charge of our email list, which we use when we need to notify members when something has happened between newsletters.

Webmeister Tim Pozar has the current newsletter plus newsletters all the way back to 1996 at: