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Affiliated Commission of

Optical Computing Steering Committee


Bylaws of the Steering Committee for the Optical Computing international topical meetings series (OC'xx)

First draft established by the ICO Optics, November 10, 1990.
Approved by the Optical Society of America, February 4, 1991.
Approved by the International Commission for Optics, August 26, 1991.
Approved by SPIE, June 4, 1992 
Approved by EOS, April 30, 1992.

1 - Background:

The validity of the present bylaws results from an agreement by the above-mentioned professional organisations, named hereafter the partner organisations.

Since 1987, a series of international topical meetings entitled "Optical Computing" have been organised annually. Until 1990, there was an unwritten agreement between a number of societies and individuals involved that these meetings would be organised in the odd years by the Optical Society of America in the United States and in the even years by or with the sponsorship of the International Commission for Optics outside the United States. The aim of the present bylaws is to write down this agreement so as to clarify any procedure that needs to be agreed on; nevertheless, the essence of the unwritten agreement remains unchanged: it is expected that a topical meeting will still be organised in the odd years by the Optical Society of America in the United States and in the even years with some participation of the International Commission for Optics outside the United States.

Every meeting in the series has an international technical program committee; it may have a local organising committee and it may have an international advisory committee. Its officers are one or possibly two general chairpersons, and one or possibly two chairpersons for the various committees.

2 - Duties of the OC steering committee:

An "OC steering committee" is established, whose duties are as follows.

a) The steering committee is responsible for long-term planning for the future meetings, including choice of locations and dates and technical scope; the steering committee examines the budget and recommends it to the organisation(s) responsible financially; the conference officers obtain approval from the steering committee for their actions, including the composition of the meeting committees.

b) The steering committee reviews the technical quality of the meeting, attendance, exhibitor satisfaction (whenever applicable) and the financial report. It submits a report of its findings to the partner organisations.

c) The steering committee appoints the officers of the OC meetings.

Approvals and recommendations from the steering committee shall not imply sponsorship, cosponsorship or financial commitment from the partner organisations; these questions will be examined separately for each meeting by the partner organisations and, if applicable, by other organisations.

3 - Duties of the chairperson of the steering committee:

The steering committee has a chairperson, whose duties are as follows:

a) collect correspondence and write correspondence in the npame of the steering committee;

b) obtain appointments for the members of the steering committee in due time for its continuous operation;

c) organise the steering committee meetings (venue, agenda) and write the minutes as appropriate.

4 - Steering committee meetings:

The steering committee meets once a year, during the OC meeting. The participants of the meeting are the members of the old committee and those of the new committee.

At its meeting during OC'xx, the steering Committee

a) examines the situation and progress of all OC meetings;

b) makes a final decision for the location and officers of OC'xx+2 if this has not been done earlier;

c) makes a final decision for the location and officers of OC'xx+3 or later OC meetings if this appears appropriate;

d) appoints its new chairperson if appropriate.

The decisions are normally made by consensus and not by majority vote. If it appears necessary to use a voting procedure and if the votes are equally divided, the chairperson's vote is dominant.

5 - Composition of the steering committee:

The steering committee has eight seats, four with appointment by the Partner Organisations and four with appointment by the OC'meetings officers:

a) one member appointed by each partner organisation for a two-year term, starting at OC'xx of the even years;

b) one member appointed by the officers of each OC'xx meeting among themselves for a four year term, starting at OC'xx-2. If the beginning of office at OC'xx-2 appears premature in view of the state of preparation of one particular meeting, it is postponed for a period that may not exceed six months; in such a case, the seat is left vacant in the meantime and the end of office is not postponed.

Therefore, between the end of OC'xx-1 and the beginning of OC'xx, the committee therefore consists of

a) one officer of OC'xx-2

b) one officer of OC'xx-1

c) one officer of OC'xx

d) one officer of OC'xx+1

e) one member appointed by ICO

f) one member appointed by OSA

g) one member appointed by SPIE

h) one member appointed by EOS

During the OC'xx meeting itself, the committee is the union of the old committee and new committee. No individual may be a member of the steering committee for more than eight consecutive years.

6 - Steering committee chairperson election and term of office:

The chairperson is appointed for a two year period by the steering committee during its meeting in the even years. He is among the members who will be and stay in office during this period and who have been members before for at least one year. It is possible to serve as chairperson for more than one term, consecutively or not. If it appears necessary to use a voting procedure to appoint the new chairperson and if the votes are equally divided between two or more candidates, the past chairperson's vote is dominant except that self-designation is not acceptable.

7 - Boundary conditions:

The committee is established in 1990. For the period 1990-1992, the chairperson is J.W. Goodman. The ICO appointed member for a term ending at OC'92 is J.W. Goodman. OSA and SPIE shall appoint members for a term ending at OC'92. The officers of OC'89 shall appoint a member for a term ending at OC'91; the officers of OC'90 shall appoint a member for a term ending at OC'92; the officers of OC'91 shall appoint a member for a term ending at OC'93; the officers of OC'92 shall appoint a member for a term ending at OC'94.

8 - Changes in the bylaws:

At any time, one of the partner organisations may decide to withdraw from the agreement. Also, another professional organisation may wish to join the agreement and become a partner organisation. For these reasons or for some other reason, it may appear useful to modify the present bylaws.

In any of these cases, a proposition of modification of the bylaws is issued by the steering committee at its next meeting and submitted to all partner organisations. The modification becomes valid after approval by all partner organisations. In the event where it becomes necessary to modify the composition of the steering committee, care will be taken to maintain an adequate representation of the optical computing community.

Information compiled on November 1, 2002, Pierre Chavel


  • The committee first met March 15, 1991 in Salt Lake City, and was chaired by Joseph W. Goodman in the presence of A.A. Sawchuk, S. Ishihara, S.H. Lee, H.S. Hinton, members, and J.A. Neff, observer from SPIE.
  • From 1997, the title of the meetings was changed to "Optics in Computing". While this change was not formally acknowledged by a change in the present bylaws, it was accepted de facto and there is full continuity of the series and the procedures.
  • Since 1995, the chairs of the OSA Optical Computing Steering Committee and of the present Committee were one and the same person and the two committees acted jointly in all circumstances. The first joint meeting was called March 15, 1995 in Salt Lake City by John A. Neff.
  • My references: ICO archives, including Feb 15, 1995 e-mail received from J.A. Neff, Sep 8, 2000 e-mail received from Kelvin Wagner, OSA staff report on OSA organized OC events.