Unformatted text preview: mat. None of these operations involve the arithmetic operations normally
associated with the computing device but the term computer is often applied anyway.
The activity of processing data using a computer is called data processing. Data
processing consists of three sub-activities: capturing the input data, manipulating the
data, and managing the output results. As used in data processing, information is data
arranged in an order and form that is useful to the people who receive it. That is,
information is relevant knowledge, produced as the output of data processing operation
and acquired by people to enhance understanding and to achieve specific purposes. Thus
data is the raw material used as input to data processing and information is the processed
data obtained as the output of data processing.
CHARACTERISTICS OF COMPUTERS
The increasing popularity of computers has proved that it is a very powerful and useful
tool. The power and usefulness of this popular tool ate mainly due to its following
1. Automatic. A machine is said to be automatic if it works by itself without human
intervention. Computers are automatic machines because once started on a job, they carry
on until the job is finished, normally without any human assistance. However, computers
being machines, cannot start themselves.
They cannot go out and find their own
problems and solutions. They have to be instructed. That is, a computer works from a
program of coded instructions that specify exactly how a particular job is to be done.
While the job is in progress, the program is stored in the computer, and the parts of the
instructions are obeyed. As soon as one instruction is completed, the next is obeyed
automatically. Some of the other characteristics of computers such as speed and accuracy
are due to the fact that they are automatic and work on a problem without any human
2. Speed. A computer is a very fast device. It can perform in a few seconds the amount
of work that a human being can do in an entire year - if he worked day and night and did nothing el...
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This document was uploaded on 04/07/2014.
- Spring '14