How many engineers…

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There’s got to be a joke with a light bulb in here somewhere. But the fact of the matter is it takes a good number of engineers to make a product today. It wasn’t always that way.

Years ago things were simpler, though I am convinced not necessarily better. Like the older cars where everything under the hood was understandable, today’s cars and stereo equipment are far more sophisticated pieces of engineering than ever before. Front panel displays are programmed and there are small computers running them. Even simple tasks like turning on and off functions take programming chops.

Used to be all we had to do was install a mechanical switch, solder a few wires, and it worked.

Change isn’t always for the better but in this case, I believe it to be. I don’t personally relish the idea of no remote control or the satisfaction of a button push. Where years ago features like remote controls and visual displays were available only to the exotic, now we can enjoy performance as well as functionality at prices we can afford.

If it takes a group of engineers to screw in a light bulb, but the resulting illumination is better than ever before, then I think we’ve made progress.