Or is it that inventors make great engineers? Either way, they go hand-in-hand.
Engineers of virtually any specialty get paid to experiment with the technologies of today and add in improvements of their own. In the process, they often create new, useful inventions that may be eligible for a patent.
Engineers invent new technologies for the rest of us.
There are many engineers (otherwise known as inventors) in history. I’m sure you’ll recognize the names of a few.
For instance, take Leonardo da Vinci. He drew plans for several flying machines, including a helicopter and a hang glider as well as many military machines. In addition, da Vinci may have made a great civil engineer as shown from his plans for a 720-foot bridge that was recently turned into a reality.
Another engineer/inventor is Eli Whitney. He invented the first cotton gin. Whitney is also credited with the creation of interchangeable parts. Oddly enough, the ability to interchange parts is thought to be a much more important and long lasting invention than the cotton gin (although that is all he is usually remembered for).
Orville and Wilbur Wright, otherwise known as the Wright Brothers are credited with the creation of a practical airplane. They actually wrote a patent application in 1903 which was rejected. Eventually, patent #821,393 for a “Flying Machine” was granted to them in 1906.
Fast forward to today, when inventors are rewarded for their labors with patents that can bring in large sums of money. A large number of the patents awarded today are granted to engineers. And the number of patents applied for keeps growing each and every year in the U.S.
If you choose this career field, you will no doubt be exposed to patents and quite possibly even apply for one yourself. Who knows? You could make history!