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Re: WHO'S WHO? (Titles mean something!): Engineering vs Code-Gineering

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Dave Adams wrote:

This is EXACTLY why specific titles mean something. I don't want to rain on
a person's parade, but if we begin attributing the label "Structural
Engineer" to someone who is not licensed to do such (yeah, I understand the
politics of licensing and am quite certain that there are probably many
great individuals out there that have not taken the SE exam but are more
qualified to design than some who have passed the exam), the qualifications
of the title become fuzzy. When I was an E.I.T., I didn't dream of
presenting myself as a "structural engineer" because I held the title in
such high esteem.

I love structural engineering and am always impressed by the achievements of
my colleagues (many of you have impressed me over and over again with your
posts) and there should be some sort of guideline to allow someone to take
the title SE. Whether we agree with it or not, in California this is allowed
only after passing the SE exam. Maybe there is more that SEAOC or ASCE can
do to improve the reputation of the profession and, yes, there is much that
we need to do ourselves.

We've already had a discussion regarding automation in engineering, pro's
and con's, but I think it serves here as well. SE's understand that this
automation is merely a tool and that our profession requires personal
judgment and artistry, but I think a lot of others (non-engineers) think
they can just buy a program and they've got it handled.

Sorry for the rambling.


Dave K. Adams, S.E.
Lane Engineers, Inc.

One of the arguments presented at the legislative hearing on the Oregon Structural Engineer's Licensing Act (against the act) was that such an act was not needed, because we had the Uniform Building Code.  Thus anyone licensed as "engineer" could do anything as long as they personally felt they were qualified, and just followed the code.

The Code, IMO, after transcribing Chpt 16 of the IBC 2000 final draft onto a disk file, has become so complex and complicated; it's not clear to me whether we're supposed to do "engineeing" or "code-gineering"?  When I think of engineering, I think of being able to visualize the loads, materials, and essential parameters, express that in equation form; then apply the "insight" of my analysis to the solution.  In it's simplest form, it's what we did in Alaska when we needed a bridge to carry a haul truck.  I realize the world is more complicated than that.  But it seems to me, if the code is going to be so voluminous, complex, and require a glossary to keep track of where you've been and where you're going; then they're ought to be a CD ROM issued as part of the code, so there's some consistency in application; and it's more clear sooner, what isn't right and needs fixing?

Another issue that has come up is: if someone walks into a lumber yard, runs their computer program for a "deck", for example, is that "engineering" (or I suppose, "computeneering"?)

James Bela

Oregon Earthquake AwarenessTM        /        The Quake NorthwestTM
"We Have Nothing To Fear But Shear Itself"        /        "We're All Subducting In This Together"