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Solid ground with Jack Smith

Fluke is proud to introduce a new Fluke Plus column, titled “Solid Ground,” and its author, Jack Smith. “Solid Ground” topics will include electrical issues, electronics, automation, instrumentation, measurement, control and just about any other topic that is timely, technical and relevant.

Smith is a writer, editor, communication consultant, and owner of BIT Communication, which provides writing, editing, consulting, content strategy, and other communication-related services to business, industrial and technical clients. He was formerly Managing Editor at Plant Engineering magazine. During his 10 years at Plant Engineering, Smith covered electrical, automation, electronics, manufacturing and maintenance topics.

One of Smith’s pet topics is power quality - especially harmonics, electronics “back-to-basics,” PLCs, variable frequency drives, servos, networking and Ethernet. Speaking of harmonics, his October, 2003 article “Basics of How to Minimize Harmonics” won a Midwest-South region bronze award for technical article in the 2004 American Society of Business Publication Editors (ASBPE) competition. His 2005 series “Plant Electronics” won a regional silver award for feature series in the 2006 ASBPE competition.

Smith also supported Pure Power, a supplement to Consulting-Specifying Engineer magazine, initially writing and editing articles, columns and news stories. As he became increasingly involved with the supplement, Smith took on more content management responsibilities. Topics he covered in Pure Power included power management, power quality, solar power and environmental issues.

While at Plant Engineering, Smith created the magazine’s initial webcast coverage on arc flash issues. Arc flash became a perennial topic for Plant Engineering, evolving into the popular “Arc Flash University” series of webcast productions. Smith also created the “Plant Engineering HotWire” and “HotWire on Automation” newsletters and launched and edited the AppliedAutomation supplement.

After studying electronics, Smith spent nearly 20 years working in several technical industries. Specific industries include instrumentation and control, automation, computers, power generation, mobile communication, aerospace, contract manufacturing and professional audio.

Smith also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in journalism with a minor in communication from Northern Illinois University. His experience, education, and thought-leadership makes him uniquely qualified to provide insight into timely technical issues through his “Solid Ground” column as well as other Fluke publications in which his writing will appear.

When not writing and editing technical articles and columns, Smith likes to spend time with family and friends, read, listen to music, watch movies and play guitar. Smith is also active in IEEE and ISA.

Please give Jack Smith a warm welcome by contacting him at with your comments and topic ideas.