The Pattern on the Stone: The Simple Ideas That Make Computers Work (Paperback)
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Most people are baffled by how computers work and assume that they will never understand them. What they don t realizeand what Daniel Hillis's short book brilliantly demonstratesis that computers seemingly complex operations can be broken down into a few simple parts that perform the same simple procedures over and over again. Computer wizard Hillis offers an easy-to-follow explanation of how data is processed that makes the operations of a computer seem as straightforward as those of a bicycle.Avoiding technobabble or discussions of advanced hardware, the lucid explanations and colorful anecdotes in "The Pattern on the Stone" go straight to the heart of what computers really do. Hillis proceeds from an outline of basic logic to clear descriptions of programming languages, algorithms, and memory. He then takes readers in simple steps up to the most exciting developments in computing todayquantum computing, parallel computing, neural networks, and self-organizing systems.Written clearly and succinctly by one of the world's leading computer scientists, "The Pattern on the Stone" is an indispensable guide to understanding the workings of that most ubiquitous and important of machines: the computer.
About the Author
Daniel Hillis holds some forty patents, sits on the scientific advisory board of the Santa Fe Institute, and is a fellow of the Association of Computing. His many awards include the Hopper Award, the Spirit of American Creativity Award, and the Ramanujan Award. Hillis was named the first Disney Fellow and became vice president of research and development at the Walt Disney Company in 1996.