Synopses & Reviews
What do flashlights, the British invasion, black cats, and seesaws have to do with computers? In CODE, they show us the ingenious ways we manipulate language and invent new means of communicating with each other. And through CODE, we see how this ingenuity and our very human compulsion to communicate have driven the technological innovations of the past two centuries.
Using everyday objects and familiar language systems such as Braille and Morse code, author Charles Petzold weaves an illuminating narrative for anyone who’s ever wondered about the secret inner life of computers and other smart machines.
It’s a cleverly illustrated and eminently comprehensible story—and along the way, you’ll discover you’ve gained a real context for understanding today’s world of PCs, digital media, and the Internet. No matter what your level of technical savvy, CODE will charm you—and perhaps even awaken the technophile within.
A discussion of the history and future of coding theory celebrates the ingenuity of language systems and their uses from Braille and Morse code through binary codes to 32-bit operating systems.
What do flashlights, the British invasion, black cats, and seesaws have to do with computers? In "Code", they show us the ingenious ways we manipulate language and invent new ways to communicate with each other. And through "Code", we see how this ingenuity -- and our very human compulsion to communicate -- have driven the technological innovations of the past two centuries. Now in paperback edition, this critically praised book weaves an inventive and eminently comprehensible narrative for anyone who's ever wondered about the secret inner life of computers and other smart machines. The work of legendary computer book author Charles Petzold has influenced an entire generation of programmers. And with "Code", Microsoft Press is proud to share this gifted teacher and communicator with every reader interested in understanding today's world of PCs, digital media, and the Internet.
About the Author
Charles Petzold wrote the classic Programming Windows®, which is currently in its fifth edition and one of the best-known and widely used programming books of all time. He was honored in 1994 with the Windows Pioneer Award, presented by Microsoft® founder Bill Gates and Windows Magazine. He has been programming with Windows since first obtaining a beta Windows 1.0 SDK in the spring of 1985, and he wrote the very first magazine article on Windows programming in 1986. Charles is an MVP for Client Application Development and the author of several other books including Code: The Hidden Language of Computer Hardware and Software.
Table of Contents
Preface to the Paperback EditionChapter 1: Best FriendsChapter 2: Codes and CombinationsChapter 3: Braille and Binary CodesChapter 4: Anatomy of a FlashlightChapter 5: Seeing Around CornersChapter 6: Telegraphs and RelaysChapter 7: Our Ten DigitsChapter 8: Alternatives to TenChapter 9: Bit by Bit by BitChapter 10: Logic and SwitchesChapter 11: Gates (Not Bill)Chapter 12: A Binary Adding MachineChapter 13: But What About Subtraction?Chapter 14: Feedback and Flip-FlopsChapter 15: Bytes and HexChapter 16: An Assemblage of MemoryChapter 17: AutomationChapter 18: From Abaci to ChipsChapter 19: Two Classic MicroprocessorsChapter 20: ASCII and a Cast of CharactersChapter 21: Get on the BusChapter 22: The Operating SystemChapter 23: Fixed Point, Floating PointChapter 24: Languages High and LowChapter 25: The Graphical RevolutionAcknowledgmentsBibliographyColophon