Malice-Corp’s Basic Personal Computer Primer, part 1 the CPU

GREETINGS TO ALL FROM MALICE-CORPHey all I have had a few people look over my Raspberry Pi tutorials and tell me they are great, but we have no idea what you are talking about.  I was asked to put together a basic explanation in normal people terms what some of the computer jargon they have encounter actually means. This is the first article in a four part series. I am going to focus in this first article on some of the basic PC or personal computer hardware you are going to encounter and what they actually due, starting with the CPU.

If you are an advance computer user this may not be the article for you, but maybe you can add some insight in the comments below.

The Four MAJOR parts of a home PC.

This is a bit subjective because some people will argue that other components are more major but to me in my mind the top four major parts are

  1. CPU – Central processing unit
  2. RAM – Random access memory
  3. HDD – Hard disk drive
  4. GPU – Graphic processing unit

Don’t panic on me we are going to take these one at a time and look at them at a very high level.  What all that means and what they do in plain English.

The CPU – Central processing unit (Our Student)

We are going to start this whole thing of with an analogy that is going to run through the rest of this article.  I want you to envision in your mind a Student and all the things he needs to learn and accomplish his classes.  Well that student is our CPU.  The faster the CPU the fast our student can think. CPUs speeds are measured in Hz; specifically kilo, mega,and giga.  These prefixes all represent a number that you are going to multiple the main number by.  Also there is the number of cores to with modern CPUs these are basically multiple CPUs stack on top each other so like have the ability for our student to do more things at once.

Really detailed (can skip this part if you don’t want a deep dive)

A Hz is a abbreviate for Hertz which is a single cycle or sine-wave is the easiest way to describe it. That little wave you see on the scopes in Sci-Fi moves.  That thing is an

Herz from

Oscilloscope by the way if you are curious.  This speed is really a frequency that the processor works at.  Frequency means exactly what you think it would mean.  Even when we are talking about radio waves.  The number of times per second one of the waves is completed so 1 Hz is on wave a second where 1 kHz is 1,000 waves or cycles completed a second.  These are all metric prefixes and I will list these 3 below

  1. Kilo – 103 or 1,000
  2. Mega – 106 or 100,000
  3. Giga – 10or 1000000000

THE POINT (Basic Personal Computer Primer, part 1) – The more Hz and more cores you have the fast your student can think, but he can’t remember anything so he has a notebook, research Library, and a calculator to help him out.  We will cover the note book (RAM – Random Access Memory) in the next article; Basic Personal Computer Primer, part 2 RAM

Jack Malice, Contributor and founder

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