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. GitHub

What's new in CPUs since the 80s and how does it affect programmers? This is a response to the following question from David Albert: My mental model of CPUs is stuck in the 1980s: basically boxes that do arithmetic, logic, bit twiddling and shifting, and loading and storing things in memory. I'm vaguely aware of various newer developments like vector instructions (SIMD) and the idea that newer CPUs have support for virtualization (though I have no idea what that means in practice). What cool developments have I been missing? Dan Luu

Can Bitcoin save democracy? For a brief period in November 2000, it looked as if the future of the United States was going to be decided by chads -- hanging door chads, swinging door chads, perforated chads, and yes, even the occasional dimpled chad. When the electoral contest between George W. Bush and Al Gore came down to only a few hundred votes in the state of Florida, all anyone could talk about were the tiny perforated circles on election ballots voters pushed to indicate their selections. The Kernel

Postmortem: Launching The War Z The War Z, now known as Infestation: Survivor Stories, may have been one of the most controversial game launches of the year when we released it in December, 2012. It was also the biggest learning experience of my career, and something that I hope other developers can learn from. Here I will present the story of the creation and launch of The War Z in a narrative form from the game's inception to launch and beyond. Gamasutra

Wearables: 2014 and beyond As the year 2014 has come to a close, now is a good time to inventory changes in the consumer electronics market and project those trends forward. One of the most obvious changes was that wearable technology has, by my observation, approached the brink of the adoption chasm into the early majority. In this article we will focus on the significant business and consumer factors of wearable technology, the notable introductions in 2014, as well as future AnandTech coverage. AnandTech

What Michael Mann did to get the hackers in Blackhat right Since Michael Mann’s 1980s days -- directing James Caan in Thief, or producing/directing Miami Vice -- he's earned a reputation as the guy who makes sleek films that happen to be smart, or maybe just smart films that happen to be sleek. Either way, his love of cityscapes and of moral ambiguity have combined for a signature style that's as compelling as it is technically proficient... Wired

Video games and the curse of retro Last week's news that almost two and a half thousand MS-DOS computer games have been added to the Internet Archive, a free online library of books, music, movies, and software, was met with widespread delight. Over the years, the archive has rescued historical gems and curios that, unless one happened to own the original hardware on which to run them, were often impossible to play. The New Yorker

Moving the Steam folder on Linux is causing users' entire file systems to be deleted Users of Steam on GNU/Linux are reporting that attempting to move the Steam folder - something that the GNU/Linux Steam installer doesn't allow you to set at the time of installation - is leading to everything able to be deleted being deleted recursively from root. First entered as a bug report by the Github user keyvin... Neowin

Gear VR: For today's best virtual reality, strap a phone to your face After a month of regular use, we found little need to modify our initial impressions of the Gear VR as a piece of hardware. It's the first truly comfortable headset that provides a viable, "good enough" virtual reality experience within the reach of a high-end consumer, both in terms of price and ease of use. Ars Technica

Here's what happens when you install the top 10 Download.com apps We installed the top 10 apps from Download.com, and you’ll never believe what happened! Well… I guess maybe you might have a good guess. Awful things. Awful things are what happens. Join us for the fun! How-to-Geek