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Chapter 1

Fundamentals of Computers

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Objectives
After learning this chapter, you will able to…

Define what computer is


Define functional units of computer
Know classifications of computers
Identify Computer Architectures
Identify Major components of computer system
Know the representation of information in computers

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What is a computer? 11/28/2018

• Simply put, a computer is a sophisticated electronic


calculating machine that:
Accepts input information,
Processes the information according to a list of internally stored
instructions and
Produces the resulting output information.
Fundamentals of Computers
• Functions performed by a computer are:
Accepting information to be processed as input.
Storing a list of instructions to process the information.
Processing the information according to the list of instructions.
Providing the results of the processing as output.
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• What are the functional units of a computer?
Functional units of a
computer
Input unit accepts Arithmetic and logic unit(ALU):
information: •Performs the desired
•Human operators, operations on the input
•Electromechanical devices information as determined
•Other computers by instructions in the memory

Memory
Arithmetic
Input
Instr1 & Logic
Instr2
Instr3 Fundamentals of Computers
Data1
Output Data2 Control

I/O Processor
Stores
information: Control unit coordinates
Output unit sends various actions
results of processing: •Instructions,
•Data •Input,
•To a monitor display, •Output
•To a printer •Processing
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Input unit
Binary information must be presented to a computer in a specific format. This
task is performed by the input unit:
- Interfaces with input devices.
- Accepts binary information from the input devices.
- Presents this binary information in a format expected by the computer.
- Transfers this information to the memory or processor.
Real world

Computer

Keyboard Memory
Audio input
…… Input Unit

Processor 5

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Output unit
 Computers represent information in a specific binary form. Output units:
- Interface with output devices.
- Accept processed results provided by the computer in specific binary form.
- Convert the information in binary form to a form understood by an
output device.
Computer Real world

Memory Printer
Graphics display
Speakers
Fundamentals of Computers

……
Output Unit

Processor
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Memory unit
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Memory unit stores instructions and data.


 Data is represented as a series of bits (1 or 0).
 To store data, memory unit thus stores bits.
Processor reads instructions and reads/writes data
from/to the memory during the execution of a
program.
 In theory, instructions and data could be fetched one bit at a time.(serially)
 In practice, a group of bits is fetched at a time.(parallel)
 Group of bits stored or retrieved at a time is termed as “word”
 Number of bits in a word is termed as the “word length” of a computer.

In order to read/write to and from memory, a


processor should know where to look: 7
 “Address” is associated with each word location.
Memory unit (contd..) 11/28/2018

Primary storage of the computer consists of RAM units.


 Fastest, smallest unit is Cache.
 Slowest, largest unit is Main Memory.
Primary storage is insufficient to store large amounts of
data and programs.
 Primary storage can be added, but it is expensive.
Fundamentals of Computers
Store large amounts of data on secondary storage
devices:
 Magnetic disks and tapes,
 Optical disks (CD-ROMS).
 Access to the data stored in secondary storage in slower, but take advantage of
the fact that some information may be accessed infrequently.
Cost of a memory unit depends on its access time, 8
lesser access time implies higher cost.
Information in a computer -- Instructions
Instructions specify commands to: 11/28/2018

Transfer information within a computer (e.g., from memory to


ALU)
Transfer of information between the computer and I/O devices
(e.g., from keyboard to computer, or computer to printer)
 Perform arithmetic and logic operations (e.g., Add two numbers,
Perform a logical AND).
A sequence of instructions to perform a task is called a
program, which is stored in the memory.
Processor fetches instructions that make up a program
from the memory and performs the operations stated in
those instructions.
What do the instructions operate upon?
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Information in a computer -- Data 11/28/2018

Data are the “operands” upon which instructions operate.


Data could be:
 Numbers,
 Encoded characters.

Data, in a broad sense means any digital information.


Computers use data that is encoded as a string of binary digits called
bits.

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Arithmetic and logic unit (ALU) 11/28/2018

Operations are executed in the Arithmetic and Logic Unit (ALU).


 Arithmetic operations such as addition, subtraction.
 Logic operations such as comparison of numbers.

In order to execute an instruction, operands need to be brought into


the ALU from the memory.
 Operands are stored in general purpose registers available in the ALU.
 Access times of general purpose registers are faster than the cache memory.

Results of the operations are stored back in the memory or retained in


the processor for immediate use.
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Control unit 11/28/2018

Operation of a computer can be summarized as:


 Accepts information from the input units (Input unit).
 Stores the information (Memory).
 Processes the information (ALU).
 Provides processed results through the output units (Output unit).
Operations of Input unit, Memory, ALU and Output unit are
coordinated by Control unit. Fundamentals of Computers

Instructions control “what” operations take place (e.g. data transfer,


processing).
Control unit generates timing signals which determines “when” a
particular operation takes place.
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How are the functional units
connected?
 For a computer to achieve its operation, the functional units need to
communicate with each other.
 In order to communicate, they need to be connected.

Input Output Memory Processor

Bus

 Functional units may be connected by a group of parallel wires.


 The group of parallel wires is called a bus.
 Each wire in a bus can transfer one bit of information.
 The number of parallel wires in a bus is equal to the word length of
a computer
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Computer Architecture basics
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Architecture: specification detailing how a set of software and


hardware technology standards interact to form computer system.
Design of computer and its technology compatibility.
Two types
Von Neumann Architecture
Harvard architecture

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Von Neumann Architecture 11/28/2018

John von Neumann was a consultant to the ENIAC project. The team discussed
changing the way computers were programmed. Von Neumann publicized and
popularized these ideas.
The instructions could be converted into numbers and placed in memory along
with the data. This is known as the stored program concept.
The combination of the basic units (ALU, control, memory, input and output) and
the stored program concept give one the “von Neumann architecture.”

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Harvard architecture 11/28/2018

In the von Neumann architecture, the instructions and data are held in
the same memory.
A variation on this, known as the Harvard architecture, has the
instructions and data held in separate memories.
A more modern variation on the Harvard architecture isofto
Fundamentals have the
Computers

data and instructions in the same main memory but to place them in
separate caches.

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Fundamentals of Computers

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Computer System Components
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1. hardware

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Input Devices
Input Devices: devices that input
information into the computer such
as

keyboard
mouse
scanner
digital camera…etc

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Output Devices
Output: devices that output
information from the computer
such as a

 printer
monitor.
Speaker

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Central Processing Unit
 CPU (Central Processing Unit) also called the Microprocessor or “The Brain” or
Processor of the Computer.

 Processor speed: The speed at which a microprocessor executes instructions. This is


usually measured in megahertz (MHz).

 Brands of Processors include:


 Intel
 AMD

Some of intel processor families are


 Intel Pentium
 Intel core i3
 Intel core i5 etc.

Reading Assignment
Study the differences of each intel processor family.

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Central Processing Unit
Computer chip: also called the microprocessor
may contain an entire processing unit.
Computer chips contain millions of transistors.
They are small pieces of semi-conducting
material (silicon).
An integrated circuit is embedded in the silicon.
Computers are made of many chips on a circuit
board.

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Data Storage Devices

The hard-drive is a mechanical


storage device typically located
internally.

Fast recording and recovery of


data
Large storage capacity
Primary storage device for data
and programs
Speed is measured in R.P.M.’s

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2. Software
The software component of the computer is used to operate the computer
Divided into two parts
Application software (AutoCAD, Microsoft word etc.)
System software (Operating Systems)

Operating System
Perform common computer hardware functionsFundamentals of Computers
Provide a user interface
Manage system memory
Manage processing tasks
Provide networking capability
Control access to system resources
Manage files
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Role of the Operating System 11/28/2018

Fundamentals of Computers

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Application Software Interface 11/28/2018

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Popular Operating Systems

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Sources of Software 11/28/2018

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Summary 11/28/2018

 Hardware devices work together to perform input, processing, data storage, and output.

 There are two main categories of software: systems software and application software.

 An operating system (OS) is a set of computer programs that controls the computer hardware to
support users’ computing needs.

 Application software may be proprietary or off-the-shelf.

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Assignment (In a Group of 5)

1. What are different computer classifications? Describe each


2. List all computer evolutions and describe
each

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Questions??

Next
Binary Number Representations on Computers

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