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computer #2 #2

A computer is a machine that manipulates data according to a list of
instructions.

The first devices that resemble modern computers date to the mid-20th
century (around 1940 - 1945), although the computer concept and
various machines similar to computers existed earlier. Early
electronic computers were the size of a large room, consuming as much
power as several hundred modern personal computers.[1] Modern
computers are based on tiny integrated circuits and are millions to
billions of times more capable while occupying a fraction of the space.
[2] Today, simple computers may be made small enough to fit into a
wristwatch and be powered from a watch battery. Personal computers, in
various forms, are icons of the Information Age and are what most
people think of as "a computer"; however, the most common form of
computer in use today is the embedded computer. Embedded computers are
small, simple devices that are used to control other devices =97 for
example, they may be found in machines ranging from fighter aircraft
to industrial robots, digital cameras, and children's toys.

The ability to store and execute lists of instructions called programs
makes computers extremely versatile and distinguishes them from
calculators. The Church=96Turing thesis is a mathematical statement of
this versatility: any computer with a certain minimum capability is,
in principle, capable of performing the same tasks that any other
computer can perform. Therefore, computers with capability and
complexity ranging from that of a personal digital assistant to a
supercomputer are all able to perform the same computational tasks
given enough time and storage capacity.

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ren2008a (3)
5/27/2008 1:24:03 PM
comp.lang.java.programmer 52714 articles. 1 followers. Post Follow

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