The Engineer's Dilemma

Describe a circumstance, obstacle or conflict in your life, and the skills and resources you used to resolve it. Did it change you? If so, how?


Maggi is desire. Maggi is beautiful. There are few things I wouldn’t give up to have Maggi. Just so things are clear - Maggi is a brand of instant noodles.

Every night in our dormitories, my friends and I used my kettle and cooked up exactly these noodles. In twelfth grade this became a ritual, and every night, after a long and tiring day, we would just sit together and share laughs and steaming bowls of Maggi. All was great, until the day we discovered that our kettle had started over-heating quickly, and always got shut off by its automatic over-heating mechanism. We were crestfallen, until I decided it was time to find a solution.

I sat down with the kettle and a set of screwdrivers. While I proceeded to unscrew all the screws holding the outer shell of the kettle together, I mentally tried to track all the wires in the kettle. They formed convoluted, weird patterns which were frustrating to figure out. I wanted to get a look at the internal heating system of the kettle, but it was welded shut. This was even more frustrating. Some screws were difficult to reach and the constant twisting of the screwdriver was taking a toll; my fingers ached and I needed to strain my eyes to see what I was doing in the dim light of my table...

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