Computer What Is Going to Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

In the same year, the founders started a new company for computer development called the Eckert-Mauchly Computer Corporation. By 1949, this company launched the BINAC or Binary Automatic computer. This computer made use of magnetic tape for the storage of data. Then this company was bought by Remington Rand Corporation and the name was changed to Univac Division of Remington Rand. This company was the organization to bring out UNIVAC which is one of the originals of the type of computers that are used today. (Inventors of the Modern Computer: The ENIAC I Computer - J Presper Eckert and John Mauchly)

1951 - UNIVAC begins to take over the business industries market:

Presper Eckert and John Mauchly set up their company and found their first client in the United States Census Bureau. The population of United States was growing very fast due to the baby boom that was taking place then and they needed a new computer for calculation purposes. This led to the start of the project for the new project called UNIVAC with a deposit of $300,000 given to the new company by the census bureau. The designing and development went slowly and the design and contract could be finalized only in 1948 and then the problem was that the ceiling of expenditure had been fixed by the Census Bureau at $400,000. The inventors wanted the project to continue and in doing so wanted to absorb the excess expenditure, but the situation was grim. This led to the entry of Remington Rand, and in spite of all efforts, the price of the computer remained fixed at that price. The total expenditure for the project was nearly one million dollars, and the first computer was accepted by the bureau in 1951. (Inventors of the Modern Computer: The History of the UNIVAC Computer - J. Presper Eckert and John Mauchly)

This led to other orders and forty six UNIVAC computers were built and sold. This was thus the first manufacture of a commercial computer system. The first buyer from outside the government was General electric for their Appliance Park facility in Louisville, Kentucky. The computer was used for payroll purposes. This computer added in a time of 120 microseconds, multiplied within 1,800 microseconds and divided within 3,600 microseconds. The biggest advantage was that input was from a magnetic tape from which characters could be read at 12,800 characters per second. J Presper Eckert and John Mauchly had built this UNIVAC and the machine was a direct competitor with IBM's computing equipment for the business users of computers. The speed with which Univac's magnetic tape could collect input data was faster than IBM's technology of collecting data from punch cards. However, it was not until the presidential election of 1952 that the public had got to accept the Univac's ability to perform better than IBM. (Inventors of the Modern Computer: The History of the UNIVAC Computer - J. Presper Eckert and John Mauchly)

1981 - The era of personal computers begin:

One of the first attempts to assist computing for single users was the 'SCAMP' project by IBM in 1973. This was a development effort by the General Systems Division of the company to produce a piece of equipment which was called "Special Computer, APL Machine Portable." This was called by the PC Magazine as a revolutionary concept and "the world's first personal computer." (IBM Personal Computer) This machine had multiple uses as a desktop calculator, an interactive programming device and could run canned applications. (IBM Personal Computer) Another "personal computer" produced by IBM was the IBM 5110 Computing System, and this was announced in January 1978. This was similar to the 5100 which met all the requirements of professional and scientific problem-solvers, the 5110 was provided as a full-function computer to business and industry. This used a new system and programs, and helped businesses to use the 5110 to automate such applications as general ledger and accounts payable. Apart from this, the 5110 system could be programmed to offer a variety of reports in order to "help management analyze sales, schedule resources, reduce inventory cost and plan future growth." (IBM 5110: Computing System) It can be clearly seen that IBM were making efforts to launch the personal computers and going through experiments for that purpose.

They succeeded with their model 5150 which was released in September 1981 at a price of $3,000 a piece. The CPU being used was Intel 8088 with a speed of 4.77 MHz. There was only an available RAM of 16K and that could be increased to a maximum of 640 K. The display was for text in the form of 80 characters and 24 lines. There was no built in storage, but one could take storage of 160 KB in 5.25-inch disk drives. There were ports for cassette and keyboard with internal expansion slots. The operating system was IBM PC-DOS Version 1.0. When the situation is analyzed, it will be seen that the IBM personal computer system was not built to be as powerful as the other systems from which it wanted to grab market shares. The RAM was low and used audio cassettes to load and record information. The floppy drive could be taken if desired by the customers and no hard drives were yet available. (The IBM Personal Computer)

At the same time, the system was made to be easily expandable and this expansion was permitted for additional memory, serial ports, parallel ports, videos and whatever was desired. As the leader of the computer industry, IBM knew that they had to produce the computer fast and did not think that the system will reach the level it has reached today. They used available material from others and this made them rely on Intel CPU and operating system from Microsoft who called it as PC-Dos and gave it to IBM. This permitted other companies to get the same components from the same suppliers and build up their own PCs and thus cut down market shares of IBM. The only problem that they had was regarding the BIOS which was under copyright of IBM and thus legally protected. This made some other manufacturers and potential manufacturers go through an exercise of getting suitable BIOS and this gave them an opportunity to produce and sell PCs.

The PCs produced by competitors were cheaper, but similar to IBM PCs. This led to the development of PCs all over the world, and due to the designing by IBM the products look extremely professional. Today, these products are the Windows operating system and Intel CPU computers. At the same time, it is important to note that within one year IBM had succeeded in selling 200,000 IBM PCs. This is a very large number when compared to 46 UNIVAC computers that were sold. In the same year, 1982, Compaq launched their PC and it was 100% compatible with IBM. They had to spend $1 million to develop the ROM BIOS that made it similar to IBM PCs, and which did not yet violate the copyright held by IBM. (The IBM Personal Computer)

Another very interesting point which needs to be understood is that the Personal Computers now have brought about areas pertaining to development of the computers. One was with regard to the development relating to the machinery and the other was with regard to the development of the methods of instructions for operation or for software. For the earlier initial models with regard to the computers, the methods of functioning of the computer were basically being decided in great terms by the circuits which prevailed within the scope of the computer and any changes which took a considerably higher amount of time in order to implement it. In this case, as it relates the computers which were being created and further developed into various useful tools for individuals. However it needs to be understood that it was not possible to create individual computers or PC's for personal use, and thus different types of software were being developed and promoted for various kinds of use and these are considered to be known as programs. Most of the individual users however do not know as to what of the programs serve the different purposes, but there are several general packages which are being available in order to enable them to make use of the computer.

Thus there are several organizations that have built into various software developers who have become specialized and the most important advantage for them over others is that the computers are on the process of changing. This is basically because of the technological changes that are occurring frequently. Let us now make a comparison of a modern present day computer with that of the first Personal Computer which was being introduced by IBM. The storage levels which was then available during that time was at the range of 160K and today we find that it is around 80M which comes to about 500 times much bigger…

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