HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
Blogs
Blog

Calling All Messy Engineers!

NO RATINGS
View Comments: Oldest First|Newest First|Threaded View
Page 1/2  >  >>
Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
The messier the better
Rob Spiegel   9/6/2012 1:17:38 PM
Jennifer, I love that thought that the messier the desk the more genius involved. There may be something to that point of view. German researchers claim a messy desk leads to clearer thinking:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2088359/Messy-desks-office-actually-lead-employees-think-clearly-say-researchers.html?ITO=1490

Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
What about messy editor desks?
Charles Murray   9/6/2012 8:24:17 PM
NO RATINGS
Jenn, if we had a contest for messy editors' desks, I'd dominate.

erichv
User Rank
Silver
Re: The messier the better
erichv   9/7/2012 9:32:57 AM
All a bunch of Amateurs!

"Those who subscribe to a Clean Desk Policy can never experience the delight of finding something that was thought to be irretrievably lost!" - Unknown.

Serendipity means a "happy accident" or "pleasant surprise"; specifically, the accident of finding something good or useful while not specifically searching for it.

In fact, in the days I was still allowed to eat chocolate peanuts and raisins, I would tip the whole packet on my desk above my keyboard and, lo and behold, finding a stray one weeks later... tastes so much better!

:) I sent in my photos!

Erich
Cape Town, South Africa

Jack Rupert, PE
User Rank
Platinum
Cleaning Up.
Jack Rupert, PE   9/7/2012 12:27:27 PM
NO RATINGS
I've had a number of conversations over the years and have found that some managers like to use "relocation" every couple years to keep the messy desks to a minimum.  While I'm not one to win a competion such as this, I don't necessarily have neat little piles either.  Just a happy medium.  Since I have been doing some contract work lately, it does force a higher standard since you only bring what you really need.

NadineJ
User Rank
Platinum
Re: The messier the better
NadineJ   9/9/2012 11:12:28 PM
NO RATINGS
It would be nice if a messy desk was a sign of genius. 

I'm constantly writing ideas, reminders, etc on post-its and putting them around my screen.  Is that a sign of an inovative mind?  During busy periods, my 27" display looks more like a 19".

kid-jensen
User Rank
Silver
Messy Desks
kid-jensen   9/10/2012 4:41:46 AM
Messy desks are the natural resuklt of work being done and things being acheived.

Clear desks are just the clearest indicator that the occupant has nothing to do...

 

The "Clear Desk Policy" was invented so these slackers don't attract attention to themselves...

rebowker
User Rank
Iron
Re: Messy Desks
rebowker   9/10/2012 11:08:38 AM
NO RATINGS
Kid, my friend, I'm sorry I have to disagree a little on one point, my experience has been messy vs. clean are just two different strategies of organization. I do think this whole blog misses the point, our highly revered (rightfully so) engineering forefathers with the messy desks were able to find whatever it was they were looking for, or whatever it was someone asked them for. Clean or messy, Felix Unger or Oscar Madison, ask them for, say, that obscure nitnoid specification on that component released several years before and see how long it takes for them to find it. Felix would go digging through the numerous hanging files in the desk drawers, Oscar through the numerous piles on top of the desk.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: The messier the better
Rob Spiegel   9/10/2012 11:47:51 AM
NO RATINGS
That's pretty good, Erichv. Finding a piece of chocolate long after it has become forbidden is bound to be quite a treat. 

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: The messier the better
Rob Spiegel   9/10/2012 2:50:41 PM
NO RATINGS
That's a new twist on the messy desk, Nadine -- the messy desktop. That's worth a submission to the messy desk competition.

Ockham
User Rank
Gold
Re: Messy Desks
Ockham   9/12/2012 2:09:11 PM
NO RATINGS
Right on! You nailed it.

Another offensive thing about this contest is the presumptuous position assumed by the "cleaners" in holding the darned thing! Cleaners are those who use organization method "A" (which they call "organized" or "clean"). They begin from a self-appointed position of authority from whence they chide others who use method "B" (which cleaners call "messy")

Bottom Line: What counts are RESULTS. Results are measured in fixed qualities of design and manufacturing, mesured in units of time, cost, and excellencies of performance. Those significant outputs are measured against specifications supplied by the customer, or by engineering standards, or by other fixed boundaries which transcend personal habits or preferences unrelated to the outcome.

They are not achieved by conformance to preconceived notions of "correct placement of desk objects during the design phase" especially when the placements are those postulated by others.If they were, we could simply glue down everyone's inkwell and desk calendar and go home. All designs would be excellent!

The units of production output which meet or exceed the requirements are quality...PERIOD. Further, rather than becoming suspect, the work habits of the person who achieves those excellent performance characteristics in T/C/E should be considered the norm. If type "B" results in lower cost, faster output, higher excellence, then type "B" (mess) should be "best practice" or "correct". Cleaners should be required to have type B (messy) desks!

To my knowledge, there is no additional measurement wherby the placement of objects on her desk later disqualifies the quality of the designer's output. This is true even if the object placment practice does not conform to a particular organization scheme favored by others (even majorities of others)


These spurious categories of work style and/or practices which do not bear on the measured outcomes of interest are nothing more than artificial constraints constructed by those who believe their job is mostly to achieve uniformity of behavior, not excellence of design. Truth be told, those uniformities are nothing more than make-work invented by that majority of persons in the workplace. That sad majority are those who are almost daily frightened to face the relatively blank slate of their actual creative capacities. They therefore fill in the blanks with organizational make-work, forming a veritable religion of organizational taboos and rituals with workers around them. They find their power in the fact that such substandard performers constitute the majority in many workplaces.

 

There. I feel better. Now, back on the meds

 

Ockham





Page 1/2  >  >>
Partner Zone
More Blogs
Some humanoid walking robots are also good at running, balancing, and coordinated movements in group settings. Several of our sports robots have won regional or worldwide acclaim in the RoboCup soccer World Cup, or FIRST Robotics competitions. Others include the world's first hockey-playing robot and a trash-talking Scrabble player.
Automation technology advances matched with expanded fracking and the growing urbanization of Asia, South America, and the Middle East, are fueling a boom in the automation industry.
In this engineering disaster, the Therac-25 radiation machine would go haywire, sending massive, sometimes fatal, radiation overdoses to patients.
A recent example of a major CAE revamp is MSC Apex, released last month by MSC Software Corp. In a discussion with Design News, MSC executives noted that its next-generation platform is designed to substantially reduce CAE modeling and process time, “in some cases from weeks down to hours.”
The Thames Deckway would run for eight miles close to the river’s edge, rising and falling slightly with the tidal cycle. It will generate its own energy from a series of devices that will line the pathway and use a combination of sources to make the path self-sustaining.
Design News Webinar Series
10/7/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
9/25/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
9/10/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
7/23/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Oct 20 - 24, How to Design & Build an Embedded Web Server: An Embedded TCP/IP Tutorial
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6


Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Next Class: 10/28-10/30 11:00 AM
Sponsored by Stratasys
Next Class: 10/28-10/30 2:00 PM
Sponsored by Gates Corporation
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2014 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service