Data Communication – The Lifeblood of Digital Networks

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Data communication is essential to our ever-growing digital world. Understanding how different modes of data transmission work is crucial to constructing reliable and efficient networks. From the simple one-way nature of simplex communication to the bidirectional nature of full-duplex communications various methods determine how data is sent and received.

To transmit data efficiently hardware in a communication circuit can use a variety techniques such as multiplexing and demultiplexing processes, which combine and separate signals into composite ones for transmission and then back into individual components. This maximizes bandwidth utilization and decreases the cost. Error detecting codes and signal amplifiers also reduce the chance of data corruption due to electromagnetic disturbances or other noise that could alter bits of data as they travel over an electronic communication channel.

Data communications also come with rules (protocol) that are followed by both the computers that send and receive the data. These rules ensure that the message is received and understood.

The sender is the device or computer that generates and sends the message, which may be in the form of numbers, text images, sound or video. The receiver is the computer or device which receives the message which could be the same as the sender, or different. The transmission medium is a physical route that connects the sender and the receiver. It can be wired, such as twisted-pair wire or fiber optic cable, or wireless like radio waves or lasers.

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