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Anatomy of a Computer RAM, ROM, CPU, etc. [This material can be found in Chapt. 3 of Discovering Computers 2000 (Shelly, Cashman and Vermaat).]

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Presentation on theme: "Anatomy of a Computer RAM, ROM, CPU, etc. [This material can be found in Chapt. 3 of Discovering Computers 2000 (Shelly, Cashman and Vermaat).]"— Presentation transcript:

1 Anatomy of a Computer RAM, ROM, CPU, etc. [This material can be found in Chapt. 3 of Discovering Computers 2000 (Shelly, Cashman and Vermaat).]

2 A chip off the old block zMillions of transistors are connected into what is called an integrated circuit or chip zThe most important chip in a computer is the microprocessor zThe microprocessor houses the Central Processing Unit (CPU), the “brain” of the computer zEx. The Pentium II is a microprocessor

3 How many? zWord size and bus width zComputing means moving bits around, so an important question is how many bits can be handled at one time zanalogy: two-lane, four-lane or eight-lane highway

4 How fast? zEach of the computer’s manipulations (instructions) begins a “tick” of the clock zSo the faster the clock ticks, the faster the computer zClock speed: a measure of how fast the computer is, given in MHz (megahertz - millions of cycles per second) zMiddle number written on LaSalle’s computers

5 How fast? (Cont.) zSometimes one instruction can be started before the previous one was complete zLike have a batter on deck zSo another measure of speed is useful zInstructions per second, another measure of speed, is measured in MIPS (millions of instructions per second)

6 The mother of all circuit boards zchips and other things are connected together on what is called a circuit board zthe mother board, a.k.a. the system board, holds the main components of the computer yCPU yclock yconnectors yexpansion slots, ETC.

7 The fan and the sink zThe chips, especially the microprocessor can get hot zheat sink: the strangely shaped metal or ceramic structure sitting on the processor that serves to draw away the heat zthere’s also a little fan near the processor; that’s often what you hear on old computers

8 A link to the outside world zThe process of putting information into or getting information out of a computer is called interfacing or input/output (IO) zports are sockets, typically in the back of a computer, where one plugs in the cable connecting the computer to the IO devices

9 Two types zserial ydata sent one bit at a time yfor modems and some printers ycable can be very long yex. MIDI, USB zparallel ydata sent eight bits at a time ylimit on length of cable yex. SCSI

10 SCSI port zS mall c omputer s ystem i nterface zpronounced “scuzzy” zallows more than one device to be connected to a single port zdaisy chain: getting the output for a second output device from the first (rather than directly from the computer), the output for a third can come from the second and so on

11 A connector in every port zPorts have connectors, as do cables zconnectors come in two varieties ymale: have pins sticking out yfemale: have holes to receive pins

12 Analog to Digital zAny measurement that can be converted to an electronic signal (voltage or current) can be directly fed into a computer zthe original data is often continuous (analog) and must be converted into digital form zThis signal can be fed in through a port (typically the RS-232 port) so long as the appropriate software is installed

13 In the cards zExpansion Slot: A socket designed to hold the circuit board for the device, such as a sound or video card, that adds capability to the computer system zAdapter cards: additional circuitry and chips that extend your PC’s capabilities allowing you to customize it

14 Some types of cards zvideo or graphics card: enhances computer’s ability to convert output into video and send it to the monitor zSound card: improves your computer’s sound capabilities, be it input (microphone) or output (speakers) zinternal modem: allows computer to connect to networks via phone lines and such

15 Plug and play zrefers to computer’s capability to figure out what to do when new expansion cards and devices are added zthis way the user does not have to know how to “configure” the system

16 Memories zSaving information we have entered (e.g. onto floppies) is referred to as “storage;” it is long term and slow by computer standards (storage  memory) zBefore we save the data, it is in the computer’s memory, i.e. in memory chips, which hold the information temporarily zMemory also holds the instructions a computer needs to operate

17 ROM zRead Only Memory zThis memory is loaded up by the manufacturer (some is programmable) zcontains low-level instructions for the computer zNot lost when the computer is turned off z“nonvolatile” memory z“stored program concept”

18 RAM zRandom Access Memory zThe memory the user uses zThe programs one loads and the data one enters are here zLost when the computer is turned off z“volatile” memory zrandom?

19 Random Vs. Sequential zA cassette tape is sequential access; you have to go through song one and two to get to song three zA CD is random access; you can jump directly to song three

20 Some Types of RAM zDynamic RAM (D-RAM): dynamic means changing, which for memory is not necessarily a good thing, so dynamic memory must be continually refreshed ySynchronous DRAM — when the memory update and clock are better coordinated (“in synch”) zStatic RAM (SRAM) doesn’t need constant refreshing, is faster but more expensive than dynamic

21 Cache zpronounced “cash” zit’s an area of high-speed memory (often SRAM) zInstead of looking through the slower RAM, data is looked for here first, a speedy intermediary zYou often encounter the term while surfing the web; data from a web site can be stored in a cache

22 Buffer and Clipboard zBuffer: where data coming in (from input devices) or going out (to output devices) is stored until the transaction is complete zClipboard: Memory location where data is placed during an application such as word processing (cutting or copying puts data on the clipboard); it is also used to transfer data from one application to another (e.g. from Excel to Word)

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