In April, we posted an online slideshow called "18 People You Didnít Know Were Engineers." Within hours of its publication, readers began to suggest names of other luminaries -- astronauts, politicians, athletes, and actors -- who were educated or had worked as engineers.
Some surprised us. Could anyone have predicted, for example, that at least four inductees in the Pro Football Hall of Fame had been educated as engineers? Or that a man who made films about blood-sucking vampires and flesh-eating cockroaches could have been educated as an electrical engineer? (He lasted only four days in his only engineering job.)
Predictably, there were also a few suggestions that turned out to be more folklore than truth. For example, we could find no information to support the claims that actor Donald Sutherland, musician Herbie Hancock, or singer/songwriter Neil Young had ever received degrees in engineering or worked as engineers, although numerous websites suggested it.
So once again, weíve collected photos of individuals, most of whom earned engineering degrees and then found fame elsewhere. Following are the latest 18 people you didnít know were engineers. Click on the photo to start the slideshow.
Lonnie Johnson holds a masterís degree in nuclear engineering from Tuskegee University, has earned 80 patents, and has launched two thin film battery companies, but he is best known for his invention of the SuperSoaker Water Gun. Johnson originally made the toy using a water bottle, plastic tubing, and duct tape, but it ended up reaching more than a billion dollars in sales. (Source: Wikipedia)
I have several personal favorites in this list, with two being George Halas and Dr. Stefan Humphries. Most people recognize Halas as the co-founder of the National Football League, but few know of Humphries. There are a couple of good stories from Sports Illustrated in the 1980s about Humphries. See the index below. One is called "He Came Out Picture Perfect." The other is "The Can't Miss Kid."
My computer hates this website too. Don't bother scrolling till page is finished loading as it will jump what you are reading offscreen anway. Amazon, ebay,yahoo - none of these do it. Only hardware people at EDN?
You've gone two rounds, pretended that people should be surprised that astronauts have engineering backgrounds, and even extended your definition of engineer to include Scott Adams, and still not mentioned "Weird Al" Yankovic, who got his bachelor's degree in Architecture at the San Luis Obispo campus of Cal Poly? Really?
Bill Nye is another one that I didn't expect. Recently I saw a clip where he is bashing anyone who doesn't believe the religion of evolution. What happened to his education of not having preconceived notions but to test everything?
Earlier this year paralyzed IndyCar drive Sam Schmidt did the seemingly impossible -- opening the qualifying rounds at Indy by driving a modified Corvette C7 Stingray around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Could our view of distant galaxies be obstructed by a lawnmower? That unlikely question is at the heart of a growing debate between the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and a robot manufacturer that seeks to build self-guided lawnmowers.
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