Thursday, December 13, 2007

Scientist Employs 'Circuit Theory' to Protect Endangered Species

Scientist Employs 'Circuit Theory' to Protect Endangered Species : "Ecologists are now using 'circuit theory,' thanks in large part to a scientist named Brad McRae who works at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis in Santa Barbara, California. McRae designed electronics for printers before completing a Ph.D. in forest science at Northern Arizona University. He realized how striking the parallel was between the circuits he had worked on as an engineer and the species he was now trying to understand. "

I have long thought that specialization and the latest trend toward super-specialization may not be the best thing. It tends to narrow the ways you think about how to go about solving problems. In college we are taught certain ways to solve certain kinds of problems and we use that for everything. We get a good hammer but forget that there are other tools out thee.

I love to study how big problems were solved. Hoover Dam, The Erie Canal, the Panama Canal, the Apollo space program, the SR-71 and U-2 aircraft, Filming the Lord of the Rings.

This is a strong reminder to get outside of your specialty and see what others are doing to solve problems.

UPDATE; There are several problem solving theories that understand this. from dumblittleman

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