Define what a computer is

Technically, a computer is a programmable machine, which basically executes a programmed list of instruction and respond to new instructions that it is given. Another way of putting it is: A computer is an electronic device which accepts data, which it is designed to do. It can perform prescribed mathematical and logical operations at high speed, and the results are then displayed of these operations. It is just a complex adding machine. These days we even carry computers in our pockets. It is also a big source of office and casual work, e.g. making a presentation and watching Netflix.

 

Babbage

Charles Babbage (Born: December 26, 1791, Teignmouth - Died: October 18, 1871, Marylebone) he was an English polymath. Babbage is widely regarded pretty much as the first computer pioneer. And in the history of computing - the great ancestral figure. Babbage was also a mathematician, philosopher, inventor and mechanical engineer. The ‘Difference Engine’ was one of the works of Babbage in the 1820s, this was a machine which could perform mathematical calculations. He then developed plans for a bigger, better, machine – ‘Difference Engine 2’.

 

WW2 Colossus

Colossus was the first large-scale electronic computer, it was used against the German system of teleprinter encryption know at Bletchley Park as ‘Tunny’. Tunny, carried the highest grade of intelligence, from 1941 Hitler relied on Tunny to protect their communications with Army Group commanders across Europe. Colossus was used to break their codes down, so it was a codebreaker. Colossus was designed by the engineer Tommy Flowers to solve a problem posed by mathematician Max Newman at the Government Code and Cypher School (GC&CS) at Bletchley Park. Alan Turing's use of probability in cryptanalysis contributed to its design.

 

Post war LEO- early electronic

In 1951 the LEO I computer was operational and ran the world's first regular routine office computer job.

The company LEO Computers Ltd was formed in 1954.

LEO II computers were installed in many British offices, including Ford Motor Company, British Oxygen Company and the 'clerical factory' of the Ministry of Pensions at Newcastle. LEO lll computers were installed in Customs & Excise, Inland Revenue, and The Post Office and in Australia, South Africa and Czechoslovakia.

 

1980’s – PC

Home computing proved to be so popular, the 1980s were the main boom times of the PC all companies wanted to release their own. In 1984 we saw the real ‘computer’ that we use these days, the Apple Macintosh. The Macintosh completely changed how computer were seen in those days, it had a GUI. The average Joe could go and buy one, come home and it would be so simple, no lines of code or anything! The GUI was deemed to be quite responsible for our modern computers, the windows computers didn’t have a GUI until 1996.

It seemed like every company wanted a slice of the digital pie, with model after model released on an annual basis, all vying for dominance in the ultra-competitive marketplace.

Some efforts, such as the Commodore 64 and Spectrum, were hugely successful and went on to sell millions. But for every success story there were many more that failed to make the grade, with some models even being released and then going out of business the same year.

 

Modern

Fifth generation computing devices, based on artificial intelligence, are still in development, though there are some applications, such as voice recognition, that are being used today. The use of parallel processing and superconductors is helping to make artificial intelligence a reality. Quantum computation and molecular and nanotechnology will radically change the face of computers in years to come. But those are the complicating computers. Ever since 1984, the PC is developing in ways, in which to an extent can save live. We carry computers around in our pockets.

Fun Fact: The iPhone 5s has 1,300 times more power than the computer that landed the Apollo 11 on the moon.

 

 

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