The computer is an electronic device which stores information, processes it and presents the results.
There are different types of computers, but the main categories are:
mainframes, which are big computers used to process huge quantities of data;
personal computers (PCs), the most common ones in the office or at home;
portable computers, including laptops, notebooks and pocket computers or palmtops.
The two main parts of the computer system are called hardware and software: hardware is the mechanical equipment making up the computer; software is the set of instructions that make the computer work.
Some hardware elements are:
- the processor, the part of the computer that performs operations on the information that is put into it;
- the RAM (Random Access Memory), a type of computer memory which can be changed as necessary;
- the ROM (Read Only Memory), a type of computer memory which holds information that can be used but not changed or added to ;
- the hard disk, a magnetic device that is fixed inside a computer and stores a very large amount of information.
important components of a computer system are:
- the Monitor: a device that takes signals from a computer and displays them on a screen;
- the Keyboard: a set of keys that you press in order to operate the computer;
- the Mouse: a device you use with the computer system; by moving it across a surface and pressing its buttons you can perform operations without using the keyboard;
- the Printer, a machine that can be connected to a computer that prints the results of data processing.