What is CompE?
Computer Engineering integrates Electrical Engineering and Computer Science to exist on its own as one of the most influential disciplines today. It makes sense for this day and age – anyone who wants to combine, rather than choose one of, the two aspects of a computer (hardware and software) can now do so.
Why CompE over CompSci?
Short answer – I love circuits as much as I love programming.
People have made very weird faces at me for wanting to major in CompE and said something along the lines of “Electricity and Magnetism? Ugh” or “Just major in CompSci. ECE is confusing.” I am taking my first ECE class right now and granted I am not an expert, boy do they have no idea what they are talking about. ECE 81 is my absolute favorite class this semester.
It was hard to imagine how fun circuits could be until I gave them a chance. And when I did, they transcended my expectations. When solving a circuit problem, I try to become one with the circuit. There is no one way to solve the problem. I can pick my style and stick with what is comfortable for me. I can simplify it. I can look at it in multiple ways. The trick that works for me is to go with the flow, kind of like how current travels the path of no resistance. Prof. Best advises us to avoid forcing the solution. Think. Look at the problem. Do not miss the tiny details that can save fifteen minutes of crunching equations. ECE trains me to dispose of the “problem-solving” mentality that twelve years of public school had forced me into, and rebuilds me to think like an engineer. Prof. Best explained to the class the essence of electrical engineering with one line, “This stuff is elegant, people.”
Prof. Best advises most of his IDEAS students to take ECE 81, regardless of their majors, and especially if they are having trouble deciding on a major. I can see why. This class is for everyone. It allows people to think a certain way. And it’s quite a good time.
When there is two things I’d rather not live without and I can combine them, I see no reasons not to. That is why CompE is the ideal major for me.