May 12, 2006

Big Fat Light Bulb

I like(d) law school. But I LOVED engineering school.

Today, I finally figured out why. Maybe it was the leftover korean lamb chop and spicy okra from last night. Or maybe this is a truly brilliant insight. Or, most likely, it's so obvious that I just couldn't see it.

Engineering is all about using whatever tools work to get to the goal. Figure out a new use for an old tool? If it works, you're a good engineer. If it doesn't but it helps you figure out another possible tool for the job, you're still a good engineer.

Law is all about learning which tools are the allowable weapons when fighting a civilized fight. There is no common goal. There is no answer. There is no, "oh, that works!" against which you can measure the value of the tools you select. The tools are valuable only because people recognize them as familiar and understand the points you are trying to make.

Hence why I've been so confused about grades and the ranking system throughout all of law school. New creative uses of tools are not the stuff of law. Law is a discipline of old, well-structured tools. The people who use the tools in the manner most approximating those that come before them are rewarded the most.

Nice timing, brain. Thanks.

No comments: