Technical research is about gathering information in order to answer question and solve an engineering or technical problem. Usually it is made by engineers, technicians (called also technologists). Ludwig M. writes that the goal of technical research is to gain very specialised information, therefore it is not so spontaneous activity such as manufactuing or selling. The information should be taken from trusted sources such as:
- articles from refereed journals,
- articles from magazines from professional societies,
- articles from conferences.
Technical research paper
Technical research paper should include the following:
- Title should clearly communicate the topic.
- Abstract should contain the high-level messeage of the whole research, it is adviced to be done after completing the research - should contain maximum 300 words.
- Introduction should explain the problem, firstly from the large or historical contex, then explaining motivations and its impotence.
- Background and Motivation might be separated from introduction if there is a need to explain it widely.
- Sections with names of your choice should divide the paper into logical parts of statements and evidences for example:
- what was done,
- what is the result,
- what are discussions around it.
- Discussion and Future Work part should include further steps which can be done in the area, also some unsolved topics.
- Conclusion should include summary of the findings.
- References so all used literature in alphabetical order (by the last name of authors).
Examples of technical problem and research
Technical problem of Aligning Superintelligence with Human Interests was described as follows:What, formally, is the induction problem faced by an intelligent agent embedded within and computed by its environment? What is the set of environments which embed the agent? What constitutes a simplicity prior over that set? How is the agent scored?. The paper was described in below chapters:
- Highly Reliable Agent Designs
- Error-Tolerant Agent Designs
- The Value Learning Problem
Another example might be technical research on Civil engineering. In the report there are covered topics such as:
- risk assessment of materials tested in laboratories,
- building assessment: sustainability, fire treatment, frost durability,
- analytical and numerical models of technological and construction solutions,
- materials and constructions,
- new materials solutions,
- modifications on material composition,
- technological research in cross-sectional perspective,
- test results,
Advantages of Technical research
Technical research offers many advantages to engineers, technologists, and other professionals. Here are some of the main benefits:
- It provides an opportunity to gain specialized, detailed information. By conducting research, professionals can acquire a deep understanding of a particular topic and become experts in their field.
- It helps to increase productivity and efficiency. With the right information, professionals can develop better strategies for completing tasks, saving time and money.
- It can be used to develop new products, processes, and technologies. By combining research with innovation, professionals can create innovative solutions to problems.
- It can help to identify potential opportunities for growth. By using research to gain insights into customer needs, businesses can better target their marketing efforts and find new ways to generate revenue.
- It can help create better customer experiences. By understanding customers better, businesses can create better products and services that meet their needs.
- It can be used to improve existing products, processes, and technologies. By conducting research, professionals can identify weaknesses in existing systems and develop solutions to address them.
Limitations of Technical research
Technical research has certain limitations that need to be taken into account when planning one's research. These limitations include:
- Time limitations - Technical research often requires long periods of time in order to yield the desired results. This means that costs associated with research can become quite high, making it difficult to complete the research on a limited budget.
- Expertise limitations - Technical research often requires highly specialized knowledge and skills to complete. This means that a researcher may not have the skills or experience to complete the research on their own, and may need to hire another expert to assist.
- Access limitations - Technical research often requires access to specialized equipment and data that may not be readily available to the researcher. This means that the researcher may need to travel to a different location in order to perform the research or purchase the necessary equipment.
- Data limitations - Technical research often requires the researcher to analyze large amounts of data in order to draw meaningful conclusions from the results. This can be difficult and time consuming, especially when the data is not organized or formatted in a way that is conducive to analysis.
- Cost limitations - Technical research often requires large amounts of money in order to purchase the necessary equipment and materials needed to complete the research. This can be a major obstacle for researchers who do not have access to large amounts of money.
In addition to the traditional approach to technical research, there are several other approaches that can be used to answer questions and solve engineering and technical problems. These include:
- Reverse Engineering - This approach involves studying existing products and systems in order to develop new ones. This can involve analyzing existing products and systems to determine their components and how they work.
- Design Thinking - This approach involves using creative problem solving to develop innovative solutions. This involves gathering data, analyzing it, and then using that data to create new ideas.
- Prototype Testing - This approach involves using prototypes of a product or system to test its functionality and usability. This can involve creating a physical model of the product, as well as running computer simulations.
- Systematic Experimentation - This approach involves testing different components or elements of a system to see how they interact with each other. This can involve running tests to understand how different components of a system interact with each other.
In summary, there are several approaches to technical research that can be used to answer questions and solve engineering and technical problems. These approaches include reverse engineering, design thinking, prototype testing, and systematic experimentation. All of these approaches involve gathering data, analyzing it, and then using that data to create new ideas and solutions.
- Ludwig M., (1962)
- Shoop L. (access: 2019)
- Shoop L. (access: 2019)
- Soares N., Fallenstein B. (2017), p.4
- Czarnecki L., Gemert D. (2017)
- Czarnecki L., Gemert D. (2017), Civil Engineering – Ongoing Technical Research. Part 2 in "Bulletin of the Polish Academy of Sciences", Technical Sciences, Vol. 65, No. 6
- Ludwig M., (1962), Technical progress and textile marketing: official report on the congress, International Federation of Cotton and Allied Textile Industries, France
- Shoop L. (access: 2019), A Guide for Writing a Technical Research Paper, Macalester College, Mathematics and Computer Science Department
- Soares N., Fallenstein B. (2017), Aligning Superintelligence with Human Interests: A Technical Research Agenda in "The Technological Singularity: Managing the Journey", The Frontiers Collection
Author: Bartłomiej Zegarliński