COMPUTER –MEANING, COMPONENTS, CHARACTERISTICS AND LIMITATIONS

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Computer

Being a modern-day lad, you must have seen, heard, or use a computer. This is because computers have now become an integral part of our daily lives.

Everyone from bankers to students used computers for one reason or the other.

Hence, we must study computers. Let's start with the definition of a computer.

A computer is an electronic device that accepts data and instructions as input, process, manipulates, and produce information as output.

A simpler definition of a computer is that it is a general-purpose machine that can be programmed to perform arithmetical and logical operations automatically.

A computer can also be defined as an electronic device operating under the control of instructions stored on its memory.

How does the computer work?

Whenever a computer is used, it must pass through three stages: input, processing, and output.

1. Input: This is mainly concerned with getting data or instruction into the system. It is mainly done by input devices.

2. Processing: At this stage, the data is processed into meaningful information.

Once this data has been processed, it will be of less use if it is not easily retrievable for the system. Hence, the output stage.

3. Output: This is mainly concerned with retrieving processed data as information that is meaningful to the user.

Output from the computer is obtained using output devices

What is outputted at this stage is as good as what was inputted.

In other words, if garbage was inputted, garbage will also be output.

This is what computer scientists called Garbage in Garbage out.

Components Of Computer

A computer is majorly made up of two components: Hardware and software

1. Hardware: This is the tangible component that the made up the computer.

Hardware includes:

  • Main memory
  • Secondary memory
  • Central Processing Unit (CPU)
  • Input device
  • Output device.

We have already discussed hardware here

2. Software: These are sets of programs that the computer used to execute and perform its function.

Generally, the software is divided into two parts, namely: System software and Application software.

Software has also been extensively discussed here.

Characteristics Of A Computer

1. Speed: A computer can carry out millions of instructions per second.

2. Accuracy: Computer possess a high degree of accuracy. Errors that may occur are usually caused by humans.

3. Diligence: A computer, unlike a human, is free from monotony and tiredness. It can be performed many tasks with the same speed and accuracy

4. Automatic: once the program and instruction have been received by the computer, the computer performs the task even without human interaction.

5. Storage: A computer can store a large amount of data. Memory is an important component of the computer.

Limitations of Computer 

Although a computer has the above characteristic that makes it an intelligent machine, it has the following limitations:

1. Computers have no intelligence: Ordinarily, computers have no self-intelligence. They perform tasks blindly without minding the outcome.

2.  Wrong input, wrong output: As a result of no self intelligence, if the users send wrong data, the computer also displayed wrong data.

3. Human dependent: Generally, computers are dependent on humans. This is because the operations of computers are inherently dependent on the user's instruction.

4. Computer has no feeling: It can not make a judgment based on knowledge, feeling experience.

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1 comment

  1. Is there a difference between computer as an intelligent machine and it not having intelligence. Can you provide an explanation with example Sir

    ReplyDelete

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