2.1.1 Fundamentals of computer systems

1) Define a computer system: is a collection of hardware and software that works together to achieve some data processing task

2) Describe the importance of computer systems in the modern world:

Most aspects of our lives are affected by computer systems. They have led to:

  • improved quality in manufacturing - robotic machinary is more accurate than humans
  • new ways of doing bussiness - more buying online, more choice, cheaper goods; facilities such as the internet and ATMS would not be possible without computer systems
  • new ways of communicating - email, SMS, cell phones - are being developed all the time
  • better decision making - with lots of facts organised and available, decisions can be better informed

3) Explain the need for reliability in computer systems:

Computers are central to most of our work and leisure activities. They also play a central part in many life-or-death situations: 

  • aircraft navigation and control
  • railway signalling
  • many medical situations

Reliability is improved by thorough testing. Testing is designed to uncover errors. However testing can never be complete because there are huge numbers of pathways through most modern systems so there are usually errors even in extensively tested systems.

Reliability also refers to DATA INTERGRITY. This relates to data being accurate and consistent throughout its life. Data intergrity also means that the stored data…




not enough



Nowhere near enough, full notes should be in word document