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Microcomputers

What is Microcomputer?

A microcomputer is a complete computer on a smaller scale and is generally a synonym for the more common term, personal computer or PC, a computer designed for an individual.

It contains a microprocessor (a central processing unit on a microchip ), memory (ROM & RAM: Read Only Memory & Random Access Memory), I/ O ports and a bus or system of interconnecting wires, housed in a unit that is usually called a motherboard.

Detail about Microcomputers:
Microcomputers are microprocessor based small laptop or desktop systems with varying capability depending on the input/ output and secondary storage devices supporting it. The brain of a microcomputer is the microprocessor, a silicon chip containing the necessary circuits to perform arithmetic/ logic operations and to control input/ output operations. A microprocessor is an integrated circuit consisting of thousands of transistors squeezed onto a tiny chip of silicon. The chip is packaged as a single integrated circuit. A microcomputer system is formed by adding an input/output capability and a memory to the microprocessor.


Early microcomputers had a limited processing potential and limited choice of input/ output devices. Present day microcomputers have wider processing capabilities and support a wide range of input/output devices. Today microcomputers are available with a selection of input/ output devices varying from a cassette recorder to a voice synthesizer. In addition to general-purpose computations, microcomputers are used for special purpose applications in automobiles, airplanes, toys, clocks, appliances etc.

High-end super-micros are known as workstations. The workstation represents the bridge between the microcomputers and minicomputers. It is a microcomputer with many of the capabilities of larger minicomputers but costing much less. Initially designed for use by engineers and designers, and today they are popular for general uses. These workstations can run more than one application for a user. This is known as multitasking. A workstation is also a multi-user system that can be shared by several users at the same time.

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