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Essential Guide to Computing: The Story of Information Technology, The by E. Garrison Walters

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An Overview of Network Fundamentals

Networks are sufficiently complicated that, as in Chapter 1, a novice will benefit from an overview before plunging into the detail. The purpose of this section, then, is to introduce and explain in general terms the key concepts of computer networking. To keep things flowing, relatively few technical terms will be employed. As before, remember that these topics are covered in more depth in this and later chapters.

A Quick Analogy

Descriptions of networks often use long, complex postal analogies. While these can easily become strained to the point of confusion, they do offer the potential for some insight. As a compromise, therefore, we'll use this brief analogy to illustrate some key points.

Let's say you're ...

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