Technology may be the lifeblood of engineers, but it’s the business of almost everyone. From the time we turn on the radio in the morning until we check our final email messages at night, we’re pushing buttons, turning keys, and answering electronic beeps.
That’s why virtually everyone has an opinion on technology. Economists like to cite its importance, and users may rage against its inadequacies, but all of us have thoughts on it. Occasionally, some of those thoughts are profound.
Today, we offer insights, forecasts, and observations on technology. From wise to witty to wildly inaccurate, here are a few of the most notable. Click on the image below to start the slideshow.
“The problems of the world cannot possibly be solved by skeptics or cynics whose horizons are limited by obvious realities. We need men who can dream of things that never were.”
— John F. Kennedy, 35th President of the United States (Quote source: Wikiquote / Photo source: Wikipedia)
Elizebeth i agree with your point about facebook and other technologies but then every thing has positive and negative impacts infact every technology carries its pros and cons it totally depends upon individuals how to deal with it .
Interesting article, John Duffy. I understand what Philp K. Dick meant and how it's relevant today...ie, people spying on each other *through* phones. In terms of his quote, I would argue it's not phones spying but companies and/or the governments of countries. And according to this article, it's not just phones that could potentially be used as spying tools.
I won't argue with you on that, Rob. The key question is: how? We were talking about this on another message board, trying to get to the root of the problem and how it might be solved. There are some good efforts underway, though, apparently.
I found that the one quote that stated how exquisitely dependant o technology so many have become while so very few understand it to be very true, making it quite disturbing. Here engineers have provided all kinds of cheap goodies that do all kinds of things, and folks become quite dependant on them, and they have not any clue about how they work, or even any of the principles of how they work.
So what would happen if some day all of the engineers decided that the unknowing would no longer be permitted to enjoy the benefits of that that they don't understand? Could engineers ever be paid as much as lawyers and doctors? And get as much respect as doctors?
Your point is well argued, Ttemple. And maybe the inclination to shun women in technical work environments is over. I certainly saw it. But that was some years ago. Perhaps industry now welcomes women in technical careers. Women who are now in technical and engineering environments would know better than I.
I want people in technology who want to be there, who have a burning desire to be there. If most of those people happen to be men, then that is who I want there. I don't think there should be some societally imposed gender quota on who is in technology.
If you watch infants, little girls generally gravitate to certain things, and little boys to others. I'm not going to expound further because it only takes minimal observation to see the general differences between boys and girls, and it is obvious from a very early age.
I believe parents should seek to discern the natural bent in each child, and encourage them in the direction that they are "wired" to go. Maybe more boys are "wired" to be interested in technology, and thus, more likely to go there.
I don't believe that we (society?) should decide for our daughters that some number of them should be in technology and push them in that direction. For the ones who have that desire and bent, lead them in that direction. For the ones that don't, should we impose it on them?
If I believed that there was some grand conspiracy to keep women out of technology careers, I would be vehemently against it, but I don't think that is the case. If it is, I'm all ears.
The question of whether engineers could have foreseen the shortcut maintenance procedures that led to the crash of American Airlines Flight 191 in 1979 will probably linger for as long as there is an engineering profession.
More than 35 years later, the post-mortem on one of the country’s worst engineering disasters appears to be simple. A contractor asked for a change in an original design. The change was approved by engineers, later resulting in a mammoth structural collapse that killed 114 people and injured 216 more.
If you’re an embedded systems engineer whose analog capabilities are getting a little bit rusty, then you’ll want to take note of an upcoming Design News Continuing Education Center class, “Analog Design for the Digital World,” running Monday, Nov. 17 through Friday, Nov. 21.
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.