ARiA Software Engineer Attends Selective Acoustical Society of America School


May 30, 2014


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WASHINGTON, D.C.– Last month academics specializing in topics in acoustics gathered at the Acoustical Society of America School for a two day conference featuring a lineup of expert speakers and demonstrations.

In a room full of academics, Tom Meyer was one of the few exceptions. Meyer, who works as a software engineer at Applied Research in Acoustics LLC (ARiA), was selected to join the Acoustical Society of America (ASA) School as one of only a handful of people representing industry not academia.

“The ASA School is primarily targeted toward earlier career academics in the process of earning or having recently completed their doctoral work,” Jason Summers, founder and Chief Scientist of ARiA, a Washington, D.C. based firm of scientists and engineers involved in basic and applied research for the development of prototypes and field-ready software and systems, said. “By encouraging his participation in the ASA School, I looked to build his relationships with other academics in the field of acoustics and give him an exposure to the field that was both broad and deep through participation in classes taught by top experts.”

Meyer took Summers’s advice, applied to the School, and was accepted to attend the two day conference in Providence, Rhode Island on a scholarship.

“It was great to see some of the things I’ve been reading about in textbooks and things I’ve been working on with Jason presented live,” Meyer said. “I tend to be more of a visual learner so it was helpful to see some of these concepts in underwater acoustics in person.”

According to Summers, opportunities like the ASA School are just what he encourages his team to take advantage of.

“ARiA is unique among the many firms in our field in that we cultivate strong ties between theory and practice and between industry and academia in all of our staff—not just the scientists,” Summers said. “As a software engineer with ARiA, but also a first author on conference presentations and journal articles, Tom is an excellent example of what that synthesis looks like in practice.”

Meyer said he was grateful for the exposure that the ASA School provided him to other fields in acoustics that he doesn’t directly work on, but also benefited from presentations on the parts of underwater acoustics that he works on at ARiA.

“The more I understand the theory behind what I’m coding, the better I can be at my job,” he said.