Welcome to my blog! I'm out to break the stereotype of the "typical" engineer. We're not all fans of the slide rule and pocket protector. Read on...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Your Smart Car Shows How Dumb You Are

Here's a shout out to all of the Smart Car drivers out there.  Right up there with the Pet Rock and the Chia Herb Garden, it begs the question "who would buy one of those?"  Also, conspicuously absent is the "fine German engineering".  Let's examine further:

1) Occupants - 2

2) Luggage - Ha!

3) Crash ratings - can't defy physics, in an accident - you lose, ouch!

4) Performance - 0-60 mph in 12.8 seconds.  Shameful, and certainly not fun to drive.

5) 33/41 MPG - this is where the engineering is really suspect.  This is a 1800 lb car!  This mileage is a crime against Herr Schmidt, my German dynamics teacher.  You can get the same basic mileage with a Focus or a Fiesta and get a whole car...

So, this grand vehicular experiment has proven one thing: there's a sucker, jonesing for the next big (or little) thing, born every day.  Thanks to all the Smart Car drivers out there for providing entertainment for the rest of us.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

"Casual Overtime"

It's summer - the weather has finally turned warm here in Michigan, the kids are out of school, and I find myself mired in the land of "casual overtime".  For those unfamiliar with this term: think unpaid time spent working.  This term crept up during the last (current - when did it stop?) economic downturn, when paid overtime flew out the window.  So, we are all now expected to donate some time to the company cause, which I'm fine with.  As a salaried employee I have no expectation of compensation for every minute I log in the office.  Except it has now reached the point where I am donating an additional 25-30% of time free of charge.

With the economy being so unstable, employers are clearly declining to hire additional employees.  Instead, they are relying on their current staff to continue to shoulder the burden.   Prospects for advancement: nil, prospects for raises: nil, prospects for new hires: nil.  So, when we go on vacation and see the "poor slackers" who chose to live their life renting out surf boards in Hawaii or serving drinks on the snorkeling boat, I guess we have to ask ourselves:  who made the better career choice?!