• Question: how does information in computers travel through wires.

    Asked by jamiex16 to Tom on 24 Jun 2011.
    • Photo: Tom Crick

      Tom Crick answered on 24 Jun 2011:

      Good question.

      At the lowest level, information is stored in computers as electrical signals: 0s (off/false) and 1s (on/true). This is the binary (base-2) number system. Therefore, when this digital information is transmitted between computer systems over wires, these electrical signals are encoded/modulated using a number of different techniques, depending on what thy are going to be transferred over e.g. older copper wires, fibre optic cable, etc.

      Have a look at this data transmission summary article (and feel free to ask more specific questions in the comments!).