Serving the Society in an Ever-Changing Landscape

Serving the Society in an Ever-Changing Landscape

by Yong-Seog Kim
President, Society for Information Display

It is my great honor and pleasure to serve the Society for Information Display in the capacity of President for the next 2 years.  As an incoming president, I found Display Week 2016 at San Francisco completely different from a personal perspective.  I felt the sheer responsibility of running the SID successfully, and, in addition, I enjoyed the privilege of meeting and getting to know many volunteers and members of the society.  Without their unselfish contributions and participation, DW16 would not have been as successful.  To that end, I would like to thank all the SID volunteers for the countless hours of personal and professional sacrifice they have made to help SID become a better society.

Display Week 2016 in the beautiful city of San Francisco was a great success.  The number of attendees exceeded 7,000 for the first time in a decade.  Our exhibit remained strong even during the severe economic downturn our industry is facing.  Display Week continues to offer many must-see and must-attend events for everyone in the display-industry community.

For the last 2 decades, our society has witnessed a near-explosive expansion of display technologies, including TFT-LCD, PDP, OLED, FED, projection display, laser display, and various reflective displays including electrophoretic e-Paper, to only name a few.  These displays have been in competition with each other for market share over the last decade.  Among those technologies, TFT-LCD has outgrown the others to rule the industry.  Other technologies, for example PDP, have disappeared completely from the landscape.  During this painful consolidation period, many of our close friends left the industry and the society, but others adapted and reinvented themselves for the ever-changing display-industry environment.  I was one of the latter group.  I transformed myself from a PDP expert to a researcher of the flexible display, which took a while.

At Display Week 2016, I believe we might have again seen a harbinger of tectonic change in the display industry.  Approximately 80% of media attention was directed toward OLED flexible displays and related technologies.  This indicates that the demand for differentiation from maturing and commoditized TFT-LCDs is strongly driving the evolution of our society.  In an associated observation, technical sessions on vehicular displays and AR/VR displays captured a large audience at Display Week 2016.  This has resulted in a significant increase in new membership in those technology areas – where traditionally SID has not been as strong.

As technology transfer occurs at light speed in the current era, a swift rise and quick replacement of one technology with another is becoming the new normal, including within the display industry.  Our current flat-panel-display technology will not enjoy the 60-year run of CRTs.  I am sure that we are also going to witness the rapid adaptation of new display technologies in the coming years.  This change could be a relatively modest transition from TFT-LCD to OLED or a revolutionary transition from hardware display imaging technologies to direct communications with our brains, eliminating the display panel altogether.  Those of us at SID should embrace and lead the way through this changing landscape of information-display technology.

With this background, I have set some goals for the next 2 years of my presidency.  First, I would like to expand the society’s conference scope and related membership and exhibits to new technology areas, while maintaining strong leadership in the traditional display technology areas.  SID will continue to develop a strong conference and exhibition based on flexible displays, vehicular displays, and AR/VR displays and related technologies.  In addition, SID will develop special tracks for new technologies including printed electronics and next-generation input/output devices in our technical conferences.  In order to achieve this goal, SID needs many volunteers to invite new people for the special tracks and to organize the events.  I would like to welcome all our members to participate and help expand the scope of SID.

Secondly, the Journal of the SID is our key archival journal, and for many years SID leadership has been trying to improve and expand its quality and quantity.  Especially, we have tried hard to achieve SCI status for the journal, but with only limited success.  It is imperative to improve the citation of the journal to achieve SCI status.  To that end, we will establish a procedure to publish the distinguished papers from the Technical Symposium in JSID instead of the Display Week Technical Digest, for increased citations of the papers.

Lastly, the society’s new governance structure approved in this spring’s ballot will be implemented to streamline the administration structure of our society.  This will speed up the decision-making process and help the society adapt to a rapidly changing world.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank outgoing President Amal Ghosh and the entire SID leadership team for doing an outstanding job of improving the society in various aspects.  The financial health of our society has been vastly improved under Amal’s leadership, membership in China has increased under his China initiatives, and improved programs and events at Display Week are attracting more people.  During Amal’s presidency, the society has stabilized and set the foundation for growth in future years.

Finally, I hope you had an enjoyable summer vacationing with family and friends.  I look forward to serving you in the coming years. •