Written by IEEE | September 13, 2018

According to Gartner, our world is about to get much more interconnected: it’s predicted that there will be roughly 20 billion internet-connected things – from autonomous vehicles to smart home devices and much, much more – by 2020.

Established in 1947 as IEEE’s first society, the IEEE Signal Processing Society (SPS) is preparing for this world, wherein nearly everything and, by extension, everyone, is connected at an unprecedented level.

For the past seven decades, SPS has been at the forefront of the signal processing field, which is concerned with the analysis, synthesis and modification of signals used to convey information. SPS members drive the underlying technology that enables most of the applications we interact with on a daily basis. Their work has contributed to the rise of wireless communications, audio analysis and remastered music, video processing and online streaming, speech recognition, radar and other landmark signal technologies.

The future interconnected world will be noisy and dense, which poses a unique challenge to signal processing engineers: how to extract signals from noise in order to export intelligent data. The Society and its members are poised to take on this challenge, making data usable to empower the devices and applications that facilitate a hyperconnected world.

In addition, SPS maintains the mission of educating the broader signal processing community. To do this, it provides a venue for its nearly 16,000 global members; SPS members have the opportunity to connect and collaborate with industry professionals, academics and students from around the world, helping them exchange ideas and empower new talent in the industry through initiatives like the Society’s Signal Processing Cup Student Competition.

Over the next five years, the IEEE Signal Processing Society plans to place a greater emphasis on educational and humanitarian programs. These programs will align signal processing with applications for social good, drive new technological advances, and enhance its role as an asset to the medical field through innovations in organ imaging and brain signal analysis.