Nominations for SIAM Membership

November 1, 1999

From the SIAM President
Gilbert Strang

I often write to friends and colleagues, and invite them to join SIAM. My reasons are very straightforward. I know that SIAM is a terrific society, and I believe they would be pleased to be part of it. It is the quality and strength of SIAM that stand behind my invitation. I never ask afterward about their decisions; it is they who will gain the most by acting on the idea.

Now I have a question for readers of SIAM News. Can you suggest other prospective members to whom I could write? If you nominate someone, by giving an e-mail and mail address, I will send a short letter of invitation. My letter can mention you or not, whichever you prefer.

I am convinced that there are so many people whose work touches applied mathematics and computation, and who already know and respect SIAM---and they would like to be included. This is the right time to do our part.

It is also the right time on the calendar. For those who join now, a year's membership automatically expands to 15 months, including SIAM News and SIAM Review for the last quarter of 1999. This 15-month membership is open to everyone on, with no need for a nomination. I hope you will help, because SIAM is going well and has so much to give.

I want to add a separate note about proposals to the National Science Foundation. The Computer and Information Science and Engineering Directorate worked hard to secure a major increase for information technology. Ultimately, the House-Senate conference agreed on about $100 million for IT research (which is close to the mathematics budget). For SIAM, it is natural to emphasize one more step forward: This project will be greatly strengthened if it includes work on algorithms and software for scientific computing. The improvements in technology will then lead to improvements in science and engineering, and in human lives.

The Request for Proposals specifically encourages research in several broad areas, including advanced computational science---algorithms, software, and systems applicable to science and engineering. The key step now is to prepare proposals. You can find guidelines, including the (very early) deadlines for a letter of intent, on the Web.

There is a lot of cooperation these days among mathematics societies. I wrote earlier about activities in Europe. In the U.S., the "joint winter meeting" will include SIAM speakers and organizers, together with those from the American Mathematical Society and the Mathematical Association of America. The meeting will be held January 18-22 in Washington. I am delighted that World Mathematical Year 2000 is going to start in such a good way.

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