Computer Fundamentals - VISUAL BASIC TUTORIAL

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Sunday, August 1, 2010

Computer Fundamentals

Definition to a Computer: Computer is a electric machine. It can store, retrieve, manipulate and transmit data (information). It carries out instructions to solve problems quickly and accurately. The name "Computer" means to reckon or "to compute" has derived from the Latin word "Computare". It can be compared to an abacuss or an adding machine.


Characteristics: The characteristics that are found in digital computers are speed and memory. The stored program directs the performance with least intervention of the programmer (fairly automatic).

Capabilities: The basic functions of computers are (a) Arithematic Calculations ie. add, subtract, multiply, divide etc. (b) Compare (c) Store, search, retrieve and manipulate. The time required for execution of these basic operations vary from a micro second in small to a nano second (1/billionth) or less for large computers.

It works one step at a time. It is versatile, diligent and very accurate. The computer users term the errors as GIGO means Garbage In Garbage Out.

Units of Measure for Computer Speed
Unit of time Mesure
Milli-Second 1/Thousandth (1/1000)
Micro-Second 1/Millionth (1/1,000,000)
Nano-Second 1/Billionth (1/1,000,000,000)
Pico-Second 1/Trillionth (1/1,000,000,000,000)

What the Computers can do? The computers can provide the right information at the right time to the right person to enable him to take the right decisions to plan and implement it.

Next: History of Computers

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