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The Wireless Revolution: Signal Processing as the 'Great Enabler'

During the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, communications underwent revolutionary changes as first the telegraph, and then the telephone, emerged and transitioned to wireless transmission. Now, at the advent of the Twenty-First Century, an even more revolutionary transition is taking place as the Internet moves into the wireless domain. Like its predecessors, today's wireless revolution is being made possible by major strides in electro-technology. In particular, the current drive to push system capacity, quality of service, and mobility, well beyond their preconceived limits, is being enabled by striking innovations in signal processing methods and technology. These innovations include direct developments, such as multimedia compression, multiuser detection, space-time processing and coding, and turbo decoding, as well as indirect developments, such as the use of signal processing techniques to push practical micro-lithography beyond its current limits. This talk will provide an overview of some of these developments in the context of their impact on emerging and future wireless communications applications such as third-generation cellular telephony, broadband local access, mobile computing, etc.

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