Engineering Quotes

Some people have called the book the "bible of software engineering". I would agree with that in one respect: that is, everybody quotes it, some people read it, and a few people go by it.

Frederick Phillips Brooks, Jr.

Engineering problems are under-defined, there are many solutions, good, bad and indifferent. The art is to arrive at a good solution. This is a creative activity, involving imagination, intuition and deliberate choice.

Ove Arup

Engineering is the art of modelling materials we do not wholly understand, into shapes we cannot precisely analyse so as to withstand forces we cannot properly assess, in such a way that the public has no reason to suspect the extent of our ignorance.

Dr AR Dykes

Engineering is the art of directing the great sources of power in nature for the use and convenience of man.


Engineering is the professional art of applying science to the optimum conversion of natural resources to the benefit of man.

Ralph J. Smith

Engineering is the art of organizing and directing men and controlling the forces and materials of nature for the benefit of the human race.

Henry G. Stott

Engineering does not require science. Science helps a lot but people built perfectly good brick walls long before they knew why cement works.

Alan Cox

In science if you know what you are doing you should not be doing it. In engineering if you do not know what you are doing you should not be doing it. Of course, you seldom, if ever, see the pure state.

Richard Wesley Hamming

I see nothing wrong ethically with the idea of correcting single gene defects [through genetic engineering]. But I am concerned about any other kind of intervention, for anything else would be an experiment, [which would] impose our will on future generations [and take unreasonable chances] with their welfare ... [Thus] such intervention is beyond the scope of consideration.

Ian Wilmut

Go for civil engineering, because civil engineering is the branch of engineering which teaches you the most about managing people. Managing people is a skill which is very, very useful and applies almost regardless of what you do.

Sir John Harvey Jones

Nothing is so inspiring as seeing big works well laid out and planned and a real engineering organisation.

Frederick Handley Page

Engineering refers to the practice of organizing the design and construction [and, I would add operation] of any artifice which transforms the physical world around us to meet some recognized need.

GFC Rogers

The joy of engineering is to find a straight line on a double logarithmic diagram.

Thomas Koenig

Engineering is the professional and systematic application of science to the efficient utilization of natural resources to produce wealth.

T. J. Hoover and J. C. L. Fish

The ideal engineer is a composite ... He is not a scientist, he is not a mathematician, he is not a sociologist or a writer; but he may use the knowledge and techniques of any or all of these disciplines in solving engineering problems.

N. W. Dougherty
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