Newswise — Try matching these fun factors with engineers: "works with top theatrical designers and architects all over the world," "has no commute," "stretches his physical and mental faculties to the limit," and "builds challenging, one-of-a-kind systems that are designed to make people feel good." Engineering is sometimes seen as a stodgy profession, practiced in drab settings by dull people. Yet many engineers find both fun and excitement in their jobs, in locales ranging from glaciers to Hawaiian observatories. Ten engineers who have found their "dream jobs" are the subjects of this special article in IEEE Spectrum's February issue.

Some cases in point: Bill Woodcock circles the globe building Internet exchanges; Claude Gagnon zooms around in ATVs, snowmobiles, and watercraft to help develop new designs; Ayanna Howard dispatches robots to explore the Martian landscape; and Ossi Oikarinen fine-tunes Formula 1 race cars. If you've even watched a restored movie on DVD or taken a Cunard Line Ltd. cruise, you've been affected by the engineers' work. Their organizations include NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Color Kinetics Inc., Ohio State University's Byrd Polar Research Center, Lowry Digital Images, Packet Clearing House, Bombardier Recreational Products, W. M. Keck Observatory, the Verdin Co., and the Panasonic/Toyota Formula 1 racing team.

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