/. - Engineers have a Terrorist Mindset?

Link to Slashdot Article.

Interesting article. Enjoy!

Great. Just what we need. DHS showing up at all the regional competitions. :frowning:



Call me naive, but DHS? What’s that?

Department of Homeland Security

I don’t know… I don’t think many terrorists practice Gracious Professionalism. Should only take them a couple of regionals to figure that out. At least, I hope they can figure that out…

How do you Graciously Professionally blow up a building?

I don’t think you can, or at least I can’t think of how. The “they” I was talking about was the DHS.

First of all, I really do not like the title of this thread.
For a number of reasons.
Just one:
This is ChiefDelphi. This is place where engineers of FIRST teams gather to exchange ideas and information regarding robotics. By being a member of a FIRST team means they have been exposed to and often understand the vision, the mission, and the lingo of FIRST, including Gracious Professionalism. That doesn’t fit with this title well.

Regarding the subject matter of students in universities seeking degrees in science, engineering, and medicine.

I’ve worked in a university environment for a good part of 25 years and if you pay attention, you can see that often the global issues and concerns of the times are reflected in the learning cultures of universities and ebb and flow, depending on what is going on in the world. An example of what’s going on right now is global warming. That is a current topic that is studied, discussed, explored.

As underdeveloped countries and communities find the means to enroll students in schools and universities, they will seek knowledge in how to help the country develop in areas of building, water systems, communications, transportation, health systems.

There are many underdeveloped countries who seek knowledge and training in these areas. They send their students to the universities, many with expectations that the students will return to the communities/countries with their degrees. If you study history and sociology as well as the arts, you can follow the development of peoples and countries through time. Some struggles are longer and take more time to achieve the goals of stability and growth. Engineers and scientists have been important throughout history in achieving these goals.

Knowledge can be used wisely and safely or it can be misused and cause harm. Sharing information that is useful and helpful is always good. Asking if engineers have this type of mindset in the title, does not lead me to think it wise or helpful.

For some reason, when I read this, I saw “DHL showing up…” and thought Mr. Lavery was worrying about a fight between FedEx and their competitors.

I need some sleep.

The same way you Graciously Accept :stuck_out_tongue:

I think the cause and effect is backwards here. More likely terrorist organizations covet engineers who can help their causes through the diabolical and evil use of technology.

Like this! :smiley:

Joking aside, I have no idea why there is any correlation between degree and terrorism.

I agree. If I were a terrorist organization, I would recruit three types of college grads: chemists, engineers, and communications majors. Engineers can design things and figure out potential failure modes; if your goal is to cause terror, what would advance your cause better than destroying something that people think of as strong and undestroyable? Chemists can obviously make explosives/chemical weapons and communications types know how to get your message out and magnify the terror caused by their actions. So, I think what the terrorists need is scientists and engineers; thus, they recruit them. The lack of communications types and the presence of doctors puzzles me though.

Call and warn people beforehand, Weathermen style? Blow it up in such a way that it doesn’t damage other buildings?

Also Dulaney High School. :frowning:

Somoneone’s studied the chaos theory of terrorism… :stuck_out_tongue:
Anywho, I agree with you 100%.

As an example, if you were the head of a Terrorist organization (just pretend you’re Doctor Evil for a moment) would you hire a person with a degree in General Studies who can flip burgers, or would you recruit the top sientists of the world (however you had to) into your organization.

Look at every movie dealing with terrorism ever made. The lead Terrorist just has a huge ego, but (most of the time) no knowledge of what to actually do with the technology they want to use to overthrow the nation, world, planet, univers… (whatever it may be).

Engineers don’t have a terrorist mindset per-say, but in a terrorist organization, I would expect at least 50% of that organization to be made up of some pretty darn smart people to come up with these brilliant (albeit destructive) objects seen across the world to create chaos.
(Cell phone bombs, mines, RF remote bombs, etc…)

And going back to the hollywood representation of the subject at hand, would you want (a person like the character of) McGyver on your side if you were the head of a terrorist organization (who comes with a huge engineering background), or the average Joe who knows how to operate a grill at McDonalds? :rolleyes:

It’s called the R&D department. Companies do destructive testing all the time to make products better.
Of course, on the flipside is the ways to make things better by an accident (or an act of terrorism) such as the sinking of the Titanic which changed safety regulations on passenger ships drastically since then for the better, or terrorism examples (9/11, Oklahoma City, etc…) which has brought us the attention of how to act in a situation like that to keep ourselves as safe as possible.
That’s obviously not the best way to learn (accidents, or acts of terrorism) but to say absolutely no good comes from them is false. The percentage is very low, and the bad outweighs the good in the minds of all those who are involved in the bad, but (overall as a human entity living on this planet) we (hopefully) learn from everything that goes wrong in this world (and beyond for those NASA folks).

But isn’t one way to look at this - that a terrorist mindset would follow the thinking process of an engineer?

Not the other way.

I told a friend of mine and he said it was an insult. I just saw it as entertainment. It is just a joke. Whether the writers intend it to be or not, it is a joke and nothing more.

I don’t know anything about blowing up buildings but I’m wondering “How many of you have made ridiculous weapons out of stuff?” We made/make a pneumatic cannon out of the 120 psi cannisters the escape(dump) valve ducttaped to an 8ft. piece of PVC and fire it annually. (This is sooo fast:ahh: )

I must admit. Most of my creations are distructive in nature. and i have violent tendencies when it comes to usigng these devices. i also notice that im very agressive when i have a machine at my comand Be it a Potato gun, Car ,18v drill, hammer, acetylene torch, or a robot like SwampThing. i think i would be a good asset to a terrorist regime.