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CHAPTER - ONE Computer History Development of the PC.

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1 CHAPTER - ONE Computer History Development of the PC

2 B EFORE P ERSONAL C OMPUTERS Many discoveries and inventions have directly and indirectly contributed to the development of the PC and other personal computers as we know them today. Examining a few important developmental landmarks can help bring the entire picture into focus. The first computers of any kind were simple calculators. Even these evolved from mechanical devices to electronic digital devices.

3 E LECTRONIC C OMPUTERS A physicist named John V. Atanasoff (with associate Clifford Berry) is officially credited with creating the first true digital electronic computer during 1937 to 1942, while working at Iowa State University. The Atanasoff-Berry Computer (called the ABC) was the first to use modern digital switching techniques and vacuum tubes as switches, and it introduced the concepts of binary arithmetic and logic circuits.

4 M ODERN C OMPUTERS From UNIVAC to the latest desktop PCs, computer evolution has moved very rapidly. The first generation computers were known for using vacuum tubes in their construction. The generation to follow would use the much smaller and more efficient transistor.

5 F ROM T UBES TO T RANSISTORS Any modern digital computer is largely a collection of electronic switches. These switches are used to represent and control the routing of data elements called binary digits (or bits ). Because of the on-or-off nature of the binary information and signal routing the computer uses, an efficient electronic switch was required.

6 T UBES The first electronic computers used vacuum tubes as switches, and although the tubes worked, they had many problems. Unfortunately, the tube was inefficient as a switch. It consumed a great deal of electrical power and gave off enormous heat—a significant problem in the earlier systems. Primarily because of the heat they generated, tubes were notoriously unreliable—in larger systems, one failed every couple of hours.

7 T RANSISTORS The invention of the transistor was one of the most important developments leading to the personal computer revolution. The transistor was first invented in 1947 and announced in 1948 by Bell Laboratory engineers John Bardeen and Walter Brattain. The transistor, which essentially functions as a solid-state electronic switch, replaced the less- suitable vacuum tube. Because the transistor was so much smaller and consumed significantly less power, a computer system built with transistors was also much smaller, faster, and more efficient than a computer system built with vacuum tubes.

8 C ONTINUE.. THEREFORE:- The conversion from tubes to transistors began the trend toward miniaturization that continues to this day. Today’s small laptop (or palmtop) PC and even Tablet PC systems, which run on batteries, have more computing power than many earlier systems that filled rooms and consumed huge amounts of electrical power.

9 I NTEGRATED C IRCUITS The third generation of modern computers is known for using integrated circuits instead of individual transistors. Jack Kilby at Texas Instruments and Robert Noyce at Fairchild are both credited with having invented the integrated circuit (IC) in 1958 and 1959. An IC is a semiconductor circuit that contains more than one component on the same base (or substrate material), which are usually interconnected without wires.

10 H ISTORY OF THE PC The fourth generation of the modern computer includes those that incorporate microprocessors in their designs. Of course, part of this fourth generation of computers is the personal computer, which itself was made possible by the advent of low-cost microprocessors and memory.

11 B IRTH OF THE P ERSONAL C OMPUTER In 1973, some of the first microcomputer kits based on the 8008 chip were developed by Intel. These kits were little more than demonstration tools and didn’t do much except blink lights. In April 1974, Intel introduced the 8080 microprocessor, which was 10 times faster than the earlier 8008 chip and addressed 64KB of memory. This was the breakthrough the personal computer industry had been waiting for.

12 T HE IBM P ERSONAL C OMPUTER At the end of 1980, IBM decided to truly compete in the rapidly growing low-cost personal computer market. This small group consisted of 12 engineers and designers under the direction of Don Estridge and was charged with developing IBM’s first real PC.

13 T HE PC I NDUSTRY N EARLY 30 Y EARS L ATER In the nearly 30 years since the original IBM PC was introduced, many changes have occurred. The IBM-compatible computer, for example, advanced from a 4.77MHz 8088-based system to 3GHz (3,000MHz) or faster Core i7–based systems—about 100,000 or more times faster than the original IBM PC (in actual processing speed, not just clock speed). The original PC had only one or two single-sided floppy drives that stored 160KB each using DOS 1.0, whereas modern systems can have several terabytes (trillion bytes) or more of hard disk storage.

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