Bobjengr, you've brought up a subject that I raised just a few minutes ago in a comment on the Gadget Freak story. I've never understaood why more women don't go into engineering. In 1988, an editor named Gail Robinson did a fantastic 10-page article for Design News about the reasons why women don't choose engineering (it was 10% at that time), and what was being done about it. The article mentioned lots of possible reasons -- lack of mentors, lack of parental encouragement at young ages, inadequate high school counseling, etc. But 26 years later, the number is still the same -- about 10%, as far as I know. High school girls do well in physics, so where is the disconnect and why?
This is a very strong group. We've got engineers who've developed smart glasses, DSP architectures, underwater robotic fish and even a prosthetic limb that grows with a child, among other things. Congratulations to all of our finalists.
What should be the perception of a product’s real-world performance with regard to the published spec sheet? While it is easy to assume that the product will operate according to spec, what variables should be considered, and is that a designer obligation or a customer responsibility? Or both?
Biomimicry has already found its way into the development of robots and new materials, with researchers studying animals and nature to come up with new innovations. Now thanks to researchers in Boston, biomimicry could even inform the future of electrical networks for next-generation displays.
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