Babbage's Bag

 

Charles Babbage invented the modern computer and with it started the development of computer science and all the computer technology that we take for granted today. Babbage's Bag is a look at many of the interesting ideas that are at the heart of computing. It's not quite theory and it's not quite practice. It certainly is fun if you give it a chance and it will provide a background of knowledge that it's all too easy to miss.



Virtual Memory
Written by Harry Fairhead   

Virtual memory is a way of pretending that your computer has more memory than it really has. But like all good things it comes at a cost. Virtual memory is an example of trading speed for storage.

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VPN - Virtual Private Network
Written by Harry Fairhead   

A Virtual Private Network, or VPN, is an easy and low-cost way of connecting to your home or company network from anywhere in the world with all of the facilities that a local connection would bring.

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What if Babbage..?
Written by Mike James   

It was on this day 220 years ago (December 26 1791) that Charles Babbage was born. The calculating machines he invented in the 19th century, although  never fully  realised in his lifetime, are rightly seen as the forerunners of modern programmable computers. What if he had succeeded? Babbage already had plans for games arcades, chess playing machines, sound generators and desktop publishing. A Victorian computer revolution was entirely possible.

 

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What is a Turing Machine?
Written by Mike James   

With 2012 being designated Alan Turing Year, you may find you are asked to explain just what a Turing Machine is and why it is so important. Here is an illustrated guide.

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What Is Computable?
Written by Mike James   

Performing a computation sounds simple like a simple enough task and it is easy to suppose that everything is computable. In fact there are a range of different types of non-computability that we need to consider. In this article we try to answer the question of what is computable and what is not. 

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What's in a DOS

A look at filing systems, blocks and the FAT and how they are used

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XOR - The Magic Swap
Written by Alex Armstrong   

We all know that if you want to swap the contents of two variables you need a third temporary variable to do the job - but it can be done with just two with the magic XOR swap.

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