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Fundamentals of Information Technology INFORMATION: Consists of facts and items of knowledge. It can be anything that has meaning to people. Usually information is expressed in words and numbers. However, it can be expressed in other forms, such as sounds, measurements or pictures.
A list of names and addresses
The contents of a letter
The words of a song
DATA: Is information in which it can be processed. 40 47 32 39 28 51
A word processed letter stored on a floppy disc
A song written as sheet music so that it can be played.
A telephone conversation converted to electrical signals to be sent down the wires.
A device is digital if some quantity in it can be set to a number of different separate values or states. Data is then represented by combinations by these values. Usually the devices are binary and data is represented as a succession of 1s and 0s.
An analogue device is one in which data is represented by some quantity which is continuously variable. The value of a data item at a given time is represented by the size of the quantity measured on a fixed scale.
A Computer is a programmable, multipurpose machine that accepts data (e.g. raw data, facts & figures) and processes, or manipulates it into information we can use, such as summaries or totals A COMPUTER E.g. An Automated Teller Machine (ATM) computes the deposits and withdrawals to give you the total in your account.
A COMPUTER (ISO) Computer: (ISO) A programmable functional unit that consists of one or more associated processing units and peripheral equipment, that is controlled by internally stored programs and that can perform substantial computation, including numerous arithmetic operations or logic operations, without human intervention during a run. A computer may be a stand-alone unit or may consist of several interconnected units.
PHYSICAL COMPONENTS OF A COMPUTER The physical components of a computer system such as the computer itself, its inner components and peripherals are called hardware.
Analog Computers :- These computers recognize data as a continuous measurement of a physical property ( voltage, pressure, speed and temperature).
Example: Automobile speedometer
Digital Computers :- These are high speed programmable electronic devices that perform mathematical calculations, compare values and store results. They recognize data by counting discrete signal representing either a high or low voltage state of electricity.
Digital computers are grouped into two categories:
Super Computers :- are widely used in scientific applications such as aerodynamic design simulation, processing of geological data.
Mainframe Computers :- are usually slower, less powerful and less expensive than supercomputers. A technique that allows many people at terminals, to access the same computer at one time is called time sharing. Mainframes are used by banks and many business to update inventory etc.
Minicomputers :- are smaller than mainframe, general purpose computers, and give computing power without adding the prohibitive expenses associated with larger systems. It is generally easier to use. Small Computer Systems :- is the smallest, least expensive of all the computers. Micro computers have smallest memory and less power, are physically smaller and permit fewer peripherals to be attached.