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Overview Of Information Technology (Part I)

The world has moved from the industrial age into information age. The whole world now depends on information, education as an institute is not an exception to this particular fact. The world has witnessed an information revolution, a combination of massive increase in the world’s inventory of information and the technical development of the means of processing and transmitting information

Computers are at the center of information technology. Information is what computers process, transmit and store. We use computers to create, manipulate, and manage information faster and more easily than with any system previously devised. So, better you understand computers and what they can and cannot so, the more power you will have to put information to work for you. Knowledge is power!

But information technology does not only involve computers. It also includes the way computer and communications technologies are combined, the result is “Information Technology” – INFOTECH – technology that merges computing with telecommunication links carrying data, sound, and video. Therefore, there are two parts to information technology- computers and communications.

Moreover, information technology (IT) as it is defined by the Longman Dictionary of contemporary English as the study or use of electronic processor for storing information and making it available; INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY. In addition to, before I forge ahead in relating it to the issue of Nigerian Education system, I still have to put into consideration the second concept of information technology. That concept is the communication technology.

Communications Technology:

This is the technology that is used to communicate (digital) data. Data communication, often called telecommunication, means transmitting data and information electronically from one point to another using the telephone, radio and microwave transmission devices, laser beams, optical fiber cables and direct wiring.

Computers can be standalone machines, unconnected to anything else. If all you are doing is word processing to write term paper; that may be fine. The communications component of the computer system vastly extends the range of PCs. Data communication provides information processing services throughout the office on the around the world.

Again; to be able to understand the concept of information technology, you need to be aware of how computers work. There are three key concepts that form the basis of computer operation:

First: The purpose of a computer is to process data into information. Data consists of the raw facts and figures that are processed into information for example, the votes for different candidates being elected to student government office. Information is data that has been summarize or otherwise manipulated for use in decision-making for example, the total votes for each candidate, which are used to decide who won.

Second: You should know the difference between hardware and software. Hardware consists of all the machinery and equipment in a computer system. The hardware includes among other devices, the keyboard, the screen, the printer and the “box”-the computer or processing device itself.

Software, or programs; consists of all the instructions that tell the computer how to perform a task. These instructions come from a software developer in a form (such as a CD-ROM disk) that will be accepted by the computer. Examples you may have heard of are Microsoft windows 98 or office 2000.

Third: regardless of type and size, all computers follow the same basic operations:

(1) Input,

(2) Processing,

(3) Storage and

(4) Output.

Source by Kingsley Eze O.

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