Archive for January, 2007

ASCE engineering grades

January 30th, 2007 No comments

moneyI was recently invited to fill out the ASCE‘s annual salary survey. This post isn’t about the survey or its results. I just wanted to highlight the ASCE Guidelines for Engineering Grades, which was included as a link in the invitation. It’s basically a table that relates engineering grade (a.k.a. salary) levels to experience, eduation, and responsibility, relative to public and private sector, as well as academic work. Those of us about to change careers, or involved in a performance and/or salary review may find this as a useful reference.

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How to write good

January 11th, 2007 No comments

typewriterI don’t think engineers early in their career appreciate the importance of writing well (yes, I know about the title:) If you were like me, you treated technical writing as skill of secondary importance while in school, focusing more on design and analysis. The reality is that design and analysis skills only count for at most 50% of what I do, and the rest is communicating. Thoughts have to be conveyed clearly and concisely to the client, because the design does not stand on its own.

I don’t claim to be a great writer, or even a good one (part of the reason I started this blog was to improve my writing), but I’d like to share tips I’ve picked up along the way.

The first tip is a cheat sheat for homonyms. Read more…

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It’s a Calatrava

January 8th, 2007 No comments

Structural engineers have their opinions about architects. The relationship between the two requires synergy, but sometimes the architect’s “vision” conflicts with the engineer’s sense of constructability.

So I smiled when I saw this cartoon by Steve Duenes, published in the New Yorker on Oct. 30, 2006.

Steve Duenes New Yorker cartoon

Read more…

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