Flying Blind or Why I Lurvez My Job =^-^=

I have a fun job.  Simply put, I’m a Test Engineer.  (^_^)

Now, I’m not exactly an on-paper engineer.  I kinda don’t have that degree thingy or something. (>_<)

But, I do all the stuff.  Programming, mechanical design, and electrical design.  The production floor out here is loaded with tests and equipment I’ve created. =^-^=

What drives me nutzo is how I have to deal with getting the information I need to make the tests I do.  Thing is, communication out here is nightmarishly bad.  I have to practically reverse engineer every product I develop for. (>_<)

Today it was a GPS device.  Designed in Australia to be produced here in America.  It has 2 GPS boards and a radio modem for receiving error corrections from another GPS “base”.  It’s more simple than the things I’ve worked with in the past, so, I figured the test I’d develop would be simpler as well. (^_^)

Then the interconnect board caught fire. (O.o)

So now I get to tell the design engineer that the thermal dissipation for the voltage regulator is not enough to survive over-volt conditions… Like, say, a tractor with battery problems. (>_<)

And, that’s the fun part.  It’s almost my job to point and laugh at the bad board design because of how I quickly found a way to blow it up. XD

The main reason I catch things like that is that I’m ‘flying blind’.  That’s to say, I I’m not told how the devices actually work.  I almost always have to sort it out for myself with little more than a power cable and a schematic.  And, a lot of GPS is voodooblackmagicmojo. DX

Lots of times I find myself faced with a new gadget that has ump-teen different communication ports, different output voltages, strange analogue properties, RF noise issues, or (like today) protective circuitry that’s supposed to prevent damage under nearly any condition. =^-^=

I gotta say, I enjoy the heck out of it. XD

It’s like every new device is another toy to play with and find various ways to break. =^-^=

When I introduce myself, I normally say “If you smell smoke; it’s me!” XD



About Imnotgoing Sideways

I'm a Second Life avatar with my own cookie jar! (^_^)y
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3 Responses to Flying Blind or Why I Lurvez My Job =^-^=

  1. Maddy says:

    I spent my career on the other end of design process, happily creating the problems that you so joyfully find. Unlike perhaps many of the design engineers you encounter, I was thrilled to know there were capable people ready, willing and able to tear into my work to expose weaknesses because, like you, I was often flying blind.


  2. Ferd says:

    I did that for years and it was the best job ever.

  3. Pingback: I have a fun job. Simply put, I’m a Test Engineer. | Anna Paola Usai

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