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How Computers Work (How It Works (Ziff-Davis/Que))
by Ron White
ISBN 1562765469 / 9781562765460 / 1-56276-546-9
Publisher Ziff Davis Pr
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How Computers Work is a sort of picture encyclopedia illustrating the various technologies that make up the computer on your desk. It will appeal to anyone who's curious about how a disk drive stores a word processing document, what is actually happening when your PC runs through its lengthy startup process, how a modem transmits data, or how a sound card turns your voice into a data file.
You could of course lead a long and productive computing life without ever knowing how data moves across the Internet, what happens when a computer is connected to a network, or what RAM is. You might have no interest in how fonts work, what's laser about a laser printer, or how e-mail moves your messages around the globe. You could still have a computer and not know what SCSI is, how a scanner scans, or how your graphics adapter creates accelerated 3-D graphics. And sure, you may have been blasting away at tanks without knowing how that force-feedback joystick works. But where's the fun in that?
How Computers Work focuses primarily on the IBM-compatible PC and its peripheral products. Because much of this technology exists on the Mac and other platforms, Mac users might be a little unsatisfied at being excluded. Otherwise, this handsomely illustrated book of PC technology has something for every computer user. [via]