July 16, 2020   |   Updated: July 17, 2020

It’s always fun to imagine the exciting ways new technologies can affect how we live our daily lives. We asked six IEEE Impact Creators on the passions that have them jumping out of bed in the morning and the topics that keep them inspired in their careers:

1. Carmen Fontana
IEEE Member
“I have always been inspired by technology’s impact on humanity. I get excited about how technology can help bring us together to solve new problems. Whether it’s artificial intelligence, internet of things or quantum computing, we have an exciting opportunity to create positive change with technology.”

Alejandro Frery2. Alejandro Frery
IEEE Senior Member
“I am still inspired by the same flame that is the reason I ultimately became an engineer: curiosity. The questions have changed, but the drive is still there. I am eager to know how things work and to devise ways of doing new things. My platform of thinking is statistics, as it allows me to look into an ever-changing world.”

Renato Alves Borges3. Renato Borges
IEEE Senior Member
“There are many things that inspire me, but if I need to put it in a single and simple sentence, I must say improving the quality of human life and the way we connect in the world. In this sense, IEEE plays a very important role by being a research and technological information hub.”

Esther Luna Columbini4. Esther Luna Columbini
IEEE Member
“I am deeply inspired by the magnificence of our brain and the idea of using machines to try to mimic it so we can understand more of our complex nature and build systems that can indeed help us.”

Saumya Sharma5. Saumya Sharma
IEEE Member
“We are at a fantastic juncture in the scientific journey of mankind. It is so interesting to witness what we can accomplish with artificial intelligence mainly owing to data processing capabilities with GPUs, data collection capabilities from sensors and the internet of things providing us ways to create digital awareness of our surroundings. The applications for these abilities are usually discussed around robotics and self driving cars but they extend much beyond and even into areas that we feel ethically conflicted to dive into. This also adds to why this is a landmark moment in scientific evolution as we explore the boundaries and scope of technology mixing with the typically untouched sociological and behavioral aspects of humanity.”

Greg Welch6. Gregory Welch
IEEE Senior Member
“It’s a cliche perhaps but I love to ‘think outside the box’ in various things I work on. For example, I am inspired by new methods for sensing physical phenomena in the real world—methods that do so indirectly via inference from various signal behaviors. It’s really exciting because there is a hope of sensing things we cannot directly observe, e.g., the hidden ‘back side’ of someone’s hand or head. I am also inspired by the new opportunities to move from fundamental VR/AR technology research to actually using the technology to explore some of the things that originally drew me to VR/AR. For so long we (researchers) had to work very hard to make even the most rudimentary system work well enough to simply demonstrate something. But in the last 10 years or so, for several reasons, we have seen the explosion (and I don’t think that’s an overstatement) of turnkey off-the-shelf systems for VR and AR.”

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