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How computers work - Part 1

posted Oct 1, 2012, 10:52 AM by Michael Dreyfus-Pai   [ updated Oct 1, 2012, 10:52 AM ]
Today we're going to look at how all the parts of a computer work together.  All computers have the same kind of parts, even though they might look very different!

Storage

This where computers store all the information they need to work.  To play a song, for example, they need the MP3 file of the song, but they also need the Application that plays songs, and drivers to run the speakers.  And of course, an Operating System to run all that stuff!

Processing

Permanent storage is usually pretty slow, for a computer.  That's why computers copy anything they're working on from Storage to Memory.  It uses the motherboard to do this, which ties all the parts of the computer together.  The CPU is the brain of the computer, and it does all the processing to move information around.


Power and Heat

Computers run on electricity, so they need power!  Desktop computers use power supplies to convert wall power into the delicate electricity needed by electronics.  Electronics also create heat, so they use heat sinks and fans to keep computer components cool.


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