Information Technology is a collection of hardware and software used for storing (saving), retrieving (opening) and manipulating (editing) of information in a computer system. Information in an IT environment refers to the results of processed data while data is the raw material fed into the computer. The main purpose of IT is to process the data and give out the results as information. Whereby the processing may involve; saving, editing and manipulation. There has to be an interface for linking the different components of an IT system. This can be best described using the diagram below:
The arrows represent the interface that exists in the system. The System has to be very intelligent to enable it process the data fed into it through an input device and give out the results as information via an output device.
nformation technology is meant to make work easier for humans. The information systems have been implemented in almost every field of human operation. Different programs have been designed to suit the environment in which the system is meant to operate. Information can be easily grouped and stored in a database which makes the retrieval work easier as compared to the traditional use of manual filing systems which were bulky and cumbersome.
Components of a Computer System
The components of a computer system can be broadly classified as:
a) Hardware – They are the physical tangible parts of a computer system and they provide the capabilities or the platform on which operations are conducted.
b) Software – These are the parts of a computer system which can only be viewed and manipulated but cannot be touched physically. They are concerned with the processing operations of a computer system.
c) Live-ware: Also known as the operator. They are concerned with directing the operations and the sequence of tasks to be performed in a computer system. The design of the computer system is based on the intelligence of humans and the operations tend to imitate how a human brain functions.
i. CPU – Central Processing Unit: it is the control center of a computer unit and has two parts used for different operations.
a. ALU – Arithmetic Logic Unit: Performs basically arithmetic operations which include; Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Division, comparison and also moving data.
b. Control Unit- Performs Coordination and directing operations according to the specifications of a pre-stored program.
ii. Storage devices: Their main purpose is to hold the data being processed and also store the information which has been processed.
iii. Input devices: They are used for capturing data into the computer. They forma the interface between the operator and the computer.
iv. Output devices: They display the results of processed information.
v. Memory: The computer has a memory which refers to the devices used to store data on a temporary or permanent basis. There are two types of computer memory.
a. Volatile memory – requires power to maintain the stored information.
b. Non-volatile memory – these are computer memories which can store data even if power is removed from the system.
Applications of Information Technology
Web based Applications: The We based applications helps one connect to the internet and thereby making information acquisition very easy. It also helps in sharing of information over the internet.
Artificial intelligence: Involves the development of computers with human like qualities which can assist in decision making and performing tasks which could have required a large human labor force to accomplish.
E- Commerce /Mobile Commerce: Involves transacting business activities over the internet and using mobile phones. Multimedia/ Hypermedia and Computer Animation: Involves creating of moving images which can be used for entertainment purposes and also for shooting advertisements in the media.
IT is a broad field that has so much to offer. The computer has made work easier because of its speed and accuracy. The computer has transformed the world into a global village as information can be easily shared with different people across the globe. The advantages of IT far much surpasses the disadvantages and therefore it is a very powerful tool and has been adopted by many companies and institutions to help in accomplishing different tasks in different fields. The computer systems are very intelligent and are slowly replacing people in different places of work. The developments in the IT field continue to be realized day by day and according to researchers the innovations and the developments are far from ending. As time goes by, the physical sizes of computer systems tend to reduce with an increase in performance. This makes the use of computers more and more convenient.
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