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Name: Carrie
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Date: Around 1995

How is a computer made?

That is a pretty complicated question! In general, designing a general purpose computer these days takes billions of dollars of effort, which go into designing the surfaces of the silicon (or other semiconductor) "chips" that make up various parts of the "central processing unit" or CPU (many computers now have the entire CPU on a single chip, including almost all PC's). You want the chip to be able to implement a certain basic set of logical instructions (some mathematics, some associated with retrieving things from memory or sending them elsewhere, etc) and you want it to be able to do this as fast as possible. These instructions are converted into the very simplest logical elements that can be encoded on the chip in various kinds of transistors and connecting circuits. In addition to the CPU chip, there are several different kinds of memory chips (they differ in speed and in whether the storage is supposed to be permanent or temporary) that have to be present, and also connections to output and input devices (like the keyboard, screen, disk drives, etc). If you want to know more than this you will have to go to the library and look up computers!

A Smith

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