Know your CEan - Gohm


CE's strength lies in its contributors. In its quest of uniting engineers from all over the world, CE has met outstanding contributors who help other CEans, contribute innovative ideas, share their knowledge & experience.

CEan - Gohm is one of them. We had a chat with CEan - Gohm [aka Mr. John Netzel], Mechanical Engineer from USA. Check it out -

Q. Hello John, tell us something about your work.

I manage a small group of engineers that work on mechanical, electrical & structural aspects of 100,000-300,000 sq. ft. buildings.I am also involved with a process change committee that brainstorms, researches and implements new ideas that cut overhead, improve efficiency and also have a green impact.

Q. You are a mechanical engineer but have studied bio-technology. How did this shift happen?

Well, originally I was studying microbiology. I was interested in working in cancer, aids, etc. research (I probably had a small bit of martyrdom syndrome, laugh). Unfortunately the vast majority of the actual job market lies in the pharmaceutical industry or teaching, neither which really interested me that much. Life took me down an alternate path than what I had planned and here I am.

Q. You have a lot of experience backing you and have done various projects, molded many young minds. How does it all feel?

It feels wonderful. There is nothing better than helping to direct and mold individuals to grow and succeed in their career. People development is key. The future will be formed by those starting their career path today and you are only as strong as your weakest link. When people succeed in endeavors they feel happy and develop self-worth. To know you played some small role in helping someone achieve their goals is a great thing as a leader, practice the inverted pyramid. [โ€‹IMG]

Q. Tell us about your life as a biker?

I have been riding motorcycles only as transport for about 10 years now. Started in college riding old Vespa scooters. Then I started restoring some old Vespas & selling them. Later I switched to motorcycles and have been enjoying riding and racing of all forms ever since. Motorcycling gives one a great since of freedom and connection to your environment, it is almost a spiritual feeling for me as corny as that may sound (I sing a lot of kirtan while riding). I enjoy getting my hands dirty on working and exploring mechanical things so being a shadetree mechanic is fun to me. Delving into how things work and how you can improve on how they work.

Q. We know that you have traveled a lot. What kind of places do you prefer? How has visiting other places and meeting new people changed you personally?

I prefer traveling to places that get you out of your comfort zone and your usual environment. Not a big fan of cruises, hotels & tour groups. Immersing oneself within the people and culture is what is key. You realize that there are a myriad ways to look at each single issue with all views being correct from a point of view. The more you explore the differences, the more you come to realize we are all so similar with the same goals & desires. It is such a shame we as societies don't get along as well as we should all sharing this one cozy little rock. My favorite place has been India, as it was a chance for a pilgrimage as well as helping a local community. The temples in the mountains are so amazing. As nice as north America & Europe are, it is a totally different experience then somewhere like India.

Q. What will you consider as your best achievement till date?

I could not tell you a specific achievement; however the one I would hope for would be to have made a difference in someone's life at some point. There is no greater achievement than that. Random acts of kindness. Usually it is the acts you are unaware of that touch the life of a stranger the most, to a degree we may not fathom. If I could have helped sometime in my life with a positive effect on one person, how wonderful would that be? I have also been proud to have some poetry published on a smaller, selfish note, laugh.

Q. Any thing that you regret doing?

Absolutely nothing! I would only regret things not done. Hindsight is 20/20 as they say and sure looking back on choices I would maybe do things differently now, however I do not regret the choices made then and the lessons gained.

Q. How do you make use of your leisure time?

Well, usually involving motorcycles, new roadster car I just got, music(wish I had time to play music as much as I used to, now mainly listen to music), movies, chant, puja, poetry, forums.

Q. You seem to have a flair for adventure. Building a two story house in the wilderness of Alaska is just one example. Tell us more

Well I moved to Alaska with my family while in grade school. We built a two story house out in the wilderness up in the mountains. No electricity, running water/indoor plumbing and the whole pioneer thing. An amazing experience living side by side with nature. I stayed in Alaska through part of college. I grew up as a kid on a farm and am the type that enjoys new experiences. Some say I am also a roller coaster junkie =)

Q. What attracted you to join CE?

I was surfing for engineering forums and found a couple, most of the others were very PC/white collar type environment if that makes any sense, not my particular liking though great for some. I found this one that more fit my style of exploring knowledge and also not taking oneself overly serious. I have been addicted ever since.

Q. One thing that you would like to change here?

Hmm, well, a sub-forum on the discussion and study of ancient engineering would be amazing, an area I have a strong liking of. I do not know if there is enough liked minded folks as of yet on CE to open a sub-forum. Discussing design, theories and inventions of Da Vinci, Al-Jazari, karakuri, ancient Egyptian/Roman, etc. I am still amazed by these devices and how they were engineered, even today I could not come up with a lot of those things. I mean Da Vinci built "robots", how unbelievable?! I am in awe of their design and thinking so far in the past without all the modern tech we have.

Q. Name three CEans that you would personally like to meet?

If it must be only three, then: Ash, Biggie and yourself. It is a long swim so maybe we can meet in Hawaii so nobody has to swim the whole way?

Q. Name one invention or discovery that you wish you would have made or like to make in the future?

A Chuck Norris powered energy grid. One punch from him could power a small town with clean, efficient renewable energy. A good laugh for fellow CEans.

Q. Thanks for giving your valuable time to CE. Have a wonderful life. Before we end any message for the community?

Sure, thanks to everyone for creating a fun, rich environment to discuss engineering and also chit-chat. Be happy in whatever you do as happiness is the key of life and nothing is greater. Be proud to be CE! Thanks also to you Patty for chatting with me!

CEan - Raj87Verma88
Associate Editor


  • Ashraf HZ
    Ashraf HZ
    Man, been waiting for this interview for ages! About time! Great interview, patty ๐Ÿ˜€

    Good to know about more about you, Gohm ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Regarding a section on CE about Ancient Engineering, I totally second that. I've read about Al-Jazari's stuff for a long time. By the way, have you read Donald R Hill's book about Islamic Science and Engineering? Pretty good! Im in the midst of reading Fuat Sezgin's epic volumes about the transmission of science throughout the middle ages. I came across George Sarton's works about the history of science too.. its a good reference to find about ancient engineering.

    Anywayz, wish you success for all your projects!
  • MaRo
    Very nice interview ๐Ÿ˜€

    I have bad memories with bikes ๐Ÿ˜
  • Kaustubh Katdare
    Kaustubh Katdare
    If I could have helped sometime in my life with a positive effect on one person, how wonderful would that be?
    I hope some day, we'll be able to make a positive difference to the world!
  • moksh
    A Chuck Norris powered energy grid. One punch from him could power a small town with clean, efficient renewable energy
    rofl ๐Ÿ˜€)
    where there's will there's a way where there's Chuck Norris , there is no other way ๐Ÿ˜›
  • gohm
    Ash- No, I haven't read Mr Hill's book, though several others. I'll check that one out. I am also excited about a new group trying to rebuild tesla's giant coil to prove/disprove his theory on wireless electrical transmission.

    I have a race coming up in the near future, I'll keep all posted.

    laugh, had to make the Chuck reference with all the activity that thread had! All this engineering and we blabber on crazy Chuck Norris... love it! I like how we ballance theory/ideas with fun creativity on CE.
    Congrads, gohm! Nice interview!

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