Not long ago computers were not very reliable and comparatively slow in operation. Since then, several generations of complex electronic computing equipment have been developed, each being significantly better than the one before it. Almost every day a new use is found for these astonishing devices to help man.
We know a computer to be a complex electronic device that can store and process vast quantities of information. Following instructions, computing equipment will perform calculations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, and provide the answers to a large variety of problems in a tiny fraction of time.
A computer is known to be the "heart" of an electronic data processing system, other parts of equipment being auxiliary.
There are two main types of computing equipment – digital and analogue. They work differently and yield different results. The digital computer is performing a much broader range of functions than the analogue one.
The analogue computer, as its name implies, produces analogues or parallels of the process to be described or the problem to be solved. Both the digital and analogue computers must be "programmed". This means they must be set up in such a way that they can produce a result from the information fed into them, and the information itself must be organized so it can be handled by the machines. These devices working by electronic impulses perform at fantastic speed and with great precision.
Looking to the future, computer makers see no end to the things they would like to accomplish. The computer of the future seems to be developed by using bionics – biological functions of plants and animals – as a guide in designing electronic circuits.
Nowadays computer makers are working at the problem of introducing small computers into our everyday life making them personal. They are trying to develop a computer that will understand human language.
Each new generation of computers opens up new possibilities for basic and applied research.