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Text Box: Welcome to the 26th issue of The Grounding Connection. The annual CDEGS Usersí Group Conference was hosted last year by SR3 Engineering LLC, in Boulder, Colorado. This year marked the CDEGS Usersí Group Conference silver anniversary. For 25 years now, this annual tradition has proven to yield lively and fruitful discussions related to technical projects and the often novel strategies used to tackle them, as well as on the new, planned, and desired features of SESís software packages. Over the last quarter century, the community of CDEGS users and contributors has grown tremendously. The current state of the software and the promise it holds for the future, is a direct result of their cumulative contributions, and we proudly dedicate these proceedings to those who are not with us this week in Boulder, but are always with us in spirit. 
For the third year running, SES is unveiling a set of new modules and modernized interfaces to enhance the user experience and improve your productivity. We present beta versions of the new integrated SESResap and FFTSES computation modules that can now run directly from within the module environment and where both the input data and the computation results can be visualized in this same environment. Complementing the new soil measurement interpretation environment, we present this year the new Soil Model Editor, which will simplify and streamline the specification of soil models. A new SES Object Library is introduced, which includes not only a comprehensive conductor database, but also several power cables, and comes equipped with handy search and filter capabilities, while the new SESPlotViewer module ushers in the new generation of plotting capability via the SES Plotting Engine, which will eventually be integrated into all SES Software that needs to plot data. Even the main CDEGS interface is revisited in this yearís release.
While we forge ahead with new interfaces and modules, we continue to improve and enhance our long-serving software package features and computation capabilities as well. For example, SESCAD, now offers direct conductors import from the SES conductor database, provides a complete, autonomous interface to enter data for the MALT, MALZ and HIFREQ modules. Right-of-Way and RowCAD now handle a direct kml file import, streamline the Total Interference computation under steady state conditions, and include new and improved maximum soil breakdown voltage and various fault arcing and flashover distance options. These, and other already well-known components of SESís software suite, continue to grow and improve.
Whether in designing a new module, a better interface, adding functionalities to our software, or providing you with support, SES puts your needs and opinions first. SESís continuous expansion has led us to now occupy a second office building, allowing us to serve you better through new software and stronger support capabilities. Your questions, comments and requests, either made as wish list items at this conference, or during the course of your work and consultations with our support staff all year round, are not only welcome, but are of capital importance. Please do not hesitate to share them with SES! 
In closing, I would like to emphasize SESís enduring gratitude to YOU, our legion of loyal users who, year after year, have renewed your technical support from SES, thereby sustaining the pioneering R&D efforts at SES that will ultimately benefit every user of SES software packages and services. 
Farid Paul Dawalibi, Eng., MSc., PhD.

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