Computer Basics

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Information about Computer Basics

Published on July 24, 2009

Author: unnipp65


Computer Basics : Computer Basics Slide 2: Which computer should I buy? What do I get for an extra $775 and do I even need it? Desktop We need to understand several things before going out and buying a computer. : We need to understand several things before going out and buying a computer. What are the different components of a computer system and how do they work? What are the different options available for each of these components? How will you be using your computer and therefore which components/options will you need? Basic Computer Components : Basic Computer Components keyboard mouse printer speakers Monitor Tower Box: Central Processing Unit - CPU (motherboard), power supply, Main Memory (RAM), Auxiliary Memory devices: Hard drive, CD, DVD, etc. CPU A Laptop – with CPU, monitor, keyboard, touch pad & speakers How these Components Work Together : Auxiliary (Secondary) Memory Input devices CPU- Central Processing Unit Control Unit Arithmetic Logic Unit (ALU) Main/Primary Memory (RAM) How these Components Work Together Monitor, Printer Keyboard, Mouse Hard drive CD R/W, DVD, floppy drive, ZIP drive, Flash memory Bus Bus An inside view – the Motherboard : An inside view – the Motherboard Cards: Video, Sound Network, Modem An inside view – Hard Drive & Bus cables : An inside view – Hard Drive & Bus cables Hard Drive Bus CPU – Central Processing Unit works with memory to execute the arithmetic and logical processes : CPU – Central Processing Unit works with memory to execute the arithmetic and logical processes The performance of the CPU is dependent on both its speed and memory 1.66GHz vs 2.8GHz..whats a GHz? : Different Processors have different “clock” speeds and different memory “bus” speeds – A faster clock speed won’t necessarily speed up your processing if the bus speed is too slow! 1.66GHz vs 2.8GHz..whats a GHz? GHz - a unit of frequency equal to one billion cycles per second Slide 10: The performance of a computer is also dependent on the amount of Primary (Main) Memory – Random Access Memory (RAM) available. This memory temporarily stores information so that it’s readily available to the CPU. This includes the program(s) being executed and required data. If this memory is limited or slow – this will slow down the computer’s ability to process information. What is RAM memory? Slide 11: How does Memory Work? Physically computer memory is made up of transistors & capacitors - the only information they store is a magnetic charges (high & low) represented by a 0 or 1. Computer scientists combine a series of these transistor states to represent information - They turn information into a “binary” format so it can be easily stored as magnetic charges. Slide 12: How is Information Stored in Memory? All data is represented by a string of 0’s and 1’s. Integers, Real Numbers, and characters are stored this way. They all are converted to a string of 0’s and 1’s in different ways. Integers are their base 2 equivalent Characters are converted via some standard (ASCII, Unicode, etc) All information is translated by a set of instructions into this format and then processed Slide 13: Measuring Memory Each 0,1- is called a bit 1 Byte is 8 bits 1 Kilobyte (KB) = 210 bytes (1111111111) ˜1000 bytes = 1x103 bytes 1 Megabyte (MB) = 220 bytes ˜1,000,000 bytes = 1x106 bytes 1 Gigabyte (GB) = 230 bytes ˜1,000,000,000 bytes = 1x109 bytes 1 MB of memory can hold approximately 500 pages of text. SRAM, DRAM, SDRAM, DDR,RDRAM, ..BLAM.. BLAM : SRAM, DRAM, SDRAM, DDR,RDRAM, ..BLAM.. BLAM SRAM Static Random Access Memory doesn’t need to be “refreshed” - but like all RAM, is erased when the power is OFF DRAM (Dynamic RAM) is a type of memory that is constantly refreshed or will loose its contents. SDRAM (Synchronous Dynamic RAM) – designed to work with the CPU clock to work faster than DRAM DDR SDRAM (Double Data Rate SDRAM) – works twice as fast as SDRAM 10 ns speed 5-10X slower CPU Slide 15: It will depend on the type of computer you have/or are buying Older systems are no always compatible with newer memory types Sometimes too much memory can cause problems with Windows It will depend on the applications you wish to run Photoshop or other graphical applications require much more memory than simple word processing Do you wish to have many applications running simultaneously? So how much and what type of memory should you get? Slide 16: Auxiliary Memory is cheaper/slower than Primary memory but is not erased when the Power Supply is OFF. Hard drive – A non-removable device 20-250GB ranges Floppy disk drive- 1.44MB CD’s & DVD’s – 600 MB. (Read vs. RW) Removable Hard drives –Zip, Jazz Memory Sticks To save data for later use we can store data on Secondary (Auxiliary) Memory devices Hardware vs. Software : Hardware vs. Software For computer hardware to work it must follow a set of instructions that is supplied to it. These instructions or programs are referred to as software. Some instructions are referred to as the Operating System Software, which control the basic input/output and memory operations of the computer. Application Software are programs that work with the Operating system to perform specific tasks. System Software : System Software Programs to control computer operations are called Operating Systems (OS) Instructions on loading and executing applications and transferring data loaded into main memory on startup (booting) examples: DOS, Unix,, Windows XP, Vista ..and promised soon…. VISTA Applications Software : Applications Software Computer programs written to perform specified tasks. They work in tandem with specific Operating Systems Word Processing Spreadsheets Database Management Systems Web design software Internet Access & E-mail Graphics Packages What software you need will affect you decision of what hardware to buy…For example how much hard drive space will you need with the following requirements? : What software you need will affect you decision of what hardware to buy…For example how much hard drive space will you need with the following requirements? Windows XP Professional Operating System - *1.5 GB Full install of MS Office 2003 - *450 MB Dream Weaver - *800 MB Adobe’s Photoshop - *280MB Have room to store my photo album with 150 pictures - .. Average of 500KB each In GB: 1.5+.45+.8+.28+150*.005=3.78 What doesn’t this ad tell us? : Is any application software included? What about a monitor, mouse, speakers etc. What about getting on the internet? What doesn’t this ad tell us? The mouse : The mouse Most standard “systems” come complete with a standard 2 button mouse Frequently one can upgrade the mouse 2 button with wheels Optical Mouse.. no trackballs! Wireless Mouse …no tail! $10 $200 When buying peripherals such as a mouse consider the type of connections available on your system.. And the price! : When buying peripherals such as a mouse consider the type of connections available on your system.. And the price! Serial Connection Oldest Technology - slow PS2 Connection Newer Technology – faster than a Serial USB Connection Newest Technology - fastest The monitor : The monitor Most systems do not come standard with a monitor unless buying a “complete package”. Consider the following when selecting a computer: Size 17", 19" or 21" screen sizes Monitor type CRT bigger but cheaper, LCD Display - Smaller but more expensive Dot/Stripe Pitch - The smaller the Dot Pitch the sharper the image Resolution – number of pixels that can be displayed – usually higher resolution gives a clearer image $200 - $2000+ To go with your fancy new monitor you’ll need a video card that is compatible Speakers : Speakers Your new computer system may or may not come with other peripheral devices including Speakers and sound cards Speakers vary based on Appearance, Subwoofer, 3D-sound Sound Cards provide interface between the speakers & computer $20 - $200+ Slide 26: Unless your purchasing a “complete package” your system will probably not come with a printer. The two most common printer types are: Laser Jet - faster, quieter. Can be single or duplex (print both sides), different sizes, multiple trays etc. Inkjet - cheaper Printers Black & White Color Its not always with printer that gets you.. It’s the price of the ink supplies! $50 - $10,000+ A desktop, a laptop, a tablet PC? : A desktop, a laptop, a tablet PC? Desktop Easy to use at a desk – larger keyboard Least expensive and available with greatest speeds & memory Laptop Portable More expensive than a desktop Keyboard, mouse -not quite as easy to use Tablet Great for taking notes & keeping ad-hoc records Portable – able to take it with you Most expensive & slower than std. computers $300+ incl. monitor $500+ $1800+ Getting On-line : Getting On-line To get on-line you will need several items: An Internet Service Provider (ISP) Method of connecting Telephone with modem (56K) DSL – existing phone line but faster ISDN – digital phone line Cable – co-axial cable Hardware Modem – translate computer data to a “signal” Communications/Network Card Port Ethernet Jack – use with cable modems Phone Jack – use with telephone modems Slide 29: The simplest communication is transmission of data over a communication channel between two computers Computer <--> Modem <--> Modem <--> Computer Transmission Media A modem (modulator/demodulator) connects your computer to the Internet by modulating the digital signal from the computer to a carrier signal Slide 30: Networking - connecting a group of computers together LAN - local area network WAN - wide area network Internet – network of networks And what about security? : And what about security? Virus Protection – get Anti-virus software and keep it up to date Firewall – Software/Hardware that denies entry to all incoming traffic except those specifically requested or allowed Spam Filters – Available on most email packages or by providers and can be “customized”

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