Transforming technical conscience into applied realities

An engineer works under various constraints: nature, cost, safety, environment, ergonomics, reliability, manufacturability, and maintainability, among others. Some of the qualities we expect in an engineer are strong analytical skills, creativity, scientific insight, leadership abilities, high ethical standards, dynamism, flexibility, the pursuit of lifelong learning, and dedication to the public cause. The engineering profession needs real-world engineers equipped to forge and deal with the complex interactions across many disciplines. They are expected to foresee and manage unknown and unexpected problems. They are expected to appreciate the human dimensions of emerging technology. They are expected to understand global issues and the nuances of working in a culturally diverse space. The industry needs engineers who take pride in designing a thing and manufacturing it. They need to appreciate that for the delivery of the packaging of the goods is not enough. They are expected to learn how to work in interdisciplinary teams, how to iterate designs rapidly, how to manufacture sustainably, how to combine art and engineering, and how to address global markets. They are expected to push the bars of engineering excellence. Customer’s priorities and demands are most important, and that decides what kind of trade-offs can be made to lower the costs. Frugality too is becoming quality conscious. Only frugal innovation that works on the principles of ‘calculated trade-offs’ succeeds. An engineer is “not a scientist, he is not a mathematician, he is not a sociologist or a writer, but he may use the knowledge and techniques of any or all of these disciplines in solving engineering problems.”