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Basic concepts of computer

Objectives: 1. Discuss the effects of computers in our daily life. 2. Discuss the history of computers. 3. Describe the types and uses of computers. 4. Define an operating system. 5. Differentiate between computer hardware and software. 6. Identify the components of a computer

Computer Concepts
Definition of a Computer History of Computer Significance of Studying Computers Types and uses of computers

Computer Parts and its Function > Components of computer

an electronic device that stores, retrieves, & processes data, and can be programmed with instructions. It is composed of hardware and software, and can exist in a variety of sizes and configurations.

Effects of computers

Computers contribute much to the success of business enterprises by facilitating communication and information sharing.

History of Computers
I. The Personal Computer (PC) or Microcomputer: The word personal computer came to light when the functions of large machines were brought right into the desktop. A small form factor that fits ontop of the office table and the user can see all the component parts of the machine.

First Personal computer 1975

Manufacturers used integrated circuit technology to build smaller and cheaper computers. The first of these so-called personal computers (PCs)- the Altair 8800-appeared in 1975, sold by micro Instrumentation Telemetry Systems (MITS). The Altair used an 8-bit Intel 8080 microprocessor, had 256 bytes of RAM. The Altair was built from a kit received input through switches on the front panel, and displayed output on rows of lightemitting diodes (LEDS).

Refinements in the PC continued with the inclusion of the video displays, better storage devices and CPUs with more computational abilities. Graphical user interfaces were first designed by the Xerox corporation, and then later used successfully by Apple Computer Inc. Today, the development of sophisticated operating systems such as Windows, the Mc OS, and Linux enables computer users to run programs and manipulate data in ways that were unimaginable in the mid20th century.

In 1981, International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) introduced the IBM PC. It was designed in an open architecture that enabled other computer manufacturers to create similar machines, or clone that could also run software designed for the IBM PC. The design of the IBM PC and its clone soon became the dominant software running PCs.

A graphical user interface (GUI)-a visually appealing way to represent computer commands and data on the screen-was first developed in 1983 when Apple introduced the Lisa, but the new user interface did not gain widespread notice until 1984 with the introduction of the Apple Macintosh. The Macintosh GUI combined icons (pictures that represent files or programs) with windows (boxes that each contain an open file or program). A pointing device known as a mouse controlled information on the screen.

The Macintosh user interface made computers easy and fun to use and eliminated the need to type in complex commands. Today, software available for IBM PCs and clones, as well as most popular computer platforms, also feature the GUI.

Todays personal computer

In 1965 semiconductor pioneer Gordon Moore founder of Texas Instruments predicted that the number of transistors contained on the computer chip would double every year. This is now known as Moores Law, and it has proven to be somewhat accurate. The number of transistors and the computational speed of microprocessors currently double approximately in every 18 months.

Components continue to shrink in size and are becoming faster, cheaper, and more versatile. By the end of the decade microprocessors contained many millions of transistors, transferred 64 bits of data at once, and performed billions of instructions per second.

Todays personal computer is no less than 1,000 times faster than in 1981 and has 3 billion clock pulses. It comes with Gigabytes of memory, gigabytes of storage and has vivid and finer color display and becoming less expensive. The boundary as to computing power between Large computers and Personal computers is becoming nil and it is only a mater of size.

Personal Digital Assistant (PDA), hand-held computer that helps with such task as taking notes, scheduling appointments, and sending faxes and electronic mail. PDAs are also called Personal Communicators and Personal Intelligent Communicators. Most PDAs can connect to the computer, either through telephone lines, radio waves, or a computer cable.

Many have PC card slots (PCMCIA2) for attaching modems and other auxiliary devices. Most PDAs are capable of at least limited handwriting recognition, touch screen, allowing users to enter notes into the computer with a special penlike device rather than with a keyboard.

In personal ID biometrics, the computer automate methods for indentifying the basis of some biological or behavioral characteristics of the person. Many biological characteristics such as finger prints, eyes and behavioral characteristics, such as voice patterns are distinctive to each person.

Therefore biometrics is more reliable and more capable in distinguishing between a specific individual and an impostor than any technique based on an identification (ID) document or password. The word biometrics comes from the word bios (Life) and metriKos (measure)

Types and Uses of computers

3 Major types of computers: The first type includes the very large ones, usually known as mainframes A few years ago these were the only kind of computers available until miniaturization of components came along and give rise to the minicomputers. Nowadays, mainframe computer cost anywhere from two to over ten million pesos.

The mainframe computer can be centralized in one big information center or it can be spread widely among a number of terminals or computer substations. These terminals can be installed in different locations away from each other. Whether centralized or not, mainframe can be used by a number of people at the same time.

The second type includes the minicomputers which have been popular in business and industry for the last seven years. These usually cost from five hundred thousand to two million pesos. A minicomputer, like a mainframe is also equipped with terminals, but a more limited number. The terminals of a minicomputer can not be installed in locations away from each other, unlike mainframe terminals. But a minicomputer can also be used by several users at the same time.

The third type includes the microcomputers which can only be used by one person at a time, doing only one function at a time. Originally developed as a hobby or game machines, they are now the most widely used computers in schools and offices. A microcomputer big enough for for business application usually cost forty thousand pesos or less. Standard brands of microcomputers include the IBM_PC, Apple, Commodore, and Apple Macintosh. In addition, there are non standard brands, otherwise known as compatibles like IBM-compatible.

Why do we study computer?

Education Employment Productivity & Capability Fun

What is a Computer System?


Basic operations of Computer

I nput P rocessing O utput S torage

CENTRAL PROCESSING UNIT The central processing unit (CPU) is the heart of the computer system. All processing is carried out by the CPU.

Data are input through the input device. The function of the input device is to put the data into a form that is acceptable to the computer.

MAIN MEMORY The computer system needs stored programs and data to carry out the processing. These are stored in the main memory.

OUTPUT DEVICE The results are output by the output device in a form that can be understood by humans.

STORAGE As the main memory is of limited space, some data and programs are stored in the backing store

Basic Components of an
IT System

Hardware Software People ware

It refers to a peripheral devices that comprises computer

Categories of hardware
1) Input devices 2) Output Devices 3) Storage Devices


1) Input Devices
Keyboard Touch Screen Monitor Electronic Mouse Light Pen and Graphics Tablet Barcode Scanners Biometric Finger prints Magnetic Strip Readers

An input device consisting of various keys that allows the user to input data, control cursor and Pointer locations, and to control the dialog with the workstation.

Touch Screen Monitor

A computer screen the user touches in order to make choices instead of using a keyboard or mouse.

A device that controls the movement of the cursor or pointer on a display screen.

SCANNER / barcode

Biometric Finger Print


Located on the back-side of a plastic card, contains encoded information; Has 3 (three) lines the first line stores the cardholders name; The second line contains the card number and expiration date; And the third allows to input additional information, though used rarely.

2) Output Devices
Monitor Printers Plotters Computer Output on Microfilm (COM)

A device similar to a television screen that receives video signals from the computer and displays the information for the user.

CRT monitor

LCD monitor

is a computer peripheral device that produces a hard copy (permanent human-readable text and/or graphics, usually on paper) from data stored in a computer connected to it.

DOT matrix printer

INK jet Printer

LASER printer

is a vector graphics printing device that connects to a computer.

3) Storage Devices
Type of Storage

1. Primary Storage
- A storage location that holds memory for short periods of times.

2. Secondary Storage
- A storage medium that holds information until it is deleted or overwritten.

1) Primary Storage
Classification of Primary storage
1. RAM - (Read Access Memory)
it is temporary storage that holds data for a short period of time.

2. ROM - (Read Only Memory)

refers to special memory used to store programs that boot the computer and perform diagnostics.

Types of RAM
Differ in the technology they use to hold data, 1. Dynamic RAM needs to be refreshed thousands of times per second, dynamic RAM being the more common type.

2. Static RAM does not need to be refreshed, which makes it faster; but it is also more expensive than dynamic RAM. Both types of RAM are volatile, meaning that they lose their contents when the power is turned off.

Types of ROM
1. MROM (Mask ROM) - contain a software mask
that is burned onto the chip during the design phase of the semiconductor manufacturing process.

2. PROM (programmable ROM ) one step up from the

masked ROM, w/c is purchased unprogrammed. The process of writing your data involves a special piece of equipment called a device programmer.

3. EPROM (erasable-and-programmable ROM)

EPROMs can be erased and reprogrammed Repeatedly. It can be erased by exposing it to ultraviolet light. It is more expensive than PROM.

2) Secondary Storage
Magnetic Disk Systems
Optical Disk Systems

Magnetic Tape Systems

Magnetic Disk System

data is encoded as microscopic magnetized needles on the disk's surface. You can record and erase data on a magnetic disk any number of times, just as you can with a cassette tape.

Diskettes / Zip Disk

Hard Drive

Disk Storage for Larger Computers

Floppy Disk or Diskettes

Zip Disk

Hard Disk

Disk Storage for Larger Computer

Optical disk System

A storage medium from which data is read and to which it is written by lasers.

WORM Rewritable CDs DVDs




Magnetic Tape Systems

It refers to any program that tells the computer system What to do.

Two types of Software

Systems software consists of low-level programs that interact with the computer at a very basic level. This includes operating systems, compilers, and utilities for managing computer resources.

System Software

Application Software
A type of a software that was designed & created to perform a specific personal business or scientific processing tasks.

System Software

Microsoft Windows



Application Software

People ware

1. System Analyst 2. Programmer a. System b. Application 3. Computer Operator 4. Data Encoder 5. Data Controller

6.EDP Librarian

7.Computer Technician
8.Computer Engineer 9.Computer Analyst

10. Database Administrator


1. Identify and illustrate the basic operation of the computer. 2. What are the basic components of the computer system? 3. What are the categories of hardware? enumerate examples in each category. 4. Identify the types of software and give examples in each type. 5. Differentiate hardware from software.


Main board (mother board)
Processor (CPU) Memory

Tower, laptop, allin-one or other packaging for the electronics Peripheral attachments) Monitor Printer Keyboard & Mouse Speakers Microphones & headsets Scanners, etc.

Hard disk drive Drives for removable media (CD, DVD, ZIP) Modem Ethernet card Video card Audio card

A mid-tower front panel

Data Ports (Back)

Universal Serial Bus is fast. USB 1.1 = 12 Mbps USB 2.0 = 480 Mbps Supported devices include:
Scanners Printers Keyboards Mice Cameras Web cam

Image courtesy PASCO Scientific

USB. Ports & symbol.

FireWire - I/O (IEEE 1394)

Extremely fast with sustained speed of up to 400 & 800 Mbps Very useful in communicating with a digital video camera. Fast communication to large capacity external storage devices.

Look for this logo on FireWire products.


Case and power supply. The case houses all the components.

Motherboard. The motherboard is the main circuit board where the CPU, RAM, expansion cards (modem, sound card, video card, etc.), hard drive, floppy drive, and CD-ROM connect.

CPU (processor) back.

CPU (processor) front. The CPU is the main chip that handles complex mathamatical calculations in order to run software (programs such as Windows, games, etc.).

RAM is used to store the software that is running, and to hold the CPU's calculations.

Hard drive. The hard drive is used to store programs for later use.

The floppy drive is a removable storage device, only it does not have near the storage capacity of a hard drive

The CD-ROM is used to install programs from a CD. CD-R drives can burn CD's as well as read them. CD-RW drives can erase CD's and rewrite to them.

The modem is used for communications through a phone line, such as FAXing or accessing the Internet.

The video card is what allows a monitor to connect to the PC.

LAN card

Wireless PCI

Ethernet Adapter


I. Identify the items corresponding to a given number, then classify it according to the three main components. a. input device b. output device c. storage device II. Give the function or uses of each item.

1. keyboard 2. 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10