Engineering, Systems and Software
Engineering is the science, discipline, art and profession of acquiring and applying technical, scientific and mathematical knowledge to design and implement materials, structures, machines, devices, systems, and processes that safely realize a desired objective or inventions.
The American Engineers' Council for Professional Development (ECPD, the predecessor of ABET) has defined engineering as follows:
"The creative application of scientific principles to design or develop structures, machines, apparatus, or manufacturing processes, or works utilizing them singly or in combination; or to construct or operate the same with full cognizance of their design; or to forecast their behavior under specific operating conditions; all as respects an intended function, economics of operation and safety to life and property."
One who practices engineering is called an engineer. Engineering Systems - The MIT Engineering Systems Division is an interdisciplinary academic and research unit devoted to addressing large-scale, complex engineering challenges within their socio-political context. MIT defines Engineering Systems as the engineering study dealing with diverse, complex, physical design problems that may include components from several engineering disciplines, as well as economics, public policy, and other sciences. MIT views "engineering systems" as a distinct approach from the engineering science revolution of the late 1950s and early 1960s. Engineering science built on the physical sciences: physics, mathematics, chemistry, etc., to build a stronger quantitative base for engineering, as opposed to the empirical base of years past. This approach, while extraordinarily valuable, tends to be very micro in scale, and focuses on mechanics as the underlying discipline. "Engineering systems" takes a step back from the immediacy of the technology. Software Systems - A software system is a system based on software forming part of a computer system (a combination of hardware and software). The term software system is often used as a synonym of computer program or software. The term software system is related to the application of systems theory approaches in software engineering context. This approach is often used to study large and complex software, because it focuses on the major components of software and their interactions. The term software system is also related to the field of software architecture. Major categories of software systems include application software, programming software and system software, although the distinction can sometimes be difficult. Examples of software systems include computer reservations system, air traffic control software, military command and control systems, telecommunication networks, web browsers, content management systems, database management systems, expert systems, and more.