Do'ers and Doubters (was observation about engineers)

Subject: Do'ers and Doubters (was observation about engineers)
From: Andrew Plato <intrepid_es -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 12 Oct 2001 14:00:41 -0700 (PDT)

> Of the hundred or so employees in this company, I would venture that
> over eighty percent have engineering degrees of one sort or another--
> everything from chemical engineering to architecture to electrical
> engineering to computer science. I'm not one of them. Had I stayed with
> it long enough to get a degree, it would have been in mathematics (pure,

> not applied). I suspect that most of our tech writers also have non-
> technical degrees.

This isn't endemic to engineers, I think its a more basic human
personality trait. Their are do'ers and doubters. Do'ers will jump into
just about anything and try to make it work. These people tend to wind up
in jobs where there is a high-degree of troubleshooting and problem
solving required - like IT.

Then there are doubters, who wait for approval from some external source
to get something done. Honestly, most tech writers fall into this
category. They want some external presence to justify and sanction their

I think a fair number of engineers fall into the doubter category because
engineering tends to focus people on analysis vs. repair. Engineers are
typically tasked to solve problems using passive mechanisms of analysis,
not active "bash it with a hammer until it obeys" type methods.

As a "bash it with a hammer until it obeys" type of person myself, I can
appreciate the more thoughtful methods of my engineering pals. They can
usually reason through problems with greater precision and handle more
fundamentally complex problems (like programming). But, I also know that
eventually, you have to stop planning, thinking, and pondering and start
whacking things (or people) with hammers if you want to ever get anything

I would also appreciate only reactionary, illogical and irate responses to
this post - so that I can look like a genius. :-)

Andrew Plato

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