This is topic Engineers have the word Engineer in their degree... in forum Rants, Raves, Rumors! at The Geek Culture Forums!.


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Posted by crazyarlo (Member # 1226) on August 28, 2006, 16:58:
 
So, I am cruising Google for jobs, and I notice they need Engineers. Sweet, I thought to myself, I'm an Engineer. Nope. What they are looking for are COMPUTER SCIENCE MAJORS!! What the hell?!!?!?! Are Software Designers, IT folk, and Programmers calling themselves ENGINEERS????? After all the hard work we put in to get an Engineering degree, I find it REALLY IRRITATING that anybody can just CALL themselves an Engineer!

Where I work, they call our Chemists .. Engineers, and call us (the real Engineers) ASSOCIATES!!

What's wrong with being called what you are? Are you a Sys Admin? Programmer? Systems Designer? JUST CALL YOURSELVES THAT! BE PROUD!!!!

Otherwise, go petition the colleges to merge their Computer Science departments with the Engineering departments. And good luck with that. It ain't happening.
 
Posted by Stereo (Member # 748) on August 28, 2006, 17:19:
 
Yes, and that's why Quebec has restricted the word "Engineer" to those who 1) have an engineering degree, and 2) are member of the "Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec" (Quebec's engineering association). This way, only those who are truly qualified can use the name, with all the responsibilities that goes with it. (Condition 2 is needed so an incompetent engineer can be barred from practicing.) A much better system, if you ask me.
 
Posted by Tech Angel (Member # 908) on August 28, 2006, 18:25:
 
quote:
Originally posted by crazyarlo:
What's wrong with being called what you are? Are you a Sys Admin? Programmer? Systems Designer? JUST CALL YOURSELVES THAT! BE PROUD!!!!

Are you a planet? Dwarf planet? Kuiper Belt Object? Just call yourself that and be proud! [crazy] [Wink]

More seriously, the title "engineer" does get overused, probably because it does convey a certain level of competence in people's minds. As an engineer myself <Tech Angel gives crazyarlo the secret handshake>, I've noticed that the term does command a certain amount of respect in some circles. In most states, you can't use the term "engineer" or "engineering" when offering your services to others as a contractor or consultant unless you hold the appropriate license in that state. It's done for the same reasons Stereo mentioned, and works the same as licenses for architects, land surveyors, etc.
 
Posted by The Famous Druid (Member # 1769) on August 28, 2006, 20:25:
 
Quite agree.
I've never understood why people with Computer Science degrees call themselves "Software Engineers", it's kind of like buying a Porsche, and calling it a Volkswagen. [evil]
 
Posted by Sirius (Member # 5184) on September 06, 2006, 07:37:
 
quote:
Originally posted by The Famous Druid:
Quite agree.
I've never understood why people with Computer Science degrees call themselves "Software Engineers", it's kind of like buying a Porsche, and calling it a Volkswagen. [evil]

I WAS going to flame you then read your post again and realised I agree [Big Grin]
 
Posted by quantumfluff (Member # 450) on September 06, 2006, 08:46:
 
The ACM brings up the question of "software engineering" all the time. It's clear that to call someone a Software Engineer is technically wrong, and perhaps illegal, yet many of the largest companies in the US do it routinely. My company does as well, even though I know it is wrong.

One of the problems is that there is no accepted body of knowledge and certification that makes a "Software Engineer". If that existed, it would be clearer how to distinguish people. There are very vocal people on both sides of the debate. I think a good many CS people would like to have the equivalent of licensing, while many employers don't (labor costs might rise). Personally, I'm for professional standards, but I've never seen an employer or client ask about them. I got a cert in Systems Programming from the ICCP when I was back in college, but in 25 years, no one has cared.

Another side of the problem is that "Programmer" got a bad rep in the 70's and early 80's. The world got divided into Analysts and Programmers. The Analysts were viewed as the skilled ones and the Programmers as drones. No one with a CS degree wanted to be called a programmer - a programmer was someone who (in their minde) came out of a 2-year technical training course. That's about when we started calling ourselves engineers. (Note. I think I once read that Ken Thompson always lists "Computer Programmer" as his occupation).

Until the last of my generation retires, or we get professional licensing, programmer will be underutilized. In my resume I call myself a "Software Developer", but my job title is "Engineering Manager". I guess that's OK because you don't actually have to be an Engineer to manage them. Except none of my staff are real engineers, they're all CS majors.

What I find is that while many software people try not to call themselves engineers, it's an uphill battle because the employers keep calling them engineers. Until we can get them to stop, we'll keep treading on the real engineers turf.
 
Posted by Cap'n Vic (Member # 1477) on September 06, 2006, 09:00:
 
Pffft.

Well, let me tell you mister. My pappy-in-law drove train at CN Rail for 37 years.....he was an Engineer, and he doesn't appreciate all you young whipper snappers with book smarts calling themselves Engineers.

Oh, and the latest trend is to call ones self an Architect, as in a Network Architect or a Software Architect.
 
Posted by GMx (Member # 1523) on September 06, 2006, 09:41:
 
Oh, and a "fireman" stokes the fire in the boiler room of a ship or the boiler of a steam engine. A "firefighter" puts out fires. (Something my Dad crammed into my head over and over and over)
 
Posted by quantumfluff (Member # 450) on September 06, 2006, 10:45:
 
... and a "woodsman" is someone who ....
 
Posted by N9IWP (Member # 1229) on September 06, 2006, 12:53:
 
I've had many titles in my previous job, even the job was basically the same (programming). Right now my title is Software Engineer. (FWIW I do have a BSEE)
My alma mater (UW-Platteville) awarded the first BSSE degrees. looks like BSSE is different than BSCS http://www.uwplatt.edu/csse/index.html

Brian
 
Posted by The Famous Druid (Member # 1769) on September 06, 2006, 13:35:
 
My sis-in-law has a PhD in one of the biological fields, and once worked in a research institution where half of the researchers were PhDs, and the other half were doctors (i.e. people with a Bachelor of Medicine degree). Of course, the PhDs considered themselves to be the real 'Doctors', and referred to those with mere bachelors degrees as 'clinicians'.
 
Posted by Xanthine (Member # 736) on September 06, 2006, 14:56:
 
Huh.

I have yet to meet a PhD who used their title outside of grant applications and CVs. Around here us grad students are expected to refer to faculty by first names, or, if we can't handle that, first and last name. Undergrads still have to use the title "Professor" though (unless they work in the professor's lab, in which case they get the same priviledges grads do).

My official title is Research Assistant. My unofficial titles are Lab Rat, Bench Monkey, Tray Monkey, or just plain old Lab Monkey. I suppose that now that there are more students in here junior to me than senior to me I call call myself a Senior Lab Monkey.
 
Posted by garlicguy (Member # 3166) on September 06, 2006, 15:04:
 
I think I'm falling in love with academia all over again - not!

A high school classmate of mine, (who incidentally was so inept as to be incapable of communicating in the language taught as English by the US school system in those days), went on to major in - you guessed it - English. She also obtained a Teaching Certificate.

As things turned out, she returned to the home town and was hired as an English Teacher in that same high school. Since the pay scale for teachers in this country is largely tied to how many initials they collect after their names, she went on to purcha^h^h^h earn a Masters Degree and then a PhD in Education. Today, she is the proud Prinicpal of that school and insists upon be called "Doctor". My big white Irish A$$! No wonder Johnny can't read!
 
Posted by The Famous Druid (Member # 1769) on September 06, 2006, 16:00:
 
quote:
Originally posted by garlicguy:
A high school classmate of mine, (who incidentally was so inept as to be incapable of communicating in the language taught as English by the US school system in those days)

Don't be too hard on her, I've often wondered how anyone manages to communicate in that barbarous dialect. [evil]
 
Posted by drunkennewfiemidget (Member # 2814) on September 06, 2006, 17:49:
 
That's why I prefer to be called a 'geek'.

No seriously. That's what I ask my official job title to be.
 
Posted by Xanthine (Member # 736) on September 06, 2006, 18:01:
 
GG, any PhD who insists on being called Dr. is a dork.
 
Posted by The Famous Druid (Member # 1769) on September 06, 2006, 18:18:
 
quote:
Originally posted by Xanthine:
GG, any PhD who insists on being called Dr. is a dork.

Or a fraud.

A mate of mine had a workmate who insisted on being called "Doctor" - this in an organization where just about everyone had a PhD. It turned out his entire CV (including his impressive academic record) was a work of fiction.
 
Posted by quantumfluff (Member # 450) on September 06, 2006, 19:42:
 
I like to be addressed by my Sith title.
 
Posted by littlefish (Member # 966) on September 07, 2006, 01:26:
 
I went to a job interview at a hospital (research into disease diagnosis through Raman spectroscopy on the tear film). They had a cute organisation chart, and the formal titles were amusing.

Medical Doctors don't have a doctoral degree, and are called Dr anyway. More advanced medical practitioners with a doctoral degree call themselves Mr (or Mrs) to distinguish themselves, and can apparently get a bit sniffy.

The way they solved the deal was the most junior people (the medical doctors) had a title, whilst the researchers in the middle (where I would have been - with PhDs, but not medical ones) where called by the first name. The most senior got called Mr.
In other words:
Dr A, Bob B, Mr C.

This was only on the formal charts as far as I know. Everyone I met went by their first name.
 
Posted by Ashitaka (Member # 4924) on September 07, 2006, 02:10:
 
My two cents.

Where I work now(until next wednessday), 75% of the people on my floor there have a PhD in chemistry. No one is referred to as doctor, or Herrn Doktor, as thier official status would call for.
 
Posted by Serenak (Member # 2950) on September 07, 2006, 03:29:
 
Here in the UK medical doctors are refered to as "Dr Somebody" but those with higher medical qualifications, surgeons, consultants etc. refer to themselves as Mr... [Applause]
 
Posted by garlicguy (Member # 3166) on September 07, 2006, 06:23:
 
quote:
Originally posted by Xanthine:
GG, any PhD who insists on being called Dr. is a dork.

[blush] It appears I need a bit of help with my own English usage here. Is dork gender specific?
I've always thought dorks were males, but then a female with the same characteristics would be what, a dorkette? Anyhow, I totally agree with your notion, Xanth.

quote:
Originally poosted by littlefish:
...and can apparently get a bit sniffy.

Sniffy?? Sniffy!! OMG, I love that! I'm immediately importing it to this side of the pond. What will you EastSiders come up with next? [Big Grin]
 
Posted by Xanthine (Member # 736) on September 07, 2006, 07:24:
 
quote:
Originally posted by garlicguy:
quote:
Originally posted by Xanthine:
GG, any PhD who insists on being called Dr. is a dork.

[blush] It appears I need a bit of help with my own English usage here. Is dork gender specific?
I've always thought dorks were males, but then a female with the same characteristics would be what, a dorkette? Anyhow, I totally agree with your notion, Xanth.

I'm not sure. I've never seen the gender distinction used.

So what would a female dweeb be?
 
Posted by Bridget (Member # 5683) on September 07, 2006, 11:50:
 
I don't think that the word 'dork' is gender specific. If it is, that's news to me. I use it for everyone. [Smile] Oh, and uhhh, Hiii...I'm new!


p.s. Dweebette, maybe. -ponders- I think I have actually heard that word before. Hmmm.
 
Posted by uilleann (Member # 1297) on September 07, 2006, 12:18:
 
According to the Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (referenced by Dictionary.com), "Nearly all dweebs are male".
 
Posted by Ashitaka (Member # 4924) on September 07, 2006, 12:36:
 
quote:
Originally posted by uilleann:
According to the Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (referenced by Dictionary.com), "Nearly all dweebs are male".

don't be such a dweebette uilleann.


I'll make dweebette a word.
 
Posted by Grummash (Member # 4289) on September 07, 2006, 13:32:
 
quote:
Originally posted by garlicguy:
Sniffy?? Sniffy!! OMG, I love that! I'm immediately importing it to this side of the pond. What will you EastSiders come up with next?

Well.... repeated faux pas could very well give the offended party a crinkly mouth. [Wink]
 
Posted by Steen (Member # 170) on September 07, 2006, 15:47:
 
Dork is gender specific because, while it's used with a different meaning today, it originated as a slang term for a particular bit of the male anatomy.

Back to the topic, my company had an outbreak of misnaming engineers a couple of years back. We had, for a bit, sales engineers [shake head]
 
Posted by garlicguy (Member # 3166) on September 07, 2006, 16:53:
 
quote:
Originally posted by Steen:
Dork is gender specific because, while it's used with a different meaning today, it originated as a slang term for a particular bit of the male anatomy.

Back to the topic, my company had an outbreak of misnaming engineers a couple of years back. We had, for a bit, sales engineers [shake head]

You've related the very reason I always understood "dork" as referring to males, Steen.

But whatever do you mean by, "Back to the topic"? *Blinks*
This thread has been properly hijacked and your attempt to re-thread it is just plain dorky.
 
Posted by Steen (Member # 170) on September 07, 2006, 17:13:
 
Don't make me dork-slap you [Smile]

(okay, that's incredibly wrong... even for me)
 
Posted by The Famous Druid (Member # 1769) on September 07, 2006, 17:16:
 
quote:
Originally posted by garlicguy:
quote:
Originally posted by Steen:
Dork is gender specific because, while it's used with a different meaning today, it originated as a slang term for a particular bit of the male anatomy.

You've related the very reason I always understood "dork" as referring to males, Steen.
Interesting.

The vulgar term for the corresponding female organ is often (usually?) used to refer to males.
 
Posted by garlicguy (Member # 3166) on September 07, 2006, 17:26:
 
quote:
Originally posted by The Famous Druid:
Interesting.

The vulgar term for the corresponding female organ is often (usually?) used to refer to males.

Do you mean to say that there is only one such vulgar term?

quote:
Originally posted by Steen:
Don't make me dork-slap you [Smile]

Owieowieowieowie Ouch!

Edit: And while we're at it, Steen, don't get sniffy with me. (God. I can't help myself - I'm loving this 'sniffy' thing. Been using it all day. [Big Grin] )
 
Posted by Sirius (Member # 5184) on September 07, 2006, 20:09:
 
getting back on topic I believe this page leaves us with no doubt as to who the real engineers are
[Razz]
 
Posted by Ashitaka (Member # 4924) on September 08, 2006, 04:52:
 
quote:
Originally posted by Sirius:
getting back on topic I believe this page leaves us with no doubt as to who the real engineers are
[Razz]

from the list:
quote:
you'll assume that a "horse" is a "sphere" in order to make the math easier.

 
Posted by Steen (Member # 170) on September 08, 2006, 05:22:
 
But a horse is a toroid...
 
Posted by quantumfluff (Member # 450) on September 08, 2006, 06:27:
 
It's only a toroid if you consider just the digestive system. Once you do that, you really should add the nasal cavities and you get something multiply connected.

Of course, it's still only mathematicians who refuse to round off the insignificant parts. A real engineer would never try to deform their doughnut into a cup so they could use one less container.
 
Posted by Steen (Member # 170) on September 08, 2006, 09:57:
 
quantumfluff wrote:
Of course, it's still only mathematicians who refuse to round off the insignificant parts.

Mathematicians and those who don't like plastic surgeons [Smile]

A real engineer would never try to deform their doughnut into a cup so they could use one less container.

Not entirely true...
 
Posted by supergoo (Member # 2280) on September 08, 2006, 11:22:
 
Does biomedical engineering count?

<_<

>_>
 
Posted by canadiangeek (Member # 4946) on September 08, 2006, 12:17:
 
quote:
Originally posted by supergoo:

Does Biomedical Engineering count?

Technically, it depends... if it's taught by an accredited institution, and recognized by the governing body in your respective area... then yes.

Around here (according to APENS), it is illegal to use the word engineer unless you have a P.ENG (or drive a train, or are in the military).

We have a department at my university that is called Bio-Mechanical Engineering... they cover the same basic topics.
 
Posted by Ashitaka (Member # 4924) on September 08, 2006, 12:33:
 
quote:
Originally posted by canadiangeek:
quote:
Originally posted by supergoo:

Does Biomedical Engineering count?

Technically, it depends... if it's taught by an accredited institution, and recognized by the governing body in your respective area... then yes.

Around here (according to APENS), it is illegal to use the word engineer unless you have a P.ENG (or drive a train, or are in the military).

We have a department at my university that is called Bio-Mechanical Engineering... they cover the same basic topics.

Bio mechanical, and bio medical engineering degrees are two different degrees. At least at marquette and MSOE. Both acredited schools. My sister has a degree in bio medical engineering.
 
Posted by canadiangeek (Member # 4946) on September 08, 2006, 14:05:
 
quote:
Originally posted by Ashitaka:
Bio mechanical, and bio medical engineering degrees are two different degrees. At least at marquette and MSOE. Both acredited schools. My sister has a degree in bio medical engineering.

Fair enough. Unfortunately my University doesn't offer biomedical engineering as a seperate dicipline (it's a specialty, but you still graduate with a degree in biological engineering)
 
Posted by Rhonwyyn (Member # 2854) on September 08, 2006, 16:20:
 
I'm interviewing for a job* on Tuesday and I need to know about white papers. I figured I'd post my questions here since y'all are engineers. [Big Grin]

Have any of you written white papers? What's the key to writing a good white paper? What makes a white paper "good"?

Do any of you read white papers on a regular basis? Where do you usually obtain them? What do you like about white papers? How do you wish they'd be made better/more useful?

*advertising copywriter for an advertising firm whose major clients deal in hydraulic lifts, hydraulics and pneumatics, fiber optics, and other tech products/industries
 
Posted by dragonman97 (Member # 780) on September 08, 2006, 18:14:
 
R: That comment very much read like a spam e-mail. [Wink]

Could you have dropped the term 'white paper' any more? =P
 
Posted by Rhonwyyn (Member # 2854) on September 08, 2006, 18:33:
 
LOL. I don't know of any synonyms for "white papers" so I used what I had. I don't remember covering them at all during my undergrad, so I'm thoroughly clueless. I don't want to go into this interview looking like I don't know anything. I can summarize technical documents rather well, but I've never written a white paper. So I need to know what audiences or producers have to say about them.

I'm not selling anything. Really! [Wink]
 
Posted by Sirius (Member # 5184) on September 08, 2006, 22:00:
 
well I've only ever written on white paper but maybe this might be useful.
 
Posted by Rhonwyyn (Member # 2854) on September 08, 2006, 22:35:
 
Hehe... already read that paper, but thanks, Sirius. [Smile]
 


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