A-level Computing/OCR/Basic Principles of Hardware, Software and Applications

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Computer systems are made up of Hardware, Software, and Applications. Hardware refers to the physical components of a computer, such as the monitor, keyboard, mouse, hard drive and system board. Software refers to the set of instructions that directs the hardware to accomplish a task. The best known example of software is a computer's operating system, which provides a way for the user to interact with the hardware. Software uses hardware to perform four basic functions: input, processing, storage, and output. An application is specialized software that performs a certain function, such as word processing or media reproduction.

There are several topics in this unit: