Tell Me About Computers

05/11/2010 13:43


So you want to know about computers? The most important thing to remember, if you are new to computers, is not to be afraid of them. They are just another electrical appliance, and unless you do something drastic, I promise you they wont blow up in your face!

Trial and error is your best friend when learning about computers and a few tips on computer jargon will help a long way. I love jargon it is so creative- who on earth thought of "cookies"?

Lets begin with some basics, computers were first created in 1936, and Microsoft Windows was born in the 1980s. Since then computers, or should I say programmers, have become smarter and smarter, creating the wonderful array of program freedom that we now enjoy in our daily lifestyle of computing.

So lets get ourselves up to date with the meaning of some of the computer jargon, or what some of the bits are, and what they do in your computer.

The Computer Case

Computer cases are the outside casing of your tower, or box in your computer, these cases come in an array of different sizes and styles. Many people have their cases in fancy styles as a way of expressing themselves, or expressing individuality.

Depending on what you choose, will determine the price you will pay for a computer case. Before grabbing the fanciest thing you find, remember to take some note of what's 'inside' the box, make sure that you choose a tower or box that suits your requirements as well as your individuality!


A CPU (Central Processing Unit) is the component in a computer that sends instructions and processes information in programs. Since the 1970s single chip processors have been the main type of processor. Usually when people refer to CPUs they mean microprocessors.

The Mother Board

There are many different designs of mother boards available but generally they all look pretty much the same and do the same job. To look at, a Mother Board looks a lot like a green piece of plastic with a heap of wires and chips attached to it. Take care of your Mother Board as it is very sensitive. It is advisable to take precaution before touching it as you may damage the onboard components.

Power Supply

The power supply unit in a desk top computer is a component that converts AC voltage to DC. The ATX style is the most common nowadays, although there are several different styles of power supply units available on the market.

Hard Disks

I find hard disks funny, as they aren't really disks in the olden days sense, originally hard disks were disks made of hard plastic, and floppy disks were floppy if you shook them. Now a Hard drive refers to the storing capacity inside of your computer. All your files are written onto the hard disk and stored there for future retrival or modification.

Floppy Drive

Floppy discs aren't floppy at all! They are infant hard plastic square things that used to be a popular way of transferring data from one computer to another. The computer reads and copies the information to a small metal circular disk set in the plastic casing.


ROM means, Read only memory, ROM chips are used in many appliances not just computers, a CD ROM is a device that stores information or data permanently. Once it's on there you cant delete it like you can with your hard drive or floppy disk unless you are using a CD-RW.

CD's are a standard means for distributing large amounts of information easily, since CD's are so cheap. You can use a CD ROM on your computer to create your own music and photo CD's.

Now you know some 'inside info' you should be ready to go and explore the endless options of computers and devices that are open to you, just remember- To err is human, to mess things up requires a computer!

Happy Computing!


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