In 1985, I presented my first paper—at an SPIE conference on lithography. It was the perfect venue for my work—a topical meeting full of people with the same interests as me, eager to communicate their latest results. That remains the paradigm for SPIE conferences to this day. But after publishing a few papers in conference proceedings, I decided that I had some work that deserved a peer-reviewed publication. But unlike the SPIE conferences that were the perfect fit for the work I did, there was no journal that matched the topic. Over the next 15 years I published papers in a number of journals: Optical Engineering, Applied Optics, Journal of the Electrochemical Society, Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology, IEEE Transactions on Semiconductor Manufacturing, Japanese Journal of Applied Physics, and others. Every time, I felt like an orphan. My lithography papers were surrounded by good papers that I had no interest in—and I’m sure that most readers of those journals felt the same way about my papers. Lithography had no peer-reviewed home.
That all changed in 2002, with the publication of the first issue of —then called the Journal of Microlithography, Microfabrication, and Microsystems. Finally, there was a home for peer-reviewed publications in lithography, and that home fit perfectly. I’ve talked to many folks who have told me the same things about their work in microfabrication, MEMS and MOEMS as well.
Ten years after that first issue, I am taking over as Editor-in-Chief of from Burn Lin, the founding editor. I have big shoes to fill. Burn not only helped to found this important journal—establishing its scope and tenor, building an incredible team of volunteer senior and associate editors, and soliciting papers to establish and grow the journal—he created a much needed home for science and engineering work in lithography, micro- and nanofabrication, microsystems, MEMS and MOEMS. I am honored—and just a bit daunted—to carry on his work. How can we improve upon a journal that is already a flagship?
I have a few ideas. First, there are still many papers published in SPIE conference proceedings that are important enough and good enough for peer-reviewed publication. I hope to encourage more conference authors to consider the value of submitting their work to . Second, I’d like to expand the scope of paper types published in JM3. The vast majority of papers that we publish are regular and special section papers, as expected (though I hope to increase the number of special sections significantly in the coming years). I am surprised, though, at how few letters and review papers are published. These very valuable communication tools are definitely underutilized in our community. And I’d like to consider the possibility of adding some of new categories as well, things like tutorials and commentaries. These new formats will, I hope, expand the usefulness of as a communications venue. Do you have any ideas? I’d love to hear about them.
My goal, as one might expect, is simple: to increase the value of by increasing the quality, relevance, and (possibly) quantity of papers published. As I begin my new adventure, I look forward to serving our community of authors and readers to the best of my ability.