WELCOME TO THE MICRO AGE Part 2
« A computer can perform arithmetic and logic (decision-making) operations and communicate the results to other devices more easily accessible to humans, such as a TV screen or typewriter.
A computer follows commands (called “software”) given it by its operator. Connected to electronic memory banks and peripheral devices such as a printer, modifies TV set and magnetic disk recorder, the computer is capable of performing complex tasks such as maintaining a current inventory, text editing, computing personal taxes, playing Star Trek or Chess, and even creating unique music and graphic compositions. Recent advances allow microcomputers to even talk and understand vocal commands.
The word “hardware” refers to the physical computer equipment. The word “software” refers to the programs (logical series of instructions) that tell the hardware what to do.
A computer will perform any sequence of instruction given to it, even if the sequence is illogical, purposeless or meaningless; it just follows orders. Pre-programmed packages of software for microcomputers are available for the small businessman who knows little about the design of computers and cares less. Educators and computer hobbyists on the other hand find this peculiar quirk of computers an endless and fascinating challenge to explore. Indeed, the computer is the ultimate tool and toy. The recent technological breakthroughs that have led to the microcomputer have brought this capability within the reach of millions of students, hobbyists, elementary and secondary schools, homemakers and small businessmen. »
As we have previously said, for the first time in history, computers became accessible to the average person, so what could an inexpensive microcomputer system do for them?
« Depending upon the capability of the system that will meet your minimal needs, a home microcomputer system can be programmed to play video games, calculate your taxes balance your checkbook, guard your house, remember your recipes, keep your social calendar, and keep track of your inventory, type your letters, invoices and bills, keep payroll and general ledger records, provide job cost analysis and keep your appointment calendar.
The introduction of low-cost microcomputers and the rise of computer retailing have delivered this new-age capability into the hands of the average person. This phenomenon we call PERSONAL COMPUTING. Why not see what there is in it for you? »