How Computers Really Work: A Hands-On Guide to the Inner Workings of the Machine

How Computers Really Work: A Hands-On Guide to the Inner Workings of the Machine

by Matthew Justice

Paperback

$39.95
View All Available Formats & Editions
Available for Pre-Order. This item will be available on December 29, 2020

Overview

An approachable, hands-on guide to understanding how computers work, from low-level circuits to high-level code.

How Computers Really Work is a hands-on guide to the computing ecosystem: everything from circuits to memory and clock signals, machine code, programming languages, operating systems, and the internet.

But you won't just read about these concepts, you'll test your knowledge with exercises, and practice what you learn with 41 optional hands-on projects. Build digital circuits, craft a guessing game, convert decimal numbers to binary, examine virtual memory usage, run your own web server, and more.

Explore concepts like how to:
Think like a software engineer as you use data to describe a real world concept
Use Ohm's and Kirchhoff's laws to analyze an electrical circuit
Think like a computer as you practice binary addition and execute a program in your mind, step-by-step

The book's projects will have you translate your learning into action, as you:
Learn how to use a multimeter to measure resistance, current, and voltage
Build a half adder to see how logical operations in hardware can be combined to perform useful functions
Write a program in assembly language, then examine the resulting machine code
Learn to use a debugger, disassemble code, and hack a program to change its behavior without changing the source code
Use a port scanner to see which internet ports your computer has open
Run your own server and get a solid crash course on how the web works

And since a picture is worth a thousand bytes, chapters are filled with detailed diagrams and illustrations to help clarify technical complexities.

Requirements: The projects require a variety of hardware - electronics projects need a breadboard, power supply, and various circuit components; software projects are performed on a Raspberry Pi. Appendix B contains a complete list. Even if you skip the projects, the book's major concepts are clearly presented in the main text.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781718500662
Publisher: No Starch Press
Publication date: 12/29/2020
Pages: 380
Sales rank: 789,089
Product dimensions: 7.00(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)

About the Author

Matthew Justice, a software engineer, spent 17 years at Microsoft where his work included debugging the Windows kernel, developing automated fixes, and leading a team of engineers building diagnostic tools and services. He has worked on everything from low-level software to high-level web applications.

Table of Contents

Introduction
Chapter 1: Computing Concepts
Chapter 2: Binary in Action
Chapter 3: Electrical Circuits
Chapter 4: Digital Circuits
Chapter 5: Math with Digital Circuits
Chapter 6: Memory and Clock Signals
Chapter 7: Computer Hardware
Chapter 8: Machine Code and Assembly Language
Chapter 9: High Level Programming
Chapter 10: Operating Systems
Chapter 11: The Internet
Chapter 12: The World Wide Web
Chapter 13: Modern Computing
Appendix A: Answers to Exercises
Appendix B: Setting Up

Customer Reviews