Questions About Computers
- What are ASCII & UNICODE? Why are they important?
ASCII stands for American Standard Code for Information Interchange. An ASCII code is the numerical representation of English characters. UNICODE is a computing industry standard that provides numbers for characters regardless of the platform, program or computing language. Computers deal with just numbers and therefore ASCII and UNICODE are the useful in transferring data between computers and standardizing computing operations.
- If you were going to purchase a new PC in the next month, what type would you buy? Justify your selection based on the discussions and the course materials.
I would buy a Chillblast Fusion Sprite. This PC comprises an excellent monitor, a very powerful processor, an excellent graphics card and consumes relatively low power and is therefore suitable for varied operations. This PC has an 8.00 GB RAM, 1TB hard disk among other topnotch components and features. It consumes 1W standby and 151W when active; it also has a favorable cost at about $699.
- There are several types of memory located in a computer system. List them and explain their characteristics
- Primary Memory – Also called main memory is used for the immediate access of data by the processor.
- Random Access Memory (RAM) - It is responsible for storing data on a temporary basis to enable its prompt access by the processor whenever it is needed.
- Secondary Memory – It is not directly available to computers and is available on mass storage devices for permanent storage of data. Data contained in secondary devices is transferable between different machines. Examples of secondary memory devices include magnetic tapes, floppy disk, optical discs (DVD/CD), hard drives and flash drives.
- Explain the difference between computer literacy and computer fluency. Which are you?
Computer literacy is the ability and knowledge to use computers and computing technology efficiently. Computer fluency refers to the mastery of fundamental computer concepts. I am computer fluent because I have mastered several computer parts, programs, software and I can perform several computing functions with relative ease.
- Define the modern day computer as discussed in class. How has this definition evolved over time? What future changes do you see in the device we call a computer?
Modern day computers are advanced computers with high storage capacities, inbuilt photographic devices such as webcams, wireless capabilities among other features and capabilities. The definition of modern day computers has evolved with the development of portable, highly-efficient computers such as laptops and ipads. Changes occurring are in the development of lighter, slimmer, power-efficient multipurpose devices. Future computers will be very small miniature devices that will among other things be probably be used in the collection and analysis of data from outer space.
- When selecting computer systems for different functional areas within a business what should be the process for choosing the right computer system? What should you take into consideration before purchasing a computer system?
When selecting a computer system it is important to consider speed of the computer, the storage capacity, the graphics and the features that the computer has inherently, or those that can be added to allow the computer to perform varied functions. Moreover, it is important to consider the cost and the power consumption of the computer. The portability of the computer should also be considered and wherever possible an ipad should be part of a businessman’s prized possessions!
- Explain the significance of Moore’s law and Metcalf’s law. What impact has it had on computers and computer technology?
Moore’s Law states that the processing power of computers specifically microchips, doubles every 18 months while the price of a given computing power halves over the same period. Metcalfe’s law states that the value of any network increases exponentially in relation with the number of users. Going by these laws, the cost of computers and computing technology will continue to decline as better and more efficient technologies come up.
- Kevin Kelly of Wired Magazine discussed in the TED conference about the One Machine. Briefly explain how he envisioned this machine in our future
Kevin Kelly envisioned a machine that is instrumental in the convergence of the digital and the atomic. He stated that the one machine would exceed the power and capacity of the human brain several times. He asserted that the realization of total personality from the one machine would require total transparency.
- Explain how information is transported across the internet using TCP?IP protocols
The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP)/ Internet Protocol (IP) refers to the ways in which computers “communicate” with each other. Application programmes first send messages (streams of data) to an Internet Transport Layer Protocol. When the protocols receive they divide it onto packets (smaller pieces) and then add a destination address after which they pass the data to the next protocol layer which is the Internet network Layer. Common functions using TCP/IP include remote login, electronic mail and computer-mail-to-mail transfer.
- Discuss what IPv4 and IPv6 are. Why was there a need to move to a new version and when did it occur.
IPv4 and IPv6 are versions of Internet Protocol which is the technical format for the transport of data in computer networks. IPv4 is the fourth version of the IP that is used in the identification of devices on a network through an elaborate addressing system. IPv6 is an upgrade version of IPv4. It was designed to address concerns that IP addresses would exceed available supply after a short while. It was therefore a revolutionary development to allow for the growth of the internet through hosting and the amount of data being exchanged.
Goldsmith, Mike, and Tom Jackson. Computer. New York: DK Publishing, 2011. Print.
Turkle, Sherry. Alone together: why we expect more from technology and less from each other. New York: Basic Books, 2011. Print.