A man is walking through the jungle, when he steps into a pitfall trap... When he comes round in the dugout with deep vertical walls, he realises that he's not alone - there's a lion, a leopard and a lawyer in there with him - so he draws his pistol, but then realises he's only got two bullets left... what does he do...?
He shoots the lawyer twice, just to make sure.....
I'm glad you chose the other (engineering) route - especially if you consider the description in the 'Devils Dictionary' A lawyer - 'One skilled at circumvention of the law...'
But as you say, the focus of my question was that someone spends years of their life studying to become proficient in a subject that they have a passion for only to find themselves, a few years later, being the manager/overseer of the person that has now been appointed into their previous position - I think that's a sad indictment of most industries....
I'm sorry for not responing sooner - the entire cell phone network of the largest service provider in South Africa went off line over the past 24 hours.. Somebody cut through one of their underground fibeoptic cables.. (and that could make an interesting disscusion regarding internodal design...) anyway, as I'm connected via a wireless network, I was offline.
In retrospect, and considering your explanation regarding the progenesis of your comment, I feel that I owe you an apology, not the other way around - I personally do have knowledge of many mechanical factors and some electronic ones that influence design My contention in previous comments was based around the premise that many people who have 'an idea' without any previous exposure to the environment, but yet wish to develop it further, simply have no idea as to how to proceed. Certainly, there are many design houses that can ably assist, but for the home inventor, this is money that sometimes they quite simply don't have. I'm approached on an almost weekly basis by people who 'have a great idea...' and want me to design it from concept through prototype, then manufacturing setup and basically nursemaid them through the entire process upto and including how the marketing stategy should be focused.... Err, no. Sorry.
So, to cut to the chase - isn't this a wonderful opportunity to provide just some basic advice to the home inventor (possibly as a sub-forum or seperate link)? There's such a wealth of talent subscribed to this publication, and it's heart breaking to constantly have to listen to 'the next Rubiks Cube' pitch - and, admittedly, sometimes narcolepsy inducing....
So what do you think? Personally, I'd be happy to contribute, but obviously I'm not conversant in all the relevant areas required to bring an idea drawn on the back of an envelope into production....
If enough willing contributors could be found, it could form the basis of a truly useful resouce to the home inventor, and let's face it - we need them - even if it's only one in a thousand that has any viable chance of success.
I've always held with the philosophy that individuals who only know 'just enough' to hold on to their position are very reticent to freely disclose information, but true experts in their fields are always more than willing to do so.
It could be just a simple message board with a few basics - has it been done before, is it possible, how much money am I looking at spending etc
Anyway, once again, I'm sorry for any misunderstanding and I'd appreciate and value your comments on what I just proposed.
Considering that at the moment I am "between jobs", the specific answer is NO, but that's probably not what you were getting at!
Actually, when I first started my engineering education I was thinking of going into Law and this background was going to give me some tools that other wouldn't have. The change away from that came gradually over the 4 years, part was due to my enjoyment of my part-time engineering assistant job and part was due to talking to law students who were telling me about the diffent culture in Law School (backstabbing, grades at all costs, vs. the collaborative nature of EE).
Once I graduated and started full time, I saw the need to build my credibility to advance, which is why I started in a part-time MBA program.
I apologize. You are correct that the magazine is for "anyone who desires to produce a quality product." I was merely responding to your earlier comment, which was "it's supposed to be a forum for designers, some of whom have little or no mechanical or electronic knowledge..." My point is that, despite the name, our readers generally do have mechanical or electronic knowledge. That said, it doesn't preclude designers from having opinions that are equally valid.
OK, I've been brooding over your comments for a little while, I've taken the time to reveiw them - and I'm bloody annoyed by them. The interpretation of the word 'Design' has not, and will not (in my humble opinion) ever change. it means precisely what it means.
I am a designer, and I am proud of that fact. By which i certainly do not mean that I am lacking in materials, thermodynamic, or fluid dynamic skills, and the interpolation of such factors into any of my designs. I'm fully aware that a rigourous theoretical environment is conducive to a functional product, but I take issue with the fact that it tends to be exclusive within the context of our conversation....
Surely it is within the remit of this title to incorporate, and indeed, actively encourage, designers?
So why do I feel mildly unwelcome - without a degree? I'm fully conversant in all the feilds previously mentioned by yourself, although self taught in all of them. And the one area that I excel in is that of mechanical design, specifically in miniaturisation.
Once again, I'll state my claim that this is a results driven environment - anything else is simply drivel..... you get paid for it, so prove it.....
Jack, I agree with you completely. This is the problem. Companies now have a specific person with specific skills or knowledge in mind before they even interview their candidates. Unfortunately, if you don't fit in this extremely small box of skills and experience, your application is pretty much glance over or even thrown in the trash. Like you stated Jack, a "skilled" engineer could have learned the X brand in a few weeks.
What happen to training? I have an MBA also, so I understand the need to hire someone who can start working on day one. But delaying hiring because you can't find the perfect fit is costly too. The time they took finding the perfect individual, they could have hired Jack. And he could have learned X in the same timeframe it possibly took them to find the "perfect fit".
The funniest part of this situation is that in the next year or so, they will probably be using another brand of CAD. Now that's funny!!!
Here's a quick anecdote regarding Manpower's Joerres comment, "Employers have a much more sophisticated definition of skill requirements."
I was recently approached by a recruiter for engineering leader type opportunity. One of the questions he had was "what is your experience with brand 'X' CAD". When I stated that my company had not used 'X' that was the end of conversation. Nothing about technical skills, management philosophy or the fact that skilled engineer could learn brand 'X' in a matter of weeks. If he couldn't check off every box on this list, he didn't want to have anything to do with you.
I did read the story about Siemens search for qualified talent. So I went on their website and looked at their job listinigs. Here is what I found. A total of 1879 jobs were listed nationwide. Out of the 1879 jobs, 474 were for engineering. Out of the 474 there were 10 engineering positions total in all of Northern and Central California.
Out of those 10, 8 were for electrical/building automation, and 2 were for rail device and related software.
When I see headlines like 'Siemens needs 3000 Engineers' and 'Is hiring recruiters to fill the need' I get the impression that any qualified engineer can run out and get a job.
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For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.