My Professional Career: a Summary

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Advances in Mechanisms, Robotics, and Design Education and Research, 2013, pp. VII - XIX (12)
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In 1964 I was studying for the degree of Master of Engineering Science in the Department of Mechanical Engineering of the University of Sydney. This was a course work plus thesis master’s degree. I took a class from Associate Professor Jack Phillips on kinematics of mechanisms. Like many others before, and since, I was fascinated by the proposition that one could predict the movability of an assemblage of rigid links connected by joints by simply counting the numbers of members and joints, and noting the number of degrees of freedom of each joint. I was further fascinated to learn that there were anomalous mechanisms that had more mobility than predicted by the constraint criteria. I wrote up some ideas that really amounted to treating each closure separately. Abe Soni had recently published a paper about constraint analysis in ASME Transactions, I think it would have been J. Engineering for Industry. In those days journals published discussions on the papers they published. Ken Hunt came to visit Jack in this time frame, so the three of us wrote a discussion on Abe’s paper. That was my introduction to research in this technical area. At Ken’s suggestion I contacted Bernie Roth, and a couple of others in the U.S. about doing a Ph.D. Bernie came up with a Research Assistantship, so I took myself off to Stanford in the middle of 1965
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