Computer Science

 

Vocabulary:

Section Nouns Verbs Adjectives
  1. What is computer science?
Bit, character, code, data, data processing, device, keyboard, remainder, scanner, symbol. Collet, correspond, encode, enter (data), multiply, organise, process, represent, transform, translate Binary, decimal, digital, successive, useful
  1. Computer components
Barcode reader, bay, beam, blu-ray Disc, button, cable, capacity, CD-ROM, chip, circuit, component, CPU, cursor, drive, DVD, element, file, format, groove, hardware, image, input, laser, memory stick, microprocessor, modem, monitor, motherboard, mouse, operating system, output, pointer, port, printer, program, RAM, ROM, screen, shell, software, storage, text, touch screen, web, wiring Acces, carry out, communicate, connect, delete, display, enable, erase, include, install, make up, open, perform, print, read, select, store, transfer, turn off, turn on. Entire, external, horizontal, internal, magnetic, optical, peripheral, solid-state, specific, useful, vertical, wireless.
  1. Software and operating systems.
Browser, cell, column, configuration, desktop, folder, graphics, icon, microphone, picture, presentation, record, row, search, slide, sound, spreadsheet. Create, cut, delete, download, group, improve, load, manage, modify, paste, record, recover, search, share, show, start up. Common, compatible, core, free, multimedia, necessary, popular.

 

What is computer science? Computer science is extremely useful. We use computers for many tasks. When we use a computer that is what happens:

  1. Input data. Data is entered either directly from the keyboard or from other devices.
  2. Data processing. The computer collects the data and then organises, saves and transforms it.
  3. Output data. After the data has been processed, we get output information.

Information entered into a computer is translated into a code. This transformation is called encoding.
A bit is the smallest unit used to represent information on a computer. It corresponds to a binary digit: either 0 or 1.

 

Computer components

 

The components that make up a computer are called hardware and software:

–          Hardware: the physical components of the computer, such as internal circuits, the wiring, monitor, keyboard, printer, etc.

–          Software: the programs, or systems of instructions, that make it possible to operate and use a computer.

 

Hardware

  • Central Processing Unit. This is the main component in a computer, its “brain”. It interprets instructions from programs and processes data, as well as managing and controlling the entire system.
  • Memories. The memory is where we store the data and instructions that form part of the programs. There are two different types of memory:
    • ROM (Read Only Memory). Its contents can only be read. It is not erased, even when we turn off the computer.
    • RAM memory (Random Access Memory). Its contents can be changed. RAM temporarily stores the programs and data that are being used on the computer.
  • Storage devices
    • Magnetic: information is stored through the magnetic arrangement of particles on the device. Examples: hard drives and portable hard drives.
    • Optical: information is encoded by means of microscopic grooves on the surface. Examples: CD-ROMs, DVDs and Blu-ray Discs.
    • Solid-state storage devices: these storage devices are manufactured in the form of small components called transistors. Examples: memory sticks and memory cards.
  • Peripheral devices. Peripheral devices are used to communicate what is inside the computer to the outside world (people, computers, other devices, etc.).

Peripheral devices may be used for input, output and input/output. They are connected to ports (slots and bays) found on the computer’s case.

    • Peripheral input devices. These devices enable us to enter data and instructions into the computer from the outside. Examples:
      • Keyboard. Enables us to enter data (characters, letters and numbers).
      • Mouse. Allows us to perform a number of actions by moving the pointer or cursor (usually an arrow) and pressing a button.
      • Other peripheral input devices: scanner, web camera, barcode reader, touch screen and joystick.
    • Peripheral output devices. These are used to get information from the computer after the data has been processed.
      • Monitor. Display images or text (like a television screen).
      • Printer. Prints information in different formats – on normal paper, photographic paper, transparencies, etc.
    • Peripheral input / output devices. These make it possible to enter data on the computer and to output the information.
      • The modem enables communication over telephone lines between computers. This is called an Internet connection.
      • Smartphones include a small operating system that lets us transfer files easily between a telephone and a computer.
      • Digital cameras are used to take and transfer photographs and videos to and from a computer.

 

Software and operating systems

Software enables the hardware components to work. Software is the set of programs or instructions that start up the computer and process data so that we can use it.

Software = program

Some of the most important programs are:

    • Applications. These are usually designed to meet the most common needs of most users: word processors, spreadsheets, programs used for presentations, database programs, tools for processing graphics, drawing, etc.
    • Multimedia programs. These programs make use of peripheral devices (microphones, speakers, keyboards, etc.) to process text, images, sound, animation and video.
    • Operating system. This is the core program that tells the computer how it should perform all its basic functions. The most popular operating systems for personal computers are: Windows, Linux and Mac OS.
  • The operating system desktop

When you turn on the computer, it automatically loads the operating system, which allows you to see a screen called the desktop (escritorio).

The tools on the desktop appear on the screen as icons. These are little images that make them easy to identify.

There are three types of elements you’ll find on the desktop: programs or applications, files and folders where these files are stored.

 

The Windows operating system

Windows is a very common operating system. It’s easy to use and compatible with many programs, which is why it’s so popular.

We can open different windows and work with several files and programs at the same time.

  • The information in our computer:
    • This data is stored as files.
    • To organize the files we use folders, which can contain files or other folders.
    • The drives are where the information is stored, organized into files and folders.
  • Storing information. Files stored on a computer can be classified into three groups:
    • Files created by the user.
    • Files downloaded from an external drive or peripheral device.
    • Files downloaded from internet.
  • Accessing information. Using Windows Explorer, you can recover information stored on the drives that our computer has access to. There is a specific tool for this: Mi PC. If you can’t find a file, you can locate it by clicking on Inicio > Buscar.
  • Applications in Windows office software suite. An office software suite is the group of programs used to organize store and process data, as well as transmit information.

The most frequently used programs are:

  • Microsoft Word. Word processor programs enable us to write and format text.
  • Microsoft Excel. This useful application is a spreadsheet. A spreadsheet is divided into rows and columns. Rows and columns intersect in cells.
  • Microsoft Access. This application manages databases. They contain a series of tables that store information or data that are interrelated.
  • Microsoft PowerPoint. This is a presentation program. You can use it to create attractive, animated or still slide presentations. You can use them for technology projects or any other subject.

The Linux operating system

Linux is a free operating system: it can be used, improved and shred at no cost. In Linux, the information is also stored in files and organized by folders.

  • Applications in Linux office software suit. OpenOffice is a free office software package based on open source code:
    • OpenOffice Writer. It’s a word processor very similar to Microsoft Word.
    • OpenOffice Calc. It’s a spreadsheet very similar to Microsoft Excel.
    • OpenOffice Base. It’s an application that manages databases, very similar to Microsoft Access.
    • OpenOffice Impress. It’s a presentation program very similar to Microsoft PowerPoint.

 

 

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