From a professional engineering perspective, I am certainly still developing my problem solving skills. I tend to lean towards using experimentation to solve problems, which in the conventional engineering world is frowned upon. Because of this, I have been disciplining myself in the latest and most useful problem solving tools – the computer and computer modeling and simulation software.
Experimentation is a poor means of solving problems because it can be extremely costly in certain applications. Designing a fully functioning automobile only using experimentation and testing to solve design problems would result in manufacturing several iterations of the design to obtain a final functioning product. The manufacturing costs, the rework costs, and the extended iterative design method used here is extremely costly.
Computer modeling and simulation is a way to solve problems in the engineering world to develop a product that can be manufactured only once to a final design that is significantly more likely to operate and function properly. Through this technique, the engineering costs can be reduced greatly, and products with short life cycles can be developed with greatly increased profits.