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TOM the Computer Simulator

For the new computing syllabus from Key Stage 3 to A’ level.

...the concepts are clear

“It facilitates well demonstrations by the teacher but most importantly enables hands-on work by the students. It offers a safe and reliable working environment for the students, the interface is intuitive and useable, and certainly we have found that students gain a greater understanding of the topic through using TOM than would be the case with more traditional methods of delivery“ Paul Morgan, Sir John Deane‘s College.

  

TOM’s underlying machine shows how  instructions are fetched from memory and executed…

“This is real education, deep stuff. It’s informative, accurate, interesting and  recommended. I don’t want to give it back." Parents & Computing

  

A succession of screens takes the user interactively through how the components of memory are constructed, from a simple array of controlled flip-flops, address decoding, finally to the above screen which interactively demonstrates how values are fetched from particular memory addresses.

How logic gates and memory works…

…Completes the picture.

When you can see inside a computer…

The TOM Simulator is ideal for teaching the concepts of how computers work now required from Key Stage 3 onwards.


Basically, it’s a transparent machine where all the memory and registers can be seen at once.  This promotes immediate understanding.


TOM’s screen allows interactive programming that includes branching, looping, subroutine calls with stack operations, input and output operations,  interrupt processing and memory mapped output.




This is a safe and easy to use point and click environment.  So there is none of the complexity of using an actual machine whilst all the concepts are clearly accessible.  Even complex mechanisms such as recursion and interrupts are immediately understandable because they are completely laid bare.