Why engineers should rule the world.

Engineering is the art of solving problems by making the best assumptions and simplifications. One who masters this technique can do anything, and this is why I believe that Engineers should rule the world. Society acts as a machine, and like any machine no one can completely understand every change in the system, one can only understand a simplified calculation, a calculation which has been determined to work but requires many assumptions. thermodynamics is a perfect example, there is no way to predict where every particle of a substance is but we can observe the change in the particle’s state (by measuring differences in temperature, pressure, volume, etc.) After measuring these differences we can use an equation to calculate the change in something else. Digging into specifics isn’t all too helpful, it is concentrating on the correct assumptions that can give us an accurate prediction for the performance of an heat engine, refrigerator, and so on. I think that the same can go for the economy, and maybe even further to the general welfare of a people. We can measure things such as the number of crimes, legal prosecutions, speeding tickets, loans taken out, defaulted payments, etc. And after determining the correct assumptions make very accurate predictions based on the Observation of the change in these measurements.

In this regard, engineers should rule the world.

To get a masters or not.

So Here i am, already getting in tremendous amounts of debt, and looking at the types of jobs I could get with a bachelors. Well the average starting salary for a student with a chemical engineering bachelors degree is $54,000, while the average starting salary for a masters in chemical engineering is 57,000 per year, and the average starting salary for a Ph.D is 80,000. Chemical engineers in general earn a median salary of 80,000. Now all this information is from one source while a newer source gives its opinion on Chemical Engineering salaries.

“Higher education is also correlated with higher income, as shown in Table 8. The median salary of chemical engineers with a bachelor’s degree is $89,563; with a master’s degree, $98,578; and with a doctorate, $112,874”

Well in any case, furthering your education sounds like a reallly good idea. Any posts on this would be extremely helpful~~~

Free text books, good idea?

I wonder sometimes why text books are so darn expensive. I mean my girlfriend just spent 1400 dollars on her books for one simester. My Chemistry book was 200 dollars. Now I know that publishers take risks, and need to make money but 200 a book is a little steep!

I look online at books for calculus, there are the Mcgraw Hill books for 150 – 200 dollars or calculus for dummies for 25. I am pretty sure they are the same content, and both have to make money, but why is calculus for dumies, ( a perhaps better learning resource) so much cheaper. This goes further than this example if you go on amazon there are some books on thermodynamics which are 10 dollars, while the McGraw Hill versions are at least 100.

Well anyway, here are exerpts from an article from the nytimes written by Coam Cohen. He compares the text book industry to the drug industry and states that unlike the drug industry where researches dont have much leaverage against pharmaceutical companies, professeurs can do something about text book prices. He follows a proffeseur, or multiple professuers, who are starting to take action against these publishers.

“SQUINT hard, and textbook publishers can look a lot like drug makers. They both make money from doing obvious good — healing, educating — and they both have customers who may be willing to sacrifice their last pennies to buy what these companies are selling.

It is that fact that can suddenly turn the good guys into bad guys, especially when the prices they charge are compared with generic drugs or ordinary books. A final similarity, in the words of R. Preston McAfee, an economics professor at Cal Tech, is that both textbook publishers and drug makers benefit from the problem of “moral hazards” — that is, the doctor who prescribes medication and the professor who requires a textbook don’t have to bear the cost and thus usually don’t think twice about it.

“The person who pays for the book, the parent or the student, doesn’t choose it,” he said. “There is this sort of creep. It’s always O.K. to add $5.”

“In protest of what he says are textbooks’ intolerably high prices — and the dumbing down of their content to appeal to the widest possible market — Professor McAfee has put his introductory economics textbook online free. He says he most likely could have earned a $100,000 advance on the book had he gone the traditional publishing route, and it would have had a list price approaching $200.”

www.nytimes.com

(great newspaper, free website!!! you can register with them for free too!!!)

Why Engineers dont want America to drill more of its oil deposits.

There is an energy crisis. China has a population of 1.6 billion and India has a population of over 1 billion. These countries are rapidly developing, and the citizens of these countries are demanding the same living standard found in the European Union and USA. This high living standard includes many luxeries such as television, microwaves, vehicles, and electric lighting. The business sector in China and India also demands commodities such as neo signs, transportation of goods and so forth. Essentially these countries require massive amounts of energy, and they have the drive to get it.

At this point, producing energy is almost exclusively tied to oil, and when a country is in the market for energy, they are typically looking at the oil market. Because of global warming, and the massive geopolitical effect of the oil market it is in most everyones best interest to avoid the oil market. This avoidance would requires technology.

Imagine the world we live in as a energy market, at this point most, because the majority of energy is derived from patroleum, countries with large oil deposits really own and benifit from this market. Imagine the market a little differently, one where a cheap, efficient energy source was created. In this world, the owner of this technology would be extremly rich, and the ENGINEERS who were a part of this creation would benifit greatly. Now the United States of America is behind on green energy, by a long ways. Opening up drilling would only prolonge the dependance on oil, and keep America behind on innovation in the green market.

So in conclusion, Engineers need a job, and the green sector is going to be the next big market. If America is on top of this market, than there will be alot of engineering opportunities here. Otherwise, we might need to start applying for visas to the EU or China. Right now we are behind and drilling will only make us further behind. We need consumers to pay the actual cost of patroleum so innovation in the green sector is a viable alternative. Drilling more oil does not accomplish that, in fact it does the opposite.

Therefore, more drilling is bad for engineers!