Introductory Computers Understanding Technology Chapter 1

73 terms by tyshaun88m

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application software

programs that enable a user to perform specific tasks; examples include word processors, database programs, spreadsheets, and desktop publishing

audio data

relating to sound, including speech and music

browser

software that allows users to move from one location to another on the Web and to access and retrieve Web pages; also called a Web browser

central processing unit (CPU)

the part of a computer that interprets and carries out instructions that operate the computer and manages the computer's devices and resources; consists of components, each of which performs specific functions; also called the microprocessor or processor

chip

a thin wafer of silicon containing electronic circuitry that performs various functions, such as mathematical calculations, storage, or controlling computer devices

communications device

a device that makes it possible for a user to communicate with another computer and to exchange instructions, data, and information with other computer users

communications software

software that allows your properly equipped computer to communicate with other similarly equipped computers; software used to send and receive electronic messages, visit various Web sites, locate and retrieve information stored on other computers, electronically transmit large files, and much more

computer

an electronic device capable of interpreting and executing program instructions and data and performing the required operations to produce the desired results

computer system

system unit along with input devices, output devices, and storage devices

data

raw, unprocessed information

data processing

the manipulation of data into useful information according to instructions in a computer program; also called information processing

desktop computer

a personal computer system designed to fit on the top of a desk

digital

composed of discrete bits (1s and 0s) understood by computers

digital ink technology

process in which a digitizer (a grid of tiny wires) is laid under or over an LCD screen to create a magnetic field that can capture the movement of a special-purpose pen and record the movement on the LCD screen; the effect is like writing on paper with liquid ink

embedded computer

a specialized computer, usually housed on a single chip, that is part of a larger system, device, or machine

garbage in, garbage out (GIGO)

a database related proverb meaning that if errors are entered into a database, it will produce erroneous output; also refers to all situations involving incorrect user input into a computer

general-purpose computer

a computer that allows the user to perform a range of complex processes and calculations

graphic data

still images, including photographs, mathematical charts, and drawings

handheld computer

a personal computer small enough to fit into a person's hand; also called handheld, pocket PC, or palmtop

hard copy

a permanent, tangible version of output, such as a letter printed on paper

hardware

all physical components that comprise the system unit and other devices connected to it, such as a keyboard or monitor; these external connected devices are collectively referred to as peripheral devices because they are outside, or peripheral to, the computer itself

host computer

a large and powerful computer to which smaller computers are connected in a network, and which manages all user activity occurring on the network; also called a network server

information

data that has been processed to make it useful for a specific purpose, such as making a decision

information processing

the manipulation of data into useful information according to instructions in a computer program; also called data processing

information processing cycle

a cycle during which a computer enters, processes, outputs, and/or stores information

input

data that is entered into a computer or other device or the act of reading in such data

input device

any hardware component that enables a computer user to enter data and programs into a computer system; keyboards, point-and-click devices, and scanners are among the more popular input devices, and a desktop or laptop computer system may include one or more input devices

Internet

a worldwide network of computers linked together via communications software and media for the purpose of sharing information; the largest and best-known network in the world; also called the Net

Internet service provider (ISP)

an organization that has a permanent connection to the Internet and provides temporary access to individuals and others for free or for a fee

laptop computer

a computer small enough to be placed on a lap or carried by its user from place to place; also called a notebook computer

local area network (LAN)

a computer network physically confined to a relatively small geographical area, such as a single building or a college campus

mainframe computer

a large, powerful, expensive computer system capable of accommodating hundreds of users doing different computing tasks

main memory

a place for temporary storage of data, programs, or instructions; also called primary storage or random access memory (RAM)

microcomputer

a single-user computer capable of performing its own input, processing, output, and storage; also called a personal computer (PC)

microprocessor

the part of a computer that interprets and carries out instructions that operate the computer and manages the computer's devices and resources; consists of components, each of which performs specific functions; also called the central processing unit (CPU)

midrange server

a powerful computer capable of accommodating hundreds of client computers or terminals (users) at the same time; also known as a minicomputer

modem

a hardware device that translates signals from digital to analog and from analog to digital, making it possible for digital computers to communicate over analog telephone lines

motherboard

the main circuit board inside a personal computer to which other circuit boards can be connected; contains electrical pathways, called traces, etched onto it that allows data to move from one component to another

multi-user computer system

computer that can accommodate many users concurrently

Net

short for Internet, a worldwide network of computers linked together via communications software and media for the purpose of sharing information; the largest and best-known network in the world

network

a group of two or more computers, software, and other devices that are connected by means of one or more communications media

network server

a large and powerful computer to which smaller computers are connected in a network, and which manages all user activity occurring on the network; also called a host computer

notebook computer

a computer small enough to be placed on a lap or carried by its user from place to place; also called a laptop computer

operating system

a type of software that creates a user interface and supports the workings of computer devices and software programs that perform specific jobs

output

information that is written or displayed as a result of computer processing; also the act of writing or displaying such data

output device

any hardware device that makes information available to a user, such as a monitor or printer

pen computer

a computer equipped with pattern recognition circuitry so that it can recognize human handwriting as a form of data input

peripheral device

a device, such as a printer or disk drive, connected to and controlled by a computer but external to the computer's central processing unit (CPU)

personal computer (PC)

a single-user computer capable of performing its own input, processing, output, and storage; also called a microcomputer

personal digital assistant (PDA)

a handheld, wireless computer, also known as a handheld PC or HPC, used for such purposes as storing schedules, calendars, and telephone numbers and for sending e-mail or connecting to the Internet

petaflop

a measure of speed equivalent to 1 quadrillion calculations per second

portable computer

a computer small enough to be carried around

primary storage

a place for temporary storage of data, programs, or instructions; also called main memory or random access memory (RAM)

processing

the manipulation of data by the computer's electrical circuits

processor

the part of a computer that interprets and carries out instructions that operate the computer and manages the computer's devices and resources; consists of components, each of which performs specific functions; also called the central processing unit (CPU)

program

a set of instructions a computer executes; types of programs include applications and operating systems

search engine

a software program that enables a user to search for, locate, and retrieve specific information on the Internet about any topic

secondary storage

a hardware component that houses a secondary storage medium; also called a storage device or storage medium

single-user computer system

computer that can accommodate a single (one) user at a time; the type of personal computer system found in homes and in small businesses and offices

smartphone

a device that allows users to transmit and receive phone calls as well as e-mail messages and photos and browse through Web sites

soft copy

a temporary version of output, typically the display of data on a computer screen

software

programs containing instructions that direct the operation of the computer system and the written documentation that explains how to use the programs; two main types of software are system software and application software

storage

a permanent recording of information, data, and programs on a permanent storage medium, such as CD-ROM, so they can be used again and again

storage device

a hardware component that houses a secondary storage medium; also called secondary storage or storage medium

stylus

a sharp, pointed instrument used for writing or marking

supercomputer

fastest, most powerful, and most expensive type of computer designed for multiple users

system software

a type of software consisting of a set of programs that control the operations of a computer system, including starting the computer, processing applications, formatting disks, and copying files; it also controls all components and devices that comprise the computer system

system unit

the main part of a personal computer system that contains the motherboard and other components necessary for processing information

tablet PC

a type of notebook computer that has a liquid crystal display (LCD) on which the user can write using a special-purpose pen, or stylus

terabyte

a unit of memory measurement equal to approximately 1 trillion bytes

teraflop

a measure of speed equivalent to 1 trillion calculations per second

terminal

an input/output device, consisting of a keyboard and monitor, typically used with multi-user computer systems; also called dumb terminal

text data

alphabetic letters, numbers, and special characters, typically entered to produce output such as letters, e-mail messages, and reports

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