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The history of computer hardware and software - Essay Example

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Today computers span the range of forms, from hand-size iPhones, to laptops, and large-scale government mainframes. However, the 20th century witnessed great change…
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The history of computer hardware and software
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"The history of computer hardware and software"

Download file to see previous pages 9). This technology would later evolve to calculators and then primitive forms of computers. The first computer is believed to be the United States Army’s Ballistic Research Laboratory ENIAC, which was developed in 1946. This machine was extremely large and would evolve into more widely functional forms of computer technology, as vacuum tube machines gave way to transistor-based machines. Still, it wasn’t until the late 1970s and early 1980s that the modern computer emerged. The emergence of modern computer technology was allowed by a number of hardware developments. In these regards, “the development of integrated circuit technology, and the later development of microprocessors, allowed the previously bulky and cumbersome dimensions of computer technology to be streamlined and formed into the personal home computer” (Lavington, p. 98). In addition to these hardware components, the main historical shift between traditional computer technology and the modern computer has been identified as the ability of modern computers to be programmed. While this is a nebulous concept, the main understanding is that an individual is able to tell a modern computer to process a task and it will be able to carry out the command. Ultimately, these advancements in computer hardware technology have allowed the contemporary pervasive influence of computer technology.
While the development of computer hardware is primarily essential to the evolution of computer technology, software developments have made significant contributions. Perhaps the first computer software program was proposed by philosopher Alan Turing. John Turkey first used the term ‘software’ itself in 1958. In terms of the actual development of computer software, the first emergence occurred in 1946 with the ENIAC Army computer. In terms of software development, two major contributors in the late 20th century were IBM and Bill Gates. The 1980s ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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