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Misconceptions {{#invoke:main|main}}

Women as computers in NACA High Speed Flight Station "Computer Room"

A computer does not need to be electronic, nor even have a processor, nor RAM, nor even a hard disk. While popular usage of the word "computer" is synonymous with a personal electronic computer, the modern<ref>According to the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary (6th ed, 2007), the word computer dates back to the mid 17th century, when it referred to “A person who makes calculations; specifically a person employed for this in an observatory etc.”</ref> definition of a computer is literally: "A device that computes, especially a programmable [usually] electronic machine that performs high-speed mathematical or logical operations or that assembles, stores, correlates, or otherwise processes information."<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> Any device which processes information qualifies as a computer, especially if the processing is purposeful.

Unconventional computing

{{#invoke:main|main}} Historically, computers evolved from mechanical computers and eventually from vacuum tubes to transistors. However, conceptually computational systems as flexible as a personal computer can be built out of almost anything. For example, a computer can be made out of billiard balls (billiard ball computer); an often quoted example.{{ safesubst:#invoke:Unsubst||date=__DATE__ |$B= {{#invoke:Category handler|main}}{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}[citation needed] }} More realistically, modern computers are made out of transistors made of photolithographed semiconductors.


Computer sections
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Misconceptions
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