Fundamentals of Computer and Computer Types

Definition of Computer – Feature of computer – computer processing speed – MIPS – functions of computer – components of computer – types of computer

Definition of Computer

It is a device that works in an electric medium and performs both mathematical and logical operations with storage capacity.

Feature of Computer

  1. Processing Speed
  2. Accuracy and Reliability
  3. High Storage Capacity
  4. Automation (Capable of functioning automatically)
  5. Diligence (does not suffer any physical and mental trauma)
  6. Versatility

Processing Speed:

The speed of a computer is measured in the following time units for the access time of instructions per second.

Millisecond [1ms]A thousandth of a second or 1/1000
Microsecond [1ms]A millionth of a second or 1/10000000
Nanosecond [1ns]A thousand millionth of a second or 1/1000000000
Picosecond [1ps]A million millionth of a second or 1/1000000000000
KIPSKilo Instructions Per Second
MIPSMillion Instructions Per Second

Previous year questions on MIPS

  1. ______ is the unit of time used to classify different computers based on speed.
    a. Minutes
    b. MIPS
    c. Seconds
    d. Milli Seconds

    Ans: MIPS

  2. A computer with CPU speed around 100 million instructions per second and with the word length of around 64 bits is known as ______
    a. Super computer
    b. Mini computer
    c. Micro computer
    d. Macro Computer

    Ans – Super Computer

  3. Which of the following are the problems with using millions of instructions per second (MIPS) as a measure for comparing computer performance?
    1. It does not take into account the capabilities of the instructions.
    2. MIPS can vary inversely with performance
    3. MIPS varies between programs on the same computer
    a) 1 and 2 only
    b) 2 and 3 only
    c) 1 and 3 only
    d) 1, 2 and 3

    Ans – 1 and 3 only

Functions of a computer

  1. Data collection
  2. Data Storage
  3. Data processing
  4. Data Output

Components of computer

A complete computer system consists of four parts:

  • Hardware – all the physical and tangible components of the computer
  • Software – set of electronic instructions consisting of complex codes (programs) that make the computer perform tasks.
  • User – the computer operators
  • Data – all the facts and figures, computer stores and reads

Computer Hardware

Processing Devices
Mother Board
Storage Devices
Magnetic Disk
Optical Disk
Flash Memory
Magnetic Tape

Input Devices
Web camera
Touch Screen
Light Pen
Output Devices

Computer Software

Utility Software
Utility tools
Customized Software
Application Software
System Software
Single User
System Software
Windows Server

Types of Computer | Classification of Computers

A computer can be classified into five types:

1Portable Computer– can be carried from one place to another easily
– examples are Laptop, Notebook and Personal Digital Assistant (PDA)
2Micro Computer– Single-user computer
– also called Personal Computer
3Mini Computer– Medium level, multiuser computers
– generally used by Insurance companies, Bank, and Factories for keeping records
4Mainframe Computer– expensive, large centralised computer, multiuser, large memories
– generally used by railways in reservations
5Super Computer– solving large computational problems, very high speed
– examples are ANUPAM, PARAM, PADMA, Cray 1 etc.

Types of Computers based on Data Taken and Output


The computers count data or signals as “ON” and “OFF” in binary digits only


It recognises data as a continuous measurement in waveform by continuous electrical pulses


It exhibit features of both analogy and digital computer

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Last updated: August 19, 2023 Updated on 8:42 AM