How does a Computer work?

Ina Prinz, M.A.

Many of us spend a great deal of time at the computer, at work and at home. We do all sorts of work with it, get angry with it, and some of us even tend to personify it and imbue it with a life of its own. But what really takes place in a computer remains a mystery to us. Here we will ask the question: „How does a computer work?„.

This is a really important question, because a computer can do nothing more than compute. We will introduce the essentials of the binary number system and logical operations and will design a so-called „full adder„, one of the key units on a computer chip.