Info on Operating Systems and Input/Output Devices for Beginners


           While this post is quite non-advanced in its content, it is essential to know the basics of what an operating system is and what controls it. The purpose and functions of an operating system are to give a user the ability to manage and use multiple programs and hardware, seamlessly and interactively. Windows, Linux, and the Mac OS are all useful operating systems and have many differences between them. I’d say the most important difference between Windows and Linux is the access of source coding available with Linux as well as its licensing freedom; this is compared to the strict restrictions of Windows. Mac, on the other hand, is an entirely different animal; should we say leopard? Mac has a built-in security system which towers over Window’s security capabilities and also excels in graphics and multimedia services because they are designed around a graphical interface. While Mac certainly has its benefits, Windows is the top choice for running a wide range of programs, especially games.

           With any operating system, input and output devices (I/O) provide the means of interacting with it. Some critical input devices that are necessary to use a computer are devices such as keyboards and mice. Using a computer without these items would make an utterly unusable interface unless it was a touchscreen.  Some devices that are not necessary are items such as webcams and microphones because they will not be required for use during typical day-to-day operations. You could also get by with not using speakers or a printer for most applications. Modems can be considered input and output devices because they send and receive information. A printer can be classified as an output device due to the ability to print and fax information. All of these types of input and output devices add to the overall functionality and performance of a computer.

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