You raise a good issue issue, Naperlou, about the sustainability and support of these new technologies once developed and deployed. Do they need updating and maintenance to stay in working condition? If so, who's trained to fix and support them and where do they get replacement parts or fixes, if they are necessary. Hopefully the engineers and designers working on these types of innovations look at it from the complete lifecycle, from manufacture through maintinability, and in the context of the remote environments. You have to assume they do, but you never know.
This is a good type of philanthropy. On the other hand, getting it out there in general use will be the big challenge. I know a group that was helping to distribute generators that ran on a tropical plant. These could be self contained units and dropped in to an isolated settlement. I don't hear much about it these days. i wonder if these efforts to put technology in places with none can be effective in the long run. Perhaps if they help people get out of the poverty they live in now they will become obsolete. We'll see.
A middle school team from Rochester, Mich., has again nabbed the grand prize in the annual international Future City Competition, which drew students from 37 regions of the United States, as well as from England and China.
The word “smart” is becoming the dumbest word around. It has been applied to almost every device and system in our homes. In addition to smartphones and smart meters, we now hear about smart clothing and smart shoes, smart lights, smart homes, smart buildings, and every trendy city today has its smart city project. Just because it has a computer inside and is connected to the Web, does not mean it is smart.
Are you being paid enough? Do you want a better job? According to a recent survey Manpower released just before Engineers Week, employers and engineers don't see eye-to-eye about the state of US engineers' skills and experience.
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.