Computer Systems

Area Description Questions
Data Representation Describe and exemplify the use of binary to represent positive integers.
Describe floating point representation of positive real numbers using the terms mantissa and exponent.
Convert from binary to denary and vice-versa.
Describe extended ASCII code (8- bit) used to represent characters.
Describe the vector graphics method of graphic representation for common objects:
  • rectangle
  • ellipse
  • line
  • polygon
with attributes:
  • co-ordinates
  • fill colour
  • line colour
Describe the bit-mapped method of graphics representation.
Computer Structure Describe the purpose of the basic computer architecture components and how they are linked together:
  • processor (registers, ALU, control unit)
  • memory locations with inique addresses
  • buses (data and address)
Explain the need for interpreters and compilers to translate high-level program code to binary (machine code instructions).
Environmental impact Describe the energy use of computer systems, the implications on the environment and how these could be reduced through:
  • settings on monitors
  • power-down settings
  • leaving computers on stand-by
Security precautions Describe the role of firewalls
Describe the use made of encryption in electronic communications.