The Computer Continuum / Edition 2

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Overview

This book introduces readers to the fundamental concepts in the fields of information systems and computer science by examining how technology works. It first establishes a theoretical foundation, then introduces applications that put the theory into practice. Computer Hardware Components: CPU, Memory, and I/O. Software. From Stonehenge to the Super Computer: Combining Software & Hardware. Operating Systems: The Genie in the Computer. Network Concepts and Communications. The Internet and the Web: Expanding the Global Community. Multimedia. Databases: Controlling the Information Deluge. Simulation: Modeling the Physical World. Artificial Intelligence and Modeling the Human State. Pushing the Envelope of Human Potential. Ethics, Electronic Spies and Privacy. For anyone interested in learning about computers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780130898135
  • Publisher: Pearson Education
  • Publication date: 12/18/2000
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 489
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 10.87 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Read an Excerpt

PREFACE:

Preface

PHILOSOPHY: THE CONCEPTS APPROACH

Higher education has traditionally categorized knowledge into areas such as history, chemistry, physics, and literature. In most colleges and universities, almost all the common major categories have an introduction to their field that is designed for the beginner. The sciences, such as chemistry, physics, and biology, for example, have courses for the nonmajor. These courses are designed to teach the concepts of the individual fields and do not dwell on the tools used to study the field. In chemistry, for instance, courses in glassblowing and apparatus building are not the main introductory core. Instead, the focus is on understanding the concepts, which usually include chemical reactions or the structure of molecules. It is also duly noted by the authors of The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, that the fields of information systems and computer science are unique. But, the concepts approach is still a valid, if not preferred, means of teaching in these two areas.

During the past decade, the fields of information systems and computer science have focused on the tools. In fact, many colleges and universities continue to offer complete courses in learning the technical aspects of word processing, spreadsheets, and databases. This seems like a misplaced effort, considering what the future holds for the graduate. Continuous speechtotext input systems will probably make word processors obsolete in a few years, for example. Among those who use spreadsheets to solve real problems, it is wellknown that an understanding of modeling and simulation is more valuable than knowing how to make aspreadsheet look pretty. The philosophy of this textbook is to concentrate on the concepts of information systems and computer science, such as data representation, operating systems, programming languages, and algorithms. Software application sections are integrated into every chapter of the book. There also are several laboratory manuals that can be packaged with The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, to give the student working knowledge of those tools. But ultimately, it is necessary to build a lasting foundation of fundamental concepts to prepare the graduate for the future.

AUDIENCE

The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, is primarily for use in college and university undergraduate introduction to computer concepts courses. It is equally appropriate for departments of either information systems or computer science. It is equally appealing to the liberal arts major and the computer science major. This text material has been tested on more than 10,000 college students in both large and small classes.

We think that most of the concepts as presented, will be current even 10 years from now. This lasting power is due to the concentration on fundamental concepts. In fact, simulation and the associated computer concepts introduced in chapter 11, "Simulation: Modeling the Physical World," are the foundation for a new approach to computer science, in addition to the theoretical and experimental approaches.

Unique coverage can be found in chapter 2, "Metamorphosis of Information"; chapter 5, Hardware and Software: Putting It Together"; chapter 9, "Multimedia"; chapter 11, "Simulation: Modeling the Physical World"; and chapter 12, "Artificial Intelligence and Modeling the Human State:"

ORGANIZATION

The organization of The Computer Continuum follows a very natural approach to learning about information systems and computer science. After an introductory chapter, the next five chapters lay down a foundation of theory; the remaining chapters cover some general areas of computer usage. The theory chapters form a solid framework on which the general areas of computer usage and the tools can be supported. The term general areas is meant to show that these concepts are used in almost every field of endeavor. A summary of this approach is as follows:

  • Preliminaries: Where We're Going, consists of chapter 1, "Computers: A First Look:"
  • Part I, The Building Blocks: How Computers Work, consists of chapters 2 through 7 and covers the following:
    – Representation of the five kinds of information and its storage
    – Hardware components of a computer system
    – Programming, algorithms, and computer languages
    – Putting together hardware and software in the computer
    – Controlling computers through the operating system
    – Network communication between computers and people
  • Part II, Foundations: Applying Concepts, consists of chapters 8 through 11 and covers the following:
    – Understanding the Internet and the World Wide Web
    – Multimedia from hypertext to streaming audio and video
    – Databases: gathering, retrieving, and analyzing information
    – Using computers in simulation and modeling
  • Part III, Empowerment: Extending Our Limits, consists of chapters 12 through 14 and covers the following:
    – The pursuit of the intelligent computer to extend human abilities
    – Using the computer to increase personal knowledge
    – Dealing with the ethics and problems computers create

The rationale for this organization is to first provide an understanding of the basic concepts involved with computers, then to use this understanding to investigate the application of computers in many general areas. To understand the process of image manipulation, for example, it is necessary to understand the concepts of representing images in a computer. The approach is designed to enable the student to first conceptualize, then innovate. Without understanding the underlying concepts, creative work is almost impossible. truly want our students to innovate!

NEW TO THIS EDITION

We created a revision plan based on market surveys and our knowledge of the evolving needs of the introduction to computers course. The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, has new content, a modified organization, and new pedagogical features.

Content Changes

Chapter 1, "Computers: A First Look;" features new content on wireless communication and network access and discusses the growing use of the Internet. The chapter includes a new section that previews several software applications, including word processors, electronic spreadsheets, database managers, presentation graphics, internet and Web tools, and Web page builders. Chapter 2, "Metamorphosis of Information," features new coverage of word processing software applications. Chapter 3, "Computer Hardware Components: CPU, Memory, and I/O," is a new chapter that features unified hardware coverage that appeared in two separate chapters in the previous edition. We have expanded the coverage and pay special attention to new hardware, such as DVD systems. The chapter ends with a new discussion of the software tools needed to troubleshoot and maintain a computer. Chapter 4, "Computer Languages, Algorithms, and Program Development," includes a new section on Dreamweaver, a Web page design software. Chapter 5, "Hardware and Software: Putting it Together," includes a new section on electronic spreadsheets. Treating hardware in chapter 3, software in chapter 4, and then putting the two together in chapter 5 makes a more natural sequence. Chapter 6, "Operating Systems: The Genie in the Computer," includes a new section that compares three operating systems: Windows 2000, Macintosh OS, and Linux. Chapter 7, "Network Concepts and Communications," features a new section on Traceroute, software that allows the tracing of packets over the Internet or any network sing TCP/IP protocol.

Chapter 8, "The Internet and the Web: Worldwide Transformation," includes new coverage of electronic commerce in section 8.9, The Web in Business: The Growth of ECommerce. Also included is a software application section on using search engines effectively. Chapter 9, "Multimedia," is a new chapter that combines first edition chapter 10, "Visual Communication," with chapter 11, "Audio Communication." A new section covers capturing music and audio from the Internet. Chapter 10, "Databases: Controlling the Information Deluge," has been expanded to include new coverage of the relational database system, data marts, data warehouses and data mining, and the ethical hazards of database systems. The chapter closes with a new section on Webdatabase connectivity and Oracle WebDB. Chapter 11, "Simulation: Modeling the Physical World," includes a new section on using spreadsheets as a simulation tool.

Chapter 12, "Artificial Intelligence and Modeling the Human State," has more prominent treatment of evolutionary systems such as the genetic algorithm, genetic programming, and artificial life. New to the chapter is a section on Webbased and standalone language translation. Chapter 13, "Pushing the Envelope of Human Potential," has more prominent treatment of the real and virtual classroom. New to the chapter is a section devoted to electronic test generators. Chapter 14, "Ethics, Electronic Spies, and Privacy," features updated examples, including the Love Bug. The chapter closes with a new section on screening and filtering software.

New Pedagogy

We have included four new pedagogical features, described previously in the Learning Tools section of the Preface. These new features are:

  1. A chapteropening Puzzler presenting a realistic computer problem relating to the content of the chapter.
  2. Cutting Edge boxes presenting new and sometimes revolutionary topics.
  3. Software application sections at the end of each chapter.
  4. Web exercises encouraging Web exploration and problem solving.

THE TEACHING PACKAGE

The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, has a comprehensive supplements package that is coordinated with the main text and is designed for your teaching convenience. The following supplements are available with the text.

Instructor's Resource Manual

The Instructor's Resource Manual provides learning objectives and lesson outlines for each chapter. The manual also gives the answers to all endofchapter material in the main text. For the novice teacher, as well as seasoned instructors looking for new ways to teach this course, the Instructor's Resource Manual includes Teaching Tips, along with a Sample Syllabus. Lab projects for each of the chapters are included. These consist of a description of the project with sufficient detail to enable the student to work on his or her own. The Instructor's Resource Manual is available for download from the instructor's section of the companion Web site, www.prenhall.com/lauckner, and is also available on the Instructor's Resource CDROM.

Electronic Test Bank

A test databank of more than 3,000 questions is available on the Instructor's Resource CDROM or separately. The Prentice Hall Test Manager can record answers and return customized graded results. It is also easy to create your own tests using several question types, including true/false, multiple choice, fillin, and short answer. These questions can be individually selected or chosen at random.

PowerPoint Slides

PowerPoint slides are available as a lecture aid for instructors. There are more than 400 slides available for download from the instructor's section of the companion Web site and on the Instructor's Resource CDROM.

Instructor's Resource CD ROM

All of the supplements are conveniently included on one disk. This includes the Instructor's Manual, PowerPoint slides, and Test Manager.

Companion Web Site

The companion Web site, www.prenhall.com/lauckner, is a Web community monitored by the authors and the team that created The Computer Continuum. The Web site includes an interactive study guide, which consists of additional test questions for students. These questions include instant assessment, and results can be emailed to the instructor.

The instructor's section of the companion Web site includes the Instructor's Resource Manual and the PowerPoint slides. Both can be easily downloaded.

APPLICATION MANUALS

Prentice Hall offers a wide range of computer applications texts. All are available as a custom bundle with The Computer Continuum; Second Edition. The applications series are all supported by MOUScertified (Microsoft Office User Specialist) interactive computerbased tutorials and skillsbased assessment software. This outstanding product line includes the Learn Office series, Ericksen Quick/Simple series, Select Lab series, Essentials series, Duffy series, and Grauer Exploring Office series.

The MOUS Essentials series and Prentice Hall's MOUS Test Preparation Guides series are also available. These series focus specifically on MOUS exam preparation. Your Prentice Hall representative will be happy to work with you and your bookstore manager to provide the most current information on these products, outline the ordering process, and provide pricing, ISBNs, and delivery information.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

PRELIMINARIES: WHERE WE'RE GOING.

1. Computers: A First Look.

I. BUILDING BLOCKS: HOW COMPUTERS WORK.

2. Metamorphosis of Information.
3. Computer Hardware Components: CPU, Memory, and I/O.
4. Computer Languages, Algorithms, and Program Development.
5. Hardware and Software: Putting It Together.
6. Operating Systems: The Genie in the Computer.
7. Network Concepts and Communications.

II. FOUNDATIONS: APPLYING THE CONCEPTS.

8. The Internet and the Web: Worldwide Transformation.
9. Multimedia.
10. Databases: Controlling the Information Deluge.
11. Simulation: Modeling the Physical World.

III. EMPOWERMENT: EXTENDING OUR LIMITS.

12. Artificial Intelligence and Modeling the Human State.
13. Pushing the Envelope of Human Potential.
14. Ethics, Electronic Spies, and Privacy.
Read More Show Less

Preface

PREFACE:

Preface

PHILOSOPHY: THE CONCEPTS APPROACH

Higher education has traditionally categorized knowledge into areas such as history, chemistry, physics, and literature. In most colleges and universities, almost all the common major categories have an introduction to their field that is designed for the beginner. The sciences, such as chemistry, physics, and biology, for example, have courses for the nonmajor. These courses are designed to teach the concepts of the individual fields and do not dwell on the tools used to study the field. In chemistry, for instance, courses in glassblowing and apparatus building are not the main introductory core. Instead, the focus is on understanding the concepts, which usually include chemical reactions or the structure of molecules. It is also duly noted by the authors of The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, that the fields of information systems and computer science are unique. But, the concepts approach is still a valid, if not preferred, means of teaching in these two areas.

During the past decade, the fields of information systems and computer science have focused on the tools. In fact, many colleges and universities continue to offer complete courses in learning the technical aspects of word processing, spreadsheets, and databases. This seems like a misplaced effort, considering what the future holds for the graduate. Continuous speechtotext input systems will probably make word processors obsolete in a few years, for example. Among those who use spreadsheets to solve real problems, it is wellknown that an understanding of modeling and simulation is more valuable than knowing how to makeaspreadsheet look pretty. The philosophy of this textbook is to concentrate on the concepts of information systems and computer science, such as data representation, operating systems, programming languages, and algorithms. Software application sections are integrated into every chapter of the book. There also are several laboratory manuals that can be packaged with The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, to give the student working knowledge of those tools. But ultimately, it is necessary to build a lasting foundation of fundamental concepts to prepare the graduate for the future.

AUDIENCE

The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, is primarily for use in college and university undergraduate introduction to computer concepts courses. It is equally appropriate for departments of either information systems or computer science. It is equally appealing to the liberal arts major and the computer science major. This text material has been tested on more than 10,000 college students in both large and small classes.

We think that most of the concepts as presented, will be current even 10 years from now. This lasting power is due to the concentration on fundamental concepts. In fact, simulation and the associated computer concepts introduced in chapter 11, "Simulation: Modeling the Physical World," are the foundation for a new approach to computer science, in addition to the theoretical and experimental approaches.

Unique coverage can be found in chapter 2, "Metamorphosis of Information"; chapter 5, Hardware and Software: Putting It Together"; chapter 9, "Multimedia"; chapter 11, "Simulation: Modeling the Physical World"; and chapter 12, "Artificial Intelligence and Modeling the Human State:"

ORGANIZATION

The organization of The Computer Continuum follows a very natural approach to learning about information systems and computer science. After an introductory chapter, the next five chapters lay down a foundation of theory; the remaining chapters cover some general areas of computer usage. The theory chapters form a solid framework on which the general areas of computer usage and the tools can be supported. The term general areas is meant to show that these concepts are used in almost every field of endeavor. A summary of this approach is as follows:

  • Preliminaries: Where We're Going, consists of chapter 1, "Computers: A First Look:"
  • Part I, The Building Blocks: How Computers Work, consists of chapters 2 through 7 and covers the following:
    – Representation of the five kinds of information and its storage
    – Hardware components of a computer system
    – Programming, algorithms, and computer languages
    – Putting together hardware and software in the computer
    – Controlling computers through the operating system
    – Network communication between computers and people
  • Part II, Foundations: Applying Concepts, consists of chapters 8 through 11 and covers the following:
    – Understanding the Internet and the World Wide Web
    – Multimedia from hypertext to streaming audio and video
    – Databases: gathering, retrieving, and analyzing information
    – Using computers in simulation and modeling
  • Part III, Empowerment: Extending Our Limits, consists of chapters 12 through 14 and covers the following:
    – The pursuit of the intelligent computer to extend human abilities
    – Using the computer to increase personal knowledge
    – Dealing with the ethics and problems computers create

The rationale for this organization is to first provide an understanding of the basic concepts involved with computers, then to use this understanding to investigate the application of computers in many general areas. To understand the process of image manipulation, for example, it is necessary to understand the concepts of representing images in a computer. The approach is designed to enable the student to first conceptualize, then innovate. Without understanding the underlying concepts, creative work is almost impossible. truly want our students to innovate!

NEW TO THIS EDITION

We created a revision plan based on market surveys and our knowledge of the evolving needs of the introduction to computers course. The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, has new content, a modified organization, and new pedagogical features.

Content Changes

Chapter 1, "Computers: A First Look;" features new content on wireless communication and network access and discusses the growing use of the Internet. The chapter includes a new section that previews several software applications, including word processors, electronic spreadsheets, database managers, presentation graphics, internet and Web tools, and Web page builders. Chapter 2, "Metamorphosis of Information," features new coverage of word processing software applications. Chapter 3, "Computer Hardware Components: CPU, Memory, and I/O," is a new chapter that features unified hardware coverage that appeared in two separate chapters in the previous edition. We have expanded the coverage and pay special attention to new hardware, such as DVD systems. The chapter ends with a new discussion of the software tools needed to troubleshoot and maintain a computer. Chapter 4, "Computer Languages, Algorithms, and Program Development," includes a new section on Dreamweaver, a Web page design software. Chapter 5, "Hardware and Software: Putting it Together," includes a new section on electronic spreadsheets. Treating hardware in chapter 3, software in chapter 4, and then putting the two together in chapter 5 makes a more natural sequence. Chapter 6, "Operating Systems: The Genie in the Computer," includes a new section that compares three operating systems: Windows 2000, Macintosh OS, and Linux. Chapter 7, "Network Concepts and Communications," features a new section on Traceroute, software that allows the tracing of packets over the Internet or any network sing TCP/IP protocol.

Chapter 8, "The Internet and the Web: Worldwide Transformation," includes new coverage of electronic commerce in section 8.9, The Web in Business: The Growth of ECommerce. Also included is a software application section on using search engines effectively. Chapter 9, "Multimedia," is a new chapter that combines first edition chapter 10, "Visual Communication," with chapter 11, "Audio Communication." A new section covers capturing music and audio from the Internet. Chapter 10, "Databases: Controlling the Information Deluge," has been expanded to include new coverage of the relational database system, data marts, data warehouses and data mining, and the ethical hazards of database systems. The chapter closes with a new section on Webdatabase connectivity and Oracle WebDB. Chapter 11, "Simulation: Modeling the Physical World," includes a new section on using spreadsheets as a simulation tool.

Chapter 12, "Artificial Intelligence and Modeling the Human State," has more prominent treatment of evolutionary systems such as the genetic algorithm, genetic programming, and artificial life. New to the chapter is a section on Webbased and standalone language translation. Chapter 13, "Pushing the Envelope of Human Potential," has more prominent treatment of the real and virtual classroom. New to the chapter is a section devoted to electronic test generators. Chapter 14, "Ethics, Electronic Spies, and Privacy," features updated examples, including the Love Bug. The chapter closes with a new section on screening and filtering software.

New Pedagogy

We have included four new pedagogical features, described previously in the Learning Tools section of the Preface. These new features are:

  1. A chapteropening Puzzler presenting a realistic computer problem relating to the content of the chapter.
  2. Cutting Edge boxes presenting new and sometimes revolutionary topics.
  3. Software application sections at the end of each chapter.
  4. Web exercises encouraging Web exploration and problem solving.

THE TEACHING PACKAGE

The Computer Continuum, Second Edition, has a comprehensive supplements package that is coordinated with the main text and is designed for your teaching convenience. The following supplements are available with the text.

Instructor's Resource Manual

The Instructor's Resource Manual provides learning objectives and lesson outlines for each chapter. The manual also gives the answers to all endofchapter material in the main text. For the novice teacher, as well as seasoned instructors looking for new ways to teach this course, the Instructor's Resource Manual includes Teaching Tips, along with a Sample Syllabus. Lab projects for each of the chapters are included. These consist of a description of the project with sufficient detail to enable the student to work on his or her own. The Instructor's Resource Manual is available for download from the instructor's section of the companion Web site, www.prenhall.com/lauckner, and is also available on the Instructor's Resource CDROM.

Electronic Test Bank

A test databank of more than 3,000 questions is available on the Instructor's Resource CDROM or separately. The Prentice Hall Test Manager can record answers and return customized graded results. It is also easy to create your own tests using several question types, including true/false, multiple choice, fillin, and short answer. These questions can be individually selected or chosen at random.

PowerPoint Slides

PowerPoint slides are available as a lecture aid for instructors. There are more than 400 slides available for download from the instructor's section of the companion Web site and on the Instructor's Resource CDROM.

Instructor's Resource CD ROM

All of the supplements are conveniently included on one disk. This includes the Instructor's Manual, PowerPoint slides, and Test Manager.

Companion Web Site

The companion Web site, www.prenhall.com/lauckner, is a Web community monitored by the authors and the team that created The Computer Continuum. The Web site includes an interactive study guide, which consists of additional test questions for students. These questions include instant assessment, and results can be emailed to the instructor.

The instructor's section of the companion Web site includes the Instructor's Resource Manual and the PowerPoint slides. Both can be easily downloaded.

APPLICATION MANUALS

Prentice Hall offers a wide range of computer applications texts. All are available as a custom bundle with The Computer Continuum; Second Edition. The applications series are all supported by MOUScertified (Microsoft Office User Specialist) interactive computerbased tutorials and skillsbased assessment software. This outstanding product line includes the Learn Office series, Ericksen Quick/Simple series, Select Lab series, Essentials series, Duffy series, and Grauer Exploring Office series.

The MOUS Essentials series and Prentice Hall's MOUS Test Preparation Guides series are also available. These series focus specifically on MOUS exam preparation. Your Prentice Hall representative will be happy to work with you and your bookstore manager to provide the most current information on these products, outline the ordering process, and provide pricing, ISBNs, and delivery information.

Read More Show Less

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