Look at this picture of acomputer. A computer ismade up of many parts.Let’s explore the partsto see if you know whatthey are called!
The Monitor The monitor looks like a TV and lets lets you see your work and your files.
The CPU CPU stands for “Central Processing Unit”. They contain the brains of the computer. They can be desktop models that the monitor sits on top of, or tower models that stand up tall.
Floppy Disk DriveThe CPU has places to insert disks. Onekind of disk drive is a floppy disk drive.A floppy disk drive reads informationfrom a very thin, floppy disk inside a hardplastic case. Floppy disks can hold up to1.44 megabytes of information.
CD-ROM Disk Drive CD-ROM stands for Compact Disk-Read Only Memory. They are flat, shiny disks that store information. Most new computers have CD-RW drives. CD-RW stands for Compact Disk-ReWrite. This type of disk allows you to write information to it, as well as read from it. Most can hold up to 700 megabytes of information.
DVD Drive/BurnerThe newest computers come with theoption of a DVD drive. A DVD (DigitalVideo Disc) looks just like a CD, but holdsmuch more information! They can store 4.7gigabytes of data!
Flash /USB /Pen Drive A Flash Drive is a relatively new storage device. It’s like a mini, portable hard drive! You plug it into the USB (Universal Serial Bus) port on the front of newer computers and you can save to it!
How Do Computers Work? KeyBoard,Mouse,Input--This is when information is entered Scanner, into a computer. Some common input devices Tabletpen include the keyboard, mouse and scanner.Processing--This is when the information CPU is handled by the computer’s brain, known as the Processor Chip CPU (Central Processing Unit). INTEL,MOTOROLAOutput--This is the information that comes out of a computer after it has been processed. The information comes out on output devices Moniter,Printer, such as a printer or computer monitor. Speakers
Computer ProcessingOnce information has been sent to acomputer by one of the input devicesit’s processed. The computer uses it’sbrain to process the information. Thecomputer’s brain is called the CPU, orCentral Processing Unit.
The CPU is alsocalled themicroprocessor. Theword “micro” meanssmall. Since the CPUis located on a smallcomputer chip about1 inch square, thatmakes sense!
SpeakersSpeakers can be connected to yourcomputer so you can hear very realisticsound effects and wonderful music. Somecomputer monitors come with built inspeakers.
PrintersOne output device is a printer. Once acomputer user has created something onthe computer, such as a story, he cansend it to the printer. The printerprints exactly what’s on the screen.
Two Common Types of Printers An inkjet printer usually prints in color. It prints by squirting out small dots of ink onto the paper. A laser printer uses a laser beam to create an image that is transferred to paper. It uses toner and a drum. The ink is powder.
Random Access Memory When a computer processes information, it uses software programs. Each program requires a certain amount of electronic memory, or RAM (Random Access Memory) to run correctly.
Read-Only MemoryA second kind of computer memory isROM, which stands for Read-OnlyMemory. This memory is permanent.The information there was put therewhen the computer was made. Thecomputer needs the information init’s ROM memory in order tofunction.
What are all those parts inside mycomputer and what do they do???
Computer HardwareHard DriveMotherboardSound Card and Video CardMemory CardPower SupplyNIC CardBIOS
Hard Disk DriveThe Hard Disk Drive is a magnetic storagedevice. All the computer programs and filesyou create and save are located there. This ispermanent storage (at least until you uninstallsoftware or delete a file). The hard drive isnormally signified by the drive letter “C”.Today’s hard drives can store a HUGE amountof information. A new computer might have ahard drive that will hold 250 GB’s!
Inside the Hard Disk Drivecase you’ll find circular disksthat are made of steel. Onthe disks, there are manytracks, or cylinders. Anelectronic reading devicecalled the head passes backand forth over thecylinders, readinginformation from the disk orwriting to it.
Hard Disk Drives useMagnetic RecordingTechniques. The magneticmedium can be easilyerased and rewritten andwill “remember” themagnetic flux patternsstored on it for manyyears!
Hard Disk Drives can spin at 7200 or morerpm’s (Revolutions Per Minute). That means inone minute, the hard drive spins around morethan 7200 times!
Your computer couldn’t work without themotherboard. It ties everything together! Itallows every part of your computer to receivepower and communicate with each other.Everything that runs the computer or enhancesit’s performance is either part of themotherboard or plugs into one of it’s expansionslots or ports.
Sound and Video CardsSound and Video Cards are OutputDevices. They contain specialcircuits that allow your computer toplay sounds and display graphics onyour monitor.
Memory Card Remember RAM (Random Access Memory) and ROM (Read-Only Memory)?RAM cards will remember what you tell themand can even change to remember newinformation. But, when the computer is turnedoff, it forgets everything you did! That’s whyyou always save your work!ROM is good at remembering, but cannot changeit’s mind. It holds the information that wasbuilt into it!
Power SupplyIf there is any one component that is absolutelyvital to the operation of a computer, it is thepower supply! Without it, a computer is just abox full of plastic and metal. The power supplyconverts the alternating current (AC) line fromyour home or school to the direct current (DC)needed by the computer.
You can see the powersupply from the backof your computerbecause of the powercord and the coolingfan.Computers put out aLOT of heat and needthe fan to keep themfrom overheating.
Network Interface CardA NIC card (NetworkInterface Card) allowsyour computer to talk toother computers! Acable called Cat5 isplugged into the NICcard and your computercan then be attached toa network and be on theinternet!
BIOS CHIPA BIOS chip (Basic InputOutput System) is a veryimportant computercomponent. In simpleterms, the BIOS chipwakes up the computerwhen you turn it on andreminds it what parts ithas and what they do!
Just the beginning…..We just touched on the very basics withthis presentation! There is so much moreto understanding computers. There arebooks that are thousands of pages longthat explain how they work in greatdetail. But now maybe you understandthem more than you did before and you’llwant to keep learning. Keep computing!