Stephen Kowel, Ph.D.

Electricity and Electronics

Stephen Kowel, Ph.D., received his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the University of Pennsylvania. He has held faculty positions at Syracuse University, the University of California, Davis, The University of Alabama in Huntsville and the University of Cincinnati, where he also served as Dean of the College of Engineering. He was Director of Research Development for Science and Engineering at the University of California, Santa Barbara, from 2012 to 2015. Professor Kowel has contributed to more than 100 papers and patents in the fields of acousto-optics, electro-optics, liquid crystal adaptive lenses and 3D autostereoscopic displays. Among his professional recognitions are appointment as Professor and Dean Emeritus of Engineering at the University of Cincinnati, and election as Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and Fellow of the Optical Society of America (OSA).


Electricity is Fascinating and Scary; Essential and Mysterious

Reading this paragraph involves receiving, transmitting, processing and storing electrical signals. Electricity powers our society and provides critical information services. This course will describe our understanding of electricity and how it makes possible energy delivery, everything digital — medical prosthetics, digital photography, surround sound, computing, mobile phones, navigation systems — and the very act of thinking, which we will do without mathematics. Understand the electricity of today in your home and in your body, appreciate the coming advances in technology, and consider the challenges that thinking machines will pose for humanity tomorrow. The material may be shocking, but “en-lightning.”
  • Confused about FPL bills and BestBuy ads?
  • Use a hairdryer in the bath?
  • Do golf clubs attract lightning?
  • Afraid eyeballs melt when looking into the microwave?
  • What is a Dolby?
  • Ready for Olympians electro-doping?
  • Will the Government read your mind?
  • Machines the final stage of human evolution?
Four Lectures
  1. What is Electricity? -
    • Atoms, electrons, ions
    • Particles and waves
    • Electricity of the brain
  2. Power and Portent -
    • Wind, tides, solar, nuclear
    • AC and DC power transmission
    • Breakers, GFIs, electrical hazards, lightning
  3. Radiation -
    • Radio, radar, light, X-rays
    • Digital and analog signals
    • Cell phones, navigation, and self-driving cars
  4. Electronics: Will Machines Think? -
    • Microprocessors and computers: use and abuse
    • The human brain/computer interface
    • Artificial intelligence and human evolution

Course # F4M3 — First 4 Weeks
Place:Room 151 (Annex), Lifelong Learning Complex, Jupiter Campus
Dates:Mondays, October 16, 23, 30; November 6 2017
Time:12 - 1:30 PM
Fee:$40 / member; $60 / non-member

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 Last Modified 2/12/15