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TheWizardofCalculus

Career Information for Aspies: Math, Science, and Engineering

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the strangest man

they do say it's never too late.

my dad got his phd when he was quite old (he also loves hitchhikers guide to the galaxy, I get that impression from the strangest man as well).

I deny that absolutely, ......... I am not quite old just old enough to remember the HGTTG :-) Did however get my PhD when I was 42. Now there's a surprise.

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Nesf

I deny that absolutely, ......... I am not quite old just old enough to remember the HGTTG :-) Did however get my PhD when I was 42. Now there's a surprise.

Well, there's still hope for me yet, I'm 42 now. Perhaps I'll manage it by the time I'm 50, I just need to win the lottery first to fund it :)

Edited by Nesf

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jimbarrett27

for someone thinking of going to uni, just how hard is the Math on a physics course. I'm good at algebra and working out complex equations, I'm just not good at remembering set answers and answering questions on the spot. I know that's a little contradictory but it's like I'm better than most people when it comes to understanding or working out how to solve problems but i hav'nt been interested enough to remember much of the base mathmatics until now. I'm good at science but as of yet don't know what area I want to go into, thats if I do go to uni and retake my A levels (had to drop out when I was younger).

Thanks

 

Most Physics course will set out a minimum grade requirement to get in. I think it's a good idea to trust that the universities know what they're doing and believe that if you get on a course then you ARE capable of doing it. Don't give up before you've started :)

 

The maths then gets about as hard as you want it to. I'm a theoretical physicist to masters level, so I 've seen some pretty heavy stuff, but I also know some very talented experimentalists who get by on a relatively basic grounding in maths and a huge amount of physical intuition (which it sounds as though you've got!).

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Bruce

Well, there's still hope for me yet, I'm 42 now. Perhaps I'll manage it by the time I'm 50, I just need to win the lottery first to fund it :)

Yeah, that's the problem with Uni! Best wishes for it, though.

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lifeis

I deny that absolutely, ......... I am not quite old just old enough to remember the HGTTG :-) Did however get my PhD when I was 42. Now there's a surprise.

everyone's old to a toddler it's all relative. (: But I was only referring to the HGTTG in my comparison between my dad and you, the rest is just pure coincidence.

(I think i'm going to go on an access or year zero course to get a foundation.)

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Michael D

The original post is a thorough and accurate breakdown. I would only add that mechanical engineers not only deal with mechanisms and structures, but also energy production and power application. It's a broad discipline.

In general a tech career all comes down to personal desires, abilities, a fickle marketplace, and finances. Not unlike other careers, huh?

In the US engineering gives you more options than a 'pure' science degree, just because there's more need for people making things than people researching things.

If you want to teach engineering at the University level, the discipline is almost irrelevant as far as employability - get your PhD and the academic community is where you will market your services.

Working engineers can usually land a decent job with a Bachelor's degree, particular disciplines run hot or cold with the economy and marketplace at a given time. Accreditation of your university's engineering program can also be important to many (most?) employers. Note that some engineering positions require a license (notably public works projects), but this is the minority by far, and often may only apply to the chief engineer. Getting a license is a grueling process.

I have a Masters degree in computer science, but my career has been built almost entirely on my Bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering plus a license, if that tells you anything.

I know things are different outside the US, but I have collaborated with firms in the UK and across Europe, and I noticed at least analogous situations there compared to the US engineering community.

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Xenolith

The OP claims that Computer Science is a sub-discipline of electrical engineering, which I'm not entirely sure is completely accurate. I'm by no means an expert on the subject but from what I've gathered from attending conferences at Oxford and Cambridge, they give the impression that it's more of a sub-discipline of mathematics.

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TheWizardofCalculus

The original post is a thorough and accurate breakdown. I would only add that mechanical engineers not only deal with mechanisms and structures, but also energy production and power application. It's a broad discipline.

In general a tech career all comes down to personal desires, abilities, a fickle marketplace, and finances. Not unlike other careers, huh?

In the US engineering gives you more options than a 'pure' science degree, just because there's more need for people making things than people researching things.

If you want to teach engineering at the University level, the discipline is almost irrelevant as far as employability - get your PhD and the academic community is where you will market your services.

Working engineers can usually land a decent job with a Bachelor's degree, particular disciplines run hot or cold with the economy and marketplace at a given time. Accreditation of your university's engineering program can also be important to many (most?) employers. Note that some engineering positions require a license (notably public works projects), but this is the minority by far, and often may only apply to the chief engineer. Getting a license is a grueling process.

I have a Masters degree in computer science, but my career has been built almost entirely on my Bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering plus a license, if that tells you anything.

I know things are different outside the US, but I have collaborated with firms in the UK and across Europe, and I noticed at least analogous situations there compared to the US engineering community.

 

Well, to add some commentary:

 

1.) It depends on which pure science you get your PhD in.  For instance, PhD's in physics usually get jobs in fields not related to physics, and they are usually quite high paying.  In biology?  Depends.  There's a decent number of jobs for agricultural biology (GM foods, etc), for instance.  Paleontology?  Yeah, you might be sticking to academia, but not necessarily.

 

2.) The market is pretty saturated with engineers.  I wouldn't say that there's huge numbers of positions available for engineers.  If you have a degree from a good engineering university, you'll do fine.

 

 

The OP claims that Computer Science is a sub-discipline of electrical engineering, which I'm not entirely sure is completely accurate. I'm by no means an expert on the subject but from what I've gathered from attending conferences at Oxford and Cambridge, they give the impression that it's more of a sub-discipline of mathematics.

 

There's sort of two different angles here.  One is the construction and proofs about of algorithms; this is basically applied mathematics, but I wouldn't call it a subdiscipline.  The other side is that of how these things actually work with hardware, which is why it also falls into issues with electrical engineering.  This is why it's not uncommon to find these listed under the same department at large engineering universities.

 

Technically, the usual side of computer science is the side that more or less comes from the intellectual heritage of Turing and Godel, but that's not the whole story.

Edited by TheWizardofCalculus

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the strangest man

The OP claims that Computer Science is a sub-discipline of electrical engineering, which I'm not entirely sure is completely accurate. I'm by no means an expert on the subject but from what I've gathered from attending conferences at Oxford and Cambridge, they give the impression that it's more of a sub-discipline of mathematics.

 

Programming is one of the most difficult branches of applied mathematics; the poorer mathematicians had better remain pure mathematicians.

 

E.W Dijkstra

 

http://www.cs.utexas.edu/users/EWD/transcriptions/EWD04xx/EWD498.html

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turkey_steve

Electrician.

 

I just can't function when it comes to academics.  But we use trigonometry all day on the job.  Plus it keeps you active physically.  Many female electricians are asp/asd.

 

Started out in the navy as an electronics technician.  The navy nuke field is filled with asp asd's.

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