Speaking as a programmer who respects engineering, but isn't an engineer, there's been an unfortunate tendency to inflate job titles in the field. Systems analysts have become "data architects". People writing web sites are calling themselves "software engineers", when they barely even qualify as computer programmers. (HTML is not a programming language, even if media types refer to it as "code".)
You aren't an engineer unless a mistake on your part could potentially kill people and/or destroy property. The worst a bad website could do is cause nausea.
@Jessica: Thank you for a nice article!! All of the latest trends of the EE Job Titles are highlighted in this article. With the increasing trend of more companies getting actively involved in IoT applications, cloud computing, security engineers would be more in demand.
Similarly, there is an increasing trend of microprocessor getting combined with an FPGA fabric or the FPGAs having "hard" processor cores boosting the usage of SoCs more and more in design, where the hardware engineer (FPGA designer) would need to acquire some knowledge on writing the firmware code for the processor or the other way, as new trend of system engineers emerging, who are supposed on be jack of all trades & master of all to some extent.
@Rick: "In general, there's a trend toward more hiring in software than hardware engineering, too."
I agree with you as you have said hiring for software engineers is more than the hiring for the hardware engineers and I too believe that is an increasing trend. Here, by hardware engineer I mean the board designers (not the IC designers). One of the reasons for that could be that the open source hardware platforms are getting more and more available. The same hardware platform, once built could be used for different applications by developing different firmware/software programs. Can you think of any other reasons?
My daughter is in high school and thinking about a career in engineering. I am finding a lot of outreach from the professional and educational community to encourage that. For instance, she will be attending an engineering colloquium at Princeton University next month, and she has applied for the one-day STEM program at the upcoming IEEE IMS 2014 in Tampa, FL. I hope these opportunities continue to come her way!
some of the jobs are amalgamation of 2-3 traditional jobs with some automation. Most of the embedded designer would agree that without the commecially available software tools it will be virtually impossible design and write algorithms at the same time. There are some new jobs that did not exist in the past such as Data Scientist. These jobs typically require a mix of Maths, CS and Statistics knowledge. Most of such jobs are limited to PhDs but i think that in some years these kind of jobs will be more popular.
Very interesting article Jessica! It nicely highlights changes undergoing in our field and quotes reliable and respectable sources...having said that I doubt that job titles will change much although nature of EE work will...a simple example is power engineering, this used to be boring now is sexy due to smart grid concept, the job is quite different but the title is likely the same...the only exceptions are few truly new things like data mining example Rick brought up...again I truly enjoyed reading this piece! Kris
The Googles, Yahoos and Facebooks have helped create the new title of data scientist, the person who helps tackle and mine big data. I suspect that is related to what Horowitz calls information engineering.
In general, there's a trend toward more hiring in software than hardware engineering, too.
Probably there may not be huge change in Job titles but it will become more and more important that engineers are aware of other disciplines to deisgn the products optimized in terms of all the performance requirements.
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