How Computers Actually Work

BBC 2 Series 1 Episode 1
First broadcast 5th July 2012, 04:00
Duration: 28:52
A collection of five short form videos which give students studying Computer Science an insight into how computers actually work.

Clips from this programme

Opening Titles

Duration: 00:07

Computers everywhere now and in our grandparents time - Tommy Flowers, Colossus had great impact in WWII de-encrypting the enemies' messages, the transfer of data securely via cyphers (Chris Monk, The National Museum of Computing, tNMoC, Bletchley): Code breakers=Hackers? Programmers needed to get the computer to do what we want, now that they are general purpose (unlike Colossus)

Duration: 05:26

Computers: Delving inside: Input Devices, Central Processing Unit (CPU), RAM & ROM Memory, Output devices, Random Access Memory is usually temporary & volatile. Video Games (e.g. Zoe Mode, Zumba: Andy Trowes, Game Director)

Duration: 06:07

Computers in space exploration: Mars robots (Kim Ward, Head of Space Engineering and Technology RAL Space), European Space Agency, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory-Self-navigating robots with visual sensors and AI but no GPS: Mars Rover

Duration: 05:43

Computing and Health: Sequencing DNA, the building blocks of life, and an enormous amount (Petabytes) of data to be analysed. E.g. Understanding the cholera pandemic (Dr Nicholas Thomson, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Genome Campus)

Duration: 05:43

Computers and Virtual Reality (Frazer Churchill & Eugenie Von Tunzelmann, VFX Supervisors), Marvel films (Dneg Visual Effect), simulation of water, lightning & fire, abstraction. Debugging software is a core skill in computer programming

Duration: 05:27

End Titles & Credits

Duration: 00:14