Some of my most popular blog posts remains my rejection of the iron ring posts based on the religious references that I wasn’t allowed to strike.
Every few weeks I get a new comment, typically a self-entitled engineer who feels like calling me names on the Internet. But the latest comment was something new.
Someone dug up a smaller American ceremony that was developed in 1970 and is simply called The Order of the Engineer.
The US obligation states (PDF) in secular (and dare I say humanist) terms:
OBLIGATION OF THE ENGINEER
I AM AN ENGINEER,
IN MY PROFESSION I TAKE DEEP PRIDE.
TO IT I OWE SOLEMN OBLIGATIONS.
SINCE THE STONE AGE,
HUMAN PROGRESS HAS BEEN SPURRED BY THE ENGINEERING GENIUS.
ENGINEERS HAVE MADE USABLE,
NATURE’S VAST RESOURCES OF MATERIAL AND ENERGY FOR HUMANITY’S BENEFIT.
ENGINEERS HAVE VITALIZED
AND TURNED TO PRACTICAL USE THE PRINCIPLES OF SCIENCE
AND THE MEANS OF TECHNOLOGY.
WERE IT NOT FOR THIS HERITAGE OF ACCUMULATED EXPERIENCE, MY EFFORTS WOULD BE FEEBLE.
AS AN ENGINEER,
I PLEDGE TO PRACTICE INTEGRITY AND FAIR DEALING, TOLERANCE, AND RESPECT
AND TO UPHOLD DEVOTION
TO THE STANDARDS AND THE DIGNITY OF MY PROFESSION, CONSCIOUS ALWAYS
THAT MY SKILL CARRIES WITH IT
THE OBLIGATION TO SERVE HUMANITY
BY MAKING THE BEST USE OF EARTH’S PRECIOUS WEALTH.
AS AN ENGINEER,
I SHALL PARTICIPATE IN NONE BUT HONEST ENTERPRISES.
MY SKILL AND KNOWLEDGE
SHALL BE GIVEN WITHOUT RESERVATION FOR THE PUBLIC GOOD.
IN THE PERFORMANCE OF DUTY
AND IN FIDELITY TO MY PROFESSION, I SHALL GIVE THE UTMOST.
It seems like in the case of the Robertson screw, the Americans couldn’t import the Canadian invention due to copyright claims. But unlike the Phillips screw, this time the Americans improved upon the original Idea. From their website they even seem to have toned down the creepy cultish vibe that the Iron Ring ceremony gives off.
Were I a practising engineer, I might consider travelling to Seattle to attend their next ceremony.
It’s worth noting that the Canadian rings are also made of stainless steel now too since the iron wears down to quickly.