So Let it be Written, So Let it be Done!

October 15, 2009

You may be a hardcore engineer (or PhD student) if you

For those who are not engineers, this can serve as a handy guide to sniff out those of us around you. For those who are, but may be questioning your credentials or trying to play down your nerd card, this is your wake up call.

If you apply engineering principles to your regular life? I.e. the noisy channel model to dating, optimization methods to arranging your dishwasher, minimum entropy to your porn, you are likely a hardcore engineer.

Perhaps you solve “interesting” problems just to solve them, not for any possible benefit – grades, pay, extra credit, impress your boss/adviser – just to see if you can do it. If you regularly use up what is likely scant resources of your time and brainpower on problems that have a very low chance of actually paying you back something later, you are probably a hardcore engineer.

Or maybe you’ve having a conversation with a friend about something you’ve been working on and they ask for the “simple” explanation. And after you give them what is arguably the elementary school (in your head) explanation, they ask you to dumb it down some more. Until you end up saying, “well, pretty much I’m trying to *verb* *noun* much more {efficiently, cheaply, faster, simpler, to use less resources} and only then is when they nod and make that ‘aahhh’ noise that says “I still don’t understand but you’ve probably reached the limit that you mind will allow you to simplify this problem”, you are most likely a hardcore engineer.

Do you have boxes, parts, notebooks, and files on projects that you started in the past, where you were really excited about what you were going to do, but somehow never finished because you started on another project that had similar potential, but you never throw them away because one weekend, after you’ve caught up on the work you’re doing now, you’re going to go back and finish? You are definitely a hardcore engineer.

Did you read this and spend the whole time thinking, wow, this is all so familiar, but in actuality you spend your days teaching kids how to draw, or designing purses to be made out of eco-friendly fibers, or writing copy for a news article? If so, you are likely a hardcore engineer’s girlfriend.

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1 Comment »

  1. Great post!!

    Comment by switch47 — November 12, 2009 @ 5:15 am | Reply


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