Thursday, April 19, 2012

Steel Bridge Clubs

Steel Bridge
Steel Bridge (Photo credit: GrigorPDX)
A world without engineers is quite unimaginable. There would be no roads, bridges, electricity, computers; basically there would be no society. One of the great organized activities that trains and tests the minds of future engineers are steel bridge clubs. Run through colleges and universities across the world, and sponsored by the ASCE/AISC, steel bridge clubs and concrete canoe clubs compete on a yearly basis to see who can build the best steel bridge or concrete canoe. Using materials like cold drawn steel materials supplied from Capital Steel and Wire and basic concrete, students must work together to build a lightweight and sturdy canoe or bridge that could work well large scale. What's more difficult is that the students have a limited time window to complete the tasks.

Although it is a competition, it is a great opportunity for students to meet similar students from across the world and to network with potential employers that help sponsor and put on the event. This year the event will be held at Clemson University in just a few weeks. If you're looking for other steel bridge clubs to get in touch with, take a look at this steel bridge club directory, which also has a custom Google search bar to search for activities that other related clubs are involved in.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Butterfly - The best insect

beautiful butterfly
beautiful butterfly (Photo credit: Amy Berry)
Sometimes I forget that Butterflies are insects. Their bright and beautiful colors fluttering around the  sky is a classic depiction of a bright summer day. The Egyptians admired butterflies and included them in their hieroglyphs over 3,500 years ago, and the Aztecs associated butterflies with fire and war. Today they're more than just a bug, they're considered one of the most fragile and delicate creatures on our planet, and they describe a state of nervousness when you have "butterflies in your stomach". 

Many businesses and products are named after butterflies, including Butterfly, a restaurant in San Francisco, and the Valtorc butterfly valve that looks quite similar to a butterfly, but has absolutely no connection to the insect. What do you think about butterflies? Can you think of a better insect? Post your opinions in the comments section!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Fastest Growing Countries

Now that 2011 is all wrapped up and we are full swing into 2012, we can accurately look at things that happened in 2011 and event start to compare them to 2012. That got me wondering what the fastest growing economies in the world currently are. I did some research and found an article by Business Insider. What really surprised me was how not a single North American country was on the list. Here are the countries broken down in order:

  1. Zambia
  2. Qatar
  3. Lebanon
  4. Jordan
  5. China
  6. Argentina
  7. Estonia
  8. Turkey
  9. Sri Lanka
  10. India
  11. Nigeria
  12. Egypt
  13. Kazakhstan
  14. Indonesia
  15. Lithuania
Quite a large part of their expansion is due to improvements in transportation systems, healthcare improvements, and a larger percentage of educated individuals staying in their home countries. With all this growth requires a huge amount of construction, and these countries demand more tractors, trench shoring equipment and scaffolding systems to keep up with their growth. All of the growth is quite amazing, and it's all taking place out of view!

Monday, April 9, 2012


Welcome (Image via
Hello, and welcome to my Journal blog! I hope you enjoy long rants and my thoughts and reflections about the world we live in, cause I'm just full of them! I love to hear feedback, and I love sharing thoughts and ideas with interested readers. If you have a topic, product or idea you would like me to reflect on, just let me know! Thanks for visiting!