What is a Computer? Computer Parts, Motherboards and Interfaces


What is a Computer? Computer Parts, Motherboards and Interfaces

Computers have become an integral part of everyday life and it’s hard to imagine anyone who doesn’t own a personal computer. Computers are used for business, pleasure, research and for every day uses like communicating with others and storing information. Computers have become more important than the TV, radio and all the other media because they provide entertainment and also help in our daily tasks. So what exactly is a computer? How does a computer do what it does?


Computers are designed to make our lives easier by providing us with information and storing it on storage devices like hard disks, DVDs and CDs. Memory is one of the most important features of computers. A computer is only as good as the amount of memory that is installed into it. There is a maximum memory limit per computer and this is normally set by the manufacturer. Memory is used for random access memory (RAM), which stores data and helps in the transfer of information from one program to another.


The speed of a computer is also determined by the type of processor that is installed. The speed of a processor is measured in Hz and refers to the frequency that the processor spins at. The faster the processor the quicker a computer will go. Most commonly a desktop computer has a main processing unit (CPU) which is the central processing unit or the brains of the computer. The other major component is the central processing unit or CPU and the rest of the computer components such as the hard drive, memory, video card and so forth are connected to the CPU.


The operating system is the software that allows users to access, control, configure and use a computer. The operating system is usually a proprietary or public domain application that runs on a user’s mainframe computer. Examples of open source operating systems are Unix, Linux, Windows and more recently Mac OS. In the future the development of more open source applications may make Apple Computers the leader in operating system technology.


Computer memory is used to store data, programs and system settings. The amount of memory depends on the specifications of the manufacturer of the computer. Some computers use less memory while others use a lot. Generally speaking most computers have at least one gigabyte (gig) of memory space available for storing information.


Memory speed is an important factor in determining the overall performance of a computer. There are many factors that affect memory speed such as the operating system, processor and hard drive. A faster operating system will require more memory but will have increased costs. Operating systems control what programs are installed on a computer. Programmers write the code that makes the computer run and then the operating system interprets the instructions the programmer wrote.


There are also other important computer parts such as motherboards, processors, memory modules, hard drives and so on. Motherboards are the computer component that connects the computer to all the external components. It is commonly used in desk top computers where there is a cable connecting the CPU to the motherboard. The other important computer part is the processor. The processor is used to run all the software and hardware that is installed on the computer.


Other factors include the type of hardware and software used in the computer. Hardware refers to the parts such as graphics cards, hard disks and so on that are used with the computer system. Software refers to the applications written to run on the computer. There are different types of software that are available for download from the Internet. All these factors can be used to answer the question, “What is a computer?”


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