The thing is that you normally don't you know who stole the computer... or their intentions. Normally, it would be someone that just want to sell it to someone else (second hard store) to get some cash. If that's the case, any social engineering tool that you may have to use will fail
Social engineering is based in that you know which computer you want to attack, where it is (at least at a particular point) and who is using it... because to get the passwords and stuff you need to befriend this user, or get to know their friends, or get as much information about him as you can.
You don't know the thieves, nor how to contact them (not even FB) so that's out the place.
If you don't know him but want to install a remote control software, the only thing that you can do is to send something to that computer (as an example, an e-mail that's configured in it) that the thief can't resist to click on. If the laptop is modern though, or there's some kind of authorization process in place (like Linux has, you can't install or update anything new without writing the password) that will also fail.
And, if the thief simply wants to sell the computer, he may not even bother to see what's installed or will not really use the computer (just to check that it works and that it can be sold).
So for the goods that were stolen, you can't do much.
In the case of the iPhone, if you have the IMEI of the mobile card, you can contact your phone provider and they can try to trace where the phone is (if the phone is on, of course)
I think that iPhone also has a feature that Samsung phones have: a little option that can tell you where you mobile is. By using an account that you configure when you bought the phone, and through a special web page, you can active the remote location services and even manage certain options (such as taking pictures while the thief is using your phone but he will not know that you are doing so)
These phones can also be encrypted (in the same way the laptop should have been encrypted and with password protection)