I like to think I can work on things from beginning to end. At work we’ll bid on a project (which means someone has a problem, and we say “we can help with that, and we’ll charge you £xxx, is that ok? great, let’s start”), think of the ideas to solve the problem, test some things out (maybe build a small model, or do some maths, or brainstorm, or draw some parts in 3D on the computer, write a software program, etc.), then make a prototype, test it, modify it, make any changes, and build the final thing, then test it lots and lots, write any software that someone needs to run it, and send it tothe customer. So I love seeing the start and finish of a project and see something we thought of a year ago built in real life today.
Sometimes I don’t feel like it is very different, but then when I take a visitor around the lab, I can see it in a new perspective!
Location is a major difference – I work at a particle accelerator, the sort of thing most people only see in James Bond films!
I also know that what I’m doing is helping achieve some amazing things. I can’t pretend to understand half of the science that our machine is used for, but I do know that I’m not just turning a handle every day. I’m part of a team that develops medicines and new electronics and so many more cool and important things.
…and at parties I can say that I work as a henchman for the organisation of an evil Bond villain…and only be lying a bit 😉