Friday, February 17, 2006

Dear God, You Are NOT an Engineer.

Being a Biomedical Engineer, I often end up reading about human anatomy and physiology. Most often than not, I study the cellular level signalling and also tissue level functionality. Each time I read that stuff, I wonder how can everything be so perfectly organized. Even if you go to the cellular or molecular level, each particle has its own function and each action has a specific role to play. Each time I learn something new, I am flabbergasted to experience the mystery of human evolution.

I don't know who invented the human body. (While some people say it's God who created the world; I believe it was science. I am more inclined to link the human evolution to the probability theory and thermodynamics). However, lets for the moment believe that God made everything.

In that case, God is great. It must have taken immense amount of planning, knowledge, thinking, application, precision, accuracy to come up with something as complex as a human being. Being a PhD student (nothing can be more complex than a PhD student, by the way!) I often wonder what educational background did our dear God have?. Umm... probably medicine, or architecture, or biochemistry, or cell biology.... there are various possibilities; but I am damned sure that God was not an Engineer.


Even the dumbest of engineer would make sure that he gets some quantitative output at each stage of a process. In engineering, we are taught to see to it that we get the output at every possible data processing point. Whether your algorithm is right or wrong, you need an output. It's as simple as that. Take an example of any programming language: first thing we learn is how to print the output. Everything else comes later. Any engineer would agree with me about the fact that first and minimum requirement of any engineering development is an output.

But strangely, our body has no quantitative output !!. How unfortunate and unthoughtful was that !!.

Imagine if some engineer was to make the human body... He would make sure that we have outputs at every point. Just imagine:

If you are not feeling well, there will be a digital display on your hand showing "how much" you don't feel well. So if the value is within a normal range (what can be the unit of "wellness"??), you can still go to work. Otherwise, you have to take the day off. Our mood swings would be quantified as "negative 4 percent as compared to normal" or "positive 6 % as compared to normal". It would be so much easier for other to judge your mood: just look at the display on the forehead, and know if your date is in romantic mood or not!!

Thinking of that, I let my imaginative powers take control of my brain.

I could have seen a barometer on my stomach, to indicate how full or empty it was. There would have been a pH meter coming out of my intestines to see if I had acidity. I could have had a speedometer as well as an oxygen sensor on my back showing the activity of my lungs. Oh and my brain would have been full of displays: showing what was going on. Every particle of light captured in my eyes could be printed on a photo-quality paper and I could get got exact print of what I just saw. Wow!!

How helpful would that have been !!

Dear God, you made such a complex world. Couldn't you add a simple display system for us??.. So silly !!.


Nikhil said...

isnt body a perfect example of close coordination between biology and engineering ?
if we just have to extrapolate it into our world, and we have a human engineered world in harmony with nature ?
we cannot engineer our existance, but we can engineer our space..

Relax(S)ing(h) said...

Interesting thought. However, IF God created the human body, THEN God MUST BE an ENGINEER !! Why, u ask ?? Coz the human body works, who else in this world makes things that work, and work well !!!??? :):)

Mitya said...

Vivek, we do have an output. Its analog with a very high sensitivy. Its just that sometimes we don't bother to read it. Also the output is unique to each person. How then would a simple digital device display over 6 billion unique systems? Wouldn't that confuse more than inform?