May the Fourth be with you Star Wars fans. As you know, the new movie is coming out this year and J.J. Abrams is returning to the style of the old trilogy, scrapping CGI in favor of scrappy looking sets.

May the Fourth be with you survey

On the other hand there’s a few among you that don’t care. We’re talking about Star Trek fans who got their last thrills (also provided by JJ lens glare Abrams) in 2009.

Some have a stake in both camps but that’s a minority. Some of you don’t care for neither but that’s an even bigger minority in tech circles.

We were wondering how many Star Wars vs Star Trek fans are there among our own community (we know at least one forum member who identified himself as a trekkie). We think it typifies two approaches to inventing, and hence influences your style as an engineer or maker.

The Star Wars galaxy embodies the pragmatic approach to inventing. Yeah, there may be an exposed piece of PCB or wire but this robot is fluent in six million forms of communication. It’s the approach of rapid prototypers focused on functionality first and foremost. These are the types of developers you’d want in your vicinity when you’re rushing to get out a minimum viable product. Their workbenches, we imagine, look like the interior of one of those Sand Crawlers from Tatooine — a bunch of bits and pieces that look like junk at first glance, when in fact there’s a lot of useful hardware.

Trekkies, they’re all about technological innovation that improves humanity. To boldly go where no man has gone before. These are the developers that care about big ideas and take their time to develop a highly polished invention. Every detail thought out. All aspects discussed.

Of course these are broad generalisations, but please, humor us, just tell us if you’re a Star Wars or a Trekkie. We’re leaving you a space to type your thoughts on the subject too. In case we missed the mark with our preconceptions.

Yours sincerely,

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