What is Computer Hardware?
Computer hardware comprises the equipment, wiring, and other physical components of a computer. Examples of computer hardware are the monitor, mouse, keyboard, computer data storage, hard disk drive (HDD) or Solid State Drive (SSD), system unit (graphic cards, sound cards, memory, motherboard and chips).
Components of computer hardware
- System unit
- Processing unit
- Storage devices
- Input devices. These are hardware devices which take information from the user of the computer system, convert it into electrical signals and transmit it to the processor. The primary function of input devices is to allow humans to interact with the computer system. For instance a mouse allows the user to control the movement of the pointer (a common element in user interface design).
- Output devices. These take data from the computer system and convert it to a form that can be interpreted by humans. For instance, a monitor creates a visual electronic display to output information created by the processor to the user.
- System Unit – Box-like case that contains the electronic circuits that cause the processing of data to occur. This is where the computer programmes are executed and data is manipulated. It consists of the Central Processing Unit (CPU), memory (Random Access Memory-RAM), and other electronics.
- Processing devices. These are the components responsible for the processing of information within the computer system. This includes devices such as the CPU, memory and motherboard.
- Storage devices. These are components which allow data to be stored within a computer system. This includes devices such as hard disk drives and compact disk drives.
Computer Input Devices
- Joy Stick
- Light pen
- Track Ball
- Graphic Tablet
- Magnetic Ink Card Reader(MICR)
- Optical Character Reader(OCR)
- Bar Code Reader
- Optical Mark Reader(OMR)
Computer Output Devices
- 3D Printer
- Braille embosser
- Braille reader
- Flat panel
- Computer Output Microfilm (COM)
- Printer (Dot matrix printer, Inkjet printer, and Laser printer)
- Sound card
- Speech-generating device (SGD)
- Video card
Other parts of the computer.
Arithmetic/logic unit – Contains the electronic circuitry necessary to perform arithmetic and logical operations on data.
Communications Devices – Enable a computer to connect to other computers. Devices that enable a computer to connect to other components includes modems and network interface cards.
Control Unit – The component in any computing system that works in coordinating with the central processing unit to instruct, maintain and control the flow of information.
Central Processing Unit (CPU) – The component in any computing system that represents the circuitry necessary to interpret and execute programme instructions. CPU consists of the Control Unit, arithmetic/logic unit and the controller.