Adventist Youth Honors Answer Book/Vocational/Computer - Advanced (General Conference)

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Computer - Advanced (General Conference)
General Conference
Skill Level 2 Answer-Keys 06.jpg
Year of Introduction: 1991

The Advanced Computer Honor, like all things more than five years old and related to computing, is showing its age. This book provides answers to all the requirements - even those that have been archaic for some time. It is recognized that this work will itself be quickly outdated, but an attempt to update the answers has been made in this work.

One of the goals in writing this answer book is to provide low-cost or free solutions to the problems presented. All of the requirements requiring computer software can be met using high quality software that can be downloaded for free from the Internet. Procedures for common commercially available software are also provided if that is available to you. If you are going to teach this honor, you are urged to try the free packages - some of your students may not have another option. You might be surprised at what can be done with these packages - free does not always mean cheap, and the free packages listed here have been carefully selected with quality in mind.

1. Have the Computer Honor[edit | edit source]

The answer book for the Computer honor can be found in the Vocational chapter of this book.

2. Define the following terms[edit | edit source]

Baud Rate[edit | edit source]

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Baud rate is a measure of the "signaling rate" which is the number of changes to the transmission media per second in a modulated signal.

For Example: 250 baud means that 250 signals are transmitted in one second. If each signal carries 4 bits of information then in each second 1000 bits are transmitted. This is abbreviated as 1000 bit/s.

Baud rate should not be confused with data rate (also called "bits per second"). Each signaling event transmitted can carry one or more bits (as many as 256 in some cases) of information. When each signaling event transmitted carries one bit the baud rate and the data rate are equal. However, it is more common to make better use of bandwidth by encoding multiple bits in one event. This reduces the transmission time required for sending information.

DIP Switch[edit | edit source]

A DIP Switch is a component on a circuit board containing four or more switches. Each switch can be independently closed (conducts electricity) or open (does not conduct electricity). The "DIP" portion of the name is an acronym meaning "Dual Inline Package" and refers to the switch's packaging. A DIP will have two rows of pins (connectors), one on each side of the device. DIP Switches are sometimes used for configuring a circuit's mode of operation. They were formerly in common use for setting a board's address range and selecting an interrupt line. With the advent of newer technologies, the need for DIP switches has been greatly reduced. It is now rare to find them on computer boards.

Database[edit | edit source]

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

A database is a collection of records stored in a computer in a systematic way, such that a computer program can consult it to answer questions. For better retrieval and sorting, each record is usually organized as a set of data elements (facts). The items retrieved in answer to queries become information that can be used to make decisions that might otherwise be more difficult or impossible to make. The computer program used to manage and query a database is known as a database management system (DBMS). The properties and design of database systems are included in the study of information science.

Word Processing[edit | edit source]

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

A word processor (also more formally known as a document preparation system) is a computer application used for the production (including composition, editing, formatting, and possibly printing) of any sort of viewable or printed material.

Nanosecond[edit | edit source]

A nanosecond is one billionth of a second. In other words, there are a billion nanoseconds in a second. Many computers are capable of performing billions of operations per second, and so this unit of measure is often used to describe the speed at which these operations take place.

DOS[edit | edit source]

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

The acronym DOS stands for disk operating system, an operating system component for computers that provides the abstraction of a file system resident on hard disk or floppy disk secondary storage. In some cases, the disk operating system was called DOS, and on the PC compatible platform, an entire family of operating systems was called DOS.

Internal Modem[edit | edit source]

The word modem stands for "MOdulator/DEModulator". It is a device used for transmitting and receiving digital information over an analog channel. The most common type of modem is used for transmitting and receiving digital information over a regular telephone line. An internal modem is one which is installed inside a computer as an add-on card, or built-in to the motherboard.

External Modem[edit | edit source]

For the meaning of the word "modem", see the previous entry on "Internal Modem." An external modem is usually plugged into an external serial (RS-232) port on a computer. It comes with its own housing and power supply. They are easier to connect than an internal modem, and often contain processing elements which offload the burden of modulation from the computer's main processor. Internal modems can also contain such circuitry, but that is becoming less and less common, as it is cheaper to let the main processor handle these calculations.

Peripheral[edit | edit source]

A computer peripheral is a device that connects to a computer to extend the computer's capabilities. It can be thought of as a device that sits "to the side" of the computer, just as peripheral vision is "to the side" of the eye's main vision. Examples of peripherals include printers, keyboards, mice, monitors, modems, etc.

Default Disk Drive[edit | edit source]

Before hard drives were common and affordable, computers were often equipped with two floppy drives. One of these - the default drive - held the operating system, and the other was used for storing user data or applications.

A 'K' of Memory[edit | edit source]

A 'K' of memory is 1024 bytes. 'K' stands for kilo, and is a shortened form of the word kilobyte. The number 1024 is used rather than the number 1000 because 1024 is the result of multiplying two by itself ten times (that is 2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2=1024). Another way to say that number is "2 raised to the 10th power, or 210. Computers are based on binary arithmetic which is a numbering system using only two digits, one and zero. There are 1024 different ways to combine ten binary digits (more commonly called bits), so a ten-bit number can address 1024 memory locations. Thus, the "strange" number of 1024.

Other important memory milestones include the megabyte (1,048,576, or 220 bytes), the gigabyte 1,073,741,824, or 230 bytes), and the terabyte (240 bytes).

Screensaver[edit | edit source]

A common form of a computer monitor is the cathode ray tube, or CRT. CRT's work by shooting electrons onto a glass screen which has been coated with a material that glows when excited by electrons. This material can wear out if it is continually bombarded with electrons, and this in turn can cause an image to be "burned in" to a CRT. A screensaver is a program that detects when the computer has been idle for a certain amount of time and then paints different images on the CRT to prevent one image from burning in. Thus, the coating tends to wear out more evenly. This is not unlike the concept of rotating the tires on an automobile.

Although screensavers are not needed for newer types of monitors (such as LCD and plasma displays), they are still entertaining. They can also be configured to put the monitor into a low-power state, saving electricity.

Byte[edit | edit source]

A byte is a collection of eight binary digits (more commonly called "bits"). Although bits can only take on the values of 1 or 0 (on or off), eight of them can be combined in 256 different ways. Thus, a byte can have one of 256 values.

Scanner[edit | edit source]

A scanner is a device that can digitize an image much as a photocopier does, except that the image is then transferred to a computer.

Email[edit | edit source]

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Electronic mail, abbreviated e-mail or email, is a method of composing, sending, and receiving messages over electronic communication systems. The term e-mail applies both to the Internet e-mail system based on the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) and to workgroup collaboration systems allowing users within one company or organization to send messages to each other. Often workgroup collaboration systems natively use non-standard protocols but have some form of gateway to allow them to send and receive internet e-mail. Some organizations may use the internet protocols for internal e-mail service.

Font[edit | edit source]

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

A font consists of a set of images representing the characters from a particular character set in a particular typeface. Historically, fonts came in specific sizes (governing the actual height of the characters), and in sorts (governing the quantities of each letter provided).

3. What is the work of the following people associated with computers?[edit | edit source]

Operator[edit | edit source]

Computer Operators are responsible for maintaining a mainframe, server, or a network of computers. They install software, manage user accounts, and trouble shoot the network. They often select and install new computer equipment. A Computer Operator generally holds an associates degree in computer science, or has related job experience.

Data Entry[edit | edit source]

Data Entry clerks are responsible for entering data into a computer and verifying that it has been entered accurately. No job experience is necessary for a Data Entry position, but a high school diploma is often required.

Programmer[edit | edit source]

A programmer designs, writes, debugs and documents simple computer programs or small parts of large programs. They are also often asked to debug or add functions to existing programs. Programmers are usually required to have a bachelor's degree in computer science or previous related job experience.

Systems Analyst[edit | edit source]

Systems Analysts are responsible for designing large programs, and dividing a program into smaller programs that can be programmed by other team members, and then bringing all those pieces back together to work as a system. In complex systems, they are also responsible for determining how much computing power is required, partitioning the problem across multiple computers, and selecting the computing components required to get the job done. They usually need a bachelors degree in computer science plus three to five years of experience.

Consultant[edit | edit source]

A Consultant is a person who has a lot of experience, often in a specialized area of computing. They are usually in business for themselves and work "freelance" for a company looking to solve a very specific problem requiring the services of an expert. When the problem has been solved, the consultant begins working on a contract with another company. Consultants often possess an advanced degree (Masters or PhD) and have several years of experience.

4. How can it be determined when a computer is reading or writing on a disk? What precautions should be taken while the computer is performing this function?[edit | edit source]

Most disk drives are equipped with an indicator light that the computer will illuminate when it is accessing the drive.

For a hard drive, this light is usually located on the front of the computer where it can easily be seen. For a floppy drive, the light is located on the front of the drive itself.

A floppy disk should not be removed from a drive when it is being accessed. The computer should not be turned off when it is accessing either a floppy drive or a hard drive. Most modern operating systems have a "shutdown" function which will put the computer in a safe state before it is powered off. When the computer is in this safe state, it will not access any of its disk drives. Turning a computer off without running the "shutdown" function can result in the loss of data or corruption of the drives.

5. What is the difference between serial and parallel communications?[edit | edit source]

In serial communications, data is sent one bit at a time over a single pair of wires. The pair of wires consists of a data line and a return line. In parallel communications, more than one bit at a time is sent, with each bit being sent over its own wire. Parallel bits can share a common return line or they can each have their own return line.

Examples of serial communications schemes include USB, Ethernet, and RS-232 ports. Examples of parallel communications schemes include parallel printer ports and IDE (hard drive) interfaces.

Parallel interfaces have the obvious advantage of being much faster. Serial interfaces have the advantage of requiring less bulky cabling and connectors.

6. What does it mean for a computer to be "compatible?"[edit | edit source]

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

IBM PC compatible refers to a class of computers which make up the vast majority of smaller computers on the market today. They are based (without IBM's participation) on the original IBM PC. They use the Intel x86 architecture (or an architecture made to emulate it) and are capable of using interchangeable commodity hardware. These computers also used to be referred to as PC clones, and nowadays, just PCs.

7. What legal responsibility applies to software with the following designation: public domain, shareware, copyright?[edit | edit source]

Any work that is in the public domain is free to use for any purpose whatsoever. In the case of software, that means it can be copied freely, modified, and sold.

Shareware is software that is distributed on a free trial basis. After an evaluation period, the user is legally obligated to either pay for the software or uninstall it from any computer on which it was installed.

Copyright software is software that is used under an end user license agreement, or EULA. Commercial EULAs protect the rights of the software vendor. Other EULAs protect the rights of the user. In general, commercial software cannot be redistributed, modified, or reverse engineered. An example of copyright software whose EULA is designed to protect the user is "open source." Software licensed as "open source" can be modified, redistributed, and even sold, as long as the source code for the software and any modifications made to it are also distributed. The right to have access to the source code is granted to the end user. There are several open source licenses, and each is a little different. The user of "copyright" software - whether commercial or open source - is legally obligated to follow whatever terms are outlined in the EULA, so it is important to read the EULA before accepting it.

8. Successfully using the operating system of a personal computer, do the following[edit | edit source]

Clear the screen of the computer without turning off the power.[edit | edit source]

These requirements depend heavily on the operating system running on the computer being used to meet them. This operation really only makes sense in a command-line environment (such as DOS) rather than in a graphical environment (such as Windows). In a graphical environment, the screen could be cleared by minimizing all open windows. Instructions for a few command-line environments are given here. At the DOS command prompt, type "cls" (without the quotes) and press the enter key ("cls" is short for "clear screen"). At the Linux command prompt, enter the "clear" command.

Show the contents of a diskette on the computer screen.[edit | edit source]

Again, this depends on the operating system in use. Step one is the same on all of them though - insert the diskette in the diskette drive.

Use the command "DIR A:"
Use a graphical file browser, or enter the following commands at the command prompt:
mount -t auto /dev/fd0 /media/floppy
ls /media/floppy
Macintosh having the original GUI interface is quite simple: double click the icon for your disk at appears on the screen. The most modern OS's from Apple are very windows like, once upon a time the icon for your disk truly appeared on the desk top when placed in the drive.
Open Windows Explorer (press the "Windows" key and the letter "E" at the same time). Expand the "My Computer" line by clicking on the box with a + in it, then expand the "Floppy (A:)" line. The contents of the disk will be displayed on the right.

Show how to check for bad sectors on a diskette or hard drive.[edit | edit source]

Use the following command at the DOS prompt.
scandisk /surface
Use the following commands:
umount /dev/hda1 
fsck /dev/hda1
Windows XP
Double click the "My Computer" icon. Right click the drive you want to check and select "Properties". Then click the "Tools" tab followed by the "Check Now" button.

Rename a file on the disk to a different name.[edit | edit source]

Use the following command:
ren oldname newname
Use the following command:
mv oldname newname
Open Windows Explorer (Windows Key + 'E') and navigate to the folder containing the file you wish to rename. Click once on the filename. It should become highlighted and a cursor should appear at the end of the filename. Type the new name and press Enter. You can also right click on the file name and select "Rename" from the menu.

Copy the contents of one disk to another in perfect "mirror image."[edit | edit source]

This requirement seems to imply that the computer will have two floppy drives. These days it is extremely rare to find a PC with two drives, and increasingly difficult to find one with even one floppy drive! To meet the spirit of the requirement, you should instead be able to copy the contents of a folder onto a diskette or a flash drive.

These instructions assume two floppy drives. Insert the "master" diskette in the A: drive, and the destination diskette in the B: drive. Then use the following command:
diskcopy [drive1:] [drive2:]
where drive1 is the source drive and drive2 is the target.
These instructions assume copying a folder to a flash drive. Insert the flash drive into the USB port and mount it to /media/usb. Then use the following command:
 cp -ar folder/ /media/usb
These instructions assume copying a folder to a flash drive. Insert the flash drive into the USB port. Open Windows Explorer and navigate to the folder containing the folder you wish to copy. In the right panel, click on the folder you wish to copy using the mouse and drag it to the USB drive in the left panel. Release the mouse button.

Show that you have completed the previous by having the computer "compare" the two disks and show no difference between them.[edit | edit source]

DOS[edit | edit source]

Use this command:

diskcomp A: B:

Although this assumes that you have two floppy disks. If you only have one floppy drive, try this instead:

diskcomp A: A:

This will read the first disk and then prompt the user to insert the second disk. The compare operation will then proceed.

Linux[edit | edit source]

To compare two directories, use the command line interface and enter this command:

diff /path/to/source/directory /path/to/copy

Be sure to substitute the proper directories.

Macintosh[edit | edit source]

Windows[edit | edit source]

Open a DOS window and use the same procedure as described in the DOS section.

Show how to copy a file onto a disk.[edit | edit source]

Insert a diskette in a disk drive and use the following command:
copy filename A:
Insert a diskette into the disk drive and mount it to /media/floppy. Then use the following command:
 cp filename /media/floppy
Open Windows Explorer and navigate to the destination folder. Then navigate to the folder that has the file in it. In the left panel, scroll to the destination folder. Then drag the file icon in the right panel to the destination folder in the left panel.

Show how to delete a file from a disk.[edit | edit source]

Use the following command:
del filename
Use the following command:
 rm filename
Open Windows Explorer and right click on the filename. Select "Delete" from the menu.

9. Research at least four different computer languages (such as BASIC, VISUAL BASIC, Pascal, C, C++) to find out why they were developed and for what type of application they are used. Type a 200 word report on your findings or give a three-minute oral report.[edit | edit source]

The following links have plenty of material:

Other programming languages may also be of interest:

10. Show proficiency in the use and operation of three of the following[edit | edit source]

Word Processing[edit | edit source]

The word processing requirement can be met with any number of word processing programs - all of which will have different (but similar) ways of accomplishing the same thing. The answers to this requirement have been re-organized to detail the functions for three different word processing programs:

Microsoft Word



Database Make a list of at least 15 people, their addresses, phone number, birth date, and age. Perform a sort function which will list the people alphabetically by last name, list by zip code, list by age, and list by birth date. Make a printout of each list.[edit | edit source]

Accounting Program[edit | edit source]

Do one of the following with an accounting program:

Perform invoice entry and bill printing of accounts receivable.[edit | edit source]

Perform invoicing and check printing of accounts payable.[edit | edit source]

Perform journal entry and financial reports of the general ledger.[edit | edit source]

Newsletter ProgramPrepare three pages of double-column text with at least four different computer-generated graphics (such as graphs or clip art), two different fonts, and one headline.[edit | edit source]

SpreadsheetShow how to add columns, move columns, put a calculation in a field, save, reload, and print. Also perform the function of adding column A and B, dividing by column C, and placing the result in column D.[edit | edit source]

This can be accomplished with Microsoft Excel, OpenOffice Scalc, or any other spreadsheet program that is available to you and your Pathfinders. They all work about the same, with only minor differences between them.

First you will need to start the spreadsheet program and enter in two columns of numbers. A spreadsheet is a grid of cells arranged in rows (horizontal) and columns (vertical). The columns are labeled by letters (Column A, B, C, etc.), and the rows are labeled by numbers (Row 1, 2, 3, etc.). An individual cell is identified by its column and row, for example, cell B14 is in column B, row 14.

Begin by entering three columns of numbers in columns A, B, and C. To enter a number into a cell, simply click on the cell with the mouse and type in a number. Then press the down arrow on the keyboard or click on another cell. For this exercises, enter 10 numbers in each column, starting at row 1 and proceeding to row 10.

Now you are ready to add columns A and B and divide them by column C. The results will be computed in column D. Go to cell D1, and enter in the following:


Be sure to start with an equal sign. This tells the program that this column will be computed rather than taken as a literal. After you press Enter, the spreadsheet should perform the calculation, and the result should appear in cell D1. All that remains is to copy this formula into the other 9 cells in row D. To do this, click on cell D1 and type <ctrl>-C on the keyboard. This will copy the formula into the copy buffer. You could also right click on cell D1 with the mouse and select "Copy". Once you have done this, click on cell D2. Then hold down the shift key and click on cell D10. Cells D2 through D10 should be highlighted. Then type <ctrl>-V (or right click and select "Paste"). The program should put a copy of cell D1 into cells D2 through D10. However, it will not put an exact copy in these cells. Cell D2 will contain


Note how the row numbers have changed. This is a great convenience that will prevent you from having to edit every single entry in the column.

Educational Program Teach any student in grades 1 to 4 how to successfully do a solo operation of a program designed for their age level.[edit | edit source]

A nice, free, educational program that works on many computer operating systems is Tux Paint. It is available for Windows, Macintosh, Linux, and other operating systems as well. The website has plenty of documentation to get you started.

Another great program is GCompris (pronounced "Gee Com-pree") and it too is available for Windows, Macintosh, Linux, and more. It offers a wide variety of activities for children of all ages, from "computer discovery" (how to use a mouse, etc.) to algebra. It is available in several languages (12 as of this writing).

Alternatively, you may use one of many commercially available educational programs.

11. Visit the computer department of any business or have someone from a business computer department visit your classroom or club.[edit | edit source]

Whether you visit company or the professional visits you, remember you are interrupting a somebody's busy schedule. While they may genuinely happy to help you, they are doing you a favor by doing so. Respond by showing appropriate gratitude, being polite, and being on time. Be flexible when scheduling the visit as well. You will need to fit your time into their schedule rather than asking them to fit their time into yours.

About the Author[edit | edit source]


Jim Thomas earned his Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering Technology (BSEET) at Murray State University in 1985, and earned his Masters of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE) at Virginia Polytechnic Institute in 1995. He has worked in the computer/electronics industry since 1985, designing computer hardware and writing software for embedded digital signal processing applications.

Jim is a Master Guide and serves as the director of the Central New Hampshire Flames Pathfinder Club in Concord, NH, where he also serves as a local church elder. He and his wife Virginia have two sons and a daughter.

A die-hard do-it-yourselfer, his hobbies include Pathfindering (of course!), woodworking, whitewater paddling, fooling around with computers, and wild flower identification. Jim blogs regularly at Wordpress, sometimes about this Wikibook.