Computerphile Historic Lecture Catalogue

Since 2013 the University of Nottingham has been quietly beavering away at creating a series of short videos on the subject of Computer Science. Many of these presentations have been given by Professor David Brailsford who has a particular interest in the history of computing and in text processing and presentation. Here we present a catalogue of Prof. Brailsford’s lectures (in reverse chronological order) many of which will be of interest to CCS members.

David Brailsford is an engaging speaker with a particular gift for explaining the tale behind matters which many of us may take for granted without perhaps having a full appreciation of the back story.

David Brailsford is an engaging speaker with a particular gift for explaining the tale behind matters which many of us may take for granted without perhaps having a full appreciation of the back story.

Members may be especially interested in the presentations of Nottingham’s Honorary Professor Brian Kernigan, justly famous for his pioneering work on the Unix operating system and the C programming language. For your convenience we have created a duplicate index of these presentations at bwk.htm.


  1. Porting Compilers
  2. Improving Intermediate Codes
  3. The UNCOL Problem
  4. ‘Accidental’ CrossCompiler
  5. Before Raspberry Pi and Arduino
  6. Self Compiling Compilers
  7. Bootstrapping with T-Diagrams
  8. Reed Solomon Encoding
  9. X & the Book Code
  10. Error Correction & International Book Codes
  11. Turing, Tutte and Tunny
  12. Why Build Colossus?
  13. Exploiting the Tiltman Break - Computerphile
  14. Where GREP Came From - Brian Kernighan
  15. EXTRA BITS: Double Dabble 42
  16. Double Dabble
  17. 42 and Binary Coded Decimal
  18. Hello World (Assemblers Considered Harmful?!)
  19. IBM, EBCDIC & A Meg-In-A-Box
  20. Where did Bytes Come From?
  21. GOTO, Goto & Goto
  22. Initial Orders II
  23. EDSAC Simulator
  24. Von Neumann Architecture
  25. Wheeler Jump
  26. EXTRA BITS: Loops, Ackermann & Recursion
  27. Programming Loops vs Recursion
  28. EXTRA BITS: The Triple Ref Code
  29. Triple Ref Pointers
  30. Why C is so Influential
  31. Essentials: Pointer Power!
  32. EXTRA BITS: Reed Muller Program
  33. Reed-Muller Code (64 Shades of Grey pt2)
  34. 64 Shades of Martian Grey
  35. EXTRA BITS: More on Perfect Codes
  36. The Perfect Code
  37. Correcting Those Errors
  38. Multiple Dimension Error Correction
  39. Implementation
  40. Computer Science’s Wonder Woman: Ada Lovelace
  41. Babbage’s Mechanical Notation Puzzle
  42. Babbage’s Analytical Engine
  43. PDF Workflow
  44. PDF, What is it FOR?
  45. Unrolling the Loops
  46. Turing Complete
  47. EXTRA BITS — Haskell Example
  48. HTML IS a Programming Language (Imperative vs Declarative)
  49. Where HTML beats C?
  51. HTML: Poison or Panacea?
  52. Problems with Omitted End Tags
  53. SGML HTML XML What’s the Difference?
  54. Same Story, Different Notation
  55. Angle Brackets
  56. Computers Without Memory
  57. Chomsky Hierarchy
  58. EXTRA BITS — Why Binary?
  59. Why Use Binary?
  60. TLU Three Letter Username Obsession
  61. UNIX Special: Profs Kernighan & Brailsford
  62. Zig Zag Decryption
  63. Fishy Codes: Bletchley’s Other Secret
  64. Colossus & Bletchley Park
  65. 5 Hole Paper Tape
  66. XOR Easter Egg
  67. XOR & the Half Adder
  68. AND OR NOT — Logic Gates Explained
  69. The Turing Test
  70. Binary: Plusses & Minuses (Why We Use Two’s Complement)
  71. Binary Addition & Overflow
  72. Enigma, TypeX and Dad
  73. EXTRA BITS — Secret Banburismus Anecdote
  74. Tackling Enigma (Turing’s Enigma Problem Part 2)
  75. Turing’s Enigma Problem (Part 1)
  76. Turing Meets Paradoxes (History of Undecidability Part 3)
  77. Barber & Russell Paradoxes (History of Undecidability Part 2)
  78. Undecidability Tangent (History of Undecidability Part 1)
  79. Turing Machine Primer
  80. Busy Beaver Turing Machines
  81. Ackermann Follow Up
  82. The Most Difficult Program to Compute?
  83. Fibonacci Programming
  84. Reverse Polish Grows on Trees
  85. EXTRA BITS: Recursion and the Stack
  86. What on Earth is Recursion?
  87. Reverse Polish Notation and The Stack
  88. The Dawn of Desktop Publishing
  89. EXTRA BITS — More on the Original Mac at 30
  90. The Little Mac with the Big Bite
  91. The Font Magicians
  92. Typesetters in the ’80s
  93. EXTRA BITS — Printing and Typesetting History
  94. The Great 202 Jailbreak
  95. EXTRA BITS — Text Compression Meets Probabilities
  96. Elegant Compression in Text (The LZ 77 Method)
  97. EXTRA BITS/TRITS — Huffman Trees
  98. How Huffman Trees Work
  99. Error Correction
  100. EXTRA BITS — Behind the scenes on Computerphile
  101. EXTRA BITS — More about Punch Cards
  102. Punch Card Programming
  103. Error Detection and Flipping the Bits
  104. Mainframes and the Unix Revolution
  105. Entropy in Compression
  106. Compression
  107. Near to the Metal