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A quick introduction to the monsters that lurk at the centre of each galaxy.
Leslie Lamport explains how an understanding of special relativity helped him realise how to order events in computer science, and enabled the development of distributed computing.
Leslie Lamport explains how he used logical clocks to set history straight in distributed systems.
Our digital lives rely on distributed computer systems, such as the network of banks that allow us to deposit cash in one place and withdraw it in another. But understanding the order of events in such systems is not always straightforward.
Here we present a worked example of a distributed system in action, to illustrate Leslie Lamport's rules of ordering history using logical clocks.