Joined: 22 February 2006
That's a really good question. Personally, Technical Engineering as I see it is a dying art as Technology improves and the cost benefit of maintaining and implementing advanced diagnostics and solutions to a plant/equipment in disrepair tips completely the other way. I'm only in my 30's but in a 10 year timeframe, component electronics has vanished considerably where I need to be an enthusiast just to maintain that skill set. Embedded systems and software applications such as VHDL is now taking over it seems.
Much the same when I talk to old Mechanical Engineers discussing back in the day when they use to do their own fabrication and milling work which now goes to design houses with all the specialist tools. Everything is more specialised and replaceable these days with the cost of components dropping and less onerous maintenance required.
Engineering as I see it now is also more career oriented and procedural with competency models where pure Technical Skill is not that much of an advantage. Hopefully there is still a place for Technical persons who may struggle with advanced calculus but maintain and wealth of technical knowledge and understanding. I find few young engineers in the field these days, really just the more experienced Technicians and the older Engineers that I can share stories with about blowing up a power supply when I was 12 trying to tinker with an old radio or my quest to build a valve amp to experience the joys of true RMS. I hope there is still a place for these types of technical enthusiast in the future.
M Wilson MIET