What word or phrase does your mother always say?
coined 1948 by U.S. mathematician Norbert Wiener (1894-1964) from Greek kybernetes "steersman" (metaphorically "guide, governor") + -ics; perhaps based on 1830s French cybernétique "the art of governing."
The future offers very little hope for those who expect that our new mechanical slaves will offer us a world in which we may rest from thinking. Help us they may, but at the cost of supreme demands upon our honesty and our intelligence. [Norbert Weiner, "God and Golem, Inc.," 1964]
cybernetics cy·ber·net·ics (sī'bər-nět'ĭks)
The theoretical study of communication and control processes in biological, mechanical, and electronic systems, especially the comparison of these processes in biological and artificial systems.
The general study of control and communication systems in living organisms and machines, especially the mathematical analysis of the flow of information. The term cybernetics was coined by Norbert Wiener, an American mathematician of the twentieth century.