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The Digital World vs The Real World Computers “speak” in terms of the binary language (“1” and “0”) which represent on and off pulses of electricity. Digital is very discreet - either the pulse is there or it isn’t. Our world is not discreet. We “speak” and hear along a continuous analog wave.

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the digital world vs the real world
The Digital World vs The Real World
  • Computers “speak” in terms of the binary language (“1” and “0”) which represent on and off pulses of electricity.
  • Digital is very discreet - either the pulse is there or it isn’t.
  • Our world is not discreet. We “speak” and hear along a continuous analog wave.
  • Our language is not discreet. What humans recognize as language must be converted to machine language.
the digital world vs the real world2
The Digital World vs The Real World
  • A “machine cycle” is the amount of time that it takes for a computer to:
    • Fetch and instruction from RAM (which has been put there as an input process from our world)
    • Decode the instruction into machine language
    • Execute the instruction inside of the ALU
    • Return the result back to RAM (which is then returned to us as an output process by the OS)
  • Measured in terms of MHz or MIPS (millions of instructions per second)
classification of computer systems
Classification of computer systems
  • Microcomputers
  • Mainframes
  • Supercomputers
microcomputers
Microcomputers
  • Personal computer: single-user computer. Desktop model, laptop, notebook, subnotebook, Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs)
  • Workstations: special PCs designed to support applications that require more power than ordinary personal computing.
  • Embedded: microcomputer is embedded inside of another machine.
  • Convergent Technologies
  • Network computers
supercomputers
Supercomputers
  • Usually several large integrated computers. Used primarily in defense and scientific organizations to process enormous amounts of data extremely fast.
  • Finding more use in traditional transaction environments.
mainframe
Mainframe
  • Large centralized computers. Normally used to process operational business transactions. Some firms may have more than one mainframe.
  • Usually supports hundreds or thousands of users.
  • Large data storage ability