Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 21

mathematics from Cornell University in 1973 [2]. He is a past president of NAFIPS, IFSA, and the IEEE
NNs Council.
Dr. Bezdek was the founding editor
of International Journal of Approximate Reasoning and IEEE Transactions on Fuzzy Systems. He is a Life
Fellow of the IEEE and IFSA and a recipient of the IEEE Third Millennium,
CIS Fuzzy Systems Pioneer, and technical field award Rosenblatt medals and
the IPMU Kempe de Feriet Award. His
interests are woodworking, optimization, motorcycles, pattern recognition,
cigars, clustering in very large data, fishing, coclustering, blues music, gardening, poker, cluster validity, and visual
clustering. He retired in 2007.
Both gentlemen are pioneers of
fuzzy sets and especially of fuzzy
clustering, and they know each other
very well. This interview was performed via e-mail with both scientists simultaneously.
Rudolf Seising (RS): Jim and
Enrique, when and how did you come
in touch with fuzzy sets and fuzzy
systems or fuzzy logic? Was this
already related to the idea of fuzzy
clustering?
Enrique Ruspini (ER): I became
acquainted with fuzzy sets totally by
chance. In 1966, after completing the
requirements of my undergraduate
degree at the University of Buenos
Aires, I was contacted by a group
within the Scientific Computing
Center (Instituto de Cálculo) at the
School of Science. At the time, I was
mainly concerned with the numerical solution of differential equations.
I had been asked, however, to look
at the emerging field of biomedical
engineering, and I gained a reputation
for my interest in novel, then unusual,
applications of computer science.
The people who contacted me were
interested in mathematical economics, then a thriving field due to the
then prevailing belief that complex
systems, such as social/political/economic systems, may be understood
through computer system modeling
and simulation. At about that time,

Figure 1. Jim bezdek (right) interviews Enrique ruspini during the IEEE

Congress on Evolutionary Computing in Cancun, mexico, 20 June 2013.
[For this interview see the IEEE CIS history Web site, https://history.ieeecis.sightworks.net/.] (Photo courtesy of Jim bezdek.)

that topic was a matter of much attention as it was not yet understood that
complex models of certain complex
systems are just as difficult to understand as the systems being modeled.
This interest in modeling and predicting the future led to the creation, a
few years later, of the Club of Rome,
a think tank that still operates to this
date. [The Club of Rome was formed
when a small international group
of academics, civil representatives,
diplomats, and industrialists, met in

Rome, Italy. It was founded in April
1968 by the Italian industrialist Aurelio Peccei and the Scottish scientist
Alexander King.]
My colleagues were, at that time,
engaged in a study of macroeconomic
aspects of the Argentinian economy.
Not having the tools for the analysis
of complex computational models
(which are not existent even now after nearly 50 years!), they were running their simulation model having, as
input, variables describing economic

Figure 2. the attendees at the first meeting of the naFIPS in Logan, Utah,

18-20 may 1982. First row, from left: P.P. Wang, E. mamdani (deceased
2010), tanya bezdek, K.-S. Fu, J.t.P. yao, and L. Saitta. Second row, from
left: m. roubens, Ph. Smets (deceased 2005), J. Efstathiou, r. tong, and
r.r. yager. third row, from left: P. bonissone, J. bezdek, E.H. ruspini, and E.
Sanchez (deceased 2014). the photograph was taken on the front porch
of Jim bezdek's home in richmond, Utah. (Photo courtesy of Jim bezdek.)

Ja nu a r y 2015

IEEE SyStEmS, man, & CybErnEtICS magazInE

21


https://www.history.ieee http://cis.sightworks.net/

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015

Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - Cover1
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - Cover2
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 1
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 2
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 3
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 4
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 5
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 6
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 7
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 8
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 9
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 10
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 11
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 12
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 13
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 14
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 15
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 16
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 17
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 18
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 19
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 20
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 21
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 22
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 23
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 24
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 25
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 26
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 27
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 28
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 29
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 30
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 31
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 32
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 33
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 34
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 35
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 36
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 37
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 38
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 39
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 40
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 41
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 42
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 43
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 44
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 45
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 46
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 47
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - 48
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - Cover3
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2015 - Cover4
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