Just a reminder to be ready for Monday’s meeting. The topic has of course become even more high profile!

Professor Steve Fergusson will address the pros and cons of 5G. I was taken aback when one of the furniture movers for our recent move aggressively claimed that Coronavirus was caused by 5G, so I’d like to know what to say next time!

Details here. Joining instructions will be sent on the day.

The talk will cover the application, technology, safety and politics of 5G networks and the Internet of Things. Potential applications are legion, the technology is awesome, safety issues have spawned criminal actions and the politics have become geopolitical. Many claim that 5G will be the technical basis of future societies and therefore justifies both close scrutiny and restrictions on who can supply. As with any new technology, predictions of its impact and potential benefits are tricky to get right.

There can be little doubt however that its promise of a massive increase in communications capacity is likely to be transformative. Recent events have shown the importance of widely available broadband. Its replacement by near-ubiquitous ultra broadband from 5G could be even more so.

Steve’s career was based in Coventry with the same organisation as it went through changes of name and ownership: GEC, GPT, Marconi, Ericsson. He did extensive overseas travel as he worked on the initiation and design of many transmission products for connecting up the digital telecommunications network. This included work on standards, research, conference presentations, publications and technology scouting. For much of his career he worked with optical fibre systems that form a key part of the internet. His role with Ericsson included work with developers of mobile phone systems and he has retained an interest in that area after retirement. He has been an advisor to banks and various UK government committees and is a Visiting Professor at Aston University in Birmingham.