3 Reasons Why Signal Processing is the Career of the Future

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3 Reasons Why Signal Processing is the Career of the Future

Thursday, July 19, 2018

When deciding on a career path, you’re likely to have different considerations in mind. You want to have a skillset for which there is a wide demand in growing industries. You also need to be certain your expertise will remain relevant in the technologically uncertain years to come, when AI and automation will change many of our jobs as we know it. Finally,  people currently entering the workforce increasingly want to work in fields where they will be able to make a positive social impact. So, is there a way to combine all these needs and desires in one career choice? Yes, if you decide to become a signal processing engineer!

Signal processing – the enabling technology for the generation, transformation, extraction and interpretation of information via electronic signals – is essential for our smartphones and wearable devices, as well as the latest health care technologies, digital cameras and our digital assistants like Amazon Echo and Google Home. Taking stock of the immense power and promise of signal processing, it’s not difficult to see how it can be the ideal vocational path for a person with an interest in science, technology, or math, and a desire to change the world. The case for a career in signal processing is threefold:

  • Signal Processing Plays a Key Role in Multiple Industries: Unlike in most fields of study, in signal processing, futue jobs are not defined by or restricted to a single professional area. Signals are used to transmit information in nearly every imaginable field. They are used extensively in what will likely be a high-growth industry in years to come: health care. Signal processing is essential for the use of X-rays, MRIs and CT scans, allowing medical images to be analyzed and deciphered by complex data processing techniques. Signals are used in finance, to send messages about and interpret financial data. This aids decision-making in trading and building stock portfolios. The most exhilarating new movies are made possible by multiresolution signal processing in digital cameras, making entertainment a lucrative market for people with this skillset. And of course, there is the ever-dynamic consumer electronics industry, where smartphones, wearable devices and digital home assistants couldn’t exist without processing engineers. Basically, whatever industry interests you probably implements signal processing.
  • Signal Processing is the Technology of the Future: Many young people are concerned how technology is impacting their future job prospects. But when you’re caught in the tide you swim with it, not against it. That’s why you should explore the possibilities of signal processing, the technology underpinning most of our disruptive innovations. Just to give a few examples, the latest breakthroughs in health care are enabled by signal processing engineers, who are developing ways to more quickly and accurately process medical images. Hollywood will want to scoop up the best minds in the field to make the most memorable and exciting films. And in Silicon Valley, where disruption is the order of the day, the top tech companies are constantly seeking out experts in signal processing to help develop the latest product or platform. These are the growth industries of the modern economy – and signal processing is the growth skillset in these fields.
  • Signal Processing Can Serve a Social Purpose: Whether addressing inequality, making our economy more sustainable or combatting epidemics, it’s key that researchers and policymakers have access to all the relevant data. Signal processing allows for the expansion of computing power and data storage capabilities, making signal processing engineers indispensable for understanding and tackling our biggest global problems. A career in this field isn’t just about employment opportunities or guarding against your job being automated. It’s about contributing to improving the world.

The diversity, relevance and ongoing importance of signal processing makes it an ideal area to study and pursue as a vocation. And just imagine being able to say, in an increasingly digital world, that you - quite literally - make everything possible.

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