The Basics of Data Communication

Data communication is vital for our digital world. It connects us to the devices and services that we depend on. It covers a range of techniques and media that control how information is transferred from one end to the other. Understanding how it functions allows us to design a highly efficient and reliable networks that provide the benefits of greater connection, such as improved business efficiencies and productivity, and innovations within automation.

Data communication is the transfer of data between computers via the medium or channel. This can happen via wire cables, satellite signal, radio frequency or wirelessly. A device or person who transmits data is referred to as the sender while the computer that receives the data is referred to as the receiver. In a data communications network more than two computers can be involved in the communication process.

Demultiplexing and multiplexing are two important communication techniques that allow multiple signals to be transmitted over a medium simultaneously, optimizing bandwidth usage and decreasing costs. Both processes require special hardware able to combine and then separate these signals. This function is often performed by custom integrated circuits which are used in a wide range of communication devices, such as cell phones, computers and printers.

Full-duplex is the method of data communications that allows simultaneous two-way communication between a pair of devices. This type of communication is more complicated than simplex transmission since it requires the ability to transmit and receive data simultaneously.

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