SageTV Community  

Go Back   SageTV Community > General Discussion > The SageTV Community

Notices

The SageTV Community Here's the place to discuss what's worth recording, HTPC deals at retail stores, events happening outside of your home theater, and pretty much anything else you'd like. (No For-Sale posts)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 08-26-2011, 03:22 PM
panteragstk's Avatar
panteragstk panteragstk is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New Braunfels, TX
Posts: 3,312
Off topic opinion question.

I have a question for you guys. As smart as everyone seems to be on this forum I thought I'd get some opinions.

With all of the discussion of the patent suits going on right now this is very personal to me as I'd like to be a patent attorney. I'm almost finished with my electrical engineering degree and have been advised by lawyers and engineers that that particular field of law is very lacking and would be great to get into. I've always been interested in law because people abuse it to sue for little reason or even get into trouble when they shouldn't due to their lack of knowledge of the law. I've learned a lot on my own just because I find it interesting.

I know that I'd like to finish my EE degree just because I've always been interested in electronics. I starting getting interested in the law aspect of electronics due to the lawsuits I see pop up every year. I'd like to put a stop to that. I think that the current practice is ridiculous. Companies sue each other just to stop them from coming out with a better product? Or even a competing product. Why not licence the patents and make money that way? I wouldn't even consider working as an attorney for a company rather than at a firm where I could choose my clients.

The question is this. Do I just have unrealistic expectations of what I'll be able to accomplish? Would I end up in a job that would compromise my integrity due to the fact my boss could make me sue a company for something I don't think is right? It is totally possible.

On the other hand I could just get my masters in EE (or phd. being called doctor would be kind of nice), then get a job with a giant company only to work for years on projects with the possibility of them being scrapped or being afraid of layoffs? These are the fears the EE's I know have to deal with working for TI, or raytheon or whoever (whomever?).

I just don't want to waste time in school only to find I don't actually like what I'm doing like 70% of the people I know. Of those 70% most have found jobs doing something totally different and are happy. To me that is a waste of a degree.

You guys are smart and I know that there is a very diverse group on this forum with many different professions making up our community. What do you guys think?

EDIT: I'd really like to prevent stupidity like this from happening.
__________________
SageTV Server: unRAID Docker v9, S2600CPJ, Norco 24 hot swap bay case, 2x Xeon 2670, 64 GB DDR3, 3x Colossus for DirecTV, HDHR for OTA
Living room: nVidia Shield TV, Sage Mini Client, 65" Panasonic VT60
Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
Theater: nVidia Shield TV, mini client, Plex for movies, 120" screen. Mitsubishi HC4000. Denon X4300H. 7.4.4 speaker setup.

Last edited by panteragstk; 08-26-2011 at 03:38 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 08-26-2011, 04:39 PM
Spectrum Spectrum is offline
Sage Expert
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 720
Not all attorneys litigate. You could just do filings, research, etc and refer clients to a patent litigation attorney should the need arise. This could hurt you though as some clients may seek another attorney that is willing to do everything to take care of them.


The USPTO is such a freaking joke that without major reform you could end up mired in dealing with nothing but trivialities and what amounts to a protection racket. Their policy as of late seems to have been just accept every submission and let the courts sort it out; we have to clear this backlog! Also, with the current trend of companies creating patent war chests and using them to threaten the competition into submission or face lawsuits, the small time inventor/entrepreneur doesn't stand a chance in some industries. Unless the cell phone manufacturers settle out of court there will be a court battle of epic proportions over cell tech.

A few random thoughts
  • Method of exercising a cat. Yes using a laser pointer FFS.
  • Apple seems to think they own the patent on "small, rectangular, and thin" but Samsung has cited a scene from Kubrick's 2001 as prior art in their lawsuit v. Apple over the Galaxy tablet.
  • Google has a patent on electronic shipping notification.

If you really find patent law interesting and fulfilling, go for it, but be sure you do before you leap!
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 08-26-2011, 05:16 PM
panteragstk's Avatar
panteragstk panteragstk is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New Braunfels, TX
Posts: 3,312
Thanks. I find law interesting. I find engineering interesting. Putting the two together from lawyers and engineers I've talked to say patent law is the way to go.

The situations you point out are what worries me though. I would enjoy filing patents and making sure they are solid. I wouldn't want to go through patents and find reasons to sue someone.

From what I've read so far as a patent attorney you have basically 2 options. One is to work for a big company (apple, google, TI, samsung, etc) or the other would be to work for a law firm. I have no desire to work for a big company ever again if I can help it. I've worked for a few in the past and it seems to me the higher up in the company you go the lower IQ's get. Plus, I don't do politics. I can BS with the best of them, but sucking up to get somewhere will never happen. That is how lots of the companies I've worked for are. That doesn't really have anything to do with this, but still. I'd rather work for a firm that gets hired to patent a project or something like that. I'd be willing to litigate if I actually believed the suit was necessary. The thinking that "our phone is touch screen we need to sue everyone because ours was the first" is ridiculous. Hopefully in the time it will take to get my degrees there will be some reform.
__________________
SageTV Server: unRAID Docker v9, S2600CPJ, Norco 24 hot swap bay case, 2x Xeon 2670, 64 GB DDR3, 3x Colossus for DirecTV, HDHR for OTA
Living room: nVidia Shield TV, Sage Mini Client, 65" Panasonic VT60
Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
Theater: nVidia Shield TV, mini client, Plex for movies, 120" screen. Mitsubishi HC4000. Denon X4300H. 7.4.4 speaker setup.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 08-26-2011, 05:52 PM
FlyingDoc FlyingDoc is offline
Sage Advanced User
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 125
Wink

Just a few random thoughts from an old electronic engineer.

Have you ever read a patent related to something you are familiar with? It doesn't matter what it is just so long as you are familiar with the underlying technology. It's a fair bet that you will be hard pressed to figure out what is actually new. The patent system in the us is totally broken. Unless you think you could fix that I would be worried that working in the system would quickly break the spirit of an ambitious engineer. Having been deposed for more than one patent suit I have to say most of the intellectual property laywers are not good, or even, fair engineers. I could just have been unlucky I suppose.

There are some good places to work even in corporate america but there are many more soul destroying ones, what ever you decide choose very carefully.

And as for a Ph.D yes it's great to be called Dr sometimes but finding a way to make a living doing what you love would be far more valuable.

Good luck in whatever you decide you want to do. I understand there is an opening for an entrepreneur who wants to start a company building a great replacement for a system called SageTV...you might want to look in to that....
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 08-26-2011, 06:27 PM
panteragstk's Avatar
panteragstk panteragstk is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New Braunfels, TX
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyingDoc View Post
Just a few random thoughts from an old electronic engineer.

Have you ever read a patent related to something you are familiar with? It doesn't matter what it is just so long as you are familiar with the underlying technology. It's a fair bet that you will be hard pressed to figure out what is actually new. The patent system in the us is totally broken. Unless you think you could fix that I would be worried that working in the system would quickly break the spirit of an ambitious engineer. Having been deposed for more than one patent suit I have to say most of the intellectual property laywers are not good, or even, fair engineers. I could just have been unlucky I suppose.

There are some good places to work even in corporate america but there are many more soul destroying ones, what ever you decide choose very carefully.

And as for a Ph.D yes it's great to be called Dr sometimes but finding a way to make a living doing what you love would be far more valuable.

Good luck in whatever you decide you want to do. I understand there is an opening for an entrepreneur who wants to start a company building a great replacement for a system called SageTV...you might want to look in to that....
I was kidding about the Ph.D, but I see your point. I just want a job I'll like and that will be there for many many years. Paying well is also nice and with the level I'd like to attain in the engineering field that will equal out (unless I made partner then there are big bucks involved). I'm not doing this for the money, I just want to be happy with what I do. I've read that in order to be a particular patent attorney you HAD to have an engineering degree. That is the main reason I started this thread. I want to know the truth about what I'd like to do. I don't want to waste time on a useless law degree for a job I'd hate.

Why does everything have to be so hard?
__________________
SageTV Server: unRAID Docker v9, S2600CPJ, Norco 24 hot swap bay case, 2x Xeon 2670, 64 GB DDR3, 3x Colossus for DirecTV, HDHR for OTA
Living room: nVidia Shield TV, Sage Mini Client, 65" Panasonic VT60
Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
Theater: nVidia Shield TV, mini client, Plex for movies, 120" screen. Mitsubishi HC4000. Denon X4300H. 7.4.4 speaker setup.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 08-26-2011, 07:12 PM
brainbone brainbone is offline
Sage Expert
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by panteragstk View Post
I'm not doing this for the money, I just want to be happy with what I do.
Avoid law. Pick a field like molecular biology / genetics / etc., where there's something new and exciting to discover every day.

Unless you find a particularly well paying position (unlikely with law -- there are more patent attorneys than you think -- especially in MN), where you can then spend your income on something you actually like doing (assuming you have any time left), you'll probably burn out relatively quickly in the legal field.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 08-26-2011, 08:12 PM
pjpjpjpj pjpjpjpj is offline
Sage Icon
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 2,158
I was studying mechanical engineering in college (20 years ago) and had a great opportunity for a law school scholarship. While I figured I couldn't pass it up, I was somewhat curious what I would do with an engineering degree and a law degree. Every attorney I spoke with said "Patent law. There's hardly any out there. You can 'write your own paycheck', you'll be so in demand."

I attended law school, and it did not agree with me. I have an engineer's mind - and, like many engineers, I do things neat and proper and I like order. Law school rewards right-brain stuff - creativity, loosey-goosey thinking. Law school grades are based on ONE thing - a single, four-hour final, consisting of a few essay questions, and you just write (or, now, I suspect, type) your hand off. The best grades were those who literally just got as much on the page as possible. Many professors made copies of former "top scoring" exams available in the library for you to study - they were such chicken-scratch that sometimes I think the prof gave them a good grade just for bulk of writing and didn't even really know what they wrote. Me, being the engineer, wrote neatly - and somewhat slowly. My grades suffered. I passed, sure, and was not at the bottom of my class, but (having been a straight A student my entire life) I was unaccustomed to being in the bottom third of my class. And, of course, then there was job searching. Law firms get thousands of resumes per day. So the first step in culling through them? Eliminate everyone that doesn't have a "x" GPA (typically they'll start at 3.0). So, few job offers came available - it was only through our in-school interview program that I had any shot at internships.

The summer after my 2L year, I got an intership working on a case in Construction Law. That was much more what I thought I was into. However, as the summer went on, I realized that what I was loving about it was the engineering portion of the case. At first I felt smart and helpful, explaining some engineering concepts to the lawyer under whom I was working. Then I realized that the guy was an idiot and had no grasp of even the most simple concepts of physics. He was just a lawyer who stumbled into a case in this field. This did not exactly turn me on to that branch of law - and also, I really couldn't find firms who did much Construction Law anyway (my internship had been with a solo practitioner, who basically used me as his clerk and gopher).

The other thing I learned was, at that point (1995, 1996, 1997), there were so few patent attorneys because, well, they really weren't THAT in demand. Hardly any of the firms that interviewed at my school even had a patent section - the few who did were massive firms in large cities (not ones where I wanted to land), who had two guys stuck in a corner somewhere, both of whom had PhDs in engineering at MIT and graduated tops in their law class, and they sat in the corner writing patents all day and didn't really talk to anyone. Uh, no thanks.

So I pursued a job in Mechanical Engineering (my undergrad major), let my law degree go (somewhat) to waste, and I've been happily working as an ME ever since.

Of course, a year after I graduated law school, a magazine I read listed "hot jobs for the future" and Intellectual Property Lawyer was like #3... between this suddenly-exploding thing called the "internet", and all the recent advances in Genetics (we had just broken the human genetic code a few years previous), there were new and interesting cases popping up all over. Oh, well, I was born too soon.

I have had some friends since then who became IP attorneys - one was an ME who never even went to law school, just took the Patent Bar and passed, and the other went into Copyright/Trademark stuff in the entertainment field. He's the one I really am a little jealous of... he represents big-name bands in music infringement cases and such, and even represents one of the bars where we all used to hang out. He has some great stories. Of course, he also (still, 15 years out of school) works 65+ hours every single week. Whereas I typically work 40-50. That makes for a much happier home life.

/just my take, hope that helped in some way
__________________
Server: AMD Athlon II x4 635 2.9GHz, 8 Gb RAM, Win 10 x64, Java 8, Gigabit network
Drives: Several TB of internal SATA and external USB drives, no NAS or RAID or such...
Software: SageTV v9x64, stock STV with ADM.
Tuners: 4 tuners via (2) HDHomeruns (100% OTA, DIY antennas in the attic).
Clients: Several HD300s, HD200s, even an old HD100, all on wired LAN. Latest firmware for each.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 08-26-2011, 10:13 PM
david1234 david1234 is offline
Sage Aficionado
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Beaverton, OR
Posts: 312
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyingDoc View Post
Have you ever read a patent related to something you are familiar with? It doesn't matter what it is just so long as you are familiar with the underlying technology. It's a fair bet that you will be hard pressed to figure out what is actually new.
As a software engineer, I read almost daily about the stupidity of software patents. The patent office is wholly incompetent to examine the patents that are submitted, and the software patents are the worst of the worst. Algorithms being patented; you can't patent math, so why software? Or, they take 2 things that already exist, put them together and get the combination patented... tell me what was "invented"?

The more I learn, the more I think that patents need to be peer reviewed.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 08-28-2011, 02:39 PM
matterofrecord matterofrecord is offline
Sage Advanced User
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: uk
Posts: 100
I'm not saying my opinion is worth anything. BUT..

If you can get some experience in all feilds you find interesting.

Maybe with an internship ( I figure if there are plenty of jobs there will possibly be plenty of internships ? IDK ) or just show some balls and ask around promising to make yourself useful. I've got a few jobs from just asking people / small businesses who weren't even advertising for workers.

once you know enough you'll make the right decision
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 08-29-2011, 08:41 AM
jsonnabend jsonnabend is offline
Sage Aficionado
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 301
I'm a patent attorney with a BSEE, so I read your post with some interest. One thing I didn't see mentioned was *why* you wanted to pursue a law career (other than some people told you that you should). That's the first question you should answer for yourself.

As for the comments on the state of the patent system and "BS" lawsuits, I agree the patent system is in need of an overhaul. That doesn't mean that all patents that issue are bogus nor that all law suits are unjustified. The vast majority of online anti-patent pundits have no idea how to read a patent. As a result, they routinely overstate what various patents cover -- the patents are almost never as broad as the pundits say they are.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 08-29-2011, 10:16 AM
panteragstk's Avatar
panteragstk panteragstk is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New Braunfels, TX
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by pjpjpjpj View Post
I was studying mechanical engineering in college (20 years ago) and had a great opportunity for a law school scholarship. While I figured I couldn't pass it up, I was somewhat curious what I would do with an engineering degree and a law degree. Every attorney I spoke with said "Patent law. There's hardly any out there. You can 'write your own paycheck', you'll be so in demand."

I attended law school, and it did not agree with me. I have an engineer's mind - and, like many engineers, I do things neat and proper and I like order. Law school rewards right-brain stuff - creativity, loosey-goosey thinking. Law school grades are based on ONE thing - a single, four-hour final, consisting of a few essay questions, and you just write (or, now, I suspect, type) your hand off. The best grades were those who literally just got as much on the page as possible. Many professors made copies of former "top scoring" exams available in the library for you to study - they were such chicken-scratch that sometimes I think the prof gave them a good grade just for bulk of writing and didn't even really know what they wrote. Me, being the engineer, wrote neatly - and somewhat slowly. My grades suffered. I passed, sure, and was not at the bottom of my class, but (having been a straight A student my entire life) I was unaccustomed to being in the bottom third of my class. And, of course, then there was job searching. Law firms get thousands of resumes per day. So the first step in culling through them? Eliminate everyone that doesn't have a "x" GPA (typically they'll start at 3.0). So, few job offers came available - it was only through our in-school interview program that I had any shot at internships.

The summer after my 2L year, I got an intership working on a case in Construction Law. That was much more what I thought I was into. However, as the summer went on, I realized that what I was loving about it was the engineering portion of the case. At first I felt smart and helpful, explaining some engineering concepts to the lawyer under whom I was working. Then I realized that the guy was an idiot and had no grasp of even the most simple concepts of physics. He was just a lawyer who stumbled into a case in this field. This did not exactly turn me on to that branch of law - and also, I really couldn't find firms who did much Construction Law anyway (my internship had been with a solo practitioner, who basically used me as his clerk and gopher).

The other thing I learned was, at that point (1995, 1996, 1997), there were so few patent attorneys because, well, they really weren't THAT in demand. Hardly any of the firms that interviewed at my school even had a patent section - the few who did were massive firms in large cities (not ones where I wanted to land), who had two guys stuck in a corner somewhere, both of whom had PhDs in engineering at MIT and graduated tops in their law class, and they sat in the corner writing patents all day and didn't really talk to anyone. Uh, no thanks.

So I pursued a job in Mechanical Engineering (my undergrad major), let my law degree go (somewhat) to waste, and I've been happily working as an ME ever since.

Of course, a year after I graduated law school, a magazine I read listed "hot jobs for the future" and Intellectual Property Lawyer was like #3... between this suddenly-exploding thing called the "internet", and all the recent advances in Genetics (we had just broken the human genetic code a few years previous), there were new and interesting cases popping up all over. Oh, well, I was born too soon.

I have had some friends since then who became IP attorneys - one was an ME who never even went to law school, just took the Patent Bar and passed, and the other went into Copyright/Trademark stuff in the entertainment field. He's the one I really am a little jealous of... he represents big-name bands in music infringement cases and such, and even represents one of the bars where we all used to hang out. He has some great stories. Of course, he also (still, 15 years out of school) works 65+ hours every single week. Whereas I typically work 40-50. That makes for a much happier home life.

/just my take, hope that helped in some way
Thanks for your story. I really got a lot out of it. Your former situation is one I'd like to avoid, and now I know more about what actually goes into patent law (my main reason for asking the question).

Thanks.
__________________
SageTV Server: unRAID Docker v9, S2600CPJ, Norco 24 hot swap bay case, 2x Xeon 2670, 64 GB DDR3, 3x Colossus for DirecTV, HDHR for OTA
Living room: nVidia Shield TV, Sage Mini Client, 65" Panasonic VT60
Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
Theater: nVidia Shield TV, mini client, Plex for movies, 120" screen. Mitsubishi HC4000. Denon X4300H. 7.4.4 speaker setup.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 08-29-2011, 10:25 AM
panteragstk's Avatar
panteragstk panteragstk is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New Braunfels, TX
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsonnabend View Post
I'm a patent attorney with a BSEE, so I read your post with some interest. One thing I didn't see mentioned was *why* you wanted to pursue a law career (other than some people told you that you should). That's the first question you should answer for yourself.
The reason I'd like to pursue a law career is I've always been interested in how laws work, what they actually represent, and how they are supposed to be used. The reason for this is I've seen a lot of misinterpretation of the law by poliece, lawyers (mother in lay works at a law firm) and pretty much everybody. I really like to know as much as I can about everything I can learn about (hence the engineering degree I almost have) and law is the only other thing I'm really interested in. I'd like to get an ASE certification because of how much I like to work on cars (thought about an MSEE for this reason). I view law as something to take apart, analyze, and put back together just like an engine, computer or whatever else.

The main reason for starting this thread is I honestly don't know enough about patent law to say for 100% that I'd actually like to do it. From what I've been able to find out about the actual job is I'd have to know electrical engineering to understand what I'm looking at, and I'd also have to understand the law's involved to do the job correctly. To me that sounds awesome as those are two things I'm very interested in (engineering and law combined). I may be way off base, but that's what it looks like to me.

I'd be very happy being an engineer and would gladly get my masters instead of a law degree if I decided not to go into law, but I don't want to end up like some of the engineers I know. One of the smarted MSEE's I know sells HVAC equipment now. I view that as a waste of a degree. I don't know very many people that actually use their degree. I don't want to be one of those people.
__________________
SageTV Server: unRAID Docker v9, S2600CPJ, Norco 24 hot swap bay case, 2x Xeon 2670, 64 GB DDR3, 3x Colossus for DirecTV, HDHR for OTA
Living room: nVidia Shield TV, Sage Mini Client, 65" Panasonic VT60
Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
Theater: nVidia Shield TV, mini client, Plex for movies, 120" screen. Mitsubishi HC4000. Denon X4300H. 7.4.4 speaker setup.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 08-29-2011, 11:38 AM
jsonnabend jsonnabend is offline
Sage Aficionado
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by panteragstk View Post
I view law as something to take apart, analyze, and put back together just like an engine, computer or whatever else.
It's not. While engineering focuses on absolutes (by and large), law is almost all gray areas and uncertainty. Where on an engineering exam you work the problem until you solve it, in law, you analyze and analyze and analyze some more. Law is most certainly not something that can be dissected, understood and reconstructed, at least not in the engineering sense.

I suggest you audit some law classes before making the serious financial commitment to law school.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 08-29-2011, 12:12 PM
panteragstk's Avatar
panteragstk panteragstk is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New Braunfels, TX
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsonnabend View Post
It's not. While engineering focuses on absolutes (by and large), law is almost all gray areas and uncertainty. Where on an engineering exam you work the problem until you solve it, in law, you analyze and analyze and analyze some more. Law is most certainly not something that can be dissected, understood and reconstructed, at least not in the engineering sense.

I suggest you audit some law classes before making the serious financial commitment to law school.
Maybe I should have worded things a bit clearer. I wasn't really speaking in the engineering sense as much as I was saying that the law is something to figure out and interpret. My analogy was meant as figuring out what is broken in an engine or computer by looking at it carefully and applying solutions. The law isn't the same by any means, but that is more what I was trying to get across. I'm interesting in analyzing as you mentioned. I still think I have an altogether different view of the law than what is actually true. What I need to do is exactly what you said: audit some law classes. I still think this is something I'd like to do.

Thanks for your advice so far.
__________________
SageTV Server: unRAID Docker v9, S2600CPJ, Norco 24 hot swap bay case, 2x Xeon 2670, 64 GB DDR3, 3x Colossus for DirecTV, HDHR for OTA
Living room: nVidia Shield TV, Sage Mini Client, 65" Panasonic VT60
Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
Theater: nVidia Shield TV, mini client, Plex for movies, 120" screen. Mitsubishi HC4000. Denon X4300H. 7.4.4 speaker setup.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 08-29-2011, 03:32 PM
stanger89's Avatar
stanger89 stanger89 is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Marion, IA
Posts: 15,188
Well speaking as a BSEE....

First things first, to some extent, all degrees are about BS (not Bachelor's of Science ) these days. Now let me explain before you jump all over me. Having a degree can be important depending the field you want to get into (eg engineering), but what that degree is in, really doesn't matter nearly as much as you might think.

I'm actually not working as an EE, I'm actually a Systems Engineer (and I've seen people try to explain it, and I'm not going to humiliate myself attempting it ), and I work with people with all sorts of degrees, EE, Aero E, Physics, Math, Computer E/Science. From what I've seen it's mostly the fact that you survived 4 years of college that makes the degree valuable, not what you're taught. Pretty much everything I know about Engineering I learned on the job.

My company has a good tuition reimbursement program, and my College offers distance-ed Masters programs. But when I asked my boss at the time (about a year out of school/on the job) if it would make a difference, he told me not really. It may help you get a job, and may affect your initial salary, but after that, it's pretty much all down to job performance.

Now, long ramble/soapbox aside.... What I'm getting at is I would definitely advise getting out there and doing something. Make some money, learn what you like to do, rather than pour more money into education.

Quote:
Originally Posted by panteragstk View Post
I starting getting interested in the law aspect of electronics due to the lawsuits I see pop up every year. I'd like to put a stop to that.
Well lets just stop right there shall we. I don't think you can reasonably expect to accomplish anything from the "lawyer" side of that issue. The only place that can be fixed is from the legislation side.

Quote:
The question is this. Do I just have unrealistic expectations of what I'll be able to accomplish?
Personally, I think so. While you may be able to accomplish it on the scale of you, you're really not going to be able to change the system as a patent attorney, you just won't have enough influence.

Quote:
Would I end up in a job that would compromise my integrity due to the fact my boss could make me sue a company for something I don't think is right? It is totally possible.
That's completely up to you, though you could be forced to choose between your job/promotion and your integrity. Nobody can actually force you to do what you don't want to, but they can make it very uncomfortable.

Quote:
On the other hand I could just get my masters in EE (or phd. being called doctor would be kind of nice), then get a job with a giant company only to work for years on projects with the possibility of them being scrapped or being afraid of layoffs? These are the fears the EE's I know have to deal with working for TI, or raytheon or whoever (whomever?).
Hard to say, first, like I said, I wouldn't bother with a masters, I think you'll learn more on the job and probably be a better Engineer if you dive into it, rather than spend another couple years living in theory land (unless of course you want to go into research).

The other thing is, think outside the box, just because you've got an EE degree doesn't mean you have to be an EE, you can get just about any engineering job.

As far as companies, I'm not going to name any names, but I've heard of horror stories from competitors where people are stuck, basically interviewing to keep their job every time a program ends. Vs where I work and they make a concerted effort to keep current employees employed. I've been through a few canceled programs and the only time there was really "worry" about layoffs was in the 2002-2003 timeframe when aerospace took a beating. And even then, a lot of folks just moved departments/divisions vs getting laid off.

Quote:
I just don't want to waste time in school only to find I don't actually like what I'm doing like 70% of the people I know. Of those 70% most have found jobs doing something totally different and are happy. To me that is a waste of a degree.
I suppose you could put me in that category, I'm not doing any electrical engineering despite my degree. What I found personally is while I'm interested in electronics, I'm interested in what they do, not so much how they do it. If you get my meaning, the fact that you can employ transistors to amplify sound, or modulate light, or compute pi to a million digits is the interesting part, not so much how n or p doped silicon can affect flow of charge (I probably just exposed everything I forgot about EE just there ). Probably why I ended up in Systems Engineering, I like figuring out how systems fit together, how they work, and I'm good at grasping that sort of things. So now I'm off defining how our systems work, and testing that they actually do that.

Wow, this is coming out like a Systems Engineering infomercial, which isn't the point. The point is I say get out there, and find out what you like. I know, knowing what I do now, that I wouldn't have been happy doing "Electrical Engineering", designing circuits and such, but that's me. Point is, the best way to find out is to get out there and try it. If you find out you really love EE, you can get your masters on the side and let your employer pay for it
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 08-29-2011, 04:04 PM
panteragstk's Avatar
panteragstk panteragstk is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New Braunfels, TX
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post
I know, knowing what I do now, that I wouldn't have been happy doing "Electrical Engineering", designing circuits and such, but that's me. Point is, the best way to find out is to get out there and try it. If you find out you really love EE, you can get your masters on the side and let your employer pay for it
That is what I'm thinking. I wouldn't really like a job as an "Electrical Engineer" as much as I would law. I know I have some pie in the sky aspirations and realize they are unrealistic. I'm over that. I just want to have a good job that will let me "work to live, not live to work". My family is the most important, my happiness in my work is second. I'm happy with what I do now (we'll call it support for fortune 1000 companies), but I don't want to be a fix it guy forever. Money is a big part. I don't want my wife to work if she doesn't have to, but she is happy to do it right now (makes more than me anyway and where she is now she will move up quickly).

I think with what everyone is saying I'm going to stick with my original plan to get the BSEE and go from there. I'm almost finished so I've got some thinking to do in the next few years.

All in all I just want to do something I like with job security I can rely on, and pay that will make me enough to not have to worry about how I'm going to pay for something. I think that's all most people really want. I know EE is for me especially since there are so many things I can do with the degree.
__________________
SageTV Server: unRAID Docker v9, S2600CPJ, Norco 24 hot swap bay case, 2x Xeon 2670, 64 GB DDR3, 3x Colossus for DirecTV, HDHR for OTA
Living room: nVidia Shield TV, Sage Mini Client, 65" Panasonic VT60
Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
Theater: nVidia Shield TV, mini client, Plex for movies, 120" screen. Mitsubishi HC4000. Denon X4300H. 7.4.4 speaker setup.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 08-29-2011, 04:56 PM
PLUCKYHD PLUCKYHD is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 6,257
You need to live in oilfield southern country. We are also in desperate need of engineers that are qualified. The pay is great and it is a interesting field
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 08-30-2011, 10:07 AM
panteragstk's Avatar
panteragstk panteragstk is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New Braunfels, TX
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by PLUCKYHD View Post
You need to live in oilfield southern country. We are also in desperate need of engineers that are qualified. The pay is great and it is a interesting field
I do. Lived in west Texas my whole life. I've seen my home town turn to a ghost town when gas was $1 a gallon when I was in high school. My mom, brother and 2 of my best friends all work in oil. Even in Allen, TX (where I am now) it is around. I plan to move to Austin when my degree is complete. I may have to talk to my buddy that works for ConocoPhillips about it. I do know that my two choices for living would be Midland, TX (my home town, hell will freeze over before I go back there) and Houston (hell will have to get much colder).

I'll look into it though. My friend has already tried to get me to, but the living situation is what makes me not want to.
__________________
SageTV Server: unRAID Docker v9, S2600CPJ, Norco 24 hot swap bay case, 2x Xeon 2670, 64 GB DDR3, 3x Colossus for DirecTV, HDHR for OTA
Living room: nVidia Shield TV, Sage Mini Client, 65" Panasonic VT60
Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
Theater: nVidia Shield TV, mini client, Plex for movies, 120" screen. Mitsubishi HC4000. Denon X4300H. 7.4.4 speaker setup.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 09-14-2011, 04:52 PM
Fuzzy's Avatar
Fuzzy Fuzzy is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Jurupa Valley, CA
Posts: 9,957
I've told this story on G+, which is where you pointed me to this thread. Here's my story a bit more fleshed out:
The trades aren't just a fallback. They are noble.
To sum it up, DO something with your skills. No matter what training you've had, you don't know anything about electrical engineering at this point. It sounds harsh, but it's true. Until you actually use the skills you've learned, they are not truly learned. Going and getting a law degree now would not make you any better a electronic patent lawyer than you would be without the EE degree. You may find you are much happier designing/building systems than writing and arguing about them.

Success and happiness in life is not about WHAT you CAN do. Success is finding out what you do WELL and doing it often.
__________________
Buy Fuzzy a beer! (Fuzzy likes beer)

unRAID Server: i7-6700, 32GB RAM, Dual 128GB SSD cache and 13TB pool, with SageTVv9, openDCT, Logitech Media Server and Plex Media Server each in Dockers.
Sources: HRHR Prime with Charter CableCard. HDHR-US for OTA.
Primary Client: HD-300 through XBoxOne in Living Room, Samsung HLT-6189S
Other Clients: Mi Box in Master Bedroom, HD-200 in kids room
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 09-14-2011, 06:27 PM
panteragstk's Avatar
panteragstk panteragstk is offline
SageTVaholic
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New Braunfels, TX
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
I've told this story on G+, which is where you pointed me to this thread. Here's my story a bit more fleshed out:
The trades aren't just a fallback. They are noble.
To sum it up, DO something with your skills. No matter what training you've had, you don't know anything about electrical engineering at this point. It sounds harsh, but it's true. Until you actually use the skills you've learned, they are not truly learned. Going and getting a law degree now would not make you any better a electronic patent lawyer than you would be without the EE degree. You may find you are much happier designing/building systems than writing and arguing about them.

Success and happiness in life is not about WHAT you CAN do. Success is finding out what you do WELL and doing it often.
Harsh isn't a bad thing with me. This is advice I take seriously and you aren't going to hurt my feelings.

All in all I just want a job I enjoy that lets me spend time with my family and not have to worry about how I'm going to pay my bills. Realistically I'm already really close by doing the IT job I've got. I just want to feel like I'm doing something (which is how you got my attention with your post on g+). I feel like I'm just patching temporary fixes that are just going to break again and again due to the limited scope my company has. It's a great company, but I want more (if that makes sense).

The reason I'm sticking with engineering currently is I want something to challenge my brain. I can do what I do now in my sleep. You are very correct in saying I know nothing about engineering or law or anything other than what I've already done and what I'm doing now. I'm just sick of doing IT support.

I'm going to think about what I REALLY want to do and make a final decision. I'm going to take a hard look at the electrician business. I'm tired of feeling stuck.
__________________
SageTV Server: unRAID Docker v9, S2600CPJ, Norco 24 hot swap bay case, 2x Xeon 2670, 64 GB DDR3, 3x Colossus for DirecTV, HDHR for OTA
Living room: nVidia Shield TV, Sage Mini Client, 65" Panasonic VT60
Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
Theater: nVidia Shield TV, mini client, Plex for movies, 120" screen. Mitsubishi HC4000. Denon X4300H. 7.4.4 speaker setup.

Last edited by panteragstk; 09-14-2011 at 06:30 PM.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
New Build subscription topic PLUCKYHD Sage My Movies 0 08-23-2010 10:04 AM
Off Topic --> No Video???? trini0 General Discussion 2 07-07-2006 07:44 PM
Way off topic KVM question ukmgranger The SageTV Community 7 06-07-2005 01:58 AM
Off topic: Happy 4th, US folk sleight42 General Discussion 2 07-04-2004 10:20 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:33 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright 2003-2005 SageTV, LLC. All rights reserved.