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I'm a former neuroscientist, learned electronics that way because back then, much of the equipment I needed didn't exist, so I had to design & build it. That got me started with analog instrumentation amplifiers and some digital stimulators (e.g. "gated-trains") as an undergrad and in grad school. Then I got into microcontrollers--that way I could automate precisely-timed events, especially when lots of things had to happen in a short time (during experiments)! I also used them for things to help around the lab, like watching a gel run, and letting me know when the "dye front" had passed a certain distance. After that, I started to use them for everything, including projects around the house. Anything that needed monitoring a sensor (many sensors I also developed myself) and especially if I wanted to act on the info that came from the sensor (like turning on a fan to increase ventilation if the humidity got too high under the house). By then, I was pretty well hooked--I started looking for anything I could possibly use a microcontroller to do anything! (e.g., surprising the kids that come "trick-or-treating" at Halloween, access control, logging applications...just about anything!) So now I'm just an ordinary uC and SBC fiend.