Test #1 Study Guide

The basic for­mat of all tests for this course is a two-part test:

Page 1 will be mul­ti­ple choice, and must be completed before going on to page 2. Page 2 contains sev­eral free-response questions. These may be discussion ques­tions or small prob­lems to solve.

This test will be closed-book, closed-note. Calculators are not allowed on the test.

Ques­tions on the test come from mul­ti­ple sources:

  • Digital textbook readings, including all items linked from the digital textbook for the sections covered
  • In-class activities and homework assignments, including specific readings related to those assignments
  • Course library resources

To do well on the exam, it is impor­tant that you:

  • Read each ques­tion carefully.
  • Answer only the ques­tion that is asked; par­tic­u­larly with the sec­ond part, do not spend your time try­ing to do more than the question states.
  • Ask for clar­i­fi­ca­tion on any ques­tion that you don’t understand.

Major top­ics

Computing History

  • Early computing devices
    • Abacus
    • Napier’s Bones
    • Slide Rule
    • Difference/Analytical Engines
      • Charles Babbage
      • Ada Augusta Lovelace
  • Pre-World War II developments
    • Herman Hollerith & the U.S. Census Bureau
  • World War II
    • Encryption as a driving force
    • Presper Eckert & John Mauchly
    • John von Neumann
  • First and Second Generations
    • Transistors and integrated circuits
    • The space race
  • Development of the personal computer

Digital Basics

  • Data vs. information
  • Differences between handheld devices & their larger counterparts

Computer Hardware

  • Classifications/form factors of computers
  • CPU function and use
  • Memory types and uses: RAM, ROM, cache
  • Mass/secondary storage types and characteristics
  • Types & uses of typical input/output devices
  • Ecological impact of computers

Data representation

  • The use of binary (base 2) numbering
  • Number representation
    • Converting binary numbers to decimal
    • Converting decimal numbers to binary
  • Character representation
    • ASCII character set
  • Image representation
    • Differences between raster (bitmap) graphics & vector graphics
    • Uses for raster & vector graphics



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