Characteristics of Computer and Its Classification

Characteristics of Computer and Its Classification

Characteristics of Computer and Its Classification

Today we are presenting you a short note on Characteristics of Computer and Its Classification. A computer is a man made electronic machine which stores, reads and process data to produce meaningful information as output. It works very fast and does not make mistakes but its capacity is limited. It is made of English word “to compute”. It operates under the control of a set of instructions that is stored in its memory unit. A computer accepts data from an input device and process it into useful information which it display on its output device.

Characteristics of Computer

Computers are the foundation of business, travel, and leisure of life today. The common characteristics that make computers of all sizes such a powerful machine are speed, accuracy, and reliability, storage capacity, ability to operate automatically, diligence, scientific approach and versatility. Computer has many important characteristics. Some of important characteristics are described below:

i) Speed

Actually computer made first for done more calculation in a moment. Computer is electronic aperture; we know that electric has much speed, that’s why its internal speed is virtually instantaneous. In fifth generation computer can perform millions of processing operations in a second. The speed of a computer is measured in the following time units for the access time or instructions per second.

  • Milli Second (1ms): A thousandth of a second or 10-3
  • Micro Second (1ms): A millionth of a second or 10-6
  • Mano Second (1ns): A thousand millionth of a second or 10-9
  • Pico Second (1ps): A million millionth of a second or 10-12
  • KIPS: Kilo Instructions per Second
  • MIPS: Million Instructions Per Second
  • Mbps: Mega bits per second

ii) Versatility

It can hold and operate many applications and it can be used in various field. The wide use of the computers in so many areas such as commerce, scientific applications, education in day to day life is ample evidence of its versatility.

iii) Accuracy and Reliability

Computer makes rare error in calculation. If the correct data and instructions put in computer then the computer processes the data and gives the correct result. They are only a machine and do not make errors on their own. Errors are caused by humans, not by computers.

iv) Diligence

Computer is one of processing machine which can works constantly without getting bored. It is capable of operating at exactly the same level of speed and accuracy even if it has to carry out the most voluminous and complex operations for a long periods of time. It does not suffer from physical and mental fatigue, lack of concentrations and laziness.

v) Storage Capacity

Computer can store massive amount of data/information. Now a day’s computer is able to read storing disc which is capable to store millions of information. Memory/Storage Units are described below:

  • 4 bit = 1 nibble
  • 8 bit (b) = 1 byte (B)
  • 1024 B = 1 KB (Kilo Byte)
  • 1024 KB = 1 MB (Mega Byte)
  • 1024 MB = 1 GB (Giga Byte)
  • 1024 GB = 1 TB (Tera Byte)
  • 1024 TB = 1 PB (Peta Byte)
  • 1024 PB = 1 XB (Exa Byte)
  • 1024 XB = 1 ZB (Zeta Byte)
  • 1024 ZB = 1 YB (Yota Byte)

In Increasing order:
Nibble < Bit < Byte < KB < MB < GB < TB < PB < XB < ZB < YB
bit (b) , Byte (B)
MBps = Mega Bytes per Sec.

vi) Automation

Computer is not need to human intervention after the data and instruction are given. It calculates/processes its data automatically. It does not required an operate at each stage of the progress.

vii) Programmability

Basically computer software is set of programs. Its only follow the instructions which given, to execute the program to do as per user.

Classification of Computer

Computer can be classified on the basis of their work and data presentation. There are three type of computer on the basis of their work.

i) Analog Computer

  • Containing signal as input.
  • Only uses for measuring.
  • E.g. Speedometer of car, galvanometer etc.

ii) Digital Computer

  • It’s a binary base.
  • Capable to solve algorithm data.
  • Capable to solve all type of computing problem.
  • E.g Personal Computer, laptop etc.

iii) Hybrid Computer

  • Containing analog and digital as an input.
  • Most powerful to calculate.
  • Use in scientific research purpose.

Difference Between Computers & Human Beings

Computers cannot work on their own. They do what we want them to do, only we give the right command. Its memory is better than human memory. Its can’t forget anything it has saved, so it is also called an “Artificial Intelligence”.

ComputerHuman Beings
Computers can do complex calculations in seconds.Human beings care slow in doing calculations.
Computers can store and remember a large amount of information at one time.Human beings cannot remember lots of things at one time.
Computers do not make mistakes.Human beings can make mistakes.
Computer do not have feelings.Human beings have feelings.
Computers cannot think.Human beings can think.
Computer never get tired.Human beings get tired if they work for long hours.


Limitations of a Computer

i) Lack of Intelligence (Programmed by Human/Can’t think): Though computer is programmed to work efficiently, fast and accurately, but it is programmed by human beings to do so. Without a program, computer is nothing. A program is a set of instructions. Computer on;y follows these instructions. If the instructions are not accurate the working of computer will not be accurate

ii) Prone to Virus: The computer sometimes malfunctions and results in loss of data if some virus attacks.

iii) Depends on Electricity: One of the limitations also includes machine failure in case of some hardware or software problem. The computer sometimes results in loss of data if power fails.

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