RE: Re[2]: Girls and Technology -- non-rp!

From: Brock Hinzmann (
Date: Mon Oct 13 1997 - 22:37:07 EEST

An interesting contrast in views. My daughter majored in aerospace
engineering, but doesn't want to work in the field, because she thinks engineers
are nerds (she's a pilot). In spite of the military cut backs, there is a
military and commercial airline shortage of pilots; people are flying a
lot and it's likely to increase in spite of (partly because of?)
cyberspace. On the government side, a lot of interest continues in space
exploration, even though NASA and other space agencies are under scrutiny to justify
expenditures. On the commercial side, satellites for wireless
communications seems to be a business on the rise. And so on. All things taken
together, one can understand Marshall's enthusiasm, as well as Rick's pessimism.
The switch from military/government to commercial means competition, which
I think means RP&M (one way to work smarter) is likley to be even more
important in aerospace than ever, but it also means working harder, no
matter what anyone tells you. The good news for Rick is that those RP&M skills
should be transferable, if Hughes decides it doesn't value them.

Brock Hinzmann
SRI International
Menlo Park, California

ralott wrote:
> "Why not aerospace?" many of you have asked. Well, for starters,
> there was the big cut in defense spending that put most of the
> players out of business, and many workers out on the streets.
> Then, in order to survive, the remainders bought and sold each
> -- usually cutting about 20% of the workforce as they did.
> Now, the competition for the few remaining contracts is so intense
> among the surviving aerospace companies that all costs (like pay
> benefits) are trimmed to the bone. Fewer and fewer people are
> more and more work, without even the benefit of job security.
> Loyalty to the workers is a thing of the past.
> We just signed a billion dollar plus contract that will give us the

> biggest backlog of work in the company's history. At the same
> the powers here decided the profit line was too narrow so they
> the end of 850 contract labor jobs. The result? More work
> distributed among fewer people.
> "Just work smarter, not harder," the bosses say. How, they don't
> Rick Lott
> Hughes

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