Wednesday, April 30, 2014

About The Engineering Sense

The Eurostar

I am originally an Engineer. Despite not being an A student, that did not prevent me from being proud of my Engineering mindset (non-Engineers don't need to worry, we try our best to accept you in our world). Back when I was doing my Engineering degree, many of our professors made an emphasis on the what so called 'Engineering Sense'.

Several years later, I went on writing this post and realized it is not easy to find an explicit definition for the term 'Engineering Sense', thus I thought of presenting the pillars of this term based on my own understanding in addition to impressions I got from some fellow Engineers:
  • practicality, it works right
  • efficiency, providing the best solution
  • a structured way of thinking into building a solution
  • outside the box, presenting an untypical alternative
But what does it have to do with the Eurostar? To me, the drilling project of the Channel Tunnel is an example of Engineering Sense. To construct this undersea tunnel that connects England and France, a drilling machine was used from each side simultaneously. Typically, one would expect retrieving the two machines once the project is done. However, as machines met halfway through, one actually dug downwards and got buried (for good) into the floor while the other continued into the other direction.
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