A computer is a digital electronic machine that can be programmed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically. They perform many sets of operations called programs which enable the computer to perform a wide range of tasks.
Types of Computers
There are many different types of computers. Computers are generally classified as:
(PC) or microcomputers is a term mainly used to describe desktop computers. It is the most common type of computer used worldwide. These computers consist of a central processing unit (CPU), two types of memory (RAM and ROM), Hard and Magnetic discs for storage and input and output devices like the keyboard and mouse.
Super Computers are the fastest modern-day computers. They differ from other types of computers and are not readily available for commercial use. A supercomputer consists of tens of thousands of CPUs and is capable of performing trillions of calculations per second. Hundreds of users can operate it at the same time. They are very expensive and mostly used by the aerospace and automotive industries.
Mini Computers lie in the middle range of computing devices. They are very small multiprocessor computers used in organizations for basic tasks such as management and accounting. Examples are the various smartphones and tablets.
Mainframe Computers are used by large companies and organizations for high-speed bulk data processing at a very large scale. These computers are used for accounting, information retrieval and scientific engineering computations. The mainframe acts as a ‘server’ which is then connected to hundreds of thousands of users. They offer fast processing speeds and can easily handle multiple inputs at the same time.
Uses of Computers
Computers offer many advantages to our day-to-day life. This is the reason why they have become an inevitable part of our lives.
History of Computers
The first computing devices date back to ancient history. The Abacus, a 4000-year-old invention was the first ever computer used to perform basic arithmetic functions. As the need for more complex calculations arose, humans developed advanced computing devices. The Abacus became the Pascaline which developed into the Leibnitz wheel, from where the Difference and Analytical engines were born.
ADVANTAGES Of Computers
Following are some advantages of computers:
Computers have built-in memories where large amounts of data and knowledge can be stored electronically. Auxiliary storage devices can also store data.
Computers can perform the same task repeatedly without any errors or mistakes making them reliable. They do not face the problems of boredom or tiredness which are faced by humans, allowing for reliable data collection.
Computers ensure accurate results. They not only perform all sorts of calculations but they do so accurately without any mistakes making them very advantageous in completing tasks which would be impossible for humans to complete on their own.
Not only are computers amazing and accurate computing devices but they also perform these calculations at rapid speeds. They perform vital roles in human tasks and their computing speeds prove helpful in many fields.
Multitasking is a fundamental advantage of computers. Computers can perform multiple tasks of different magnitudes at the same time without any chance of error.
DISADVANTAGES Of Computers
Following are some disadvantages of computers:
Cybercrime is an unavoidable disadvantage of computers. Criminals around the world use computers to steal personal information and sell it to third parties or use it to harass the victim. Hacking, online harassment, identity theft, digital piracy, money laundering, counterfeiting and several illegal and harmful acts are carried out using computers.
Long hours of sedentary work at a computer desk can cause neck and back pain, faulty posture and diseases from lack of physical activity. Computer screens emit blue light that is injurious to human eyes. A computer screen also causes imbalances in the hormones and neurotransmitters of the body leading to mental health issues and imbalances in the sleep-wake cycle.
Wastage of Time
With the advent of the internet, entertainment is only a click away. Wasting time binge-watching new Netflix seasons or endlessly scrolling through social media websites is a common trend among the youth of today.
Internet Dependence or Compulsive Computer Use is a modern addiction plaguing young minds. One in every four children is affected. It leads to antisocial behavior, reduced workplace performance and a multitude of mental issues like depression and anxiety.
Computers are an ingenious invention that has boosted growth in every walk of life. Today, a life without computers seems unimaginable. However, too much dependence on computers can lead to us humans becoming less productive and more socially isolated. The use of computers must be strictly moderated to reap the advantages and limit the disadvantages.