– largest, fastest, and most expensive type of computer that exists today. These computers are the fastest and highest capacity machines built today. May cost millions and are used in large-scale activities such as weather forecasting and mathematical research.
– A computer architecture built with a single central processing unit to which dumb terminals and/or personal computers are connected. Were the only computers available until 1960s. Perform millions of instructions per second, and hundreds of users can be connected at the same time. Size ranges from middle to large capacity. Used in healthcare to handle input/output-intensive transactions. Most hospitals use mainframes dating back to the 1960s and 1970s to store payroll, personnel, billing, and accounting data.
- Midrange Systems -
- Minicomputers – small mainframe computer. Workstations Minicomputers introduced in the 1960s and can support up to 4,000 connected users at the same time via terminals consisting of a keyboard and video screen. Cheaper than mainframes Workstations Introduced in the 1980s. A very powerful desktop computer used mainly by power users such as graphics specialists for multimedia production. Comparable to midsize mainframes but sit on a desktop. May be used as servers to microcomputers connected through a network.
– A personal computer characterized by its relatively small size and fast processing speed. PC – personal computers Introduced in the early 1970s. The fastest growing type of computer today. Come in a variety of sizes including desktop, laptop, palmtop, and pen based. Can be used in stand-alone environment or connected to a network.
Web Appliances Used in conjunction with the Internet.
One device sits on top of a television and allows the user to surf the Internet using a remote control device. Web appliances have no processing unit or storage device. Main purpose is Web navigation.