A computer system is made up of six parts: hardware,software,data/information,procedures,people and communications.
The term computer is used to describe a device made up of a combination of electronic and electomechanical (part electronic and part mechanical) components. By itself, a computer has no intelligence and is referred to as hardware, which means simply the physical equipment. A computer can’t be used until it is connected to other parts of a computer system.
Software is the term used to discribe the instructions that tell the hard-ware how to perform a task. Without software, the hardware is unless. The purpose of a computer system is to convert data into information. Data can be considered the raw material- whether in paper, electronic, or other form- that is processed by the computer. In other words, data consists of the raw facts and figures that are processed into information. Information is summarized data or other wise manipulated data. Thus, the raw data of employees’ hours worked and wage rate is processed by a computer into the information of paychecks and payrolls.
Actually, in ordinary usage, the words data & information are often used synonymously. After all, one person’s information may be another person’s data. The ‘information’ of paychecks and payrolls may become “data” that goes into some one’s yearly financial projections or tax returns.
People, however, constitute the most important component of the computer software. Procedures are descriptions of how things are done, steps for accomplishing a result. Procedures for computer systems appear in documentation manuals, also known as reference manuals, which contain instructions, rules and guidelines to follow when using hardware and software. When you buy a microcomputer or sofrware pacage, it comes with one or more docomentation manuals.
When one computer system is set up to share data and information electronically with another computer system, communications becomes a sixth system element. In the other word, the manner in which the various individuals systems are connected for example, by phone lines, microwave transmission or satellite-is an element of the total computer system.
Now we’ll focus on the basics of the first part of the typical computer system the hardware device. For now, use the following discussion to gain an over all perspective of computer hardware. Just focus on large concepts.