Monday, March 22, 2010

To B.E or not to B.E..? That is the question. [20 marks]

Ok. I admit it. I can't tell a lie. I did cut it with my hatchet… Oh, sorry. I was too carried away with the truth part that I forgot that I didn't carry any hatchet nor did I cut anything. The bad thing about truth is, even if it shows up anywhere by mere chance, its presence is ignored, or its identity doubted. And the good thing about a lie is that it's always expected, welcomed and digested. Even if a lie does not pop up anywhere [the chances being humongous imaginary numbers], something else takes up its place and all the credit. So it's up to magnificent minds like ours to crack the code, break the barriers, throw up the truth and let up the lies.

If you think the paragraph sleeping above makes any sense, you can very well apply for a psychiatrist's appointment or for the post of a lecturer in an engineering college, because the preceding paragraph is an excellent example to the undoubted skill of engineering students to fill up pages and pages of senseless, incoherent and incomprehensible text as answers [to questions similar to those framed by Mayans on the certainty of doomsday] in their exams. Mayans, as history says, were great men in terms of astrology, but stupid men in terms of their terms with astrology. A worn-out calendar-maker of a Mayan village had, out of sheer boredom or because he had got a better job-offer from TCS, obviously terminated his work abruptly on a random date [which now is deciphered as 21-12-2012, and has got blockbuster status thanks to the movie- 2012]. If engineering students had been living next door, they would've persuaded the calendar-maker to have party with them every night, have some drinks, share their assignments or watch movies together, not leaving the mayan guy give a shit to the calendars.

But engineering is much more. Engineering is probably the art of using science in practical applications to achieve commercially viable outcome for the betterment of humanity. Having said that, one can very well notice that the definition of engineering, in itself, encompasses art, science, commerce and humanity. So it's up to engineers to take up their careers in all the other fields as they are confident that they are laymen in terms of knowledge in their own field. Simply put in words, B.E is a 4-year course that comprises of the study of various practices, which, once mastered [or rather bachelored], will render the pursuer clueless of what or why he's pursuing.

Getting serious, engineering is about discovery-understanding-creation-innovation. Engineering requires knowledge of the basic sciences for which the 1st year of the course is dedicated. The next year brings to the students the building blocks of that engineering discipline the student has taken up. The 3rd year has possibly got to do with greater advancements or deeper concepts with which the field is thriving. And the final year exposes the students to the most mature topics of the discipline and the real-time implications of their subjects. The syllabus must be so framed as to attract the attention of the students and the system must be so designed as to bring out the best of each student.

What's the point in having physics in the syllabus for two semesters when, actually, the knowledge, along with the textbooks goes to the old book shop? Same is the case with inter-departmental subjects, say basics of civil and mechanical engineering [for electrical engineers]. The next one is the omission of subjects which are essential [say Computer Architecture]. It is with due respect to such critical parameters that the NBA (National Board of Accreditation and not National Basketball Association), NAAC (National Accreditation and Assessment Committee), AICTE (All India Council for Technical Education) must assess the colleges/courses.

Having complained enough about authorities, it is mandatory to complain about students. Engineering, of course, has lost most of its reputation in the years. Once upon a time, engineering was elusive and exclusive. Only a very few blessed men could taste the course. There were even B.Sc. courses on engineering subjects. But now engineering has come to the reach of almost everyone and its expansion is still in progress. This, bringing positive results on one hand, has also brought deadly impacts. Persons, who would have otherwise taken up courses in arts or science, have taken up engineering, mainly due to the abundance of engineering seats, the opportunities for the arrangement of educational loans, and the primary consequence of a BE degree, namely a job. Many such people and others do not take up engineering very seriously. It is no good to study the subjects, remember lines of text by heart and lastly puke them all in the answer papers along with flowery contraptions.

The next thing is higher education. What is the purpose of getting a B.E degree when all you want is an MBA? First things first. It would be wise to offer now some valuable tips to become an engineer and stay the same.

  • Engineering is not just another field of study. It is an experience and a method of life. This is why all B.E grads are engineers, but not all B.Sc. grads are scientists, nor are all B.A grads artists.

  • Marks will definitely have an effect on the life an engineer but they are no good if the student has insufficient knowledge.

  • Understand the subject. It doesn't matter how vast your subject area is. All that matters is how deep you know your subject.

  • Engineering is basically about thinking. Those who fail to think, make terrible engineers. So think differently; but first, think.

  • Engineers are born to make mistakes. It doesn't matter how large or how bad the mistakes are. How better you become after the mistake is important.

  • The most important of all, engineering is about being brave. Sounds stupid? There is no point in running away from a problem when, eventually, it's gaining on you. Engineering gives the mind everything it takes to solve any problem. It's up to the heart to stay steady and courageous to face the circumstances.

  • Engineering is all about learning. When everyone looks at something, the artist enjoys the beauty of it, the scientist studies it, the engineer understands it [and the economist plans on how to buy/sell it]. Engineers stop at nothing when it comes to learning.

  • Engineering is fun. Unless one appreciates the enjoyment in something, never can he be said to have understood it. In fact, there is more to having fun being an engineer, than being an engineer itself.

  • Engineering is responsibility. Responsibility is one word an engineer must embrace, for it can be a fearsome tiger if feared or it can be a friendly kitty if tamed.

Lastly engineering is all about imagination. Those who imagine little, make enemies out of themselves. It would not be unfair to say that engineering has no limits. But, most importantly, Engineering = 100% common sense.


  1. seriously cool da.. it is like my conscience being put up in a blog :) The mayan thing is great...
    actually one thing that i felt left out in ur blog is the caste reservation system by our great politicians... hoping to read it in ur upcoming blogs..

  2. superb da.. tho the intro is beyond the scope of my knowledge, and the in between passages are bit dry to my taste, finally those points are awesome..

    Engineering is probably the art of using science in practical applications to achieve commercially viable outcome for the betterment of humanity.

    you stupefied me with the above sentence..

    keep writing blogs.. :)