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What are the classifications of computers?

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Quick Answer

There are three major types of computer classifications: size, functionality and data handling. Classification of computers in relation to size divides computers into four main categories: mainframe computers, minicomputers, micro-computers and supercomputers. Different-sized computers offer different services. A computer can be as big as an entire room or as small as a microcontroller found in mobiles and embedded systems.

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The microcomputers, sometimes referred to as the personal computers, are the most common types of computers used by people. They include in-car built computers, game consoles and desktop computers. Additionally, under the category of microcomputers, there are smaller computers, including laptops, mobile phones, tablets, programmable calculators, handheld game consoles, notebooks, smartphones and smart books.

Minicomputers, also known as mid-range computers, refer to a group of multi-user computers which are always in the middle range of systems on computing spectrum. Mainframe computers comprise of large institutional computers meant to serve multiple users who are working from smaller single machines. Thus, mainframe computers are typically found in institutions such as banks, big business buildings and government offices. Finally, the classification of supercomputer represents all large computers intended to solve intense numerical calculations. Such calculations include tasks like nuclear simulation, weather forecasting and fluid dynamics.

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