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Computer engineering (CoE or CpE) is a branch of
engineering Engineering is the use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items, including bridges, tunnels, roads, vehicles, and buildings. The discipline of engineering encompasses a broad range of more specializ ...

engineering
that integrates several fields of
computer science Computer science deals with the theoretical foundations of information, algorithms and the architectures of its computation as well as practical techniques for their application. Computer science is the study of , , and . Computer science ...
and
electronic engineering Printed circuit board Electronic engineering (also called electronics and communications engineering) is an electrical engineering discipline which utilizes nonlinear and active electrical components (such as semiconductor devices, especially ...
required to develop
computer hardware Computer hardware includes the physical parts of a computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of operations ...

computer hardware
and
software Software is a collection of instructions that tell a computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of operatio ...

software
. Computer engineers usually have training in electronic engineering (or
electrical engineering Electrical engineering is an engineering discipline concerned with the study, design, and application of equipment, devices, and systems which use electricity, electronics The field of electronics is a branch of physics and electrical enginee ...

electrical engineering
),
software design Software design is the process by which an Agency (philosophy), agent creates a specification of a Artifact (software development), software artifact intended to accomplish goals, using a set of primitive components and subject to Constraint (m ...
, and hardware-software integration instead of only
software engineering Software engineering is the systematic application of engineering approaches to the software development, development of software. A software engineer is a person who applies the principles of software engineering to design, develop, maintain, tes ...
or electronic engineering. Computer engineers are involved in many hardware and software aspects of
computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experimentation of algorithm of an algorithm (Euclid's algorithm) for calculating the greatest common divisor (g.c.d ...

computing
, from the design of individual
microcontroller A microcontroller (MCU for ''microcontroller unit'') is a small computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of ...

microcontroller
s,
microprocessor A microprocessor is a computer processor where the data processing logic and control is included on a single integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) ...

microprocessor
s,
personal computers A personal computer (PC) is a multi-purpose computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of operations known a ...

personal computers
, and
supercomputer File:Supercomputer-power-flops.svg, upright=1.5, Computing power of the top 1 supercomputer each year, measured in FLOPS A supercomputer is a computer with a high level of performance as compared to a general-purpose computer. The performance ...

supercomputer
s, to
circuit design The process of circuit design can cover systems ranging from complex electronic systems all the way down to the individual transistor file:MOSFET Structure.png, upright=1.4, Metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET), showing M ...
. This field of engineering not only focuses on how computer systems themselves work but also how they integrate into the larger picture. Usual tasks involving computer engineers include writing software and
firmware In computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experimentation of algorithm of an algorithm (Euclid's algorithm) for calculating the greatest commo ...
for embedded
microcontroller A microcontroller (MCU for ''microcontroller unit'') is a small computer A computer is a machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. Modern computers can perform generic sets of ...

microcontroller
s, designing
VLSI Very large-scale integration (VLSI) is the process of creating an integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circuits on one small f ...
chips ''CHiPs'' is an American crime drama Crime films, in the broadest sense, is a film genre inspired by and analogous to the crime fiction literary genre. Films of this genre generally involve various aspects of crime and its detection. Stylist ...
, designing analog
sensor A sensor is a device that produces an output signal for the purpose of sensing of a physical phenomenon. In the broadest definition, a sensor is a device, module, machine, or subsystem that detects events or changes in its environment and se ...

sensor
s, designing mixed signal
circuit board A printed circuit board (PCB) is a laminated sandwich structure of conductive and insulating layers. PCBs have two complementary functions. The first is to affix electronic components An electronic component is any basic discrete device or ...

circuit board
s, and designing
operating system An operating system (OS) is system software System software is software designed to provide a platform for other software. Examples of system software include operating systems like macOS macOS (; previously Mac OS X and later ...

operating system
s. Computer engineers are also suited for
robotics Robotics is an interdisciplinary Interdisciplinarity or interdisciplinary studies involves the combination of two or more academic disciplines into one activity (e.g., a research project). It draws knowledge from several other fields like s ...

robotics
research, which relies heavily on using
digital systems Digital electronics is a field of electronics Electronics comprises the physics, engineering, technology and applications that deal with the emission, flow and control of electrons in vacuum and matter. It uses active devices to control elect ...
to control and monitor
electrical systems Electricity is the set of physical phenomena associated with the presence and motion Image:Leaving Yongsan Station.jpg, 300px, Motion involves a change in position In physics, motion is the phenomenon in which an object changes its positio ...
like
motor An engine or motor is a machine A machine is a man-made device that uses power to apply forces and control movement to perform an action. Machines can be driven by animals and people A people is a plurality of person A person ( ...

motor
s,
communications Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in relation with") is "an apparent answer to the painful divisions between self and other, private and public, and inner thought and outer world." As this definition indica ...
, and
sensor A sensor is a device that produces an output signal for the purpose of sensing of a physical phenomenon. In the broadest definition, a sensor is a device, module, machine, or subsystem that detects events or changes in its environment and se ...

sensor
s. In many institutions of higher learning, computer engineering students are allowed to choose areas of in-depth study in their junior and senior year because the full breadth of knowledge used in the design and application of computers is beyond the scope of an
undergraduate degree An undergraduate degree (also called first degree or simply degree) is a colloquial term for an academic degree earned by a person who has completed undergraduate courses. In the United States, it is usually offered at an institution of higher educ ...
. Other institutions may require
engineering student Engineering education is the activity of teaching Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness, or understanding of someone or something, such as fac ...
s to complete one or two years of
general engineering
general engineering
before declaring computer engineering as their primary focus.


History

Computer engineering began in 1939 when
John Vincent Atanasoff John Vincent Atanasoff, , (October 4, 1903 – June 15, 1995) was an American physicist and inventor, best known for being credited with inventing the first electronic digital computer A computer is a machine A machine is a man-made dev ...
and Clifford Berry began developing the world's first electronic
digital computer A computer is a machine A machine is a man-made device that uses power to apply forces and control movement to perform an action. Machines can be driven by animals and people A people is a plurality of person A person (plural ...
through
physics Physics is the that studies , its , its and behavior through , and the related entities of and . "Physical science is that department of knowledge which relates to the order of nature, or, in other words, to the regular succession of eve ...

physics
,
mathematics Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as numbers (arithmetic and number theory), formulas and related structures (algebra), shapes and spaces in which they are contained (geometry), and quantities and their changes (cal ...
, and
electrical engineering Electrical engineering is an engineering discipline concerned with the study, design, and application of equipment, devices, and systems which use electricity, electronics The field of electronics is a branch of physics and electrical enginee ...

electrical engineering
. John Vincent Atanasoff was once a physics and mathematics teacher for
Iowa State University Iowa State University of Science and Technology (Iowa State University or Iowa State) is a public land-grant research university in Ames, Iowa. It is the largest university in the state of Iowa and the third largest university in the Big 12 ...
and Clifford Berry a former graduate under electrical engineering and physics. Together, they created the Atanasoff-Berry computer, also known as the ABC which took 5 years to complete. While the original ABC was dismantled and discarded in the 1940s a tribute was made to the late inventors, a replica of the ABC was made in 1997 where it took a team of researchers and engineers four years and $350,000 to build. The modern
personal computer A personal computer (PC) is a multi-purpose computer whose size, capabilities, and price make it feasible for individual use. Personal computers are intended to be operated directly by an end user, rather than by a computer expert or technician ...
emerged in the 1970s, after several breakthroughs in
semiconductor A semiconductor material has an value falling between that of a , such as metallic copper, and an , such as glass. Its falls as its temperature rises; metals behave in the opposite way. Its conducting properties may be altered in useful ways ...
technology. These include the first working
transistor upright=1.4, gate Candi bentar, a typical Indonesian gate that is often found on the islands of Java">Indonesia.html" ;"title="Candi bentar, a typical Indonesia">Candi bentar, a typical Indonesian gate that is often found on the islands o ...

transistor
by
William Shockley William Bradford Shockley Jr. (February 13, 1910 – August 12, 1989) was an American physicist and inventor. He was the manager of a research group at Bell Labs that included John Bardeen and Walter Houser Brattain, Walter Brattain. The three s ...
,
John Bardeen John Bardeen (; May 23, 1908 – January 30, 1991) was an American engineer Engineers, as practitioners of engineering Engineering is the use of scientific method, scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and o ...
and
Walter Brattain Walter Houser Brattain (; February 10, 1902 – October 13, 1987) was an American physicist at who, along with fellow scientists and , invented the in December 1947. They shared the 1956 for their invention. Brattain devoted much of his life ...
at
Bell Labs Nokia Bell Labs (formerly named Bell Labs Innovations (1996–2007), AT&T Bell Laboratories (1984–1996) and Bell Telephone Laboratories (1925–1984)) is an American industrial research and scientific development company A company, abbrev ...
in 1947, the
silicon Silicon is a chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol Si and atomic number 14. It is a hard, brittle crystalline solid with a blue-grey metallic lustre, and is a Tetravalence, tetravalent metalloid and semiconductor. It is a member ...

silicon
surface passivation Water droplet lying on a damask. Surface tension">damask.html" ;"title="Water droplet lying on a damask">Water droplet lying on a damask. Surface tension is high enough to prevent floating below the textile. A surface, as the term is most gener ...
process (via
thermal oxidation 250px, Furnaces used for diffusion and thermal oxidation at LAAS technological facility in Toulouse, France. In microfabrication Microfabrication is the process of manufacturing, fabricating miniature structures of micrometre scales and smaller. H ...
) by
Mohamed Atalla Mohamed M. Atalla ( ar, محمد عطاالله; August 4, 1924 – December 30, 2009) was an Egyptian-American engineer, physical chemist Physical chemistry is the study of macroscopic The macroscopic scale is the length scale on which ...
at Bell Labs in 1957, the
monolithic integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circuit File:PExdcr01CJC.jpg, 200px, A circuit built on a printed circuit board (PCB). An electronic circuit i ...
chip by
Robert Noyce Robert Norton Noyce (December 12, 1927 – June 3, 1990), nicknamed "the Mayor of Silicon Valley", was an American physicist and entrepreneur who co-founded Fairchild Semiconductor Fairchild Semiconductor International, Inc. was an American s ...
at
Fairchild Semiconductor Fairchild Semiconductor International, Inc. was an American semiconductor A semiconductor material has an electrical conductivity Electrical resistivity (also called specific electrical resistance or volume resistivity) is a fundamental pr ...
in 1959, the
metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistor The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor (MOSFET, MOS-FET, or MOS FET), also known as the metal–oxide–silicon transistor (MOS transistor, or MOS), is a type of insulated-gate field-effect transistor The field-effect trans ...
(MOSFET, or MOS transistor) by Mohamed Atalla and
Dawon Kahng Dawon Kahng ( ko, 강대원; May 4, 1931 – May 13, 1992) was a Korean-American electrical engineer and inventor, known for his work in solid-state electronics Solid-state electronics means semiconductor A semiconductor material has an el ...

Dawon Kahng
at Bell Labs in 1959, and the single-chip
microprocessor A microprocessor is a computer processor where the data processing logic and control is included on a single integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) ...

microprocessor
(
Intel 4004 The Intel 4004 is a 4-bit In , 4-bit s, or other units are those that are 4 s wide. Also, 4-bit and architectures are those that are based on s, or es of that size. es (and thus es) for 4-bit CPUs are generally much larger than 4-bi ...

Intel 4004
) by
Federico Faggin Federico Faggin (, ; born 1 December 1941) is an Italian-American physicist, engineer, inventor and entrepreneur. He is best known for designing the first commercial microprocessor, the Intel 4004. He led the Intel 4004, 4004 (MCS-4) project and ...

Federico Faggin
,
Marcian Hoff Marcian Edward "Ted" Hoff Jr. (born October 28, 1937 in Rochester, New York Rochester () is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds ...
,
Masatoshi Shima is a Japanese electronics engineer Image:Silego clock generator.JPG, Printed circuit board Electronic engineering (also called electronics and communications engineering) is an electrical engineering discipline which utilizes nonlinear and acti ...

Masatoshi Shima
and Stanley Mazor at
Intel Intel Corporation is an American multinational corporation A multinational company (MNC) is a corporate A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company A company, abbreviated as co., is a Legal personalit ...

Intel
in 1971.


History of computer engineering education

The first computer engineering degree program in the United States was established in 1971 at
Case Western Reserve University Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) is a private Private or privates may refer to: Music * "In Private "In Private" was the third single in a row to be a charting success for United Kingdom, British singer Dusty Springfield, after an abse ...
in
Cleveland Cleveland ( ), officially the City of Cleveland, is a city in the U.S. The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country primarily located in North America North ...

Cleveland
,
Ohio Ohio () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper in Co ...

Ohio
. , there were 250
ABET ABET, incorporated as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, Inc., is a non-governmental organization A non-governmental organization, or simply an NGO, is an that is, generally, formed independent from . They are typical ...
-accredited computer engineering programs in the U.S. In Europe, accreditation of computer engineering schools is done by a variety of agencies part of the
EQANIE EQANIE (European Quality Assurance Network for Informatics Education e.V.) is a non-profit association seeking to enhance evaluation and quality assurance of informatics Informatics is the study of computational systems, especially those for data ...
network. Due to increasing job requirements for engineers who can concurrently design hardware,
software Software is a collection of Instruction (computer science), instructions that tell a computer how to work. This is in contrast to Computer hardware, hardware, from which the system is built and actually performs the work. At the low level lang ...

software
, firmware, and manage all forms of computer systems used in industry, some tertiary institutions around the world offer a
bachelor's degree A bachelor's degree (from Middle Latin Medieval Latin was the form of Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area ...
generally called computer engineering. Both computer engineering and
electronic engineering Printed circuit board Electronic engineering (also called electronics and communications engineering) is an electrical engineering discipline which utilizes nonlinear and active electrical components (such as semiconductor devices, especially ...
programs include analog and digital circuit design in their curriculum. As with most engineering disciplines, having a sound knowledge of
mathematics Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as numbers (arithmetic and number theory), formulas and related structures (algebra), shapes and spaces in which they are contained (geometry), and quantities and their changes (cal ...
and science is necessary for computer engineers.


Education

Computer engineering is referred to as
computer science and engineering Computer Science & Engineering (CSE) is an academic program at many universities A university ( la, universitas, 'a whole') is an institution of higher (or tertiary) education and research which awards academic degrees in various academi ...
at some universities. Most entry-level computer engineering jobs require at least a bachelor's degree in computer engineering (or computer science and engineering). Typically one must learn an array of
mathematics Mathematics (from Greek: ) includes the study of such topics as numbers (arithmetic and number theory), formulas and related structures (algebra), shapes and spaces in which they are contained (geometry), and quantities and their changes (cal ...
such as
calculus Calculus, originally called infinitesimal calculus or "the calculus of infinitesimals", is the mathematics, mathematical study of continuous change, in the same way that geometry is the study of shape and algebra is the study of generalizations ...

calculus
,
algebra Algebra (from ar, الجبر, lit=reunion of broken parts, bonesetting, translit=al-jabr) is one of the areas of mathematics, broad areas of mathematics, together with number theory, geometry and mathematical analysis, analysis. In its most ge ...

algebra
and
trigonometry Trigonometry (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is ...

trigonometry
and some
computer science Computer science deals with the theoretical foundations of information, algorithms and the architectures of its computation as well as practical techniques for their application. Computer science is the study of , , and . Computer science ...
classes. Sometimes a degree in
electronic engineering Printed circuit board Electronic engineering (also called electronics and communications engineering) is an electrical engineering discipline which utilizes nonlinear and active electrical components (such as semiconductor devices, especially ...
is accepted, due to the similarity of the two fields. Because hardware engineers commonly work with computer software systems, a strong background in computer programming is necessary. According to BLS, "a computer engineering major is similar to electrical engineering but with some computer science courses added to the curriculum". Some large firms or specialized jobs require a master's degree. It is also important for computer engineers to keep up with rapid advances in technology. Therefore, many continue learning throughout their careers. This can be helpful, especially when it comes to learning new skills or improving existing ones. For example, as the relative cost of fixing a bug increases the further along it is in the software development cycle, there can be greater cost savings attributed to developing and testing for quality code as soon as possible in the process, and particularly before release.


Profession: Computer engineer

A person with a profession in computer engineering is called a computer engineer.


Applications and practice

There are two major focuses in computer engineering: hardware and software.


Computer hardware engineering

According to the BLS, Job Outlook employment for computer hardware engineers, the expected ten-year growth from 2019 to 2029 for computer hardware engineering was an estimated 2% and a total of 71,100 jobs. ("Slower than average" in their own words when compared to other occupations)". This is a decrease from the 2014 to 2024 BLS computer hardware engineering estimate of 3% and a total of 77,700 jobs. " and is down from 7% for the 2012 to 2022 BLS estimate and is further down from 9% in the BLS 2010 to 2020 estimate." Today, computer hardware is somehow equal to electronic and computer engineering (ECE) and has been divided into many subcategories; the most significant is embedded system design.


Computer software engineering

According to the U.S.
Bureau of Labor Statistics The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is a unit of the United States Department of Labor The United States Department of Labor (DOL) is a cabinet-level department of the U.S. federal government responsible for occupational safety and health, ...
(BLS), "computer applications software engineers and computer systems software engineers are projected to be among the faster than average growing occupations" The expected ten-year growth as of 2014 for computer software engineering was an estimated seventeen percent and there was a total of 1,114,000 jobs that same year. This is down from the 2012 to 2022 BLS estimate of 22% for software developers. And, further down from the 30% 2010 to 2020 BLS estimate. In addition, growing concerns over cybersecurity add up to put computer software engineering high above the average rate of increase for all fields. However, some of the work will be outsourced in foreign countries. Due to this, job growth will not be as fast as during the last decade, as jobs that would have gone to computer software engineers in the United States would instead go to computer software engineers in countries such as India. In addition, the BLS Job Outlook for Computer Programmers, 2014–24 has an −8% (a decline, in their words) and a Job Outlook, 2019-29 -9% (Decline) for those who program computers (i.e. embedded systems) who are not computer application developers. Furthermore, women in software fields has been declining over the years even faster than other engineering fields.


Computer engineering licensing and practice

Computer engineering is generally practiced within larger product development firms, and such practice may not be subject to licensing. However, independent consultants who advertise computer engineering, just like any form of engineering, may be subject to state laws which restrict
professional engineer Regulation and licensure in engineering is established by various jurisdictions of the world to encourage public welfare, safety, well-being and other interests of the general public and to define the licensure Licensure means a restricted practi ...
practice to only those who have received the appropriate License.
National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) is an American non-profit organization dedicated to advancing professional licensure for engineers and surveyors. The Council’s members are the engineering and surveying lice ...
(NCEES) first offered a
Principles and Practice of Engineering Examination The Principles and Practice of Engineering exam is the examination required for one to become a Professional engineer, Professional Engineer (PE) in the United States. It is the second exam required, coming after the Fundamentals of Engineering ex ...
for computer engineeringPE_Electrical_and_Computer_exam,_[NCEES
.html" ;"title="CEES">PE Electrical and Computer exam, [NCEES
">CEES">PE Electrical and Computer exam, [NCEES
/ref> in 2003.


Specialty areas

There are many specialty areas in the field of computer engineering.


Processor design

Processor design process involves choosing an instruction set and a certain execution paradigm (e.g. VLIW or RISC) and results in a microarchitecture, which might be described in e.g. VHDL or Verilog. CPU design is divided into design of the following components: datapaths (such as ALUs and pipelines), control unit: logic which controls the datapaths, memory components such as register files, caches, clock circuitry such as clock drivers, PLLs, clock distribution networks, pad transceiver circuitry, logic gate cell library which is used to implement the logic.


Coding, cryptography, and information protection

Computer engineers work in coding, cryptography, and information protection to develop new methods for protecting various information, such as digital images and music, fragmentation, copyright infringement and other forms of tampering. Examples include work on wireless communications, multi-antenna systems, optical transmission, and digital watermarking.


Communications and wireless networks

Those focusing on communications and wireless networks, work advancements in telecommunications systems and networks (especially wireless networks), modulation and error-control coding, and information theory. High-speed
network design Network planning and design is an iterative process, encompassing topological design, network-synthesis, and network-realization, and is aimed at ensuring that a new telecommunications network A telecommunications network is a group of nodes ...
, interference suppression and modulation, design, and analysis of
fault-tolerant system Fault tolerance is the property that enables a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its envir ...
, and storage and transmission schemes are all a part of this specialty.


Compilers and operating systems

This specialty focuses on
compilers In computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experimentation of algorithm of an algorithm (Euclid's algorithm) for calculating the greatest com ...
and
operating systems An operating system (OS) is system software System software is software designed to provide a platform for other software. Examples of system software include operating systems (OS) like macOS, Linux, Android (operating system), Android and Mi ...
design and development. Engineers in this field develop new operating system architecture, program analysis techniques, and new techniques to assure quality. Examples of work in this field include post-link-time code transformation algorithm development and new operating system development.


Computational science and engineering

Computational science and engineering is a relatively new discipline. According to the Sloan Career Cornerstone Center, individuals working in this area, "computational methods are applied to formulate and solve complex mathematical problems in engineering and the physical and the social sciences. Examples include aircraft design, the plasma processing of nanometer features on semiconductor wafers,
VLSI Very large-scale integration (VLSI) is the process of creating an integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circuit 200px, A ci ...
circuit design, radar detection systems, ion transport through biological channels, and much more".


Computer networks, mobile computing, and distributed systems

In this specialty, engineers build integrated environments for computing, communications, and
information access Information access is the freedom or ability to identify, obtain and make use of database In computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experimen ...
. Examples include shared-channel wireless networks, adaptive resource management in various systems, and improving the quality of service in mobile and ATM environments. Some other examples include work on wireless network systems and fast Ethernet cluster wired systems.


Computer systems: architecture, parallel processing, and dependability

Engineers working in computer systems work on research projects that allow for reliable, secure, and high-performance computer systems. Projects such as designing processors for multi-threading and parallel processing are included in this field. Other examples of work in this field include the development of new theories, algorithms, and other tools that add
performance A performance is an act of staging or presenting a play, concert, or other form of entertainment. It is also defined as the action or process of carrying out or accomplishing an action, task, or function. Management science In the work place ...
to computer systems. Computer architecture includes
CPU design Processor design is a subfield of computer engineering Computer engineering (CoE or CpE) is a branch of engineering Engineering is the use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items, including ...
,
cache hierarchy Cache hierarchy, or multi-level caches, refers to a memory architecture that uses a hierarchy of memory stores based on varying access speeds to cache data. Highly-requested data is cached in high-speed access memory stores, allowing swifter access ...
layout, memory organization and load balancing.


Computer vision and robotics

In this specialty, computer engineers focus on developing visual sensing technology to sense an environment, representation of an environment, and manipulation of the environment. The gathered three-dimensional information is then implemented to perform a variety of tasks. These include improved human modeling, image communication, and human-computer interfaces, as well as devices such as special-purpose cameras with versatile vision sensors.


Embedded systems

Individuals working in this area design technology for enhancing the speed, reliability, and performance of systems. Embedded systems are found in many devices from a small FM radio to the space shuttle. According to the Sloan Cornerstone Career Center, ongoing developments in embedded systems include "automated vehicles and equipment to conduct search and rescue, automated transportation systems, and human-robot coordination to repair equipment in space." , computer embedded computer engineering specializations include
system-on-chip A system on a chip (SoC; or This article uses the convention that SoC is pronounced . Therefore, it uses the convention "an" for the indefinite article corresponding to SoC ("an SoC"). Other sources may pronounce it as and therefore use "a ...
design, architecture of
edge computing Edge computing is a distributed computing Distributed computing is a field of computer science Computer science deals with the theoretical foundations of information, algorithms and the architectures of its computation as well as practical ...
and the
Internet of things The Internet of things (IoT) describes the network of physical objects—"things" or objects—that are embedded with sensors, software, and other technologies for the purpose of connecting and exchanging data with other devices and systems over ...

Internet of things
.


Integrated circuits, VLSI design, testing and CAD

This specialty of computer engineering requires adequate knowledge of electronics and electrical systems. Engineers working in this area work on enhancing the speed, reliability, and energy efficiency of next-generation very-large-scale integrated (
VLSI Very large-scale integration (VLSI) is the process of creating an integrated circuit An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit (also referred to as an IC, a chip, or a microchip) is a set of electronic circuit 200px, A ci ...
) circuits and microsystems. An example of this specialty is work done on reducing the power consumption of VLSI algorithms and architecture.


Signal, image and speech processing

Computer engineers in this area develop improvements in human-computer interaction, including
speech recognition Speech recognition is an interdisciplinary Interdisciplinarity or interdisciplinary studies involves the combination of two or more academic discipline An academic discipline or academic field is a subdivision of knowledge that is Educa ...

speech recognition
and synthesis, medical and scientific imaging, or communications systems. Other work in this area includes computer vision development such as .


Quantum computing


See also


Related fields


Associations

* Association of Computer Engineers and Technicians *
IEEE Computer Society IEEE Computer Society (sometimes abbreviated the Computer Society or CS) is a professional society of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Its purpose and scope is "to advance the theory, practice, and application of comput ...
*
Association for Computing Machinery The Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) is a US-based international learned society A learned society (; also known as a learned academy, scholarly society, or academic association) is an organization that exists to promote an discipl ...


References


External links

* {{DEFAULTSORT:Computer Engineering Electrical and computer engineering Engineering disciplines