The Concept of Computer in Business


The Concept of Computer in Business

As discussed in our previous article, human life is associated with challenges and the process of looking for ways to solve the challenges leads to discovery. 

Before now the major machine that was in business was the manual typewriter. The limitation of the manual typewriter led to the invention of electric typewriters which went through several processes of modification and advancement. 

This was followed by the birth of personal computer which today has helped to ease the tasks in business. This article will focus on the computer.

In this article, you should be able to:

· Explain the concept of computer in business

· Explain the genealogy of the use of computer in business


Concept of Computer in Business

In the 1940s to 1950s, computers were special purpose machines that only large institutions such as governments, the military, and universities could afford. The earliest computers were ENIAC (Electronic Numeric Integrator and Calculator) and universal Automatic Computer (UNIVAC).

But in 1960, computer revolutionized business world. IBM introduced its system/360 mainframe computer in April 1964. In the 1970s, Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) took further steps to bring computers into mainstream of business.

Today, personal computer (PC) is the most common computer. It is PC because it is designed to be used by one person at a time. In spite of its small size, the PC is more powerful than any of the room–sized machines of the 1950s or 1960s. Computers have become so vital in the modern society that without them our economy would grind to a halt.

The flexibility of the computer makes it very useful in the business world on a daily basis. Office workers use personal computers to write letters, keep employee rosters, create budgets, communicate with co-workers, find information, and manage projects and so on. 

Sales people use computers to manage accounts and make presentations. You now have portable computers called laptop computers or notebook computers.

The operating system (OS) is an important aspect in business, of which an average business man should have an idea. An operating system is a software programme but different from other programmes, it is the master’s control programme. 

The operating system provides the tools (commands) that enable you to interact with the personal computer.

It is therefore important we know the OS we use for our business. Then you need to get advice on the central processing unit (CPU) type, Memory, Disk space, compatibility is very important when upgrading your personal computer. Early desktop computer users used it as a replacement for the typewriter, to generate letters, memos, and other documents.

Many business professionals relied on the computer to “crunch numbers”. As time went on personal computer began to replace the ledger book as primary tool for tracking and analyzing revenues and expenses in business. Individuals and organization use computers to maintain lists of contracts, products, sales, personnel and so on.

This leads to what is called productivity software. Productivity software is any application that helps the user accomplish a specific task e.g. text, graphics, working with numbers, searching for data or preparing a presentation.

Examples of productivity software are:

· Word processor – provides tools for creating and formatting text-based documents. It is the most common software.

· Spreadsheet programmes – used for working with numbers and performing complex calculations. One of the most important tools for accountants, business managers, and anyone else who needs to create budgets, analyse statistical or collect numerical research.

· Database management system – help to keep track of things from a sales person maintaining a list of contracts, to government agencies tracking entire population. This helps to gather large volumes of data and process them into useful information.

· Presentation programme – used for creating sophisticated presentations using text, graphics, numerical data, sound and animations. The resulting presentation can be printed, displayed as slides or overheads or played back on a computer screen.

· Desktop publishing (DTP) software – helps to revolutionize the publishing and graphic arts industries, allowing the ordinary users the power to produce professional quality documents and publications.

The popular DTP software packages are Aldus PageMaker, Quark Press, and Adobe Frame Maker and soon. Storage device is provided on the personal computer which network administrators, CDROM drive, Diskette drive or Floppy disk drive Hard disk.

Storage devices can be summarized thus:

· Storage device can be classified as magnetic or optical.

· The most common magnetic devices are diskettes, hard disks, magnetic tapes, and removable hard disks.

· The most common optical devices are CD-ROM, WORM and Magnetic – optical disks.

To measure derived performance, know the average access time and the data-transfer rate.


Conclusion on the Concept of Computer in Business

Personal computer is designed in such a way that it can serve all business purposes. The type of software installed into the computer, determines the various functions that can be performed by it. 

Therefore, the type of business activities in an organization would determine the kind of software that would be required for use in that environment.

The use of computer in business started in the 1940s as special purpose machines that could only be afforded by big organizations like universities, military and government. 

But with subsequent development the Digital Equipment Corporation (SEC) took a further step in the 1970s to bring computer into mainstream businesses.

But today, the personal computer is now the most commonly used and more powerful than the room size computers of 1950s and 1960s. 

The computer has become inseparable from economic development because of its role in business

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