AS ICT Notes Ch. 2 - G061

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Varun Pratap
Hardware ­ Physical equipment that makes up a computer
Software ­ Programs that can be run on the computer
A lack of standardization is when hardware/software made from one company isn't compatible
with other hardware/software made from another. e.g. a keyboard made by MAC will not work on a
on a PC.
Lack of standardization could affect: layouts, resolutions, file formats, power requirements.
Advantages of standardization:
Hardware and software will be known to be compatible.
Range of choices of where to purchase hardware/software leads to more competition which
leads to lower prices.
Disadvantages of standardization
Companies can charge higher prices if there is less competition amongst suppliers.
Less choice of where to purchase hardware/software from if competition is low.
Examples of Input Devices:
Examples of Output Devices:
Printer (Laser, Ink jet, Dot matrix)
Plotter (Uses an electronically controlled pen which can be moves around the paper)

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Varun Pratap
Output Device Advantage Disadvantage
Printer (Laser) High quality and fast printouts Most expensive printer to buy
Can print high quality
documents using Toner ink.
Printer (Ink Jet) Cheap to buy Colour printing can be
Uses cartridges that contain extremely slow
Printer (Dot matrix) Low operating costs Printing quality is poor
Combinations of pins are
pushed out to form different
Monitor Can use dual monitors to Can cause health problems e.g.…read more

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Varun Pratap
CD R/RW Small and portable Fragile, can be snapped or
Data is burned onto the surface or scratched
of the disk Cheap to produce
Flash (USB) Small and portable Can easily be lost
Consist of a small printed circuit
Specialist Hardware devices for physically disabled users:
Puff-suck switch, used to turn on/off the computer
Foot mouse, mouse operated by foot
Eye typer, can operate cursor from where the eye is looking
Speaker, can read text from screen
Microphone, can input voice
Specialist…read more

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User Interface Advantage Disadvantages
Command Based Uses very little memory (RAM) Commands have to entered
User can run commands to precisely
access programs which aren't
accessible through menu or
Forms No training required Limited options presented
Method of allowing you to
interact with an application and
enter data into a system
Natural Language No training required Not widely available as other
This type of interface allows forms of interface are often
the user to speak or type in superior (Not always
their…read more


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