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Arpita Kumari Anu Nair

Priyanka Paul Sayali Borde

Nikita Kanadi

FIRST GENERATION, 1951 1958: The Vacuum Tube

The vacuum tubes were used in the circuits of first generation computers. Vacuum tubes are glass tubes with circuits inside. Vacuum tubes have no air inside of them, which protects the circuitry The input and output operations were done using punched card technology. For external storage, magnetic tapes were used.

The machine was capable to do one job at a time, therefore batch processing was adopted. The language used by these computers was machine language and assembly language. Example of Computers: UNIVAC, IBM 650

UNIVAC (Universal Automatic Computer) - 1951

first fully electronic digital computer built in the U.S. Created at the University of Pennsylvania ENIAC weighed 30 tons contained 18,000 vacuum tubes


They generate more heat causing many problems in temperature regulation and climate control. Tubes were subject to frequent burn-out.

SECOND GENERATION, 1959 1964: The Transistor

The year 1959 marked the invention of transistors, which characterized the second generation of computers. TRANSISTOR was a three-legged component which shrunk the size of the first generation computers. Occupied only 1/100th of the space occupied by a vacuum tube More reliable, had greater computational speed, required no warm-up time and consumed far less electricity.

The orientation was towards multiple users i.e. the machine was capable to process multiple tasks concurrently. The high level languages like FORTRAN, COBOL, BASIC etc. were used as the languages by the computer. Example of Computers: IBM 1400 and 7000 series, General

THIRD GENERATION, 1965 1970: The Integrated Circuit

Third generation computers arose in 1965 with the invention of smaller electronic circuits called integrated circuits (ICS) INTEGRATED CIRCUITS are square silicon chips containing circuitry that can perform the functions of hundreds of transistors.

Integrated circuits replaced transistors. Inspite of their smaller size they were capable to perform better than transistors. For data input and output operations monitors and keyboards replaced the punched cards. For external storage magnetic disks were used. Sophisticated operating systems, which were capable of handling several jobs concurrently were used. More advanced high level languages like PASCAL were used. Example of computers: IBM System

RELIABILITY Unlike vacuum tubes, silicon will not break down easily. It is very seldom that you will have to replace it. LOW COST Silicon chips are relatively cheap because of their small size and availability in the market. It also consumes less electricity.

FOURTH GENERATION, 1971 present: The Microprocessor

Marked by the use of microprocessor MICROPROCESSOR is a silicon chip that contains the CPU part of the computer where all processing takes place. 4004 chip was the first microprocessor introduced by Intel Corporation.

The circuits used microprocessors of virtually microscopic size, which led to drastic cut on the size of computer. The input output devices were the same monitors, keyboard, printer etc.

Generations of Electronic Computers

First Generation Technology Vacuum Tubes Second Gen. Transistors Third Gen. Integrated Circuits (multiple transistors) Smaller Fourth Gen. Microchips (millions of transistors) Tiny - Palm Pilot is as powerful as old building sized computer


Filled Whole Filled half a Buildings room

5th generation

Is classified as fifth generation computers. Faster, more powerful, tremendous data storage and processing capacity New brands and models would come out the market almost every other month.

Computers became more affordable Computers can now be found in homes, schools, offices etc. There has been a tremendous improvement in software technology Different software applications to choose from: word processing, spreadsheets, database management, games and entertainment. Computer subjects are now being offered not just to college students but even to high school and elementary. Computers are now used as an aid in teaching math, science etc.

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