Computer–History, Generations, Hardware, Future
BY: Anson Martin D’costa
Fasil T. V.
Shibin T. V.
Vibith P. V.
Table of Contents
History of Computer
Generations of Computer
4.1 Central Processing Unit
4.2 Input Devices
4.3 Output devices
4.4 Memory of the Computer
Future Computer Technology
Computers are machines that perform tasks or calculations according to a set of instructions, or programs. The first fully electronic computers, introduced in the 1940s, were huge machines that required teams of people to operate. Compared to those early machines, today's computers are amazing. Not only are they thousands of times faster, they can fit on your desk, in your lap, or even in your pocket. Computers work through an interaction of hardware and software. Hardware refers to the parts of a computer that you can see and touch, including the case and everything inside it. The most important piece of hardware is a tiny rectangular chip inside your computer called the central processing unit (CPU), or microprocessor. It's the "brain" of your computer the part that translates instructions and performs calculations. Hardware items such as your monitor, keyboard, mouse, printer, and other items are often called hardware devices, or devices. Software refers to the instructions, or programs, that tell the hardware what to do. A word processing program that you can use to write letters on your computer is a type of software. The operating system (OS) is software that manages your computer and the devices connected to it. Two well-known operating systems are Windows and Macintosh operating system. Your computer uses the Windows operating system.
2. History of Computer
The word ‘computer’ is an old word that has changed its meaning several times in the last few centuries. Originating from the Latin, by the mid-17th century it meant ‘someone who computes’. The American Heritage Dictionary (1980) gives its first computer definition as “a person who computes.” The computer remained associated with human activity until about the middle of the 20th century when it became applied to “a programmable electronic device that can store, retrieve, and process data” as Webster’s Dictionary (1980) defines it. Today, the word computer refers to computing devices, whether or not they are electronic, programmable, or capable of ‘storing and retrieving’ data. One of the earliest machines designed to assist people in calculations was the abacus which is still being used some 5000 years after its invention. In 1642 Blaise Pascal a famous French mathematician invented an adding machine based on mechanical gears in which numbers were represented by the cogs on the wheels. Englishman, Charles Babbage, invented in the 1830's a "Difference Engine" made out of brass and pewter rods and gears, and also designed a further device which he called an "Analytical Engine". His design contained the five key characteristics of modern computers:- * An input device
* Storage for numbers waiting to be processed
* A processor or number calculator
* A unit to control the task and the sequence of its calculations * An output device
Augusta Ada Byron was an associate of Babbage who has become known as the first computer programmer. An American, Herman Hollerith, developed (around 1890) the first electrically driven device. It utilised punched cards and metal rods which passed through the holes to close an electrical circuit and thus cause a counter to advance. This machine was able to complete the Calculation of the 1890 U.S. census in 6 weeks compared with 7 1/2 years for the 1880 census which was manually counted. In 1936 Howard Aiken of Harvard University convinced Thomas Watson of IBM to invest $1...
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