A computer is a device that can be instructed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically via computer programming. Modern computers have the ability to follow generalized sets of operations, called programs. These programs enable computers to perform an extremely wide range of tasks.
Engineering is the creative application of science, mathematical methods, and empirical evidence to the innovation, design, construction, operation and maintenance of structures, machines, materials, devices, systems, processes, and organizations. The discipline of engineering encompasses a broad range of more specialized fields of engineering, each with a more specific emphasis on particular areas of applied mathematics, applied science, and types of application. See glossary of engineering.
Systems engineering is an interdisciplinary field of engineering and engineering management that focuses on how to design and manage complex systems over their life cycles. At its core, systems engineering utilizes systems thinking principles to organize this body of knowledge. Issues such as requirements engineering, reliability, logistics, coordination of different teams, testing and evaluation, maintainability and many other disciplines necessary for successful system development, design, implementation, and ultimate decommission become more difficult when dealing with large or complex projects. Systems engineering deals with work-processes, optimization methods, and risk management tools in such projects. It overlaps technical and human-centered disciplines such as industrial engineering, mechanical engineering, manufacturing engineering, control engineering, software engineering, electrical engineering, cybernetics, organizational studies and project management. Systems engineering ensures that all likely aspects of a project or system are considered, and integrated into a whole.
Engineering: The art of organizing and directing men, and of controlling the forces and materials of nature for the benefit of the human race.
Henry Gordon Stott. Presidential address, 1908, to American Institute of Electrical Engineers. Cited in: Halbert Powers Gillette (1920) Engineering and Contracting. Vol. 54. p. 97
Chestnut (1965) devotes one page of the more than 600 pages in his book to man as an operator or an element of man-machine systems. Hall (1962) devotes about a page and a half to human factors applications. Machol (1965) has a brief chapter of limited content on human factors, in which man is considered only as an information processor. Shearer et al. (1967) mention a driver and a steersman in their introductory chapter; thereafter, there is no of man, his characteristics, or his behavior. Wilson (1965) allocates three pages to human factors. For every book on systems engineering containing a mention of the human operator, there is another in which the words human, man, human factors, and psychology do not appear.
Kenyon B. De Greene, Earl A. Alluisi (1970) Systems psychology. p. 75
Rocket engineering is not like ditch digging. With ditch digging you can get 100 people and dig a ditch, and you will dig it a hundred times as faster if you get 100 people versus one. With rockets, you have to solve the problem of a particular level of difficulty; one person who can solve the problem is worth an infinite number of people who can’t.
Elon Musk Interview With Elon Musk Tesla Motors (2000s)