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Nickname: eeLife     Articles(52)     Visits(40155)     Comments(9)     Votes(43)     RSS
eeLife is about the engineering life, project challenges, engineering humour, community connections, career aspirations,... all that makes engineers tick.
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Posted: 05:15:26 PM, 28/04/2015
In business school, they use case studies to see what works and what doesn't. In law school, they study old court arguments. But it's not often that an engineering school uses failure as a teaching tool.   I had this point brought home to me when speaking with Dave Nadler, a consult......

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Posted: 10:04:33 PM, 23/04/2015
I graduated college in 1979 (yeah, I know.... makes me about 35, right?). Back then our college Comp Sci department had less processing power than a modern toaster. There was talk, probably apocryphal, of a PDP-11 somewhere in the building, but we in the Physics department cut our teeth on a PDP-8......

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Posted: 01:34:57 PM, 27/03/2015
It has been said that humanity can be divided into two basic personality types --  the Apollonian, whose existential statement is “I think, therefore I am” and the Dionysian, who says “I feel, therefore I am.” This, of course, is simplistic – there are many other......

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Posted: 06:46:37 PM, 20/03/2015
Swaziland is an absolute monarchy in a rather dry area of Southern Africa. As part of a United Nations project to irrigate sugar cane fields, a dam was built on a river that flowed from Swaziland to Mozambique. Because the water flowed across an international border, there was a bilateral agreemen......

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Posted: 08:53:09 PM, 20/02/2015
Although the term "smart phone" first appeared in print in 1995, describing AT&T's "PhoneWriter Communicator" as a "smart phone," it was the indomitable Steve Jobs who forcefed it into our vocabulary and consciousness 12 years later. "Smart phone" ha......

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Posted: 06:57:11 PM, 10/12/2014
I recently wrote a review for a new electronic CAD package named Upverter for a Canadian magazine. This product is a paradigm shift away from classical CAD packages in that it is entirely web-based. There are no upfront costs or annual maintenance charges -- just a simple monthly fee. Several othe......

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Posted: 07:19:38 PM, 02/12/2014
In companies I have been to, engineers are typically given both a desk and a workbench. The desk is where plan design and non-technical overhead is performed. It is the realm of, and symbolizes, theoretical activity. The bench is where prototypes are built and made to work -- the symbol of experim......

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Posted: 08:39:01 PM, 01/10/2013
To ensure that I remain current and up-to-date throughout my career as a Chartered Engineer (the UK equivalent of a Professional Engineer), I am required to continue my professional development each year. While the peer review by my professional institution—the Institute of Engineering and......

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Posted: 02:36:00 PM, 14/12/2013
My father and I jokingly share that the main reason for divorce in the US has to be putting up the Christmas tree (specifically, stringing lights). Each year it is about the most painful four hours of my life. It only takes about two hours to string all the lights on our nine-foot tree, but I in......

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Posted: 09:43:44 PM, 25/06/2014
You have probably seen our own inscrutable Max Maxfield's recent blog on iPod/iPad/iPhone headphone output. He started by explaining some fairly fundamental analog concepts.   I emailed Max asking why he'd started off at such a simple level. He replied that, over time, he's come......

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