Engineering Certifications

Discussion in 'A+ Certification' started by Harsha Raghavan, Jun 2, 2004.

  1. Man I love sarcasm...thanks! :)

    Tom MacIntyre, Jun 19, 2004
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  2. Wow...I have actually experienced that, in a discussion about the term
    "brother-in-law". The person who doubted the dictionary's correctness
    claimed that should she marry someone, that person's sister's husband
    does not become her brother-in-law, since their marriage was first.

    Tom MacIntyre, Jun 19, 2004
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  3. Harsha Raghavan

    Bernie Guest

    Except that he is coupling this type of silliness with a bold
    hypocrisy when he goes on to posit the connection of money to
    "Engineer" without a whit of substantiation. He also seems to be
    arguing the existence in nature of the freestanding job title
    "Engineer", sort of like trying to argue freestanding quarks, free
    standing anti-matter, freestanding free radicals, etc. IOW, that
    there are these IT people who have simply the word "Engineer" on their
    business card, not "Systems Engineer," "Network Engineer," etc, that
    the noun "engineer" (except when used as a simple job title) must
    always be coupled with an adjective describing the field of study.
    IOW, if I am a EE, I am not an engineer, I am only a EE. However, if
    I am some loser IT guy who passed a CCNA exam but still can't identify
    a router from my own butt, I am an "engineer," not a network engineer,
    just a plain "engineer," but only if I make a lot of money when
    destroying people's networks.

    Never mind that he can't come up with examples of the word "engineer"
    *by itself* being used as a job title by anyone other than himself.
    Never mind that the definition of the noun actually refers to the
    traditional branches of engineering, not the fake ones we invented.
    Never mind that the DoL defines "Engineer" as an occupation (a larger
    category under which the branches fall) which does not include the
    bastard IT designations under it.

    Never mind that he has contradicted himself so many times I have begun
    to lose count. The most egregious offense is one is strikes at the
    heart of his own position:

    So does it say you are holding an engineering position (which by
    definition means you are applying science and math, which excludes the
    vast majority of IT jobs that lift the term) or that you are making
    more money than a technician? Oh, and never mind that those who hold
    real engineering positions, by his twist-a-plot logic, would not be
    allowed to use the "freestanding" title "Engineer." They would have
    to use civil engineer, or nuclear engineer, etc. I guess only the
    fake engineers are allowed to use "engineer" as a "freestanding"

    Basically, he is making these connections up as he goes. That much is
    obvious. It is one fallacious construct after another to justify a
    fallacious POV.

    Bernie, Jun 19, 2004
  4. Harsha Raghavan

    Bernie Guest

    I'm not angry, but one of my pet peeves in life is when people try to
    justify clearly wrong behavior. For example, if someone cheats, they
    should just say, "I am cheating, and I don't care if it is wrong..."
    But it becomes really annoying when said person goes on an endless
    tirade of justification for what they are doing.

    In this case people have been trying to wrongfully steal job titles
    from another profession. Fine, it happens. But trying to justify it
    with ridiculous constructs like, "I make $x/hr therefore I must be an
    'engineer'" is just beyond belief.
    But that is a different issue from the one I am talking about.
    Network administrator and technology coordinator are not rip-offs from
    other prestigious professions. Competency issues aside, I have no
    problem with those job titles.

    Bernie, Jul 25, 2004
  5. Harsha Raghavan

    nrf Guest

    Far far more egregious was one guy I know who passed his CCIE and then
    started referring to himself as a 'network doctor'.

    I think much of the phenomenom of network guys appropriating titles they
    clearly have no right to use stems from simple insecurity. In their
    hearts, they know that the skills they have, however hard they might have
    worked to acquire those skills, don't hold a candle to the skills of real
    engineers or real doctors. So they coopt their titles to try to gain some
    measure of legitimacy. Notice how strongly competent people never seem to
    care too much about titles. I know a whole bunch of MIT alumni, and none of
    them particularly care about titles or whether people call them engineers or
    not. Only in IT have I ever found people who insist on using the title of
    nrf, Jul 25, 2004
  6. Harsha Raghavan

    Bernie Guest

    Well there you go... I mentioned that title a while back as something
    the future might adopt once "engineer" is so thoroughly worn out, like
    a dirty piece of underwear. I didn't realize there were *already*
    individuals stooping so low.

    Bernie, Jul 25, 2004
  7. Harsha Raghavan

    catwalker63 Guest

    en·gi·neer [ ènj? n?r ]

    noun (plural en·gi·neers)

    1. engineering engineering professional: somebody who is trained in a
    branch of professional engineering

    2. rail locomotive driver: somebody who operates a railroad
    U.K. term engine driver

    3. mechanical engineering mechanic: somebody who operates or services

    4. shipping navy ship's officer: an officer on a ship who is in charge
    of the engines

    5. military construction soldier: a member of a unit of the armed
    forces that specializes in building and sometimes destroying bridges,
    fortifications, and other large structures

    6. planner: somebody who plans, oversees, or brings about something,
    especially something that is achieved with ingenuity or secretiveness
    the engineer of the overthrow of the government

    You're all right and you are all wrong. Now find something worthwhile
    to argue about.
    catwalker63, Jul 26, 2004
  8. Harsha Raghavan

    catwalker63 Guest

    Definition # 6 describes an engineer as someone who plans, oversees, or
    brings about something that is achieved with ingenuity or secretiveness.
    That's IT to a tee! <g>

    RE your BTW: I'm female so I'm quite able to believe in logical
    impossibilities. It's part of my nature. And the term has six definitions
    so it's in no way binary.

    aka catwalker
    IT Professional, MCP

    catwalker63, Jul 26, 2004
  9. Harsha Raghavan

    Bernie Guest

    Except that none of those definitions fit the so-called "network
    engineer" or "systems engineer"....

    BTW, you present a logical impossibility as the solution to the
    argument. We can't all be right and all be wrong on a binary issue.
    The term either fits or it doesn't.

    Bernie, Jul 26, 2004
  10. Harsha Raghavan

    Bernie Guest

    There are several problems with #6. I'll list those in a reasonable
    and logical order.

    First, there is disagreement on whether #6 is a true definition.
    Webster and American Heritage, carry only a similar definition, but
    not nearly as generic. "[3] c : a person who carries through an
    enterprise by skillful or artful contrivance." Not sure what your
    source is, but I'll tend to stick to Webster. (Note that under the
    Webster definition, the bar is much higher so similar arguments apply
    but to a greater degree.) MSN Encarta is hardly the end authority on
    the English language <g>. Either way, the rest of the argument will
    follow very similarly, so for sake of ease, I will still refer to #6
    from here on out.

    Second, #6 has transient application, and is clearly not applicable to
    this topic of job titles. #1 is clearly the definition that has
    application to job titles. #6 may apply to certain circumstances, or
    activities in time, but it does not make one an engineer by
    profession. What didn't come through as clearly in the copying and
    pasting is the bold type for the category of the different
    definitions. One was labeled "engineering professional" and the other
    "planner." Which do you think fits this application (i.e. job titles)
    best? As for support in this interpretation, the Department of Labor
    who tracks and publishes info on occupations, does not apply this
    definition to the term engineer. They apply something along the lines
    of #1, but with much greater depth of definition and description. The
    heading on your definition #1 "engineering professional" does
    highlight the fact that this is the definition that applies to jobs
    and job titles if any of them do. For example, an engineer may be
    what I am when I get out my roll of duct tape around the house <g>,
    but that doesn't make me an engineer by profession. If I call myself
    a Network Engineer, I am essentially claiming to be part of the class
    of engineering professionals. Definition #6 is clearly not the
    definition that is invoked when someone introduces themselves as a
    "Systems Engineer."

    Third, (for the sake of argument, assuming you still disagree with 1
    and 2 above) lets look at the discrepancy between #6 and the vast
    majority of those using the title "engineer" in the IT field. At
    best, #6 only has application to those who work in the design phase of
    projects, particularly the consultants who typically get involved at
    the planning level. Yet people who are troubleshooters, fixers, tech
    support, implementers, installers, technical salespeople, ad nauseam
    all steal the term "engineer" and put it on their business cards too.
    Why is that? The interesting dynamic here is that the people who snub
    the consultant and say "I am a real engineer because I play with nerd
    knobs all day; the consultant is a bozo" are not the engineers...the
    consultant is (under that definition)!! Fixing a network, even with
    ingenuity, is clearly not an application of #6. Installing a router,
    even with ingenuity, is not an application of #6. Designing a network
    with ingenuity is at least an arguable application, so see the next
    note. But with respect to the hoards of Systems Engineers, Sales
    Engineers, Support Engineers, Network Engineers [ad nauseam] whose
    jobs don't include design/planning, sorry, but #6 just doesn't cut it.
    As an example of this distinction, Software Engineer and Computer
    Programmer are two distinctly different jobs, and the DoL tracks them
    as separate (but obviously related) professions. So even if you still
    believe that #6 applies to some, you have to admit that most of those
    using the title in the IT field are using it illegitimately.

    Forth, for those few IT people remaining in consideration under point
    3, ingenuity and secretiveness don't quite cut it either. Lets narrow
    the focus to only those designers who can make argument of the use of
    the title under #6. You can't call it secretiveness when bookstores
    carry hoards of publications on these subjects of IT. Ingenuity is
    certainly debatable here too. I have run across few people who
    actually practice ingenuity in their daily jobs. They follow Cisco's
    blueprint for design and throw gigabit (and now 10G) pipes everywhere,
    even to the desktop, when it really isn't needed. Throwing raw
    bandwidth at problems until problems go away is not ingenuity. As
    another example, with WLANs (wireless being an area that has
    previously been a true application of an engineering field) these so
    called planners are not RF engineers, they are people who are looking
    for simple rules of thumb to design by, like "one AP per 7500 sq.
    ft...." and when those rules of thumb fail them they do a site survey
    to figure it out by trial an error. That is not ingenuity. Following
    like a lemming the blueprint from Cisco is not ingenuity. Calling an
    SME to help them figure out the only complex part of a design is not
    ingenuity. Case in point, how many times have you looked at a network
    and said "Why that design is ingenious!" Probably never. These
    cookie-cutter designs are things you see everywhere you go.
    Alternatively put, if your mind convulsed at the suggestion above
    (point 3) that the consultant is the "engineer" of the project then
    you agree with me on this point too, i.e. that the planner isn't
    particularly ingenious in his work. Summary, the guy who wrote the
    Cisco blueprint *might* be considered an engineer, some top people in
    the industry *might* be considered engineers, but most of the planners
    who steal the title "engineer" do not practice ingenuity at all, if
    ever. And I then refer you back to point 2 above: even so, it is a
    transient description of an activity, not a job title or legitimate

    Fifth, you just really cannot possibly be putting network design on
    the same level as engineering a plot to overthrow a government, or
    building a bridge to withstand earthquakes, can you???? When they say
    (#6) ingenuity, they *mean* ingenuity. They provide an example that
    illustrates the level that they are talking about. It just doesn't
    follow that our jobs fit in that echelon. For example, I plan to go
    to the store, and I think through in my head the shortcut I will take.
    Did I engineer my trip to the store? No. There is a level of
    ingenuity required, and a level of difficulty required before the term
    fits. If former truck drivers could learn the trade in a few months
    and do the job as well as the former plumber <g>, then we aren't
    talking about a trade that requires a particularly high level of
    ingenuity (no offense to truck drivers or plumbers <g>). Your
    application of ingenuity to the IT field is greatly overstated.

    Sixth, I submit that if #6 really did apply to IT, then we wouldn't be
    complaining about offshoring right now because it wouldn't be
    happening except as a trickle of jobs moving. I really can't claim
    that I am performing secretive arts or ingenuity if just about
    *anyone* can do my same job in my place.

    Seventh, if you argue that #6 applies to IT as a general statement,
    then you also open the flood gates to application of the term doctor
    to ourselves. By genericizing beyond the intended application of the
    definition (which is fairly clear given the context of it: see point
    2) in order to cheapen the term making it apply to a broader set of
    people than it should, you open the floodgates to this happening to
    other revered titles. In fact, if you want to insist that Encarta is
    the authority on the subject of word definitions, all tech support
    people in the IT industry should heretofore start calling themselves
    "doctors" and change their job titles:

    3. somebody who can fix things: somebody who is good at doing
    something, especially fixing or improving something

    As with the term engineer, Webster offers similar "loopholes" if you
    insist on interpreting them that way. Webster is also similarly not as
    watered down in wording as Encarta. Encarta seems to be trying to
    legitimize the colloquialisms which is not the way you maintain
    standards in a language. That is why Encarta isn't authoritative as a
    dictionary. See point 1.

    Conclusion. 1 and 2 really discredits any application of that
    definition to our use of job titles. However, if you contest that,
    you at least have to grant 3, that most who do use the title,
    shouldn't use that title. 4 through 7 contests even that limited
    application of the title. (I suppose all the domestic engineers,
    sanitation engineers, custodial engineers, etc. cite #6 and claim they
    do some planning in their work too....)
    It is binary by the fact that if one of the six fits the definition
    fits, and if none of the six fits it doesn't fit. That is why there
    are multiple (sub)definitions--you can't say that a train engineer
    (#2) is not an engineer because they aren't in the Navy (#3). That is
    obviously not how the logic of definitions works. So regarding the
    question posed, there are only two possible conclusions. Since
    various sub definitions are meant to be read as logical ORs, the
    definition (as a whole) fits or doesn't fit as a simple binary.

    Bernie, Jul 26, 2004
  11. Harsha Raghavan

    JaR Guest

    No shit!


    JaR, Jul 26, 2004
  12. Harsha Raghavan

    catwalker63 Guest

    Blah, blah, blah. I read enough to realize you have entirely missed the
    point of my post. <sigh> Find something important to argue about! <eg>

    aka catwalker
    IT Professional, MCP

    catwalker63, Jul 26, 2004
  13. Harsha Raghavan

    TechGeekPro Guest

    On Jul 26, 2004 "catwalker63" blathered:


    Please don't post binaries in text newsgroups.
    TechGeekPro, Jul 26, 2004
  14. Harsha Raghavan

    catwalker63 Guest

    And I don't even really like fish. <eg>

    aka catwalker
    IT Professional, MCP

    catwalker63, Jul 26, 2004
  15. Harsha Raghavan

    JaR Guest

    JaR, Jul 26, 2004
  16. Harsha Raghavan

    TechGeekPro Guest

    You should snip more. I don't know what the h*ll you were replying to.
    Bottom-posting would also be nice.
    TechGeekPro, Jul 26, 2004
  17. Harsha Raghavan

    Bernie Guest

    It seemed like the point was to resurrect the justification. Sorry if
    I missed the real point.

    But what is important is entirely relative. It is probably important
    to those professions that are the victim of the title theft, don't you
    think? If it is important enough for people to keep resurrecting the
    debate, then it is important enough for me to works both
    ways. I'm not running a monolog here and last I checked you were
    contributing [some point] to the discussion [even if I missed it].
    Don't complain that I responded.

    Bernie, Jul 26, 2004
  18. Harsha Raghavan

    TechGeekPro Guest

    Maybe she was referring to her smell?
    TechGeekPro, Jul 26, 2004
  19. Harsha Raghavan

    JaR Guest

    Ms Kelley is a little bit clue-resistant, it seems.
    JaR, Jul 26, 2004
  20. Harsha Raghavan

    TechGeekPro Guest

    I don't have a clue what you are talking about.
    TechGeekPro, Jul 26, 2004
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