Chapter 1 (Limitations and evolutions of computer)

Chapter 1

Limitations and evolutions of computer

Characteristics / Features of Computer

   1.       Speed (Processing)

   2.       Accuracy

   3.       Reliability

   4.       Storage Capacity

   5.       Word Length

   6.       Diligence

   7.       Versatile

   8.       Automatic

   9.       Electronic

  10.   Non-intelligent

Application Areas of Computer

   1.       Education

   2.       Communication

   3.       Business

   4.       Transportation

   5.       Banking

   6.       Health, Medicine, hospital

   7.       Security, military

   8.       Industry

   9.       Scientific research

   10.   Entertainment

   11.   Weather Forecasting

   12.   Desktop Publishing

   13.   Designing

   14.   Satellite Controlling

   15.   Aviation

Applications of Computer

  •          Storing and maintain records
  •          Helping deaf and dump people to communicate
  •          Controlling the process of production in industries
  •          Translating text from one language to another
  •          Transforming information from one place to another
  •          Playing games at homes
  •          Logging archaeological findings
  •          Designing and launching missiles, rockets, etc.
Advantages of Computer

 Ø  They are fast device which helps us save our time and money

 Ø  It is an automatic device

 Ø  It is a diligence device

 Ø  It is versatile i.e. it can be used in many different fields with minimum changes to it

 Ø  It is always accurate and reliable then humans

 Ø  It has a vast space for data storage

 Ø  It can be used for communication purpose

Disadvantages of Computer

 v  It is machine dependent

 v  Repair and maintenance is required frequently

 v  Skilled manpower is must to work in computers

 v  It is still unaffordable to every household due to its very high cost

 v  It has been widely used for cyber crimes

 v  Computer users become completely dependent upon computers and working without them will be very difficult

 v  With the overwhelming use of computer, unemployment problems might be created in lack of proper policies

classification table

History of Computer (Some important ones are only discussed over here)

ABACUS

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A Chinese abacus

Description: http://bits.wikimedia.org/skins-1.18/common/images/magnify-clip.png 

The abacus, also called a counting frame, is a calculating tool used primarily in parts of Asia for performing arithmetic processes. Today, abaci are often constructed as a bamboo frame with beads sliding on wires, but originally they were beans or stones moved in grooves in sand or on tablets of wood, stone, or metal. The abacus was in use centuries before the adoption of the written modern numeral system and is still widely used by merchants, traders and clerks in Asia, Africa, and elsewhere. The user of an abacus is called an abacist.

EDVAC

The EDVAC is the successor of the ENIAC. Made by the same designers: Mauchly and Eckert.


design by Mauchly and Eckert

This computer was called by acronym EDVAC (Electronic Discrete Variable Automatic Computer) and its public presentation was carried through in 1947

This machine should be able to hold any program in memory that was fed to it. This would be possible because EDVAC was going to have more internal memory than any other computing device at that time. In other words, it was a multipurpose computer.

The idea being that given a tube of mercury, an electronic pulse could be bounced back and forth to be retrieved at will–another two state device for storing 0s and 1s. This on/off switch ability for the memory was required because EDVAC was to use binary rather than decimal numbers, thus simplifying the construction of the arithmetic units.  [Source: http://www.thocp.net/hardware/edvac.htm]

Charles Babbage (1791 – 1871)

Babbage was a British mathematician, an original and innovative thinker and a pioneer of computing.

Charles Babbage was born on 26 December 1791, probably in London, the son of a banker. He was often unwell as a child and was educated mainly at home. By the time he went to Cambridge University in 1810 he was very interested in mathematics.

After graduation Babbage was hired by the Royal Institution to lecture on calculus. Within two years he had been elected a member of the Royal Society and, with his Cambridge friends, was instrumental in setting up the Astronomical Society in 1820, the first to challenge the dominance of the Royal Society. From 1828 to 1839, Babbage was Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at Cambridge.

The 1820s saw Babbage work on his ‘Difference Engine’, a machine which could perform mathematical calculations. A six-wheeled model was initially constructed and demonstrated to a number of audiences. He then developed plans for a bigger, better, machine – Difference Engine 2. He also worked on another invention, the more complex Analytical Engine, a revolutionary device on which his fame as a computer pioneer now largely rests. It was intended to be able to perform any arithmetical calculation using punched cards that would deliver the instructions, as well as a memory unit to store numbers and many other fundamental components of today’s computers. The remarkable British mathematician Ada Lovelace completed a program for the Analytical Engine but neither it, nor Difference Engine 2, were finished in Babbage’s lifetime.

Babbage also worked in the fields of philosophy and code-breaking, as well as campaigning for reform in British science. He died at his home in London on 18 October 1871.

Joseph Marie Jacquard

Joseph Marie Charles (called or nicknamed) Jacquard (7 July 1752 (Lyon, France) – 7 August 1834 (Oullins, France)) played an important role in the development of the earliest programmable loom (the “Jacquard loom“), which in turn played an important role in the development of other programmable machines, such as computers.

The Jacquard Loom is a mechanical loom that has holes punched in pasteboard, each row of which corresponds to one row of the design. Multiple rows of holes are punched on each card and the many cards that compose the design of the textile are strung together in order

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