During a college engineering internship, I was asked to help implement an advanced manufacturing technology. If successful, I would essentially eliminate one manufacturing worker’s job. And in order to apply the technology, I had to work directly with that worker to understand his work, both of us knowing full well what the result could be. It was tremendously difficult and, at times, heart wrenching for both of us.
This is the type of scenario many of us will be facing as what we now call “the future of work” makes its way into the present. There are going to be tremendous benefits as well as tough conversations and new challenges to overcome.
Confronting such a personal impact of automation early on in my career made a lasting impression on me. It motivated me to closely follow not only the overarching statistics about job loss and automation, but also the smaller personal impacts happening every day.
On that note, I am excited to announce that as of today, I will be writing a new newsletter on the future of work for MIT Technology Review, Clocking In!
Danit Peleg has been pushing the bounds of 3D printed fashion for years. From her fashion collection made completely on home desktop printers in 2015, to her launch of the first 3D printed clothing available for purchase online this year, she continues to demonstrate 3D printing’s capabilities in fashion. I have been following her career since her TED talk a few years back and got the opportunity to ask Peleg five questions I’ve been dying to ask her about her experiences with 3D printing and the future of technology in fashion.
From lasers to supernovas, Berboucha is making science communication a priority
A career in communicating science can start at any age. For some it starts after years of experience in the field, others during their PhD. For Meriame Berboucha, it started while she was an undergrad.
Berboucha is currently a masters student at Imperial College in London, but started her science communication blog as an undergraduate studying physics. She was inspired to start it after she was a part of an Institute of Physics (IOP) science communication competition.
Working on the MAGPIE Machine at Imperial College London“Since then, I’ve wanted to share what it’s like to be a woman in physics and share snippets of my life as a physicist in order to inspire other women to get into the field and to realize that physics is for both guys and girls,” Berboucha said.
I am spending this summer in London, and as I’ve been traveling around the UK, I’ve come across some salutes to women in STEM. However, I think they need a bit more attention. While they may not be prominent, keep your eyes peeled and you will find them.
With this is mind, I decided to put together my #womeninstem travel guide from your next trip to the UK. I hope it makes it easier to honor and learn about these historic women who have paved the way for generations of women who have followed during your trip.
Growing up with a dad who is a huge Star Trek fan, and being a science fan myself, I have always had an affection for all the Star Trek series. With all of the comic con news coming out about the new series, I decided now was a perfect time to do a fun Star Trek cosplay modeling project! I took a stab at free-handing the commanders badge from the new Star Trek Discovery series in SOLIDWORKS.
Last year I wrote an article about the relationship of engineering and sewing and how growing up at a sewing machine influenced me to become an engineer. It was towards the beginning of my experience sharing my experiences in STEM online and was one of my first popular pieces that got picked up by Code Like a Girl.
Out of the blue last month I got an email from Laura, a Science Instructional Coach at the Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Leadership Academy, telling me she was inspired by that article to create this new program in Atlanta centered on combining sewing and engineering to encourage young women of color in the STEM fields. More than half of her students are from low-income neighborhoods.
How being raised by proud bird nerd parents gave me an appreciation for the natural world
My love for nature has always been a major part of my life. Before I could even walk my parents were taking me out on the hiking trails in their backpack and showing me around the base of waterfalls. All of our family vacations were to beautiful parts of nature and were based around hiking destinations, giving me a great appreciation for the natural world.
However, my parents were not ordinary hikers. They were birders.
Now when you picture birders, you probably imagine people walking around with giant cameras, 3 pairs of binoculars and stacks of birding books. Well, you are pretty spot on in the case of my parents.
The workings behind the lowering of light
Although engineering is often associated with things like rockets and coding, there is engineering in the everyday objects around us! When I was in school as a mechanical engineering major, I had friends that had engineering internships everywhere from Gillette to Caterpillar to Nestle. Engineers are needed to plan out how things are manufactured, how food packaging is designed, the patterns of stoplights and more. In this new blog series, Everyday Engineer, we are going to be looking at the engineering behind some of the everyday objects around us.
Today: Dimmer switches
Outwardly, these handy switches may appear simple. Move them one way and the light gets brighter, move them the other way and it gets darker. However, there is more going on behind the scenes.
On a mission to show the art and creativity in science, technology and engineering.