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The IEEE Computer Society has been assuming an increasingly important role in the development of microprocessor standards through the medium of the Microprocessor Standards Subcommittee of the Society's Computer Standards committee. This subcommittee, formed in August 1977 under the leadership of Dr. Robert Stewart (currently chairman of the parent committee), has established working groups to execute several projects authorized by the IEEE Standards Board. A description of the current status of one of these projects, the P896 backplane bus, can be found on page 67 of this issue. Others will be described in this department and in separate articles in coming issues.