Essential introduction to computers – Part 1
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Essential introduction to computers – Part 1. Outline. Computers and computer literacy What is a computer? The information processing cycle Data versus information Components of a computer Input devices The central processing unit The main memory Output devices

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Outline

  • Computers and computer literacy

  • What is a computer?

  • The information processing cycle

  • Data versus information

  • Components of a computer

    • Input devices

    • The central processing unit

    • The main memory

    • Output devices

  • Where does the power of a computer come from?

  • Hardware versus software


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Computers and computer literacy

  • Examples of computers?

    • Desktop, laptop, palmtop, …

  • Computer literacy:

    • Knowledge of the computer components

    • Knowledge of how a computer works

    • Knowledge of computer uses



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UNIX – Most Popular High End OS

Ken invented UNIX in cooperation with Dennis and Dennis invented the C Programming Language

Dennis Ritchie

Ken Thompson


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UNIX – On A PDP-11 In 1971This was Dr. Brown’s First Ever “Personal Computer”.012 MB RAM!



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What is a computer?

  • A computer is a programmable, multiuse machine that:

    • Accepts input

    • Processes it

    • Stores the processing results

    • Provides output

    • Communicates with others (For example: Other computers on a network such as the Internet)



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The information processing cycle

  • Basic operations of a computer:

    • Input

    • Processing

    • Output

    • Secondary storage


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Data versus information

  • Data --> Facts

  • Information --> Meaning



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Components of a computer …

  • Five major categories of devices

    • Input devices

    • System unit -- Processing & memory (CPU & RAM)

    • Output devices

    • Storage devices

    • Communications devices

  • Note: Input, output, storage, and communications devices are also called peripheral devices


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Components of a computer ...

  • Examples of computer devices:

    • Input --> Keyboard; Mouse; Scanner

    • System unit --> CPU; Main Memory

    • Output --> CRT; Printer; Sound

    • Secondary storage --> Floppy Disk; Hard Disk; Magnetic Tape; Optical Disc (CD-ROM)

    • Communications -->Wired; Wireless; Modem


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Components of a computer ... – The keyboard

  • A typical keyboard has:

    • Standard typewriter keys -- QWERTY

    • Enter key or Return key

    • Cursor movement keys

    • Numeric keys

    • Function keys -- For frequent tasks

    • Special-purpose keys -- Backspace, Delete, Insert, Esc, Ctrl, and Alt.

    • The start key is used for accessing system resources in Windows.


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Standard Typewriter Keys

Function Keys

Numeric Keypad Keys

The keyboard ...

Special Purpose Keys

Cursor Movement Keys


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Components of a computer ... – The mouse

  • The mouse is used with a Graphical User Interface (GUI).

  • Usage:

    • Rolled about on a desktop -- Directs a pointer on the screen.

    • Has a number of buttons (+a wheel).

    • Can be used to: click on an item or to drag it and drop it.

  • Types of mice:

    • Mechanical

    • Optical

    • Cordless


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Components of a computer ... – The Central Processing Unit

CPU carries out instructions retrieved from main memory.

C U

CPU contains the CU and the ALU

ALU

Registers


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Components of a computer ... – The main memory

  • Also known as memory, primary storage, internal memory, or Random Access Memory (RAM).

  • It is the working storage or “working space”.

  • Holds data, instructions, and intermediate results.



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Components of a computer ... – Printers

  • Impact printers: Dot matrix printers are the most common impact printers.

  • Non-impact printers:

    • Ink-jet printers

    • Laser printers

  • Measuring the speeds of different printers


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Components of a computer ... – Computer screens

  • Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) screens

  • Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) screens

  • The pixel is the smallest unit of any screen image

  • Measuring the resolutions of different computer screens


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Where does the power of a computer come from?

  • Five factors make a computer powerful in carrying out its basic operations:

    • Speed

    • Reliability

    • Accuracy

    • Storage capacity

    • Ability to communicate with other computers


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Hardware versus software

  • Hardware  Circuitry and physical components

  • Software (also programs or computer programs) consist of step-by-step instructions that tell the computer how to perform tasks

  • Each program is written in a computer programming language

  • Most computers carry out the instructions of a program in a sequential manner (meaning one instruction after another until the whole program is completed)


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