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If You Can Cook You Can Code Vol 3: Learn Computer Hardware

Learn How Computer Hardware Works Using the Metaphors of Cooking and How Restaurants Work.
4.8 (4 ratings)
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1,218 students enrolled
Created by Timothy Kenny
Last updated 10/2015
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  • 3 hours on-demand video
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What Will I Learn?
Understand the hardware that their code will run on
Build a computer
Determine which components are important for improving computer performance
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  • A desktop computer that they can take apart to look at (optional)
  • A desire to understand how things work
  • A willingness to go inside their computer and take it apart

The If You Can Cook You Can Code series started off as a single course and an idea, to teach students with no previous experience with computers or programming how computer code works at a beginners level.

In reality, code is just one half of the picture.

The other half is the hardware that the code runs on.

To have a complete understanding of how code works, you have to understand computer hardware.

In this course, you'll go on a tour of the various components inside a computer that make it work.

And we'll be using the same cooking and kitchen metaphors that you've come to expect.

The inside of your computer is like the kitchen in a restaurant.

If you are a diner sitting at a table, you never see inside it, just like you normally have no reason to look inside your computer to see what is going on.

There are certain components in a computer that you may already be aware of.

The CPU, for example, which does the thinking and processing in a computer. The CPU is like the Chef in the kitchen. It's the center of everything that happens and makes all the decisions.

Another component is the RAM, or memory in a computer. You've probably heard about this one before too...computers these days have 4, 8 or 16 GB of RAM usually. Well, that RAM is just like the counter and cutting board that a Chef uses in the kitchen to do their work. If they have lots of space to work with, they can have lots of bowls and pans and dishes for different parts of the meal they are working on.

In the same way, having a computer with more RAM means you can have more applications running at the same time, or more tabs open in your browser without things slowing down to a crawl. The RAM is the kitchen table or counter where the CPU (aka the Chef) does their processing work.

The third major thing you've probably heard about in your computer is your hard drive. The storage space is also measured in GB, so it can get confusing between what is "memory" and what is hard drive space.

Here's the difference:

In your kitchen, you have counter space where you do your Chef-thing, and then you have your cabinets, shelves, pantry, etc where you do your storage-thing.

You can measure both in square feet, (but why would you?) and you would find that you have much more storage space in your shelves than you do on your kitchen counter.

Same thing with your RAM and your hard drive. You might have 4 or 8 GB of RAM in your computer, but 500 GB or even 1 TB (1,000 GB) of storage space on your hard drive.

In this course we'll all the other parts of your computer using these same kitchen and restaurant metaphors.

If you've always wanted to understand how computers worked, but found other guides or books too complicated or technical, this is the course for you.

Also, remember if you have any question I'm available in the discussion section.

See you on the inside,


Who is the target audience?
  • Entrepreneurs who want a better understanding of the computers their software is running on
  • Professionals who want to build their technical understanding of the hardware side of computers
  • Students who want to build their own computer on a budget
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Curriculum For This Course
Expand All 19 Lectures Collapse All 19 Lectures 02:53:08
2 Lectures 12:52

My Story
Frequently Asked Questions About Computers
6 Lectures 58:49

What's Important When You Buy a Computer?

FAQ - What Makes a Computer Fast?

FAQ - How Can I Save Money When Building a Computer?

FAQ - What Kinds of Computers Are There?

FAQ - How Hard is it to Build a Computer and Where Can I Get Free Help?
The Essentials of Computer Hardware
6 Lectures 01:12:08
Read This Before You Watch The Power Supply Lecture

The Power Supply to Your Kitchen - Electricity and Gas

Your Cabinets and Pantry - How Data is Stored in Your Computer

The Dining Room Lighting Setup - The Graphics Card That Feeds Your LCD Screen
The Supporting Cast in the Kitchen
5 Lectures 29:26
The Air Conditioning That Keeps the Chef Cool - Cooling Hot Computer Parts

Mouse and Keyboard Reccomendations

The 8 Burner Stove - How Two 24" LCD Screens with Boost Your Productivity

Case Study - Video Editing Rig
About the Instructor
4.3 Average rating
648 Reviews
33,085 Students
51 Courses
Author of "Accelerated Learning for Entrepreneurs"

Timothy Kenny is the author of “Accelerated Learning for Entrepreneurs.” He teaches classes and speaks to groups about how to accelerate their learning so that they can build successful businesses faster and with more confidence in their success.

Timothy has taught at the Harvard Innovation lab, The Tufts University Entrepreneurs Society, General Assembly in Boston, and has been a featured teacher on Skillshare, among others. He has consulted with startup teams on how to accelerate their learning, creativity, and growth.

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