CACS/Hardware Introduction

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This part contains a survey of the world of computer hardware. This chapter introduces computer hardware and provides a very short history of computing. This section introduces the computing environment thrugh a brief hitory of computers and an overview of the subjects within hardware.

Outline of computer history[edit]

There is some disagreement about when the digital age began. After all, the Babylonians used a kind of abacus about 500 BC. If we call it the computer age, we can get a much cleaner mark. 1951 was a watershed year, and two events identify it as the beginning. The UNIVAC became the first commercially available digital computer. That same year a research team at MIT completed the first user-interactive computer (named Whirlwind) that used a keyboard and a television screen or CRT. Considering developments by decades gives a pretty clear picture of the evolution of computers.

  • 1950s the vacuum tube decade - introduction of computers and their use in business and major scientific research;
  • 1960s the mainframe decade - transistor-based computers used in business;
  • 1970s the PC decade - the first CPU on a chip to widely available personal computers;
  • 1980s the software decade - windows, games, and spreadsheets make the PC useful;
  • 1990s the internet decade - creation and then commercialization of the Web.

Vacuum tubes[edit]

computer hardware notes


Mainframes[edit]

Personal Computers[edit]

Applications[edit]

World Wide Web[edit]

Computer Hardware[edit]

All notes of Computer hardware