National Engineers Week, 2/18-24/01 (Engineers and non-engineers, c'mon in!)

Yep, you heard it. This week is National Engineers Week. In celebration, I’d like to request the following of the Teeming Millions: Non-engineers, it is your duty to hug an engineer this week; at least one, although more is better (and you were wondering why I called you in here).

Engineers, we’ve done this already, but it’s been a while so we’ll do it again. It’s your duty to bore…er…ah…share with the Teeming Millions what your job entails. I’ll go first.

I wear a few hats where I work. Most of my time is spent supporting the finite element analysis (aka “virtual testing” aka “virtual prototyping” aka “Computer Aided Engineering (CAE),” for those of you laymen who have read this far) software that my company distributes. These support duties include training, technical support, and mentoring. I also write programs within the software for customers to facilitate specific finite element modelling processes and make them more efficient. Some of the time, I peform engineering analysis for jobs that are outsourced to us. My specialty is structural analysis (stress, dynamic, vibration, fatigue) although I do a little bit of heat transfer. I’m quite capable of using classical hand-calculations, but most of the jobs we get require finite element analysis (FEA).

The great thing about my job isn’t just the variety of tasks I perform, but the number of industries and applications to which I’m exposed. I’m most acquainted with the aerospace industry, with a fair amount of exposure to the semiconductor industry as well as a few others. Just last week, I had a student who’s a geologist with some background in mechanical engineering. She uses FEA to predict lava flow and temperatures in volcanos. She also uses it to predict the effects of the volcano weight and magma pressure on fault lines over a period of several years. We got along really well and I have the feeling that I’ll be learning a little geology in the future (Don’t read anything into that, you pervs!).

OK, I’ve bored you enough. Next!

So, I’m missing the Engineering Show again this year? Eh, it’s boring, anyway. From my days making exhibits I learned that the best shows have food and the very best is the Dairy Show. Dessert after dessert after dessert, all free and they assume you are there because you are in the trade.

These days, glorified Clappers and sound systems for rich folk. Stultifying, but easy and it pays well. And gives me the time to automate the process to make it even easier. Currently comparing what can be done with Visio versus Autocad–I told you these drawings were easy. It’s the nitty gritty, interpreting what the customer wants and what the salesman sold him, and getting it on paper, that makes this more an art than a science and makes me worth my salary.

hugs and smooches Strainger

There. I hugged and kissed MY engineer for the week.

I have been a Software Engineer for the last 13 years. I am currently a project lead working on network management. I get to do fun things like design object-oriented software systems, tell the other engineers on my time what to do, :wink: and write Python code (yes, it’s named after Monty Python’s Flying Circus).

No one has hugged me this week. :frowning: And I could reallly reallly use it.

That’s cuz software engineers are just programmers while REAL engineers make STUFF!

(Sorry, I’m just bitter because, when unemployed, I had to wade through a trillion software engineer listings to find the pitiful few jobs I was qualified for because Monster doesn’t know the difference.)


I am an RF engineer. Let me tell you, when I was in college I took a class called High Frequency Amplifiers. The frequency was a little over 1 GHz. I now consider that to be very low frequency. Mostly what I do is sit in front of a computer and design. They force me to attend meetings sometimes, boring meeting and we are not even given any munchies. I can really relate to Dilbert. I fortunately have a window office but there are areas that have cubicles and I can barely keep from laughing when I see these people “prairie dogging”. I have collected a large collection of jokes called “you might be an engineer if…”

Am I boring enough?

Aerospace Structural Engineer here. I do get to do a teeny-tiny bit of structural design work - I’m working on the installation drawings for an electronic prop control for the Navy P-3 aircraft. The majority of my time is spent dealing with landing gear issues on the P-3 - right now I’m heading up a group to investigate process problems with steering system components. I prefer designing to looking at processes, but I do what I can to keep the parts moving and the planes flying.

And if I’d been the lucky holder of this weekend’s winning Lotto ticket, I’d be outta here in a heartbeat!! :smiley:

Civil Engineer here!

Better’n bein’ an uncivil engineer I guess. My favorite line in school was “4 1/2 years in college to be an Engineer, and I still haven’t seen the train yet!”

Okay, bad joke, but what can ya do at 7:00 AM?


Industrial engineer by profession

Yet, about 20 people who have read the hopeless thread I tried to start last week know that I am quitting my job as Sales and Inventory Planning Specialist and starting a new job on my own:
Concert Production!!!

I definitely need a couple of encouragement hugs!!

Another Civil Engineer here. I mostly do roadway and utility design work. I must say it’s by far the most exciting, thrilling and rewarding work I’ve…ever…


I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t.

Bite me gently, drop. :wink:

Actually this really is a pet peeve of mine, because I get called a “programmer” all the time by people who don’t know any better (not that there’s anything wrong with being a programmer, it’s just not what I do). I had to take all the core engineering classes in college, a ton of physics, a ton of math, etc. I did not get a liberal arts degree (though I would not call those that did “programmers”; many of the people in the LAS Math and CS program were dropouts from the engineering college, got kicked out the engineering college because they couldn’t maintain the required GPA, or could never get in to begin with.

I don’t write programs that other people have designed and spec’ed; I develop requirements, design systems, and implement portions of them.

Oh, so you’re a systems analyst?

:: ducking and running FAST ::

(BTW, I’m not a real engineer, just a draftsman with a succession of titles fancier than the jobs.)

drop, if you are at the next ChiDope, I suggest you keep your distance; otherwise I will have my revenge. :wink:

Kewl! You work with infiniite analysis code? You’re prabably one of the people I curse at as I sit here and wonder why I get matrix singularities and why automesh never works quite as well as one would hope. I too toil in the lowly engineering field. Structural is my forté. I look at bug hunks of steel inside of submarines and try to figure out what happens when you blow them up (insert your own Japanese fishing boat joke here). Yes, eigenvalues, participation factors, and mode shapes are my friends.

I love National Engineer’s Week. I still have a button from last year’s festivities in my jacket’s right breast pocket (last year’s week was February 20-26)

I’m only an engineering student, though. But in good time I’ll be out there with the rest. (I’m studying EE for those interested (that’s electrical engineering for the non-engineers.))

Psst…drop! grins Yes, that means she’s a systems analyst. runs like hell

(kidding! Honest! I’m just amused, since I do close to the same thing, and I am a systems analyst…*

And now then…BIG HUG for porcupine.

And second, hugs and smooches to Tripler. How could I not smooch my fave engineer? :wink:

Oh my dear . . . I may not be able to share a castle, but my next tent city is for you!

:smooches your hand:

The key to your Canvas City, my sweet! :smiley:
FSTFS, Tempers, and GPs, Oh my!

Engineer-in-training here. Haven’t decided which field, but leaning toward civil/structural. That, or mech/automotive…I’m gonna build either garages or cars :smiley:

Now about that hug…anybody seen racinchikki?

Mechanical engineering student here and I didn’t even know there was an Engineering Week. Is it some kind of secret we aren’t supposed to know about until graduation? :slight_smile:

Cool, good luck with the new direction

Industrial and Ssytems Engineer, here. In my previous life, I did process improvement, project engineering, wrote discrete event simulations, performed ISO/QS-9000 audits and ran a quality lab.

Now I do SQA, that is, I’ve made the jump to tech-weenie. I sit around writing scripts to automate software testing. Fun-fun.