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The Secret Life of Programs: Understand Computers

Lots of technical detail is available online but it's not organized or collected into a convenient place. In The Secret Life of Programs, veteran engineer Jonathan E. Steinhart explores--in depth--the foundational concepts that underlie the machine. Subjects like computer hardware, how software behaves on hardware, as well as how people have solved problems using technology over time.

You'll learn:

• How the real world is converted into a form that computers understand, like bits, logic, numbers, text, and colors

• The fundamental building blocks that make up a computer including logic gates, adders, decoders, registers, and memory

• Why designing programs to match computer hardware, especially memory, improves performance

• How programs are converted into machine language that computers understand

• How software building blocks are combined to create programs like web browsers

• Clever tricks for making programs more efficient, like loop invariance, strength reduction, and recursive subdivision

• The fundamentals of computer security and machine intelligence

• Project design, documentation, scheduling, portability, maintenance, and other practical programming realities.

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