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Engineering is the use of scientific principles to design and build machines, structures, and other items, including bridges, tunnels, roads, vehicles, and buildings.
Engineering is often characterized as having four main branches: chemical engineering, civil engineering, electrical engineering, and mechanical engineering. Other branches include aerospace engineering, marine engineering, computer engineering, and geological engineering.
The first engineer known by name and achievement is Imhotep, builder of the Step Pyramid at Ṣaqqārah, Egypt, probably about 2550 BCE. Imhotep’s successors — Egyptian, Persian, Greek, and Roman — carried civil engineering to remarkable heights on the basis of empirical methods aided by arithmetic, geometry, and a smattering of physical science.