When most people hear computer hardware, they get a blank look to their eyes and almost a scared look on their face. That's what computer hardware talk does to most, but let's make that less likely. Computer hardware put simply is the physical part of your computer, this includes the circuitry and all. Hardware does not include the software though.
The hardware of a computer will rarely need changing, while people are changing or adding software all the time to their computers. There is also a thing called frimware, it's a special software that will rarely need changed, it is stored on your hardware devices.
Most of the time you as a normal computer user will not even see your hardware, unless you want to start learning to repair your own computer that is! A normal computer will consist of a case or chasis, which is better known as the down, and the following parts, power supply, CPU cooled computer fan, Graphics card, PCI buses, Motherboard, CD and or DVD drives, and hard disk.
Motherboard is inside of your tower, and it is the “body" of your computer, it is where all the other components interface through.
The CPU or Central processing unit will perform the calculations which make the computer able to function, this is usually called the “brain" of the computer.
Computer fan, this will keep the temperature of your computer low. If it gets too hot you may ruin some of the hardware.
Internal buses, which are connections to various components, there are several including the PCI, PCI-E, USB, HyperTransport, CSI, AGP (which won't be around much longer), and the VLB (outdated now).
There are also External bus controllers, these are used to connect such things as printers. Here's a list of the different external buses, parallel port, serial port, USB, FireWire, SCSI, PS/2, ISA, EISA, and MCA.
Of course you can't talk about computers and not talk about the power supply. Usually it will be run by a case control, a cooling fan, and it will supply power to run the computer.
You also have your mouse and keyboard which are considered hardware, and if you have any other attachments that all those computer savvy people out there will know exactly what I'm talking about. But really to learn about hardware and all you have to go very in depth and learn a bit about the workings and all.
It's amazing that all these things are so foreign to so many of us. At least now you will know what is in your computer. Perhaps at a later time we'll go more in depth to the workings of the hardware. But at this time let's just feel a bit accomplished at knowing a bit more of the computer parts that we don't see very often. And the parts that we hope don't go bad on us, making a trip to the computer store a must. No in fact let's just get that blank look again on our faces and sit back and relax!
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