3
\$\begingroup\$

This may be a regional issue but in the UK (and pretty much everywhere apart from the US it seems) there is a clear distinction between Electrical and Electronics in terms that one is about powerlines, etc and the other is about PCBs, etc.

Given this, wouldn't Electronic Engineering be a far more suitable name?

\$\endgroup\$
1
  • \$\begingroup\$ In college (RPI, late 1970s, upstate New York) the two disciplines were called electrical engineering and electric power engineering. The term "electric" can be take both ways, but I think "electronic" means only the opamp and not power grid stuff. \$\endgroup\$ – Olin Lathrop Nov 11 '11 at 16:21
7
\$\begingroup\$

Is electrical suitable as a name?

Meh, it'll do. Some consider Electrical to be the broader discipline, of which Electronics is a subset. To be clear, both Electrical and Electronics questions are on-topic - We just don't have a lot of users who work in the Electrical discipline.

This may be a regional issue but in the UK (and pretty much everywhere apart from the US it seems) there is a clear distinction between Electrical and Electronics in terms that one is about powerlines, etc and the other is about PCBs, etc.

I'm from the US, and that distinction is present here, too. Electrical engineers will also work on PCBs, but mostly in RF, power electronics, and analog domains.

Check the site history if you want the whole story. I'll try to relate the facts there to this question:

  • We were seeded with content (and users, myself included) from an SE 1.0 site called "chiphacker", which was run by a Sparkfun reseller in Australia. That relationship imparted a decidedly Electronics bent to the site.
  • When we became an SE 1.0 site, we were called "Electronics and Robotics", and recieved the domain electronics.stackexchange.com. Our scope still included electrical engineering at this time.
  • We dropped "Robotics" from our scope, becoming "Electronics". Consumer electronics questions were a big problem, so we campaigned for a a different title.
  • Our benevolent overlords renamed us Electronics Design. Unfortunately, there was a trademark claim against that name, so we were renamed to "electrical engineering". I made comments much like yours to that proposal, stating that "Electronics Engineering" or "Electrical and Electronics Engineering" would be more appropriate, but they weren't answered by the team. I could speculate that this was due to the lawyers trying to steer the site away from the trademark claim, but I don't know.

To sum up, our site is not defined by the name. The name is less than ideal, but it doesn't really impede our ability to ask and answer questions. Our scope is defined by the questions you see on the site, by the FAQ, and by the community in questions asked on this meta site.

Meanwhile, we answer questions like Does the Area 51 proposal "Electronics & Electrical Engineering" duplicate this site? and May I ask questions about industrial power system design? with "Yes".

\$\endgroup\$
5
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ I am still strongly in support of the site name Electrical and Electronics Engineering. \$\endgroup\$ – Kortuk Nov 13 '11 at 19:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ Is this answer still correct? \$\endgroup\$ – AndrejaKo Nov 15 '11 at 22:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ @AndrejaKo - It was posted 4 days ago, so I would like to think it does :) - Do you have an objection to the answer? \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Vermeer Nov 15 '11 at 23:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ @ Kevin Vermeer♦ For some reason, it looked to me like the answer was from 2010. I also read in comments to some closed questions that they were closed because this isn't electrical engineering in the broad sense but in the electrical==electronic sense. What I don't remember is if the questions were wiring questions or not. I also don't have the links to the questions right now. As a sidenote, I also believe that electrical engineering fits as a name. \$\endgroup\$ – AndrejaKo Nov 15 '11 at 23:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ @AndrejaKo - Perhaps they were about the fact that this isn't a site for electricians? We've migrated a few, like this one, to DIY. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Vermeer Nov 15 '11 at 23:46

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .