. . .w a Computer Works.
I know how a computer is made. Sand is heated, and melted at a very high temperature. Then silicon slices, called wafers, are cut. These then go through an etching process. Some designs are printed on them. After that, softwares become active on those wafers. This is how a computer is made.
What I do not get, is this: What design, specifically, are etched on the wafers. And exactly how softwares become reactive on wafers?
Another thing I do not understand, is this: The philosophical work of Immanuel Kant, named Critique of Pure Reason. I have read Will Durant's rendition of the work, in Durant's book "The Story of Philosophy". I understand that work.
But whenever I go to read the 700 pages real work (Critique of Pure Reason), on Archive.org, I get exhausted. I can not finish the book. It's cryptic, esoteric, etc.
What are your thoughts?
Because I think these two issues are connected.
I want to extend my answer, and add some more information. The Critique of Pure Reason was conceived by Immanuel Kant through 12 laborious years of thinking. The guy wrote that conceived thinking, in 6 months. So he had a language problem. His thinking was too deep, and his language became shallow, hence the difficulty in understanding him. And he was alone while he was thinking and writing. It was not like us. We were two people working on a shared understanding. When two people are talking, they must make sense, if they want to continue the conversation in a productive way. When writing alone, a man may go otherwise.
Secondly, I want to clarify about computers: I think nobody knows how computers are made, not even by the companies who make them! What happened is that there were different groups who were working on silicon material, and electricity. They clashed with each other. And the computer was born. It was a Hegelian clash. Now, no one knows how the magic of computer works.
I firmly believe that not even Intel, Apple, AMD, Microsoft, etc know how the magic of computers work. Computers are a magic. This magic was ignited by a historical architecture of activities of different groups of people converging into a single point.
Let's elaborate on the computer problem: I think coding a software had its origin in the field of electricity (voltages, etc). The history of electricity is more than 200 years old. Before the digital gadgets came to be, there were analog electrical gadgets. Writing a software — this has its original basis in the work on electricity and electrical appliances.
Now, a different group was working on sand, and silicon. These two groups accidentally collided with each others work — and the magic of computers was born. Now, none of the two groups accurately know exactly how computers work — because the magic computers is derived when the electrical voltages act on silicon material — and not when they are kept away from one another. In other words, the magic is in the interplay of these two thing (i.e., electricity and silicon). That magic does not happen when silicon and electricity are kept as stand~alone things.
How Does "Critique of Pure Reason" Connect with the Magic of Computers?
This is difficult for me to answer: because I have not read the original 700 pages book. Without completing that task, I can not answer with confidence. But I shall try.
I think Immanuel Kant went deep inside the atoms. He discovered the fact that science talks and describes the atom — but no one actually has seen an atom. Of what material an atom is made of — no one knows; and this connects with the magic of computers. No one knows of what material atoms are made of — but we enjoy a material world; similarly, we enjoy the magic of computers — although we can not pinpoint exactly how it takes place.
As a suggestion why not read the Wikipedia article to get a grasp on Kant's work.
I read that Wikipedia article. Whoever wrote it, does not (fully) understand Immanuel Kant. I read Will Durant's book, 'The Story of Philosophy'. That book has a very simple elaboration of Immanuel Kant's philosophy.
I want to clarify something: the book, The Critique of Pure Reason, has a sequel: "The Critique of Practical Reason". I understand that book.
I think Immanuel Kant intentionally made the language of the first book 'hard, difficult to crack'. By this, he created a puzzle. If you are clever enough, you will crack/solve the puzzle, and get the secret/esoteric prize.
He had to create this philosophical puzzle because his realizations were too deep — nonverbal (intents) and almost noncommunicable. He could not write the first Critique in as clear tone as in which a philosopher, like Hegel, writes. Immanuel Kant has to invent a secondary way. He created the puzzle. It was a puzzle. It is a puzzle. And it will remain puzzle, even for the future generations. Herein lies the greatness of this philosopher's (i.e., Immanuel Kant) work.
At it's root, and stripped of all accessories such as a power supply, keyboard, output device, storage devices, etc. a computer is nothing but a collection of transistors. Transistors which are little more than tiny, microscopic sized on/off switches and the "wires" that connect them. A view of a chip under a microscope might be helpful. Computers can be, and have been, made with vacuum tubes rather than transistors or even common relays. If there is "magic" involved it is in building a single chip with as many as 1,000,000,000,000 transistors on it with all the connections necessary.
You can learn just how a computer works by learning "machine language"; the inputs necessary to get the result you want. It can be incredibly complex with many instructions given to add 2+2. Or to print a single character on the screen - you must decide which pixels to turn on, give that information to the computer and "turn on" the individual transistors that control those specific pixels. Again, no "magic" involved, just a great deal of hard work.
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