Browse Definitions :
Definition

general-purpose computer

Contributor(s): Ivy Wigmore

A general-purpose computer is one that, given the appropriate application and required time, should be able to perform most common computing tasks.  

Personal computers, including desktops, notebooks, smartphones and tablets, are all examples of general-purpose computers. The term is used to differentiate general-purpose computers from other types, in particular the specialized embedded computers used in intelligent systems.

ENIAC, designed and built in the 1940s, was the first general-purpose computer. ENIAC weighed 30 tons and covered an area of about 1,800 square feet. In contrast, a current smartphone weighs a few ounces and is small enough to slip into a pocket.

This was last updated in October 2013

Join the conversation

2 comments

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

helpfull!!
Cancel
This really helped with work for my GCSE.
Cancel

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

SearchCompliance

  • compliance audit

    A compliance audit is a comprehensive review of an organization's adherence to regulatory guidelines.

  • regulatory compliance

    Regulatory compliance is an organization's adherence to laws, regulations, guidelines and specifications relevant to its business...

  • Whistleblower Protection Act

    The Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989 is a law that protects federal government employees in the United States from ...

SearchSecurity

  • RSA algorithm (Rivest-Shamir-Adleman)

    The RSA algorithm is the basis of a cryptosystem -- a suite of cryptographic algorithms that are used for specific security ...

  • remote access

    Remote access is the ability to access a computer or a network remotely through a network connection.

  • IP Spoofing

    IP spoofing is the crafting of Internet Protocol (IP) packets with a source IP address that has been modified to impersonate ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • network disaster recovery plan

    A network disaster recovery plan is a set of procedures designed to prepare an organization to respond to an interruption of ...

  • virtual disaster recovery

    Virtual disaster recovery is a type of DR that typically involves replication and allows a user to fail over to virtualized ...

  • tabletop exercise (TTX)

    A tabletop exercise (TTX) is a disaster preparedness activity that takes participants through the process of dealing with a ...

SearchStorage

  • enterprise storage

    Enterprise storage is a centralized repository for business information that provides common data management, protection and data...

  • disk array

    A disk array, also called a storage array, is a data storage system used for block-based storage, file-based storage or object ...

  • optical storage

    Optical storage is any storage type in which data is written and read with a laser. Typically, data is written to optical media, ...

Close