in 2002, after 40
years in the field of computers and data communications working for
Bell Labs. During that time, I developed hardware (circuits) and
software, was a manager for a while, and did advanced R&D and
technology forecasting. Over the course of my career, I have also
taught courses at the graduate and undergraduate level in computer
I have been married to Rochelle
Tutelman (née Rice) since 1966, and we have two sons. One is a software
engineer and the other a pharmacist. My current primary hobbies are
playing golf and doing golf technology. We live at the
New Jersey shore.
That's the short form. But it didn't really say what I've been up to, so....
I am an
not just what I do, it's who I am. In 2002, I retired from a 40-year
career, almost all of it with Bell Labs. But I remain an engineer. It
has always been how I approach things, and it still is even in
graduating from the
Bronx High School of Science in 1958, I got a Bachelor's degree in
Electrical Engineering at the City College of New York. I followed that
with a Master's in EE at MIT. I was really interested in computers, but
there was no such thing as a degree in Computer Science at the
the mid-'60s, when the University of Pennsylvania introduced a CS
major, I enrolled to study for a PhD. I finished all the coursework and
passed the qualifying
exam but didn't finish my dissertation, feeling I
had already gotten all the educational value I was going to. The
additional year would be more credential-building than learning.
One of the
about working for Bell Labs was that it was so big and varied that it
possible to change jobs without changing your employer. I had an
incredible variety of work assignments during my nearly 40 years with
the company. Most of them had to do with data communications in one
form or another. Here are some idea of the things I've had the
chance to do over the years:
bottom fell out of
the telecom market in 2001, I was surprised to be one of the survivors
of a huge layoff. But, with only a quarter of the people left on my
project, it just wasn't fun any more. By early 2002, I had had enough
I did electronic engineering -- circuit development -- early in my
career. Of course I worked on the usual datacomm fare of modems and
multiplexers. But I also got to do early work on the architecture
of bit-sliced microprocessor chips, a field in which I hold a few
patents. I also did design of instrumentation for data
communications; I have always been interested in measurement
instruments of all kinds. One of my contributions was to push,
sometimes successfully, for the digitization of the Bell System's
I have developed software for telephone switches, PBXs, mainframe
computers, personal computers, and Internet servers. I have programmed
at the machine-language level, intermediate languages including
C++, and as machine-independent a level as
Java. In fact, I even developed a real-time-critical application
in Java -- that was an interesting challenge.
I became a supervisor in 1968. Until about 1980, a first-level
engineering supervisor at Bell Labs was mostly a project leader, a role
I loved. Then, fairly suddenly, the management work ("bean-counting",
schedule tracking, salary administration, etc) expanded
and drove out any technical work; it even sucked up the time for
mentoring my people. I discovered I really didn't like it,
and consequently wasn't very good at it. One of the nice things about
the Bell Labs culture is that it is possible to "resign your commision"
and go back to being a techie. In 1986, I did that and have been
smiling about my job ever since.
Anybody whose career was data communications from 1962 through 2002 has
to have been intimately involved with the evolution of The Internet.
And I was! I have used email in my daily work since the 1970s. I
participated actively in newsgroups (an Internet forum before the World
Wide Web came along) as early as 1982. My last few job assignments
before I retired included development of PC-based internet mail
software, a security firewall for big companies to protect their
Internet access, and Voice Over IP servers (how telephone calls get
transmitted over the Internet today).
Over the period from 1979 to the early 1990s, I had quite a few
opportunities to assess the implications of new technologies and to do
5-year forecasts of where computer and communication technology were
going. These were very exciting work assignments. For instance, around
1980 my group did studies of the feasibility of telephone access via
cable TV, broadband data via cable TV, and a high-speed packet network
carrying telephone and video traffic as well as data. It took until the
2000s for those to become real businesses, but we blue-skied the
technology back then. In fact, I now get my telecommunications
services at home that way: telephone, TV, and broadband data via
digital fiber (and cable before that),
and my telephone calls travel over the Internet packet network.
During the 1970s, I was Bell Labs' delegate to several
and international standards committees involved in data communications.
It was my job to negotiate datacomm interface standards in the interest
of AT&T and what its products could and would do.
It required traveling all over the world, until we had our second child
and I requested an assignment with less travel.
Labs offers graduate-level courses to its employees in relevant
technologies. I taught several of these courses. Notable among them was
the course in Computer Networking. In 1977, I designed that course from
scratch, and taught it the first time it was offered.
several times during my career, I was an in-house consultant to the
legal and patent staff. But, for a few months in 1983, my involvement
with legal issues was much deeper. My group's assignment was to
negotiate a half-dozen software development deals with software
companies around the country. Bell Labs and AT&T lawyers were
simply not up-to-date on software law, so I put my group and myself
through a crash course in software law and we did the contracts
ourselves. We must have done it OK; the legal department wound up using
the form contract we developed as Bell Labs' standard software contract
well into the 1990s.
The year after I retired, I tried teaching at the college level. As an
adjunct professor at The College of New Jersey (what used to be called
Trenton State), I taught computer networking to MIS majors. I was
unimpressed with the desire of today's undergraduates to actually learn
the material -- as opposed to sit through four years and collect a
degree. That was too frustrating, and I have no intention to try it
again. Perhaps I was spoiled by having taught in-house courses to motivated and very smart Bell Labs engineers.
the job story.
What about my personal life? Yes, I have one. (As I mentioned
above, I changed jobs to have more time with my family.)
2016 marked 50 years of marriage to Rochelle Honey
Tutelman (née Rice). We have raised two sons:
I'm glad that,
while they were growing up, I got away from the office
enough to do things with them. I was their music mentor (and
occasionally instructor; I play a few instruments), and their soccer
coach (I coached teams in the town's recreation program for a dozen
- Jeff was born in
and is a computer/software engineer. He is married to
Ventriglia Tutelman, and they have twin sons born early in 2013. They
live about 40 minutes drive from us, and we see them often.
- Dan was born in
1975 and is a
pharmacist -- his second career, originally getting a degree in English
and teaching high school. He lives and works in Arizona.
As for hobbies, the most important ones have been in music and sports.
Music: I come from a musical
family. In addition to monitoring my sons'
I play music myself. My primary instrument is piano. I have also
learned banjo and a little clarinet (the former for long bus rides --
see "skiing" below -- and the latter to practice with Jeff when he took
up clarinet). In addition, I have been involved in electronic music:
some performing and some technical, including both circuit and software development.
I said when I started, I am an engineer. When I participate in a sport,
I often get involved in the technical end of it as well. This includes:
graduate school, I learned to ski
and sail. That's a nice combination, because the seasons do not
overlap. I skiied for many years, until at about age 50 I decided my
increased brittleness and
declining healing powers would make it too dangerous.
throughout the late '60s and the '70s. For much of that time, I
belonged to the Monmouth Boat Club and raced in the Albacore class, a
15-foot planing sailboat. In 1975, I was the Northeast District
champion and tenth at the US National championships.
1967 through 1995, I was always in at least one recreational volleyball
league, and once as many as three leagues.
my sons proved not to be interested in sailing, I turned to coaching
them in soccer and getting my
own exercise on a bicycle.
While I was never a competitor in bicycling, I found it a good way to
keep fit without the boredom or the pounding of running. In my 40s, I
was cycling about 120 miles per week in season. I rode at least once or
twice a week until I was 67, when a nagging knee problem made it
painful to chug uphill.
1986, I began playing golf again; I had played as a
teenager and when I was in college. Now that I'm retired, I get to play
three times a week. Now into my 80s, I still walk the course -- and finally can sometimes shoot my age.
I was sailing competitively in 1971, I built a centerboard
whose design I optimized by computer, which was one of the early
applications of Computer Aided Design (CAD) to sports. Having
derived the equations, I
had the computer draw the templates on hardboard using a flatbed
For the next few years, nobody won an Albacore US national championship
first borrowing my templates and building a centerboard.
you were a serious cyclist who did his own maintenance in the
late '80s and also used a PC, there's a good chance you downloaded and
used my "BikeGear" program
design your gearing ratios.
I got back into golf in the late '80s, I started building my own clubs
from components. But, being an engineer, I wanted to know more about
how golf clubs really worked -- and there wasn't much around except the
propaganda from the club manufacturers. So I did my own research, and
published my findings on the Internet. By the time I retired from Bell
Labs, I was getting calls from companies in the golf business to do
consulting. Since I'm retired, my fees depend mostly on my interest in
the project; if I see a high hobby value in it, I'll do it for free.
And I do freelance a lot of projects I come up with myself. Things I
have done in golf technology include:
- My tutorial on
clubs work has been the first text of a surprisingly large number of
custom clubfitters, both professional and amateur.
- Of course, I fit and build almost all of my own clubs. I
also build the occasional club or set for family and friends, but I am
not a professional clubmaker.
- I have designed and built my own shaft flex instruments,
including a frequency meter,
an EI meter
and (along with Dan Neubecker) the NeuFinder
4. Using these instruments, I have profiled shafts
for Graman shafts, Mercury Golf, AccuFlex, and others.
- Along with Frank Schmidberger, I am the
co-developer of TrajectoWare
Drive, a golf ball trajectory computer application.
- I have done consulting and technical writing for The
Golf Institute in
Naples, Florida. That included the screenwriting for an
educational video on golf clubs.
- I have done occasional consulting for The Golf Coast of
Santa Ana, California.
- I have profiled shafts for Graman shafts, Mercury
Golf, True Temper, and others.
- I have been the beta tester for several computer
applications for clubmakers and club researchers.
- Just because it's interesting, I have done
analytical studies (and articles on my web site) on:
- I have been an officer of two companies that make golf
training aids: Pro-Head Golf
and Aim-Sense Technologies.
in 2010, I have gotten involved in the physics
of the golf swing as well as the club, which has brought me into
collaboration with biomechanists like Sasho MacKenzie, as well as noted
instructors like Jim Mclean and Martin Hall. I have been in the middle
of some of the more interesting disputes in golf biomechanics in the
past half-dozen years. Exciting!