NETWORKING AND COMMUNICATION
A computer network is a network that connects several computers in order to share information between them. The internet is a large network
that connects a huge number of computers across the world. The internet does not belong to anyone and is actually a set of physical connections
that connects networks to other networks and computers. Computer networking has enabled people situated far away from each other to communicate
easily using e-mails, video-calls, text messages, etc.
There are several types of networks: WAN (wide area network), LAN (local area network),
PAN (personal area network) and MAN (metroploitan area network). PAN is a network that is built around an individual, inside his residence or office
. A LAN is used to connect computers inside a building or a collection of buildings. MAN is used for network access in a city. WAN is used for large
area networking, connecting cities, countries and even continents. The Internet is an example of a WAN that conncects the entire world.
wired and wireless technologies for networking. Coaxial cables, twisted pairs, and optical fiber being the wired and radiowaves, cellular, satellites
being the wireless ones.
To connect to a network, a computer needs an NIC (network interface card), which is a hardware component that connects to the
network. A node is a component/part of a network. There are devices that can connect multiple computers to a single network. Some of them are
hub and switch. A hub, when receives information, sends it to all the connected nodes. A switch is a smart hub that sends the received info to only
the required nodes by detecting the MAC address of the sender.
A MAC address is a unique number that is assigned by the manufacturer to the NIC of
the hardware. This number is permanently assigned to the NIC and cannot be changed. An IP address on the other hand is assigned to every device on
the network and can be changed, of course with the ISP (internet service provider's permition).
There are several ways in which nodes in a network
can be arranged. These arrangements are called Network topologies. Some of them are: bus, star, and ring. In bus topology, all nodes are
connected to a central cable, the backbone. But since only one cable is used, failure of one node will result in the failure of all the nodes.
In star topology, all nodes are individually connected to a hub and failure of one node in sending or receiving data will not affect other nodes.
In ring topology, nodes are connected in a circle, in a loop. Each device further retransmits the data when it receives it.
Protocols are a set of rules that are designed to govern how a packet of data is packaged, sent, and received over a network. Some of these protocols are:
HTTP, FTP and TCP/IP. HTTP (hypertext transfer protocol) is a protocol that is used to connect the World Wide Web, FTP (file transfer protocol) is
used to transfer files from the computer to another over the network. TCP/IP (transmission control protocol/internet protocol) guides how the package is
actually packaged, divided into smaller packets, collected together and then transferred.
1. How do you explain how some internet connections are faster or slower compared to others?
2. What is google fiber? How does Google manage such high speed networking?
3. What inventions can be made in networking apart from faster speeds? What does the future holds?