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1. The Architecture of Computer Hardware,
2. Computer Organization and Design,
3. Code: The Hidden Language of Computer
4. The Architecture of Computer Hardware
5. Discovering Computers: Fundamentals,
6. Computer Organization and Design:
7. Computer Engineering: Hardware
8. PIC Microcontroller: An Introduction
9. Principles of Computer Hardware
10. PC Hardware in a Nutshell, 3rd
11. The HCS12/9S12: An Introduction
12. The Next Bible: Hardware and Software
13. Computer Repair with Diagnostic
14. Artificial Life Models in Hardware
15. Evolvable Systems: From Biology
16. How Computers Work (9th Edition)
17. IT Essentials: PC Hardware and
18. Upgrading and Fixing Computers
19. The Elements of Computing Systems:
20. Hardware and Computer Organization

1. The Architecture of Computer Hardware, Systems Software, & Networking: An Information Technology Approach
by Irv Englander
Hardcover: 704 Pages (2009-05-04)
-- used & new: US$57.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0471715425
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

  • Reflects the latest technology in the field to provide readers with the most up-to-date resource
  • Presents examples that cover a broad spectrum of hardware and software systems, from personal computers to mainframes
  • Places more emphasis on networking to address increased importance of the communications area
  • Consolidates the coverage of buses into one chapter.
  • Integrates numerous review questions at the end of each chapter to enhance the reader's understanding of the material
... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

1-0 out of 5 stars Waste of money.... many pages with bunch of examples
This is book is a waste of money. There are hundreds of examples and no important information. You gonna have to go through many pages, until you reach something that it's really worth it.
Anyway, it's matter of choice, but I don't wanna read the author opinions. I want to learn stuff I don't know. The serious material in that book is 100 pages or less out of 700!

2-0 out of 5 stars Computer Hardware systems software & networking
My order arrived timely. Not enough information to maker buyer aware of having some highlights in the book which would just be a good information.

5-0 out of 5 stars GREAT
The book is very helpful.
The only complaint is that they do not have a keyword dictionary at the end of each chapter.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good purchase!
Book seems like new condition so i was satisfied. However, shipping took way to long. I can understand 7-10 business days but 16 days seemed a little ridiculous. ... Read more

2. Computer Organization and Design, Fourth Edition: The Hardware/Software Interface (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Computer Architecture and Design)
by David A. Patterson, John L. Hennessy
Paperback: 912 Pages (2008-11-10)
list price: US$89.95 -- used & new: US$54.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0123744938
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
The classic textbook for computer systems analysis and design, Computer Organization and Design, has been thoroughly updated to provide a new focus on the revolutionary change taking place in industry today: the switch from uniprocessor to multicore microprocessors. This new emphasis on parallelism is supported by updates reflecting the newest technologies with examples highlighting the latest processor designs, benchmarking standards, languages and tools. As with previous editions, a MIPS processor is the core used to present the fundamentals of hardware technologies, assembly language, computer arithmetic, pipelining, memory hierarchies and I/O. Along with its increased coverage of parallelism, this new edition offers new content on Flash memory and virtual machines as well as a new and important appendix written by industry experts covering the emergence and importance of the modern GPU (graphics processing unit), the highly parallel, highly multithreaded multiprocessor optimized for visual computing.

Instructors looking for 3rd edition teaching materials should e-mail textbook@elsevier.com.

A new exercise paradigm allows instructors to reconfigure the 600 exercises included in the book to easily generate new exercises and solutions of their own.

A CD provides a toolkit of simulators and compilers along with tutorials for using them as well as additional problems and solutions, and references.Amazon.com Review
This textbook provides a basic introduction to thefundamentals of current computer designs. As the title suggests, thetext skirts the border between hardware and software. After anoverview of the subject and a discussion of performance, the booklaunches into technical matter such as instruction sets, how they areconstrained by the underlying processor hardware, the constraints ontheir design, and more. An excellent critique of computer arithmeticmethods leads to a high-level discussion on processor design.Following is a great introduction to pipelining, nice coverage ofmemory issues, and solid attention to peripherals. The book concludeswith a brief discussion of the additional issues inherent inmultiprocessing machines. The extremely lucid description is groundedin real-world examples. Interesting exercises help reinforce thematerial, and each section contains a write-up of the historicalbackground of each idea. Computer Organization and Design isaccessible to the beginner, but also offers plenty of valuableknowledge for experienced engineers. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (65)

5-0 out of 5 stars Better than expected
I bought this book used and I was very surprised at how well kept it was. I saved about $40 by buying it here as apposed to the school Bookstore.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best book I have used in computer engineering at UCLA
I'm a fourth year UCLA student studying computer engineering, and by far this has been my favorite text. It appeals both to the programmer and circuits guy in me, as well as the DIYer hardware enthusiast. It covers much of the essential computer architecture theory, but also is well supplemented with real world examples. It emphasizes design tradeoffs that real computer architects must solve. The only thing I don't like about it is the omission of some content from the hard text, but those items are provided via CD.

2-0 out of 5 stars Could be better.
I've only made it through the first chapter, but there has already been answer-changing typos in the homework problems, and there have been several places where units in equations are either not defined or ambiguous and other similar problems.

5-0 out of 5 stars Masterpiece
I did not buy this book from Amazon portal because of the fact that Elsevier sells low priced editions in my country.

This book is a masterpiece. Every budding CPU hobbyist or enthusiast must own this book. Everything that you needed to know to build a microcomputer on your known can be learnt from this book. By the way, I have the 4th edition of the book which focusses on another modern marvel - ARM. The pipelines, datapaths, control paths, hazards etc are explained with intuitive visuals. This book would have changed my life if I had it 14 years ago. But with teachers like Dave Patterson and John Hennessy, it can never be too late.

I highly recommend this book for undergraduate and advanced courses on the topic.

5-0 out of 5 stars Awesomeness
The product came as described in the description. I also received it quick and had it for use in class within a few days. I would definitely make another purchase with this seller in the future. ... Read more

3. Code: The Hidden Language of Computer Hardware and Software
by Charles Petzold
Paperback: 400 Pages (2000-10-11)
list price: US$17.99 -- used & new: US$11.48
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0735611319
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
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.Amazon.com Review
Charles Petzold's latest book, Code: The Hidden Language ofComputer Hardware and Software, crosses over into general-interestnonfiction from his usual programming genre. It's a carefully written,carefully researched gem that will appeal to anyone who wants tounderstand computer technology at its essence. Readers learn aboutnumber systems (decimal, octal, binary, and all that) throughPetzold's patient (and frequently entertaining) prose and thendiscover the logical systems that are used to process them. There'sloads of historical information too. From Louis Braille's developmentof his eponymous raised-dot code to Intel Corporation's release of itsearly microprocessors, Petzold presents stories of people trying tocommunicate with (and by means of) mechanical and electricaldevices. It's a fascinating progression of technologies, and Petzoldpresents a clear statement of how they fit together.

The realvalue of Code is in its explanation of technologies that havebeen obscured for years behind fancy user interfaces and programmingenvironments, which, in the name of rapid application development,insulate the programmer from the machine. In a section on machinelanguage, Petzold dissects the instruction sets of the genre-definingIntel 8080 and Motorola 6800 processors. He walks the reader throughthe process of performing various operations with each chip,explaining which opcodes poke which values into which registers alongthe way. Petzold knows that the hidden language of computers exhibitsreal beauty. In Code, he helps readers appreciateit. --David Wall

Topics covered: Mechanical andelectrical representations of words and numbers, number systems, logicgates, performing mathematical operations with logic gates,microprocessors, machine code, memory and programming languages. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (83)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Excellent reading for any seminar intro to CS. It could be outside reading. It is enjoyable.

5-0 out of 5 stars Now (I think) I know how a computer works
Wow.Before I read this book, I already knew about logic gates, but I did not know (1) how electric and electonic devices can in the real world perform the function of logic gates and (2) how by arranging logic gates wisely one can perform addition and subtraction and (3) more complicated mathematical operations can be performed by doing "a lot of" additions and subtractions.Now I (kind of) know.

All these are gratifying.

Starting from Chapter 17, however, the speed and depth of the book changes gear quite a bit (at least to me).From that chapter onward, it is about the relatively detailed working of a modern computer - e.g. how integrated circuits (chips) work, what microprocessors are, etc.In Chapter 18, for instance, the author answered the question in the preface: "why can't you run Macintosh programs under Windows?".It is quite rewarding to understand why.

Different readers will have different views towards this book.By profession I am a physician and have no experience in serious computing, so I myself find Chapters 21 and 22 particularly difficult.But overall I think I have learned a lot from this book.Five stars.

5-0 out of 5 stars Good stuff is towards the end
When I first got this book it was required reading for an entry level computer science course, we learned everything that this book talks about but I didn't quite get "why" we were being taught all these things. I made it about half-way through the book and felt it was pretty silly and boring. It was talking about logic gates and using them to buy a cat from the pet store, neutered, female, gray, and all this other stuff that in my mind had nothing to do with computers.

It wasn't until about a year later I picked up this book again and began reading more and more computer science and programming related books. Once I started reading this again I wanted to find out what happens towards the end. And realize why I was taught different number systems and logic gates back in that entry level course. It wasn't until about chapter 17 where I realized what all of it had been leading up to and it was pretty awesome. The following chapters were quite interesting but I felt too short. It felt like all the good stuff was in the last 100 pages or so.

I think Petzold wrote this book so that anyone could understand code and how computers work. So if you're already a computer science person the early stuff might seem a bit boring and repetitive, but once you get to the end it will all make sense. I'm glad I did go back and read it again, because the first time through I never got that far. I think it was mainly because I was focused on passing all my classes and this book was more of an extension of the class and not a requirement to read it. I'd recommend this book to anyone vaguely interested in how computers work, or anyone in the computer science or programming fields. It's really useful to understand exactly what's going on when you are programming. And this book essentially explains how you could build your own computer and know exactly how it works.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very descriptive as to the inner-workings of a computer
I recall the book being split into three parts:

The first third of this book is a crash-course in various "codes" used for communicating -- Morse code, Braille, and eventually Binary/Octal/Decimal/Hexadecimal.The author simply explains how to communicate messages using only 2 signals (on/off).This

The second third of the book delves into the history of computing, automated machinery, using electrical signals to convey messages (starting with the telegraph), and eventually working up to "Switches" -- the basic building block of a computers.From there, the author explains, very slowly and clearly, how to build a rudimentary computer.Even if you are not interested in the logical diagrams of circuits, you could easily skip past these sections and still find a wealth of information in the book.

In the third part of the book, after building our basic computer, the author goes into Processors: when they were popular and mass-produced, how people programmed with them, what each chip does, etc.The author explains how newer computers had different processors, and how the x86 chip is still commonly used in PCs today. The author also explains how advances in technology are trending.

The book is a little dated -- my edition was only current up to the year 2000.However, not much has changed in how a computer is made and powers itself on since 2000.This is a must-read for anyone interested in being a programmer or computer electrical engineer. It's also vital for anyone who really wants to know how a computer works.

5-0 out of 5 stars I think it was written with Love
I wanted to write a review for this book for the past few weeks, but held off until I finished reading it completely, in case there was some disappointment at the end. Thankfully that is not the case - the book is excellent from start to finish.

You can see the amount of love and care that the author has put into this work. From the easy to read font, thought-out diagram and image layouts that never make you flip-back the pages - to the excellent teaching-like style with which the author gradually tackles the topic. It is amazing. I found myself holding off reading too much of the book at once, because I wanted to prolong the pleasure!

I recommend this book to anyone. The first seven or eight chapters should be accessible to anyone, regardless of their technical background, and are alone worth the price of the book. This book should be enjoyed from start to finish, just like a novel. Unlike a novel this book not only provides the reader with the pleasing reading experience, but also with some very useful lessons and fundamentals.

I like the author's approach so much that I have purchased his next book "The Annotated Turing". I will post my impressions of that when I am done. ... Read more

4. The Architecture of Computer Hardware and Systems Software: An Information Technology Approach
by Irv Englander
Hardcover: 760 Pages (2003-01-20)
-- used & new: US$19.94
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0471073253
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Fundamental principles that will keep you on the cutting edge!

Most computer  architecture books are just too technical and complex. Focusing on specific technology, they often bypass the basics and are outdated as quickly as technology advances. Now, Irv Englander's gentle-but-thorough introduction to computer architecture and systems software provides just the right amount of technical detail you'll need to make successful decisions in your future career.

The text covers all the basics in an accessible, easy-to-understand way. Organized in a form that parallels an actual computer system, entire sections are devoted to principles of data, hardware, and software, with computer interconnection, clustering, and networking integrated into the material to emphasize the importance of computer and system structure. Assuming only basic knowledge, these sections build up to an in-depth understanding of each topic and how they interrelate to make up a computer system.

With this Third Edition's outstanding features, you'll be able to build a solid foundation for success on the job.

  • All chapters have been thoroughly updated to reflect current technology.
  • Revised with even clearer discussions of virtual storage, the operation of memory, and modern CPU architectures.
  • Programming examples are written in a C++/Java-like pseudocode.
  • Emphasizes the computer aspects of clustering and networking, rather than the data communication aspects.
  • Provide an understanding of underlying, non-changing basics of computers, so that you can make knowledgeable decisions about systems.
  • Introduce new technological concepts without overwhelming you with too much detail.
  • Examples cover a broad spectrum of hardware and software systems, from personal computers to mainframes.
  • Integrates discussions of hardware and software throughout, and explores the symbiosis between them.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (13)

5-0 out of 5 stars exactly what I needed
Exactly what I needed. They gave what they said I would get. Very satisified with my purchase and the service.

3-0 out of 5 stars Fairly helpful, but who is it aimed at?
Okay, first the good news. This is a weighty book with a lot of well presented information. As one of the previous reviewers noted, you can only simplify this kind of technical information so much. I agree with that reviewer that Englander has done a good job in covering such topics as data and computer mathematics, hardware architecture and operation, and software components. The diagrams are generally helpful and well done, and though there is a large volume of text here, the author keeps the pros flowing pretty well.

The bad news is that this is not particularly helpful for those approaching this subject for the first time. On many occasions Englander refers to "your previous programing experience" and similar presumptions about the readers technical background and knowledge level. Yes, I agree not all books are aimed beginners, but I read this text for a third year undergraduate course in IT and was often a bit baffled by the author's assumption that I was a computer programmer. Perhaps this fact says more about the lack of introductory texts available on the subject of hardware and software architecture than about this particular text, but I only found this book "fairly" helpful.

The strange thing is that I can't imagine intermediate or advanced IT student or professionals not knowing the subjects covered in this book already, and so I am left with the question "who is this text actually aimed at"?

Overall, I would rate this book as fairly helpful, but not really aimed at the readership well.

1-0 out of 5 stars Not good for learning
This was required reading for an online IT college course.I'm an experienced IT professional and I had a very hard time with this book.the language is very difficult to follow and the examples/illustrations only made sense after I learned the concept from other texts/websites.This isn't a book from which to learn, if you do not already understand these concepts.I did not complete the book, as it only caused frustration.

1-0 out of 5 stars Seriously Lacking - Buy a different book if you can
This was a required text for a computer science course I am taking. I've gone through half the book already and I get more and more confused as I go.

There are a lot of nice pictures that I assume are meant to be funny, but other than that, you're not getting much.

This book lacks clear explanations for each topic. While there is a lot of text, you'll be hard pressed to find anything you can make sense out of.

This book lacks quality examples. Though the examples it does have are helpful, there are not enough. When you get to the exercises at the end of each chapter you find that the questions seek answers to ideas that often were not covered or not covered well enough or lacked examples.

This book is so bad, there have been emails going around among almost all of my classmates, and even the professor had his 2 cents, and hopefully the course will use a different textbook for the next semester.

Don't waste your money on it!

1-0 out of 5 stars Confusing and hard to understand
As others have pointed out, this is definitely not a book for beginners. But what's worse is that its not very well written. The phrases and sentences are sometimes confusing. While some appear to be good examples, usually they are not well explained. I hate to be this harsh, but the book often has sentences for the sake of having sentences! I would not recommend this book to anyone other than someone who wants a quick reference of IS architecture. There are other books that do a better job of explaining this subject. ... Read more

5. Discovering Computers: Fundamentals, Fifth Edition (Shelly Cashman Series)
by Gary B. Shelly, Misty E. Vermaat
Paperback: 552 Pages (2008-02-12)
list price: US$123.95 -- used & new: US$18.90
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1423927028
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Learners are guided through the latest trends in computer concepts and technology in an exciting and easy-to-follow format. Updated for currency, this book and the robust Online Companion provide learners with the most up-to-date information on the latest technology in today's digital world. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great
I needed this book for a college class and even though the condition was marked as only good I got the book in excellent condition, I would have said like new. It has very useful info in it, and it doesn't have very much difference from the new edition, just a few different pictures.

3-0 out of 5 stars This is a paralell edition of the true edition !
It is a look alike edition of the book I needed for my class. I hope to receive the correct edition so I can return this book I currently using. It's not what I ordered!!! Please contact me asap so we can fix this situation whether very disturbing for me as I may fail my class as a result of receiving the wrong texbook...And the book came very late too.

5-0 out of 5 stars I paniced wheni seen how much it was in the student store!!!
This book was in really great condition (brand spanking New). it came in three days . i assumed it would take 7-10 days as usual. well that's so much i saved $35 compared to the student store . i have ordered books from amazon before and the comments were good but when i recieved them they looked like crap ..A few of the books were all highlighted and written in , they were suppose to be in excellent condition .so this one is a winner and will keep me coming back..

3-0 out of 5 stars Great resource:Expensive
I use this book in my classes and it's jam-packed with useful, current information.However, it's too expensive and there are a lot of alternatives out there.The book industry must learn to adapt or it will die like newspapers.E-books!

5-0 out of 5 stars discovering computers
Received the book very quickly and in good condition as stated.
Very smooth transaction.
... Read more

6. Computer Organization and Design: The Hardware/Software Interface. Third Edition, Revised
by David A. Patterson, John L. Hennessy
Paperback: 621 Pages (2007-06-20)
list price: US$64.95 -- used & new: US$30.85
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0123706068
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
What's New in the Third Edition, Revised Printing

The same great book gets better! This revised printing features all of the original content along with these additional features:

. Appendix A (Assemblers, Linkers, and the SPIM Simulator) has been moved from the CD-ROM into the printed book

. Corrections and bug fixes

Third Edition features

New pedagogical features

. Understanding Program Performance
- Analyzes key performance issues from the programmer's perspective
. Check Yourself Questions
- Helps students assess their understanding of key points of a section
. Computers In the Real World
- Illustrates the diversity of applications of computing technology beyond traditional desktop and servers
. For More Practice
- Provides students with additional problems they can tackle
. In More Depth
- Presents new information and challenging exercises for the advanced student

New reference features

. Highlighted glossary terms and definitions appear on the book page, as bold-faced entries in the index, and as a separate and searchable reference on the CD.
. A complete index of the material in the book and on the CD appears in the printed index and the CD includes a fully searchable version of the same index.
. Historical Perspectives and Further Readings have been updated and expanded to include the history of software R&D.
. CD-Library provides materials collected from the web which directly support the text.

In addition to thoroughly updating every aspect of the text to reflect the most current computing technology, the third edition

. Uses standard 32-bit MIPS 32 as the primary teaching ISA.
. Presents the assembler-to-HLL translations in both C and Java.
. Highlights the latest developments in architecture in Real Stuff sections:
- Intel IA-32
- Power PC 604
- Google's PC cluster
- Pentium P4
- SPEC CPU2000 benchmark suite for processors
- SPEC Web99 benchmark for web servers
- EEMBC benchmark for embedded systems
- AMD Opteron memory hierarchy
- AMD vs. 1A-64

New support for distinct course goals

Many of the adopters who have used our book throughout its two editions are refining their courses with a greater hardware or software focus. We have provided new material to support these course goals:

New material to support a Hardware Focus

. Using logic design conventions
. Designing with hardware description languages
. Advanced pipelining
. Designing with FPGAs
. HDL simulators and tutorials
. Xilinx CAD tools

New material to support a Software Focus

. How compilers work
. How to optimize compilers
. How to implement object oriented languages
. MIPS simulator and tutorial
. History sections on programming languages, compilers, operating systems and databases

On the CD

. NEW: Search function to search for content on both the CD-ROM and the printed text
. CD-Bars: Full length sections that are introduced in the book and presented on the CD
. CD-Appendixes: Appendices B-D
. CD-Library: Materials collected from the web which directly support the text
. CD-Exercises: For More Practice provides exercises and solutions for self-study
. In More Depth presents new information and challenging exercises for the advanced or curious student
. Glossary: Terms that are defined in the text are collected in this searchable reference
. Further Reading: References are organized by the chapter they support
. Software: HDL simulators, MIPS simulators, and FPGA design tools
. Tutorials: SPIM, Verilog, and VHDL
. Additional Support: Processor Models, Labs, Homeworks, Index covering the book and CD contents

Instructor Support

Instructor support provided on textbooks.elsevier.com:

. Solutions to all the exercises
. Figures from the book in a number of formats
. Lecture slides prepared by the authors and other instructors
. Lecture notes

*For the Revised Printing, Appendix A appears in the printed book rather than on the CD. This is the only change.
*Explains the latest benchmarking software including SPEC CPU2000 suite for processors, SPEC Web99 for web servers, and EEMBC for embedded systems
*Features the latest developments of the Intel IA-32 architecture as well as the Power PC 604, the AMD Opteron Memory, and the Intrinsity FastMATH processor.
*Compares MIPs assembler code to both C and Java ... Read more

Customer Reviews (40)

4-0 out of 5 stars Great book, poor kindle version.
This book is a *must have* for any student or profession at CS. I have the 2nd edition and I bought the Kindle edition of the 3rd. The book is great, but a lot of images are hard to see and understand at kindle version and I really dont know to (or if it possible) to access the content of the CD of the printed version. My tip: buy the printed version, but not the kindle one.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great product, Super fast shipping A+++
my experience shows that companies should post more than just the state on the from location. this ended up shipping from a shop right down the street from me. although it had a price tag on it for $45, and I paid ~10. other than that, shipping was great and book was in excellent condition.

5-0 out of 5 stars Good books and very cheap
I have to say this is the best deal I get from Amazon.com, only cost me 1 dollar and it is amazing cheap!

4-0 out of 5 stars Not a bad deal
The book is in the condition described, except there is a little writing in the margins and stuff from previous owner. Otherwise, it was a perfect purchase. Fast shipping and good price =)

3-0 out of 5 stars Comp Arch Book
It's the required textbook for my CA class, and I haven't looked at it yet. ... Read more

7. Computer Engineering: Hardware Design
by M. Morris Mano
Hardcover: 464 Pages (1988-02-04)
list price: US$116.00 -- used & new: US$60.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0131629263
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
An introduction to the hardware concepts needed to analyze and design digital systems and the principles of computer hardware organization and design. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

3-0 out of 5 stars Great book for beginners
If you are new to computer engineering and need a firm grasp of the basic, this book will do the trick. Goes good with class room training or as additional resources to more updated version of the book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Oldie but a goodie
This is an excellent book for beginners or as a review. Look at the large number of topics covered in the table of contents.Many excellent diagrams.Easy to read. Many basic concepts for computer hardware design are covered. ... Read more

8. PIC Microcontroller: An Introduction to Software & Hardware Interfacing
by Han-Way Huang, Leo Chartrand
Hardcover: 608 Pages (2004-07-01)
list price: US$158.95 -- used & new: US$50.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1401839673
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
This book presents a thorough introduction to the Microchip PIC® microcontroller family, including all of the PIC programming and interfacing for all the peripheral functions.A step-by-step approach to PIC assembly language programming is presented, with tutorials that demonstrate how to use such inherent development tools such as the Integrated Development Environment MPLAB, PIC18 C compiler, the ICD2 in-circuit debugger, and several demo boards.Comprehensive coverage spans the topics of interrupts, timer functions, parallel I/O ports, various serial communications such as USART, SPI, I2C, CAN, A/D converters, and external memory expansion. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars The best µC book I have ever had.
This is a great µC book that teaches with the PIC18 series. All examples in the book cover ASM and C18 code. I wish such a book were available for other µCs. I would recommend this book for anyone looking to get started with PICs, especially if your using a PIC18.

4-0 out of 5 stars A very thorough overview of the PIC microcontroller
Having a background in software development (C/C++), having written a lot of assembly language in the distant past, and being familiar with processor architecture, I found the book to be straightforward and useful to me. I was able to make rapid progress through the text, sometimes skipping ahead to sections to find just what I needed. Plenty of useful source code in both asm and C as well. The professor who wrote this put together what seems like a very clean, easy to understand text (where "easy" may depend on your background - I found it easy). It is true that you can probably find much of the information in the processor specification PDF file available from Microchip or in other online sources, yet I found it very convenient to have it all available in one organized textbook. I do recommend the book for others wishing to learn more about the PIC18.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best PIC18 book available.
I have virtually all of the major PIC books available and this
one is, by far, the best PIC18 book on the market. That may be
because it is written as a textbook by an obviously experienced
academic as well a microprocessor engineer. Each chapter follows
a natural progression from the basics of instruction set, tool
use such as MPLAB, assembly, C programming, and
on to the details of the PIC18 architecture.
Its clear organization makes it equally useful as a reference
and may be dipped into for solutions to many PIC issues such as
I2C, timer and A/D use and interfacing details for many applications.
For the earlier PIC16, the best reference is "The Quintessential PIC Microcontroller"
by Sid Katzen for many of the same reasons.
Buy these two books and you have both the PIC16 and PIC18 covered.

1-0 out of 5 stars it's not an introduction in fact it's advanced Software & Hardware Interfacing
the name of this book is not matching with it's contents unfortunatley i found it very complecated and confusing and very hard to understand,it seems to me the only way to understand it is to read some other books related to the PIC microcontroller

the name of this book is missleading ... Read more

9. Principles of Computer Hardware
by Alan Clements
Paperback: 672 Pages (2006-03-30)
list price: US$89.95 -- used & new: US$55.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0199273138
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Completely updated and revised throughout, the fourth edition of Principles of Computer Hardware explores the fundamentals of computer structure, architecture, and programming.

The book opens with an introduction to the fundamental concepts behind computer architecture: gates, circuits, logic, and computer arithmetic. It goes on to discuss computer operation from instruction set architecture and assembly language programming to the central processing unit. Then, the text builds on these foundations; explaining how the hardware interfaces with its surroundings, introducing computer memory, operating systems, and computer peripherals.

With clear, concise explanations throughout, Principles of Computer Hardware, Fourth Edition, is ideal for undergraduate courses in computer architecture.

Student CD--Included with Every Copy of the Text

·Features a Windows-based simulator for the student to explore the design of digital circuits

·Includes Windows and DOS-based 68K simulators for students to investigate the operation of the 68K processor

·Contains an ARM simulator that allows students to write programs for a RISC processor and run them on a PC

Companion Website

·Provides a bank of multiple-choice tests

·Lists downloadable files of all figures from the book as well as solutions to problems featured in the text ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

3-0 out of 5 stars boring book
This book will only appeal to nerds or students who have no chose in their purchases

3-0 out of 5 stars Horrible Number of Errors

It is simply unacceptable for a book to be on its fourth edition and have the number of errors this book contains.It's really difficult to learn when the information on the page is wrong.

With that said, it's a good book although often times too wordy and a difficult read because of the small font, volume of information and the layout of illustrations into the print.You won't get buy reading each chapter just once unless you take some good notes.

5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing book !
I am a Computer Science student at Tallinn University of Technology, and I bought this book for Computer hardware class. It is the main book that our Computer Hardware teacher uses in class.
I used this book ( Principles of Computer Hardware, 4th edition) along with Tanenbaum's "Structured computer organization" and I have to say it is a perfect combination.
I was amazed how easy to understand the information in this book was. It is not the simplicity of "for dummies" books, but somehow the author managed to explain complicated subjects in an easy to understand way. It is well structured and organized, the material is covered thoroughly (there were quite a few explanations that helped me understand what Tanenbaum meant in his book :-)), there are a lot of very easy to understand illustrations with comments that truly help in understanding the material. The complicated topics are clearly presented, so I REALLY enjoyed reading it. I have to say that I learned a lot from this book, and many topics became really clear to me after reading it.
Well, of course, as in almost every book, there were a few misprints in the book, but I think these are not critical to understanding the material.
I am so glad I bought this book. So if you are a Computer Science student or just want a book that would help you with your self-education in Computer Hardware, don't hesitate and buy this book.
I'm giving it 5 stars !

4-0 out of 5 stars Great computer hardware book.
I had to use this textbook for my college principles of computer hardware class, but I found myself reading it when I didn't even have to by the end of the semester.Some complex ideas are discussed in here, but the authors lay it out to the reader in a friendly and easy-to-grasp manner.

On the downside, as the other reviewer mentioned, there are quite a few errors in the logic diagrams, Karnaugh maps, and truth tables presented in the book.Also, the chapter order can be somewhat unintuitive, although that may be a matter of personal preference.

If you have to get this book for a class, consider yourself lucky-- and if you are just looking to learn by yourself about computer hardware from the ground up, this book is a great way to go.

4-0 out of 5 stars Goodbook covering core features of hardware
This is the textbook used in a computer hardware class I have taken - its a good read and has some clear explanations and good illustrated examples of the ideas - found several errors and typos in the logic diagrams and amnot sure if their outlined in a errata supplement. some of the technologyseems to be a bit dated in the later chapters, but the ideas still hold.-Overall a good introductory text book. ... Read more

10. PC Hardware in a Nutshell, 3rd Edition
by Barbara Fritchman Thompson
Paperback: 880 Pages (2003-07-24)
list price: US$39.95 -- used & new: US$19.94
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 059600513X
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
A longtime favorite among PC users, the third edition of the book now contains useful information for people running either Windows or Linux operating systems. Written for novices and seasoned professionals alike, the book is packed with useful and unbiased information, including how-to advice for specific components, ample reference material, and a comprehensive case study on building a PC. In addition to coverage of the fundamentals and general tips about working on PCs, the book includes chapters focusing on motherboards, processors, memory, floppies, hard drives, optical drives, tape devices, video devices, input devices, audio components, communications, power supplies, and maintenance. Special emphasis is given to upgrading and troubleshooting existing equipment so you can get the most from your existing investments.Amazon.com Review
PC Hardware in a Nutshell: A Desktop Quick Reference relies on an eternal truth of the computer industry: legacy systems never die. This book focuses on the technologies that have provided Wintel personal computers with various capabilities over the years. Like most of its competitors, this book addresses the PC on a subsystem level, and deals with video cards, hard-disk interfaces, memory, and other pieces of the componentry puzzle that hardware integrators need to figure out. The authors do a great job of explaining the differences between (and relative merits of) IDE and SCSI hard-drive interfaces, various video buses, competing processors, and other technologies. They also prove themselves adept at explaining general assembly procedures and troubleshooting strategies.

This book distinguishes itself from its most popular competitors by emphasizing the authors' opinions on hardware products. It's refreshing to see authors recommend Product A for high-performance systems in which price is not an issue, Product B for economical home systems, and Product C for organizational workstations. On the other hand, the recommendations, prices, and similar values will change over time. The authors maintain a great Web site, at which you can find their current recommendations. (The Web site, on the other hand, doesn't include the book's high-quality tutorial on designing and assembling a system from zero.) Even the photographs that appear in this book--traditionally a weak point among hardware books--are clear. --David Wall

Topics covered: Personal computers that comply with Microsoft Windows and Intel compatibility requirements. The authors address processors, memory, hard disks, optical media, removable magnetic disks, video cards, power supplies, and more. Also, there are instructions for assembling a machine from scratch, and some coverage of troubleshooting problems. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (33)

5-0 out of 5 stars Pull-no-punches opinionated and highly detailed
Robert Thompson is a man who doesn't hold back from giving his opinion on why something is good or bad, either on his website or in his books.In _PC Hardware in a Nutshell_, he tells you just what he thinks of what's good and bad about PC components in just about any category you can think of, and backs it up with all the facts, figures and personal experiences you could ever ask for.Every chapter includes historical information on the components under discussion, detailed reviews of what they do and how they do it, and recommendations on what to use (and what not to use).The final chapter walks you through building your own machine step-by-step, though, this being an omnibus book, the chapter is necessarily slightly skimpy in comparison to _Building The Perfect PC_.The writing style is clear and lively, in fact the book is well worth reading as a book even if you don't need any specific information at the time.The only real complaint I have is something the author has no control over - the fact that new PC hardware comes out so fast that it's just impossible to review every single new thing in a paper edition. (Well, that and the fact that Thompson doesn't like Western Digital because he's had bad experiences with their hard drives, whereas I've been using WD exclusively for years and never yet have had one go out on me.I think that can be chalked up, though, more to the fact that there's just so much PC hardware out there that different people are just going to end up having completely different experiences with components from a particular manufacturer.That, or I just got lucky with WD hard drives.)All in all, this book is truly indispensable.

5-0 out of 5 stars Power to the People!
Let me start out with a huge thanks to O'Reilly. I'm not a big fan of large corporations or publishers - but I have come to trust O'Reilly implicitly wherever technical issues are concerned. Although I'm certain that they are not the "perfect" publisher, nor in the business for wholly (ha!) altruistic reasons, I AM amazed by the remarkable originality, diversity, range, quality, accuracy, and honorable business practices of this publisher. Oftentimes I wonder how they manage to maintain such a level, when their current library is so chock-full of tough-to-follow acts.

That said, PC Hardware in a Nutshell does not fail to meet up to these high expectations. Let me get the review portion of my review out of the way - simply put, this is the book I have been hunting for a couple years. That I did not immediately search the O'Reilly library only shows that I am a bit silly. I should have known better. End of review.

But I would like to carry this a bit further, and go out on a limb to discuss the only complaint prior reviewers have voiced: that the book is too "Microsoft-centric."

Rather than a weakness, I believe that this is actually a strength. Let me offer big kudos to the authors and publisher for realizing that a serious, yet accessible, compendium of computer hardware knowledge was necessary. The folks who register such complaints are those least in need of an in-depth introduction to PC hardware. These are the high priests of hi-tech, who rule the roost by virtue of their knowledge-monopoly on all issues technical. They would have you believe that if it was not hand-crafted from spare parts, duct tape, and copious amounts of solder and configured with the most obscure version of Linux, then it's only fit for a 4-year-old. They are, quite simply, dead wrong. Let them compile their own "PC Hardware for Only the Most Serious Tech Gurus", I say!

Thompson's very first point is that he intended the book to be of the most practical usability possible. The practical reality is that the people who desperately need such a compendium are poor fools, like Yours Truly, who are too technical to be satisfied with tutorials on how to use Microsoft Office, yet are not quite knowledgeable enough to get right under the hood of their PCs (never mind build a Linux box from spare hatpins and Reynolds Wrap). We, the "psuedo-techies", often do not come equipped with enough experience, knowledge, or confidence to take ourselves to the next level. We are the crowd who are using Microsoft products, yet would love to learn enough to understand exactly WHY Microsoft means "mush-mind" and Linux is God - but will never get there without a guide. This book is the guide, and to me it says, "Psuedo-techies unite! Power to the people!"

4-0 out of 5 stars A bit dated
This is a great book that covers every aspect of building a PC. However, as of August 2004, the 3rd edition of this book is a bit dated. For example PC3200 memory is considered the newest memory and both Pentium 4 Prescott processors and Athlon 64 processors were not out when this book was published. If you are buying this book, you may want to wait for a 4th edition, unless you are looking to assemble an old computer.

I would not accept the author's hardware recommendations as the final word. For one thing, the components they review are in many cases no longer manufactured. Magazine reviews and PC hardware Web sites are going to have different opinions on what the best components are.

5-0 out of 5 stars All you need for PC hardware
This book is amazingly concise and thorough, yet also very easy to read. It contains many helpful photographs, and the authors maintain a great website that is tremendously useful and is a great addition to the book. I am not a big fan of the "In a Nutshell" computer books published by O'Reilly, but this book is definitely an exception. It's great for both beginners and experts.

4-0 out of 5 stars A Gem of a PC primer!
O'Reilly's an up and coming publisher of computer related books. Maybe a kingpin already. This selection is a true quick reference guide. Written by the Thompsons, this selection gives you a thorough look into buying, assembling and operating computers. You do need a basic understanding to get anything out of this book, but if this is the case, you won't be disappointed. I have a first edition copy, and it's still current. That says a lot, a first edition published four years ago is still not too outdated! Think about it. How many computer related books can you think of that's relatively current after four years? Huh? ... Read more

11. The HCS12/9S12: An Introduction to Hardware and Software Interfacing
by Han-Way Huang
Hardcover: 760 Pages (2005-07-26)
list price: US$166.95 -- used & new: US$128.77
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1401898122
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
This new book provides a total solution for learning and teaching embedded system design based on the Motorola HCS12/9S12 microcontroller. Readers will learn step-by-step how to program the HCS12 using both assembly and C languages, as well as how to use such development tools as asmIDE, MiniIDE, GNU C, and EGNU IDE.Supportive examples clearly illustrate all applications of the HCS12 peripheral functions, including parallel port, timer functions, PWM, UART port, SPI, I2C, CAN, on-chip flash and EEPROM programming, external memory expansion, and more.A back-of-book CD contains the source code for all examples in the book, several groups of reusable utility functions, and complimentary freeware development tools for improved learning. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

2-0 out of 5 stars Review of Hardware and Software Interfacing
To be honest got overwhelmed with the assembly code bases for the HCS12.I harldy used this book for my class as if I recall correctly the book went more in C approach on hardware programing, and we used assembly.In time I'll go back and relearn what I applied in class, but using C.So hopefully this book will be more handy then.

5-0 out of 5 stars Review for HCS12/9s12 Book
I always seem to find the right book at the at the right price at amazon.This time was no exception. I went with amazon because of the free shipping and it arrived in a timely manner.I was not disappointed.The book arrived in described condition, and I hope to get my moneys worth out of it. Thanks Amazon.

5-0 out of 5 stars The book freescale should have wrote
Fantastic reference.
Great examples in asm and "C".
Good explanations.
A must have if you are using this family of MCU's.
Covers tools as well.

4-0 out of 5 stars Pretty good for a rank novice
Let me state that I'm a rank novice to microcontroller programming and embedded systems.This book seemed quite comprehensive, going as far as recommending demo boards and compilers to run the examples in.There were a few errors (i.e. Chapter 14, table 1 and figure 1 are the same) but the code all seemed to compile and run ok and the CD provided all of the source code for both assembly and C.All in all this book covered pretty much everything I wanted it to and would recommend it for any student looking to use the new HC9S12 family of microprocessors.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best book on the market for the HCS12
I'm an Electrical Enigineering student and do a lot of work with the Freescale MC9S12 family of 16-bit microcontrollers.After using just about every other book on the market for the HC(S)12 family, I can honestly say that this one is the best - by far.It's definitely the only one you will need on your desk if you work with these chips.The thing that makes it so useful is the wealth of code included in the text - both in assembly and C.Most books on the topic just include assembly, which is a fine place to start, but most of my work is done in C.So having the addition of the extra language is a huge selling point for me.And this book is for JUST the S12 family; it doesn't try to confuse things by adding the older HC12 family.The author includes code for everything that he goes over; and not just one or two snippets, there are many full examples for each of the topics covered.The author thoroughly discusses all of the hardware aboard the S12.It's like he takes the Freescale User Guides, interprets them into a form that's very easy to understand, and then gives you the code, both in assembly and C, to perform the task that was just explained.The author chose to use AsmIDE, MiniIDE, and GNU C for the code in the book.These software tools are freeware which makes the book more appealing to students or those without high-dollar development tools.In addition, they're included in the CD that comes with the book, and since they are freeware IDE's, they have no memory size restriction like the tools included with many other book CD's.Also, a plethora of practical applications are presented such as interfacing the S12 with stepper and DC motors, Servos, keypads, LCD's, external memory and much more.It also explains how to program the onboard Flash memory using both the resident booloader and a BDM.No other book that I have found even comes close to presenting just these two topics as well as Dr. Huang does.Before I had this book, I spent weeks trying to figure out Flash programming and Interrupts.This book makes it simple.Also, if you're just starting out and not familiar with a programming language, this book begins at the ground level introducing assembly and C.Basically, this is THE textbook on how to make the HCS12 microcontroller work.I use mine constantly and all of my other books just sit on the shelf - honestly.Come to think of it, the copy I have isn't even mine but my professor's :) To sum it up, I love this book because it's completely up-to-date, easy to use, and applicable to actual applications that one is likely use with the HCS12.You can tell that Dr. Huang actually uses the S12 and knows what he's talking about; not just a professor writing a text for an academic audience.This book is completely thorough and made to be used in the field.Money well invested!Thank-you Dr. Huang for such a great book! ... Read more

12. The Next Bible: Hardware and Software Systems for the Next Computer
by Doug Clapp
 Paperback: 452 Pages (1990-04)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$71.54
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0136207251
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Editorial Review

Product Description
From rear cover: The NeXT Bible opens up the box and introduces this machines unique software and hardware components. Topics include: Mach Operation system; NextStep User Interface; Display PostScript; Hardware Elements; Networking; Programming; Built-in Software Applications. (Description by http-mart) ... Read more

13. Computer Repair with Diagnostic Flowcharts: Troubleshooting PC Hardware Problems from Boot Failure to Poor Performance, Revised Edition
by Morris Rosenthal
Paperback: 120 Pages (2008-08-01)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$13.45
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0972380175
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
The updated edition of the classic visual manual for troubleshooting PC hardware problems. Morris Rosenthal creates a visual expert system for diagnosing component failure and identifying conflicts. The seventeen diagnostic flowcharts at the core of this book are intended for the intermediate to advanced hobbyist, or the beginning technician. Following a structured approach to troubleshooting hardware reduces the false diagnoses and parts wastage typical of the "swap 'till you drop" school of thought. Flowcharts include: Power Supply Failure, Video Failure, Video Performance, Motherboard, CPU, RAM Failure, Motherboard, CPU, RAM Performance, IDE Drive Failure, Hard Drive Boot and Performance, CD or DVD Playback, CD or DVD Recording Problem, Modem Failure, Modem Performance, Sound Failure, Sound and Game Controller Performance, Network Failure, Peripheral Failure, SCSI Failure and Conflict Resolution ... Read more

Customer Reviews (24)

4-0 out of 5 stars A simple approach to troubleshooting
With no pictures, no technical details but just some simple straight forward flow chart, I have to give credit to the author.

This book is well written and outlined out so even a beginner can follow and troubleshoot.
For the well experienced, it serves a simple reminder that some problems are generally solved by taking the simple steps first.

It is indeed very good book to have.

3-0 out of 5 stars PC Repair Book
This book is not as detailed as the same author's book on laptop repair.Therefore, it is not as good as it might have been.

5-0 out of 5 stars MUST BUY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Troubleshooting tool
This is probably the most valuable tool a PC Technician could have in his tool box. It's better at diagnostics and been more helpful than many of the bigger more expensive PC repair books I've gotten. My only regret is that I didn't buy this sooner. Also see the The Laptop Repair Workbook by the same author. It's well written and easy to follow. I highly recommend both.

5-0 out of 5 stars computer repair
It's always good to have a reference book when dealing with computer problems. If not this book,a similar book would do just as well. ... Read more

14. Artificial Life Models in Hardware
Hardcover: 270 Pages (2009-06-16)
list price: US$99.00 -- used & new: US$59.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1848825293
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Editorial Review

Product Description

Hopping, climbing and swimming robots, nano-size neural networks, motorless walkers, slime mould and chemical brains - "Artificial Life Models in Hardware" offers unique designs and prototypes of life-like creatures in conventional hardware and hybrid bio-silicon systems. Ideas and implementations of living phenomena in non-living substrates cast a colourful picture of state-of-art advances in hardware models of artificial life.

... Read more

15. Evolvable Systems: From Biology to Hardware: 6th International Conference, ICES 2005, Sitges, Spain, September 12-14, 2005, Proceedings (Lecture Notes ... Computer Science and General Issues)
Paperback: 227 Pages (2005-09-29)
list price: US$58.00 -- used & new: US$52.14
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 3540287361
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Editorial Review

Product Description

This book constitutes the refereed proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Evolvable Systems, ICES 2005, held in Sitges, Spain in September 2005.

The 21 revised full papers presented were carefully reviewed and selected. The papers are organized in topical sections on fault tolerance and recovery, platforms for evolving digital systems, evolution of analog circuits, evolutionary robotics, evolutionary hardware design methodologies, bio-inspired architectures, and applications.

... Read more

16. How Computers Work (9th Edition)
by Ron White, Timothy Edward Downs
Paperback: 464 Pages (2007-11-24)
list price: US$34.99 -- used & new: US$19.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0789736136
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Having sold more than 2 million copies over its lifetime, How Computers Work is the definitive illustrated guide to the world of PCs and technology. In this new edition, you’ll find detailed information not just about every last component of hardware found inside your PC, but also in-depth explanations about home networking, the Internet, PC security, and even how cell phone networks operate. Whether you’re interested in how the latest graphics cards power today’s most demanding games or how a digital camera turns light into data, you’ll find your answers right here.


Ron White is a former executive editor and columnist for PC Computing, where he developed the visual concept behind How Computers Work. Founder of one of the

earliest PC user groups, he has been writing about computers for 25 years and is known for building wildly extreme computers.


Timothy Edward Downs is an award-winning magazine designer, illustrator, and photographer. He has directed and designed several national consumer, business, technology, and

lifestyle magazines, always infusing a sense of “how it works” into every project.


A full-color, illustrated adventure into the wonders of TECHNOLOOGY


This full-color, fully illustrated guide to the world of technology assumes nothing and explains everything. Only the accomplished Ron White and award-winning Tim Downs have the unique ability to meld descriptive text with one-of-a-kind visuals to fully explain how the electronic gear we depend on every day is made possible. In addition to all the content you’ve come to expect from prior editions, this newly revised edition includes all-new coverage of topics such as:


•    How tablet PCs put the power of a PC quite literally in your hands

•    How Windows Vista makes your Windows desktop translucent and makes your PC more secure

•    How advances in optical disc technology such as dual-layer DVD, HD-DVD, and Blu-Ray discs continue to push the envelope

•    How Apple’s new iPhone is revolutionizing what cell phones can do

•    How BitTorrent technology enables anyone to share information with everyone


For a decade, How Computers Work has helped newbies understand new technology, while at the same time hackers and IT pros have treasured it for the depth of knowledge it contains. This is the perfect book about computing to capture your imagination, delight your eyes, and expand your mind, no matter what your technical level!


Category: General Computing

Covers:    PCs/Hardware

User Level:    Beginning–Intermediate


Amazon.com Review
Updated to include all the recent developments to the PC and complete with a CD-ROM, the third edition of How Computers Work is like a cool science museum in a book. But make no mistake--this is not a book for children. How Computers Work aims to teach readers about all the intricacies held within the machine, and it's a daunting task. The author, Ron White, doesn't dumb down his material; instead he provides thorough and substantive definitions. The pages of fun and colorful graphics ease the tension, though, and bring the abstract concepts--the difference between RAM and ROM, for example--into real life.

The book has incredible depth, explaining everything you could want to know about your computer, with each piece of hardware being given full treatment over two to five pages. (Macintosh and UNIX users should be aware, though, that the book's model is the "Wintel," a Windows PC with an Intel microprocessor.) The book is well-structured and can easily be used as a reference resource beyond the first reading. --Jennifer Buckendorff ... Read more

Customer Reviews (94)

5-0 out of 5 stars If you think you know computers, think again! You will learn!
The layout & photos just make this book EXCEPTIONAL!
Great detailed information & history.
This is the best book for all levels of PC knowledge.
Can't say enough good things about it!

3-0 out of 5 stars Must be an Impulse Buy
I suspect many of those who buy this book never finish it. Despite the enticing illustrations and efficient short, numbered paragraphs, it soon becomes apparent this is a professional writer's superficial treatment of a vast landscape of information, compiled from easily available sources, rather than an expert's distillation of that information for a general reader. That would be OK except so much of the basic science is wrong that, after a while, it becomes annoying.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good starting place
Very graphic heavy for easy-to-understand layouts. A good place to start with understanding computers. If you are looking for a more systematic approach, this book might frustrate you a little. It gives you snippets of information without providing a "roadmap" to know how this fits and where we are going. But overall, a really good resource for the general public.

5-0 out of 5 stars Shipping not Intellectual Content
The product arrived as stated in the shipping terms.
The product was in it's original wrapping, and in pristine condition.

I cannot rate the intellectual content of the book. It is simply for a class of mine and I have no other books to compare it too.

I enjoy purchasing from Amazon, especailly since the price is ALWAYS significantly lower than that of the school's bookstore.

5-0 out of 5 stars Quick service
The item came quick and was in good condition. Exactly what I was looking for. ... Read more

17. IT Essentials: PC Hardware and Software Companion Guide (3rd Edition)
by David Anfinson, Kenneth Quamme
Hardcover: 656 Pages (2008-01-25)
list price: US$109.33 -- used & new: US$33.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1587131994
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

The only Cisco authorized textbook that for the IT Essentials: PC Hardware and Software course from the Cisco Networking Academy Program

  • New Companion Guide format complements the online curriculum with insight and instruction from Academy instructors
  • A portable reference that supports all the topics in the new course, aligning 1:1 with course modules
  • Features improved readability, enhanced topic explanations, real-world examples, and all new graphical presentations
  • Alignment to A+ objectives

The IT Essentials: PC Hardware and Software Companion Guide supplements and complements the IT Essentials I: PC Hardware and Software v4.0 online curriculum offered by the Cisco Networking Academy Program.


The Companion Guide is designed as a supplemental textbook for the Networking Academy course, offering students a portable desk reference of the course content to use anytime anywhere as a study aid. The chapter content aligns 1:1 to the online course module topics, but does not merely mimic the content word-for-word. The authors present the course material in the Companion Guide in a comprehensive manner, providing their own examples where necessary to augment a student's understanding of the course material.

  • Chapter Objectives as stated as questions at beginning of each chapter
  • Key terms listed in the Chapter openers
  • Enhanced readability for younger student comprehension
  • How To Feature provides step-by-step tasks for common activities
  • Key concept recaps, Check Your Understanding Questions, and next chapter previews are in a concise summary at the end of each chapter

The Companion Guide serves as an additional instructional tool for the instructor to assign take-home reading or give vocabulary quizzes to better prepare the students for in-class lab assignments.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Text
I purchased this book used. The seller said it had some damage to the cover. The book came in like new condition and even include the unopened supplemental student disk.

Since I couldn't be reading from Cisco's website I had to buy the book which is accompanied by a cd with virtual lab activities.

It's great and I would strongly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars Cisco PC Hardware and Software Companion Guide (3rd edit)
This is the only text to use with the Cisco course.This edition is up to date and current with the industry standards.Amazon's price was over half of that of Cisco Press or Prentice Hall. This is the only place to purchase the text book without feeling gouged or ripped off.

1-0 out of 5 stars IT Essentials
I bought this to help in a course I am currently taking. I feel that not only does it lack in written style, there is a wide disconnect between it and the companion lab book.

5-0 out of 5 stars It Essentials: PC hardware
The book is really nice for entry level people pursuing or even for fun, on learning about PC's. The book also arrived in a quick manner and in brand new condition. Helps alot also if your trying to get your A+ certification. ... Read more

18. Upgrading and Fixing Computers Do-it-Yourself For Dummies
by Andy Rathbone
Paperback: 336 Pages (2010-09-22)
list price: US$24.99 -- used & new: US$15.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0470557435
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
An illustrated, step-by-step guide to repairs and upgrades

Whether you want to prepare your computer for Windows 7, avoid investing in a new one, or just "go green", this fully illustrated guide has what you need. You'll learn how to add printers and new keyboards, boost your PC's performance and increase memory, improve power consumption, rev up your multimedia capacity, and much more. Step-by-step instructions are accompanied by photos that show you exactly what you should see at every stage.

  • Learn to perform basic upgrades and prepare your PC for high-speed Internet connections, network connections, and added security, all with fully illustrated instructions
  • Find out how to expand memory, enhance speed, and update your computer's power supply
  • Prepare an old computer for Windows 7 and beef up your capacity for multimedia

Upgrading & Fixing Computers Do-It-Yourself For Dummies is a show-and-tell course in making your PC happy, healthy, and green.Amazon.com Review
Like all Dummies books, Upgrading & Fixing PCs for Dummies,Third Edition, shows you what you absolutely need to know andlittle more--but in very clear language. Oriented toward casual userswho want to solve specific problems, the book pays attention to suchtroubles as parity error messages and out-of-memory warnings.

Upgrading & Fixing PCs for Dummies promotes the ideas that youshouldn't fix things that aren't broken and that you should apply thesimplest possible solutions to the broken things. The guide includesexcellent coverage of the hardware-management features in Windows95.

This book's problem-oriented approach yields sections aboutcommon hardware-related problems, such as, "My printer puts outonly junk characters!" and "How do I install a new harddrive?" Cartoon-like sequential diagrams outline physicalprocedures, such as installing and removing SIMMs. Similar drawingshelp you find key parts of your computer, such as the PCI slots andthe video port.

Overall, Upgrading & Fixing PCs for Dummies,Third Edition, does what all the Dummies books do--it clearlyexplains how to solve certain problems. If your particular troubleshappen to fall outside of what's covered here, you'll need to consulta geekier reference book. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (19)

5-0 out of 5 stars Just what I needed
Andy's book gave me the information I needed to get a few more years out of a very old computer.

5-0 out of 5 stars computer know-how
can't always have a computer repair person handy when you need one so this book book is just the ticket.

5-0 out of 5 stars Upgrading pc's for dummies
I love the for dummies books. This is very good, still needs to include really useful things. Like that part about removing viruses with programs, anybody can do that . I'm looking for a way to learn how to remove them by myself , manually.In overall is a good and useful book.

4-0 out of 5 stars Ok Book
There is more in this book about Vista than XP...which is not what I was looking for. But the color pages with installation instructions are a big help for upgrading components.

4-0 out of 5 stars Upgrading & Fixing PCs For Dummies (Upgrading & Fixing Pcs for Dummies)
Great book for wanna be computer geeks.Helps a lot.

Donto ... Read more

19. The Elements of Computing Systems: Building a Modern Computer from First Principles
by Noam Nisan, Shimon Schocken
Paperback: 352 Pages (2005-03-31)
list price: US$27.00 -- used & new: US$26.97
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0262640686
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
In the early days of computer science, the interactions of hardware, software, compilers, and operating system were simple enough to allow students to see an overall picture of how computers worked. With the increasing complexity of computer technology and the resulting specialization of knowledge, such clarity is often lost. Unlike other texts that cover only one aspect of the field, The Elements of Computing Systems gives students an integrated and rigorous picture of applied computer science, as its comes to play in the construction of a simple yet powerful computer system.

Indeed, the best way to understand how computers work is to build one from scratch, and this textbook leads students through twelve chapters and projects that gradually build a basic hardware platform and a modern software hierarchy from the ground up. In the process, the students gain hands-on knowledge of hardware architecture, operating systems, programming languages, compilers, data structures, algorithms, and software engineering. Using this constructive approach, the book exposes a significant body of computer science knowledge and demonstrates how theoretical and applied techniques taught in other courses fit into the overall picture.

Designed to support one- or two-semester courses, the book is based on an abstraction-implementation paradigm; each chapter presents a key hardware or software abstraction, a proposed implementation that makes it concrete, and an actual project. The emerging computer system can be built by following the chapters, although this is only one option, since the projects are self-contained and can be done or skipped in any order. All the computer science knowledge necessary for completing the projects is embedded in the book, the only pre-requisite being a programming experience.

The book's web site provides all tools and materials necessary to build all the hardware and software systems described in the text, including two hundred test programs for the twelve projects. The projects and systems can be modified to meet various teaching needs, and all the supplied software is open-source. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (13)

4-0 out of 5 stars Not for the weak of heart
I find this book to be highly informative and challenging, and it is not for just a casual inspection.The book is intended to be a multi-semester text book and so requires more individual effort than may be expected.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent, comprehensive and fun!
First, realize that I am a cynic. I was prepared for a critical response from my students regarding the TECS class I conducted last semester (Spring 2010). However, the results were _fantastic_. I had multiple opportunities to see the "lightbulb come on" for our students. They finally understood many topics that our other classes, such as "Computer Organization," only briefly describe.

I had one 17-year-old high school student, two graduate students from outside the CS department, and about sixteen upper-level CS undergraduates. The high school student really received a postmodern computer science education in one semester. However, although she grasped the concepts, she lacked the proper programming experience necessary to be independently successful when working on the software side of the material. This was remedied by pair programming.

My two non-CS graduates _loved_ the class and were very successful. It was "just the class they were looking for."

As for my CS undergraduates, it has been a smashing success. They all emphatically felt that the class should be a required part of our curriculum and the class is now an official elective and will be taught again in the fall of 2011.

If you only read one effective book in the field of computer science, this might be the one.

5-0 out of 5 stars This Book is One of a Kind, and a True Masterpiece
I've been a computer hobbyist since the first days of the Apple ][, and have dabbled in everything from programming to circuit board design. Despite all that time spent, there have always been huge holes in my understanding. In the back of my mind, I've always dreamed of building a simple computer from a handful of chips, designing an operating system for it, and using it to write programs. Unfortunately, the complexity of the task always seemed overwhelming. Assembly language, stack arithmetic, compiler design - all seemed much too intimidating to seriously approach. But no longer.

This book guides the reader on a journey from the basics of boolean logic and elementary gates through CPU design, assembly, virtual machines, high level languages, compilers and operating systems. How can such a task be accomplished in one 300-page volume? Simple - you do most of the work yourself. The relatively short chapters introduce each concept and suggest an approach to implementation. The reader is then given a project to complete and test. Intimidated by assembly language? You probably won't be after you've written a symbolic assembler. Confused by compilers? Imagine how you'll feel when you realize you've created one for a simple (but completely usable) high-level language.

Some degree of familiarity with a programming language will be needed to complete all of the later projects in this book. I used Java, and it worked like a charm. I'm just about finished with the book, and I'm trying to decide what to do next. I'm actually sad to be almost done! I plan to fulfill that original dream of building an actual computer from scratch - several modern microcontrollers can handle video output and keyboard input, so I think it will be doable. I feel pretty confident that after completing this book I'll be able to create a basic operating system and development toolset, which I can then spend countless hours extending!

In summary, if you want to gain an understanding of how computers really work, and if you're willing to learn by doing, this is the best book I've ever seen. I wish I could shake the authors' hands to thank them personally.

5-0 out of 5 stars The real image of a modern computer
This work is a perfect aproach about moderns computers. The best way to
understand the real way of working of these machines.

5-0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Learning Experience
I bought this book on a whim, but I did not expect it to contain all that it does. Having read several chapters and having completed the first couple of projects I can say that this book contains an outstanding learning experience.

In fact, I would highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn the basics of computing. I teach mathematics at the college level, but computer science and the history of computing is a hobby. I also develop math software and do Windows programming and my background includes working on a chip for one of Hewlett-Packard's programmable calculators.

I often have students ask how they can learn more about computers because after they take the basic language and programming courses my school offers they know they need more. In fact, few of them can write real-world software because they don't have sufficient experience with a Graphical User Interface like Windows and even fewer of them have a clue as to what an Instruction Pointer is or how the hardware in a CPU works or how subroutine return addresses can be built on a LIFO stack.

Telling these students to either study symbolic logic or assembly language or to start reading Knuth's books is not very helpful because these activities are way too hard to do on your own. Having them read about Babbage and Turing can be motivating, but does not bring them close to either the real hardware or the real software.

This book is outstanding in its approach and its implementation. Once you get hooked on this you can go very far. This book builds a solid foundation and provides the deeper understanding that students really need. I compliment the authors and all those who worked on this project to make it a reality. It is simply outstandingly effective. There is nothing like it that I have ever seen.

... Read more

20. Hardware and Computer Organization (Embedded Technology)
by Arnold S. Berger
Hardcover: 512 Pages (2005-05-20)
list price: US$75.95 -- used & new: US$40.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0750678860
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Hardware and Computer Organization is a practical introduction to the architecture of modern microprocessors for students and professional alike. It is designed to take practicing professionals "under the hood" of a PC and provide them with an understanding of the basics of the complex machine that has become such a pervasive part of our everyday life. It clearly explains how hardware and software cooperatively interact to accomplish real-world tasks.

Instead of simply demonstrating how to design a computer's hardware, it provides an understanding of the total machine, highlighting strengths and weaknesses, explaining how to deal with memory and how to write efficient assemble code that interacts with and takes best advantage of the underlying hardware.

Additionally, the book has a unique emphasis on facilitating the ability to make real engineering decisions in industry when working with anything from simple 8-bit microprocessors in embedded applications to PCs and workstations. It demystifies the link between the behaviour of the code and the operation of the machine, while helping engineers and students to better understand the limitations imposed by finite speed and resources.

This book is divided into three major sections:
· Part 1: Hardware Fundamentals and Digital Design
· Part 2: Assembly Language Programming
· Part 3: Computer Architecture

The DVD accompanying the text will contain the following:
* source code files for all the code examples used in the text
* working demo versions of two different processor simulators
* video lectures from industry notables covering several of the major topics dealt with in the text. ... Read more

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