# Thread: How do you go from on/off electrical input to technological output?

1. ## How do you go from on/off electrical input to technological output? var addthis_config = {"data_track_clickback":false};

I've never been able to get a straight answer.

Computer programs operate fundamentally in on/off electrical switches. That is, everything is 1 and 0. People designed ways to streamline these processess, ie they created computer languages that did this more effeciently, yet it is always, at its base, a on/off system.

My question is, how did one go from the flow/non flow of electrons to computer programs as detailed as the ones we have today?

2. This is a really good question but it would require a considerable amount of writing here to give a satisfactory answer. There are many sources available to you to help you to learn about computer languages at the machine level. Basically you are using numbers to represent everything. You set a standard that says the number 0 represents the letter "a". So that whenever any one types the number 0 you in turn will think of the letter "a". Now lets continue to say 1 is "b", 2 is "c". Remember you set the standard here.

Now a computer knows only ones and zeros (on/off). Knowing that means it only can represent a Binary system that counts 0 to 1 and that is all. Now look at the system you are familiar with. The Decimal system or base 10. You have 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9. And that is all you have, 10 digits. But from these 10 digits you are able to represent numbers that are much larger than 10. How did you do that? Now consider how you would do that same function in a binary system.

Remember the standard we set about that 0 is really 'a", 1 is "b" and 2 is "c". If you wanted to write, "It's time to learn your abc's", based on your standard you could write, "It's time to learn your 012's". You would know you meant, "It's time to learn your abc's".

So you see you could represent anything by using a number system if you wish to do so. This is what we have done with computers that only use 0 and 1.

You might say we have a lot of numbers that would have to be played with and you would be correct, but a computer operating at 2000 megacycles a second is very fast and makes it seem to us as if it has performed a task instantly when it really has not.

I hope this helps,

Newton1Law

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