What is computer? What are the four elements of computer? What are the functions of a computer?

Author: Tanmay Chakrabarty

First Published On: Thursday, May 19, 2016 at 5:39 PM


A computer is a multipurpose electronic device that can receive, store, process data and deliver information. A computer takes data such as numbers, text, images etc. as input and then process those data and convert those to useful information. Additionally, a computer can also store data and information both for future use. Also a computer can do scheduled tasks.

Computers are programmed devices. Computer programmers write programs or software for computer which actually takes input, process it and outputs information.

A computer consists following four elements:

1. Hardware: 

Electronic devices used to build up the computer such as motherboard, hard disk drives, memory devices etc. A hardware in a computer system is anything that can be touched.

2. Software: 

Software Programs that use the hardware to do tasks such as operating system software, application software etc. There are various types of software to do various tasks.

3. Data: 

Data that the computer takes in and processes. Data can be of various types such as numbers, texts, images etc.

4. Users: 

Human or other devices or programs that operates the computer with instructions.

Functions of a Computer:

1. Program Execution: 

Computer stores generated or processed or compiled program codes in its memory and executes them as per user interaction or schedules.

2. Input: 

Computer takes instructions from various input devices, such as, keyboard, mouse etc.

3. Processing: 

Computer processes data to generate information or data for another another process.

4. Output: 

Computer uses various output devices to deliver outputs such as monitor, audio devices, printers etc.

Note: The above answer includes answer to the following question(s)
1. List the four parts of a complete computer system.



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