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History of computing

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History of computing Way back in early history, when people relied mainly on their brains to perform calculations, people used their fingers, pebbles, and tally sticks for computing purposes. Various attempts were made to build general-purpose programmable computers from the same mechanical devices used in calculators. But the problems posed by the lack of technology at the time were not satisfactorily solved until the introduction of electronic computing techniques in the mid-20th century. Between Pascal's invention and around 1820 there were about 25 manufacturers of calculating machines; most of them were the work of one man. Few of them worked correctly and even less actually reached the manufacturing line. In the mid-19th century Charles Babbage, a visionary British mathematician at Cambridge University, designed the first computers to perform multistep operations automatically. The technologies were entirely mechanical. He called this first computing machine the Difference Engine, and it was intended to compute and print mathematical tables automatically. The Difference Engine performed only one arithmetic operation: addition. Babbage constructed a small portion of his first Difference Engine in 1832, which served as a demonstration prototype. ...read more.


It had the general structure depicted in Figure 4. It had a CPU (Central Processing Unit) for executing instructions, a main memory for storing active programs, a secondary memory for backup storage, and miscellaneous input-output equipment. The IBM PC series was introduced in 1981 and quickly became the de facto standard for this class of machine. IBM made a smart decision by making the architecture of the PC open, meaning its design specifications were available to other manufacturers of computers and software. As a result of this decision the IBM PC became very popular and many versions of it, PC clones, were produced by others. Many other significant achievements have occurred in the PC era and continue to occur with the widespread use of the Internet and networked computers. Here are a few other notable historical achievements having to do with PC's: o 1976 - The Cray 1 Supercomputer was the first commercially developed supercomputer. It contained 200,000 IC's and was cooled by Freon. o 1977 - Apple II computer introduced. ...read more.


Hyperlinked pages could not only provide information but could provide transparent access to other pages of information as well as other Internet facilities such as ftp, telnet, Gopher, WAIS, and USENET. The Web started out as a text-only interface but NCSA Mosaic, an early browser, later presented a graphical interface for it and its popularity exploded as it became accessible to the novice user. The explosion of the Web started in earnest during 1993 and in a single year Web traffic increased by 300,000%. o 1990 - Windows 3.0 introduced by Microsoft. This graphical user interface OS offered true multi-tasking, meaning you could run multiple programs at the same time. o 1993 - The Pentium microprocessor released by Intel. It was only available at that time in 60 and 66 MHz versions. o 1995 - Windows 95 operating system released by Microsoft. o 1995 - Pentium Pro microprocessor released. o 1997 - Pentium MMX (166 and 200 MHz) released. o 1997 - Pentium II (233, 266, and 300 MHz) released. o 1998 - Windows 98 released. o 1999 - Linux, a free alternative operating system to Microsoft's Windows, is estimated to be running on over 10 million computers worldwide. ?? ?? ?? ?? Sarah Dow ...read more.

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