This paper provides a tutorial-style overview of sensor networks from a systems and control theory perspective. We identify key sensor network design and operational control problems and present solution approaches that have been proposed to date. These include deployment, routing, scheduling and power control. In the case of mobile nodes, a sensor network is called upon to perform a “mission”. We present solution approaches to two types of missions both involving stochastic mission spaces and cooperative control: reward maximization missions and coverage control missions. We conclude by outlining some fundamental research questions related to sensor networks and the convergence of communication, computing and control.