Classification of Computers

Computers can be classified according to their functionality and size. The types of computers according to their functionality are analog computer, digital computer and hybrid computer. The analog computer measures the changes in physical quantities such as temperature, voltage etc. The digital computer uses binary number system in which there are only two digits, 0 and 1. The hybrid computer is capable of inputting and outputting both digital signal and analog signals.

The types of computers according to their size are: super computer, minicomputer, microcomputer and mainframe computer. Super computer is the fastest and most powerful computer on earth designed for scientific work. Some common examples of supercomputers are IBM Roadrunner, IBM Blue gene and Intel ASCI red. Minicomputer is a multi-user digital system as it allows more than one user to work on it at a time. PDP 11, IBM (8000 series) are some of the widely used minicomputers. Microcomputer is a small, low-cost and single-user digital computer. Desktop computers, laptops and palmtops are some of the different types of microcomputers. Mainframe computer is a multiuser, multiprogramming and high performance computer. It is a large and powerful system, generally used in centralised database. Some common examples of mainframes are CDC 6600 and IBM ES000 series.

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