Is IT work harder than working with your hands?

in AppleOutsider edited January 2014
I have a question. Is the work of an IT guy, like programming or keeping a network of computers up and running more intellectually challenging or more complex than say, carpentry or fixing cars or any other work with your hands?

Now your first instinct might be that I am attempting to "look down" on people who work with their hands. But the reason I ask this question is that there are lots of things that say yes and lots that say no. Here are some observations:

- There is no doubt that a lot of people who fix cars or work with their hands are the type that don't seem smart and did not do well in school. I think their is a correlation. And if you started explaining programming loops to (some of) them, they would say that it was over their head.

- But yet on the other hand, for myself I find two things. Number one is that I am naturally good with computers, but it took a while to learn to not be clumsy and useless with my hands. But even more important than that, it seems like debugging a program or network and fixing a car are very similar forms of thinking and are both engineering. They both require a feel for how parts work together and an instinct for troubleshooting.

So I ask the question because there are definitely a lot of people that seem dumb and do poorly in school that work with their hands. But yet it is odd, because computers or mathematics are really logical thinking just like fixing a car is. I don't see that working with computers involves more complexity or number of details than fixing cars, either. You learn more and more as you handle different cars, just like you learn more as you handle different networking problems.

So why is it that there are people that seem dumb as a rock but can do things with their hands that seem to involve the same kind of logical skills as anything else, like working with computers or doing any other professional job?


  • Reply 1 of 3
    Originally Posted by tonton

    There are simply different kinds of intelligence, and different people are inclined to pick up different things more easily than others. Some people are good at lots of things, and some people aren't good at anything. Being good at one thing, like Physics, doesn't mean you're naturally good at something else that's for the most part unrelated, but equally as challenging, like baseball management, and vice/versa...

    Well, I was raising the possible point that I don't see how computers and mechanics are two different things. If I write a FOR loop to count to 10, FOR I=1; X=X+7; I=10, I don't see how that much different than a system of gears where one must feed into the other and things will not work if they are out of alignment. I do agree that writing poetry or doing calculus, or being able to interview someone for a job are different skills. The only difference I see between computers and cars is that cars involve physical parts you can see, where programming involves abstract variables that you can't touch and feel. But other than that, they just seem fundamentally similar to me.
  • Reply 2 of 3
    dmzdmz Posts: 5,775member
    Everything becomes work after a while.
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