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How to browse to google.com

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 20, 2015

This article attempts to explain, in great detail, what happens when you type ‘google.com’ into your browser and press enter.

To pick a zero point, let’s choose the enter key on the keyboard hitting the bottom of its range. At this point, an electrical circuit specific to the enter key is closed (either directly or capacitively). This allows a small amount of current to flow into the logic circuitry of the keyboard, which scans the state of each key switch, debounces the electrical noise of the rapid intermittent closure of the switch, and converts it to a keycode integer, in this case 13. The keyboard controller then encodes the keycode for transport to the computer. This is now almost universally over a Universal Serial Bus (USB) or Bluetooth connection, but historically has been over PS/2 or ADB connections.

An I, Pencil for the internet age.