More Engineering Quotes


A few more engineering related quotes for you. I’ll start with a man who has some of my favorite quotes:

“Problems cannot be solved at the same level of awareness that created them.” -Albert Einstein

True, but was ol’ Albert referring to performance enhancing drugs? If he wasn’t this guy certainly was:

“No problem can stand the assault of sustained thinking.” -Voltaire

“sustained” huh? … yea, I get you Voltaire. Wink wink nudge nudge. And while we are quoting Europeans I’ll add this one:

“A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.” -Douglas Adams

Perfectly put! Though every engineer has probably had a thought similar to that before, I doubt any phrased the concept as eloquently and clean as the Hitchhiker Adams. Speaking of the Galaxy:

“A scientist can discover a new star, but he cannot make one. He would have to ask an engineer to do that.” -Gordon L. Glegg

He would also have to ask an engineer to take him to that star, or to make him a new telescope. Moving on to the truth:

“The pure and simple truth is rarely pure and never simple.” -Oscar Wilde

“There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics” -Benjamin Disraeli

“Then there was the man who drowned crossing a stream with an average depth of six inches” -W.I.E Gates

What are your central tenets of engineering? Do problem solving and efficiency make the list?

“Engineering problems are under-defined, there are many solutions, good, bad and indifferent. The art is to arrive at a good solution. This is a creative activity, involving imagination, intuition and deliberate choice.” -Ove Arup

“Engineering is the science of economy, of conserving the energy, kinetic and potential, provided and stored up by nature for the use of man. It is the business of engineering to utilize this energy to the best advantage, so that there may be the least possible waste.” -William A. Smith

Those 2 touch on concepts I’ll want to discuss more later. But for now I’ll end with one of my favorite quotes for engineers:

“Clothes are the lowest priority for an engineer, assuming the basic thresholds for temperature and decency have been satisfied. If no appendages are freezing or sticking together, and if no genitalia or mammary glands are swinging around in plain view, then the objective of clothing has been met. Anything else is a waste.” -Anon

T-shirt and jeans dudes… t-shirt and jeans.

About Ed

This Engineering Dude is a contract Mechanical Engineer with 12 years experience in comprehensive electro-mechancial product design. His consumer and OEM products have been sold worldwide in the laboratory, medical, clinical, and research markets. He has also designed orthopedic rehabilitation hardware, firearms, pneumatic weapons, mountain bikes, and even furniture.
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