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Career Advice

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by Tuurbo46, Nov 6, 2005.

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  1. Tuurbo46

    Tuurbo46 Guest


    I need a bit of advice on what career path I should follow. I have recently
    finished universtiy and am quite good a DSP, C, C++, Java and C#.

    At this point I relise I cannot persue all these paths and would would like
    advice from current engineers on what would be the best most rewarding
    career to follow (and one that has a future)?

    Look foward to your advice

    Cheers Tuurbo
  2. OK, you ask a hardware group about which software route to

    Progammable nanotech. All the people here are state of the "current"
    art, take a leap forward

  3. That's individual. I have a blast with C++ and perl and doing some
    mathematical modeling. Other people may like other things. Generally
    speaking, you can make the most $$ doing things that you like.

  4. keith

    keith Guest

    If he's indeed a hardware engineer, there is work in modeling and
    hardware verification for people with such skills.
    Programmable is the keyword; products and employees.
  5. #define REWARDING ....????

    money, nekkid wimmen, lots of holidays ???

    But, really, there is no such thing as "career" - if you are willing to
    learn and can apply yourself then opportunities tend to throw themselves at
    you; it's really just grabbing them. It will be a random walk, but it will
    go somewhere.
  6. Phil Hobbs

    Phil Hobbs Guest

    Why on earth not? Lots of the folks in this group do all of that, plus
    designing and stuffing their own boards. Some of us even make things
    that work, occasionally, when we're not wasting our time swatting trolls
    on Usenet. Narrowing down your skill set is the thing that really has
    no future.


    Phil Hobbs
  7. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Hello Phil,
    Absolutely. Engineers have got to be or become generalists. Being a
    niche specialist is usually a sure path towards hardcore unemployment.

    Regards, Joerg
  8. Rich Grise

    Rich Grise Guest

    The one that you love.

    Good Luck!
  9. Bob Stephens

    Bob Stephens Guest

    That was cruel.

  10. I read in that Bob Stephens <>
    OTOH, he might just take the advice ..... and end up as CEO!
  11. Joel Kolstad

    Joel Kolstad Guest

    I'd say you really only have two significant skills you're presently here:
    Those of someone designing signal processing routines and those of a generic
    programmer. C, C++, Java, and C# can be used to program whatever you want,
    and all the good programmers I know end up spending most of their time in one
    language or another, but being familiar with lots of them -- and ready to
    change if they switch jobs.

    Saying you're good as DSP is pretty vague, unless you're saying you really are
    quite experienced in most areas with it -- algorithm design (filters, control
    systems, demodulation/modulation, etc.), architecture (fancy filter bank
    arrangements and other architectures that typically aim to parallelize a
    design so that you don't need to come up with 100GHz MACs :) ), as well as
    implementation (in DSP chips from the likes TI or Analog Devices, in FPGAs, in
    high-end CPUs such as Pentiums, even in esoteric devices such as CCDs).
    Good programmers will always be in demand, as will good DSP people -- and
    there are a lot fewer DSP people out there than "generic" programmers. So, if
    you enjoy everything you've listed equally, I'd go the DSP route if you can
    get a job in it, and if not find the most interesting sounding programming job
    and still play around with DSP stuff in your spare time. If you're interested
    in it, you can often readily parlay being a firmware programmer into
    performing digital design. (I've worked at places where the digital hardware
    was designed by people with software backgrounds, and it was quite scary!
    :) )

    ---Joel Kolstad
  12. Spell checkers seem to be the best career move, IMHO.
  13. Luo XiaoZen

    Luo XiaoZen Guest

    If you just finished university (either BS or MS), chances are you are
    not quite good at DSP yet...

    If you have a PhD in DSP, good for you! But it is still inappropriate
    to call yourself an expert in DSP.

    If you want to compete with high school kids from now on, go for the
    remaining items on your list (i.e. C, C++, etc.)

    Good luck!
  14. Robert

    Robert Guest

    Oh? I had an interview at Maxim not too long ago where the 2nd Level Manager
    specifically said he didn't "believe" in generalists.

    He wanted someone that had done that exact same job (or very very close) for
    at least 5 years.


    My previous position at a Semiconductor place did that work as well as about
    3 to 4 other major functions. As near as I could figure out from the
    feedback the rest of the interviewing group liked me (the Design Manager in
    particular) but as you might guess I didn't get that job.


    In today's job market he may even be able to get one. And yes, I know the
    problems with being too specialized as well.

  15. Guest

    in it, you can often readily parlay being a firmware programmer into
    What scary stuff did they design ..? =)
  16. Do what you like the most. However, do yourself a favour and never
    specialise too much. Always keep up with technology.

    If you choose software and looking at you language skills, i would
    drop the DSP C and C++ and go for the C# and Java. All the former are
    getting to specialised these days and dont pay enough. However, never
    forget the low level stuff.

    I program c++ now, but without a low level understanding from my asm
    days I could never be able to use the debugger to its best. Talk to
    most C#/Java/VB people and they would not have a clue about what a
    memory location is or how to trace the call stack. These are skills
    you should retain for life.
  17. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Hello Robert,
    That doesn't mean that the view point of this manager is correct.
    Whenever I hired engineers I expected them to be well versed and willing
    to explore other disciplines. I have never had use for an engineer who
    would says "transmission lines are not my specialty, I am an FPGA
    designer". Not even as a consultant. Actually, I expected a lot more.
    For example a good awareness of cost. When I asked them in design
    reviews what the total cost would be they better had a good ballpark
    figure. And that doesn't mean parts only. They had to know what stuff
    like placement or laser trimming costs. I also expected them to be
    willing to go out to users (in this case the cardiac catheter lab), don
    a lead vest and find out what our key customers thought and wanted in
    new products.

    IMHO the best engineers are those who would also have most of the skills
    to run a business. A hot shot specialist in a small area might make a
    lot of money for a few years only to see his whole trade vanish or move
    to Asia some day. Sorry, but that won't be me.

    Regards, Joerg
  18. I read in that Joerg
    <IP6cf.9795$>) about 'Career Advice',
    I agree. But I put forward this view at an IEE (not IEEE) meeting about
    30 years ago and was rewarded with hard stares and sharply in-drawn

    You might have gone far in consumer electronics. (;-)
  19. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Hello John,
    They are mostly scientists who won't understand such thoughts too well.
    I am a member of IEEE but I sure hope that the organization embraces
    business thinking some more. A lot more.

    I think I might have caused too much of a ruckus there. The hard cost
    thinking is what I would have loved but the designs are often rather,
    well, antique. Just look at how long it took them to figure out class D
    audio or comb filters. I wouldn't have been sitting there quietly, in
    medical ultrasound we are pushing the envelope a lot harder.

    Regards, Joerg
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