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#512 – Design For Longevity

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**bsfeechannel**:

@00:42:28, Dave says

You can be an electronics design engineer, go your entire career without solving an integral or without going back to basic physics.

Unfortunately that's not true. At least not for Dave. If he calculated the battery capacity he needed for a reasonable battery life for his 121GW multimeter, he solved an integral.

bc(t) = battery capacity

i(t) = current consumption

bc(t) = 0ʃti(t)dt

If you consider i(t) as a constant (I) and you target a certain battery life BL, then:

bc(BL) = 0ʃBLIdt = I0ʃBLdt = I × BL

bc(BL) = I × BL

Calculus was first invented by Isaac Newton but first publicly proposed by Gottfried Leibniz as a rigorous mathematical description of the physical phenomena they were studying. They didn't do it for the fun of the intellectual exercise. What they offered was an invaluable tool for the prediction of movement of physical bodies and our modern engineering is all based on that new concept. From the times of Newton and Leibniz to our days, calculus has advanced a great deal.

When you go for your degree you're looking for the advanced topics of engineering and accreditation as a professional. And that's exactly what they do. They show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.

Maybe you can spend your whole career in engineering design solving simple integrals that you don't even recognize as such or using trivial physics concepts, but the fact is that calculus and physics are unavoidable. And since you really can't tell what your career goes to show, if you're not prepared may miss opportunities.

So we lend a disservice to engineering education when we disparage the study of math and physics. They require rigorous thinking, and that's all for the benefit of engineering. Instead of discouraging people to study them, we need to explain why they're important, and why they're required if you want to be a full-fledged professional.

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