The Personal Computer

Essay by informerJunior High, 8th grade January 2009

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This document contains the history current use and future possibilities of the home PCCONTENTS:Introduction 3IntroductionA home computer was the description of the second generation of desktop computers, entering the market in 1977 and becoming common during the 1980s. They are also members of the class known as personal computers. These computers typically cost much less than business, scientific or engineering-oriented desktop personal computers, and were generally less powerful in terms of memory and expandability. However, a home computer often had better graphics and sound than contemporary business personal computers, and was usually sold for purposes of education, game play, and personal productivity use.

The home computer became affordable for the general public due to the mass production of the silicon chip based microprocessor and, as the name indicates, tended to be used in the home rather than in business/industrial settings. In contrast to their predecessors, they were designed to be used by the average consumer, not necessarily an electronics hobbyist.

Very typically a home computer would have had a version of the basic programming language in read-only permanent memory. To save the cost of a dedicated monitor, the home computer often would have connected either directly or through an RF modulator to the family TV set as video display and sound system.

Personal computers are normally operated by one user at a time to perform such general purpose tasks as word processing, Internet browsing, Internet faxing, e-mail and other digital messaging, multimedia playback, computer game play, computer programming, etc. The user of a modern personal computer may have significant knowledge of the operating environment and application programs, but is not necessarily interested in programming or even able to write programs for the computer. Therefore, most software written primarily for personal computers tends to be designed with simplicity of use, or...