October 3rd: The Commemoration of IEEE’s History (and Free Tosti’s)

The marvelous sensation of toasted bread and melted cheese, beloved tosti, intertwined with the fabric of history and engineering! Picture it: on the 3rd of October, plenty annals were gently nudged aside to make room for a peculiar, yet captivating, synergy of culinary delight and technological marvel. Allow me to stroll you through the interlinking realms of IEEE Day with that humble, yet universally appreciated creation: the tosti.

Within the lofty confines of floor six in Flux, wafts of crisped bread billow through the air as stomachs unleash their relentless calls of longing. A battalion of engineers, their minds ordinarily preoccupied with circuits, codes, and wire, now singularly enchanted by a simple culinary delight: the tosti. Yet, it is no ordinary snack, it is a tribute, a nod, to the celebration of International IEEE Day. Imagine, if you will, a formidable total of two hundred and thirty tostis succumbing to the collective might of hungry intellectuals, a veritable charge towards ‘Het Walhalla’. Though it was mentioned multiple times we where doing ‘the work of God’, we did miss out on spreading a fundamental truth. The truth of the event where we commemorating.

Permit your mind to drift to 1884, where, in the ever growing metropolis of New York, a motley crew of electrical professionals converged. The air, perhaps ripe with the same intrigue and aspiration we feel today, witnessed the birth of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers (AIEE). Now, delve into the folds of history with me: that October, their first technical meeting in Philadelphia sewed the first seeds of an organization that would twine through the tapestry of technological advancement.

Gaze upon the luminaries that illuminated those early corridors of electrical advancement: Norvin Green, Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell – names that not only carved out pathways in telegraphy, power, and telephony respectively but also bridged realms of possibility. Envisage the swift, electrifying spread of power, with AC induction motors, sweeping AC transmissions, and behemoth power plants lighting the way to a new epoch.

Visualize companies like AEG, General Electric, Siemens & Halske, and Westinghouse – the pulsing heart of commercialization, pumping vitality into an era where electrical power began morphing lives, ushering in products and services of unprecedented capabilities. Here, then AIEE, embarking on a journey, began spotlighting electrical power, and, with a secondary glance towards wired communication, spearheaded the burgeoning electrical engineering profession through technical meetings, publications, and a zeal for standards.

On this International IEEE Day, amidst the contemplation of contributions and anticipations of technological tomorrows, there we find it: a meeting point of past and present, encapsulated within a seemingly humble snack. Each crispy bite, a gentle echo of history, each shared moment around it, a tiny filament lighting the boundless expanse of future endeavours. So, as we venture forth towards unseen technological horizons, let us occasionally glance back, appreciating the intricate, yet hearteningly human tapestry from which our present is lovingly woven.

May the tosti ever remain an appreciated emblem of such unity and progress within IEEE SBE!