what is a computer? | computer definitions

Computer definition stems from the three steps it gets through to compute a given data. These information system processing steps are:-

Input --> Processing --> Output

Input refers to the collecting and gathering of data.

Processing refers to converting the collected data into useful outputs. Processing consists of executing calculations, comparison of data and analysis.

Output refers the production of information into reports and documents. Outputs can be prepared both in soft copy or/and hard copy. That is means the produced information can be printed using printers or saved on the computer hard drive for future reference and use.

Computer definition

In simple terms, computer is a machine which can be instructed to accept, process, store and output data.

Here are some of computer definitions from the net:-

“An electronic device designed to accept data, perform prescribed mathematical and logical operations at high speed, and display the results of these operations.”

Source: Dictionary.com

“Computer, machine that performs tasks, such as calculations or electronic communication, under the control of a set of instructions called a program.”

Source: Microsoft ® Encarta ® 2009

“An electronic machine that can store, organize and find information, do calculations and control other machines.”

Source: Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, Oxford university press 2000

“Technically, a computer is a programmable machine. This means it can execute a programmed list of instructions and respond to new instructions that it is given. Today, however, the term is most often used to refer to the desktop and laptop computers that most people use. When referring to a desktop model, the term "computer" technically only refers to the computer itself -- not the monitor, keyboard, and mouse. Still, it is acceptable to refer to everything together as the computer.”

Source: http://www.techterms.com/

“A computer is a device or machine for making calculations or controlling operations that are expressible in numerical or logical terms.”

Source: http://www.wordiq.com/

“A computer is a device that accepts information (in the form of digitalized data) and manipulates it for some result based on a program or sequence of instructions on how the data is to be processed. Complex computers also include the means for storing data (including the program, which is also a form of data) for some necessary duration.”

Source: http://www.whatis.com/

“A programmable usually electronic device that can store, retrieve, and process data.”


“A device that computes, especially a programmable electronic machine that performs high-speed mathematical or logical operations or that assembles, stores, correlates, or otherwise processes information.”

Source: http://encyclopedia.thefreedictionary.com/computer

Advantages of computers

The advantages of a computer sums up into the following reasons:-

  • Reliability
  • Consistency
  • Versatility – can be used for different purpose
  • Precision
  • Communication
  • Stores large amounts of data
  • Fast processing speed
  • Manipulation of data
  • Output can be produced in several formats


Computer plays great role and becomes part of the day to day activities of every profession and industry. These days it is not possible to perform any task without the usage of a computer.

I hope the above article helps you to know about computer definition and the advantages of using a computer in your business.

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