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Computers: Tools for an Information Age

Chapter 1

Objectives
• Describe the three fundamental characteristics of computers • Describe at least four areas of society in which computers are used • Identify the basic components of a computer system: input, processing, output, and storage • List some common input, output, and storage media • Distinguish data from information • Describe the significance of networking • Explain the significance of the Internet • Explain the various classifications of computers

Contents
• • • • • • Information Age Computer Literacy Where Computers Are Used Computer System Network Classifications of Computers

Information Age
• Evolving more rapidly than Industrial Age • Will continue into the current century

Cornerstones of our Economy
Forging a Computer-Based Society:
• • • • Land Labor Capital Information

Jobs Forging a Computer-Based Society: • From physical to mental • From muscle-power to brain-power .

A Computer in Your Future • Where used? – Bank withdrawal – Supermarket – Drive the car • Do I need a Personal Computer? – Half of Americans have one at home – Many more use at work • Will I use a computer in my future career? – Almost every job will involve use of a computer .

Computer Literacy • Awareness – Importance – Versatility – Pervasiveness in our society • Knowledge – What are computers – How do computers work – Terminology • Interaction – Use some simple computer applications .

The Nature of Computers Characteristics • Speed • Reliability • Storage capability Results • Productivity • Decision making • Cost reduction .

Where Computers Are Used Graphics Graphs and charts Animated graphics Visual walk-through .

Where Computers Are Used Education • Teaching and testing aid • Learning by doing • Computer-based instruction .

Where Computers Are Used Retailing • Bar codes for pricing and inventory • Shipping .

Where Computers Are Used Energy • Locate oil. natural gas. coal. and uranium • Monitor the power network • Meter reading .

Where Computers Are Used Law Enforcement • National fingerprint files • National files on criminal • Computer modeling of DNA .

Where Computers Are Used Transportation • Cars • Run rapid transit systems • Load containerships • Track railroad cars • Monitor air traffic .

Where Computers Are Used Money • Record keeping • Banking by phone • Credit cards .

Where Computers Are Used Agriculture • Billing • Crop information • Feed combinations • Livestock breeding and performance .

Where Computers Are Used Government • Forecast weather • Manage parks • Process immigrants • Social Security benefits • Taxes .

Where Computers Are Used The Home • • • • • Educational tool Record keeping Letter writing Budgeting Drawing and editing pictures • Newsletters • Connecting with others .

Where Computers Are Used Health and Medicine • Monitor patients • Electronic imaging • Diagnose illnesses .

Where Computers Are Used Robotics • Perform jobs that are dangerous for humans • Factory work .

Where Computers Are Used The Human Connection • Assist the disabled • Assist athletes by monitoring their movements .

Where Computers Are Used The Sciences • Research • Simulation Connectivity • Communication • Telecommuting .

Where Computers Are Used Training • Airline pilots • Railroad engineers Paperwork • Junk mail • Term paper • Record keeping .

Computers are all around! • • • • • Grocery store School Library Bank Mail We interact with computers everyday! .

Computer System People Software Hardware .

People • Computer programmer – person who writes programs • Users or End-users – make use of the computer’s capabilities .

Software • Programs • Set of instructions that directs the hardware to do a required task and produce the desired results .

Hardware Basic Components of a Computer .

and store it away (in secondary storage device) for safekeeping or later reuse • Process is directed by software but performed by the hardware . process it into useful information (output).Computer • A machine that can be programmed to accept data (input).

Function of Computer System Data handling I P O S Input Process Output Storage .

Input devices • Accept data or commands and convert them to electronic form • Getting data into the computer – Typing on a keyboard – Pointing with a mouse – Scanning with a wand reader or bar-code reader – Terminal .

Output devices • Convert from electronic form to some other form • May display the processed results • Usable information Monitor or screen • • • • • • Text Numbers Symbols Art Photographs Video Printer • Black and white • Color .

output and storage .The Processor Central Processing Unit (CPU) • Converts data to useful information • Interpret and execute instructions • Communicate with input.

Two Types of Storage • Secondary storage long-term storage • Primary storage or memory temporary storage .

Memory / Primary Storage • Temporary storage • Holds input to be processed • Holds results of processing • Contains the programs to control the computer and manipulate input into output • Volatile .

Secondary Storage • Long-term storage • Non-volatile .

Secondary Storage Examples • Magnetic disks – read and written by magnetic disk drive – Hard disk – Diskette • Optical disks – read and written by optical disk drives – CD-ROM – DVD-ROM • Magnetic tape – read and written by magnetic tape drives – Primarily used for back-up .

Computer System • Computer – CPU – Memory • Peripheral equipment – Connected to the computer by a cable – Input. storage . output.

• Types – Local area network (LAN) – connects computers in close proximity – Metropolitan are network (MAN) – connect computers between buildings in the same geographic area – Wide are network (WAN) – connects computers over great distances .Network • Definition – A system that uses communications equipment to connect computers and their resources.

Home Connectivity • Connect home PC to other computers • Use modem to convert signals between electronic (computer) and analog (voice) formats .

Internet • • • • Collection of networks No ownership No central source for services available No comprehensive index of what information is available Connects Everyone! Individuals Businesses Organizations Libraries Research labs Government .

Getting Connected • User’s computer must connect to a server • Server must communicate using TCP/IP • The user can purchase access to a server from an ISP (Internet Service Provider) .

Internet – What Can You Do? • WWW – World Wide Web • FTP – File Transfer Protocol • E-mail • UseNet • IRC – Internet Relay Chat • Bulletin Boards .

World Wide Web • Browser – program that allows the user to move around and explore the Internet • Use the mouse to point and click on text and graphics • Web page • Web site • Home page .

Classifications of Computers • Use the computer that fits your needs • Based upon – Size – Speed – Cost – Portability – Number of simultaneous users supported – Available software – Typical use .

Personal Computers • Other names – PC – Microcomputer – Home computer – Low-end functional – Fully powered – Workstations – Net computer or net box (Web TV) • Categories • Desktop Models .

Notebook Computers • Portable – Lightweight – Fits in a briefcase – Battery operated • Laptop – Larger – Heavier • More expensive that desktop models .

Handheld Computers • Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) – Scheduling – Addresses – Handwritten input – May offer wireless e-mail and fax • Pocket – More power than PDA – Runs basic productivity software .

Other Types of Computers Mainframes – – – – – High speed More expensive Used to process large amounts of data quickly Support multiple users Does server tasks Supercomputers – Fastest speed – Most expensive .