Infinitive (Passive and Perfect Forms). What Can Computers Do?

Конспект урока

Иностранные языки, филология и лингвистика

From the first electronic digital computers of the forties to to-day’s versatile computers and most up-to-date microcomputers, very little has changed as far as basic computer operation is concerned. In the last thirty years, vast improvements in the size, speed and capabilities of computers have taken place.



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Unit 13

Grammar: Infinitive (Passive and Perfect Forms)

Reading Exercises:

I. Practice reading the following one-syllable words:

 Vast; size; speed; type; code; plant; range; chip; fast; large; solve; wrong.


II. Practice reading two-syllable words with the stress on the first syllable:

  Basic; concept; human; person; circuit; input; output; member; common; signal.

III. Practice reading two-syllable words with the stress on the second syllable:

Apply; perform; complete; prepare; concern; unique; respond; research; arise; consist.                                                                                                                                                                                           


IV. Practice reading many- syllable words:

    Memory; digital; versatile; improvement; capability; predecessor; calculation; integration; application; appropriate.  

V. Practice reading the following word-combinations:

     1.  set of instructions – набір інструкцій;

     2.  memory unit – блок памяті;

     3.  binary-coded form – форма двійкового кодування;

     4.  integrated circuit chip – кристал інтегральної схеми;

     5.  large-scale integration – велика інтегральна схема;

     6.  industrial control system – система промислового управління;

     7.  binary digit – двійкова цифра;

     8.  timing circuit – схема синхронізації.

VI. Practice reading with double stress:

  1.  microcomputer [ma'1krəukəmpֽju:tə]; 
  2.  scientific [ֽsa1ən'tifik];ֽ
  3.  capability [ֽkeipə'biləti];
  4.  calculation [kælkjulei∫n];
  5.  university [ֽju:ni'və:sət1];
  6.  minicomputer ['minikəmֽpju:tə].    

VII. Memorize the spelling and pronunciation of the following words:

  1.  digital – [did3itl] – цифровий;
  2.  versatile – ['vә:sətail] – універсальний;
  3.  microcomputer – ['maikrəukəmֽpjutə] – мікрокомпютер;
  4.  predecessor – ['pri:disesə] – попередник;
  5.  immediately – [1'm1:d1ətll] – негайно, безпосередньо;
  6.  chemical – ['kəmikl] – хімічний;
  7.  appropriate – [ə'prəupriət] – відповідний;
  8.  circuit – ['sə:kit] – ланцюг, схема;
  9.  scientific – [ֽsaiən'tifik] – науковий;
  10.  decision – [di'si3n] – рішення.


What Can Computers Do?

From the first electronic digital computers of the forties to to-day’s versatile computers and most up-to-date microcomputers, very little has changed as far as basic computer operation is concerned. In the last thirty years, vast improvements in the size, speed and capabilities of computers have taken place. But to-day digital computers still use the same logical operations as their predecessors. There are many basic concepts that can be applied to all types of computers, including microcomputers.

For the most part, human beings can do whatever computers can do, but computers can do it with much greater speed and accuracy, though computers perform all their calculations and operations one step at a time. A  computer  is  faster  and  more  accurate than  people, but unlike most people it must be given a complete set of instructions that tell it exactly what to do at each step  of  its operation. This set  of  instructions, called  a  programme, is  prepared  by  one  or  more persons for  each  job a computer is to do. These programmes are placed in the computer’s memory unit in a binary-coded form, with each instruction having unique code.

Computers are often used in applications where the results of their calculations are required immediately to be used in controlling a process. These are called real-time applications; they are often found in industrial process control in industries such as paper mills, oil refineries, chemical plants, and many others. The measuring systems send their signals to the computer which processes them and responds with appropriate control signals to be sent back to the process.

Computers in present use range considerably: from tiny things to big fellows. The microcomputer is the smallest and the newest member of the computer family. It usually consists of several integrated circuit chips, including a microprocessor chip, memory chips, and input/output interface chips which are a result of tremendous advances in large-scale integration.

Minicomputers are larger than microcomputers, they are widely used in industrial control systems, scientific institutions, and research laboratories. Although more expensive than microcomputers, minicomputers continue to be widely used because they are generally faster and possess more capabilities.

The largest computers (“maxicomputers”) are those found in research centers, large scientific laboratories, big universities.       

Most of the computer principles and concepts are common to all categories of computers, although there can be tremendous variations from computer to computer.

A question sometimes arises whether computers are able to think. As a matter of fact they do not think. The computer programmer provides a programme of instructions and data which specifies every detail of what to do, how to do, and when to do it. The computer is simply a high-speed machine which can manipulate data, solve problems, and make decisions, all under the control of the programme. If the programmer makes a mistake in the programme or puts in the wrong data, the computer will produce wrong results.

Every computer contains five essential elements or units: the arithmetic logic unit, the memory unit, the control unit, the input unit, the output unit.

The arithmetic logic unit is the area of the computer in which arithmetic and logic operations are performed on data.

The memory unit stores groups of binary digits (words) that can represent instructions (programme) which the computer is to perform and the data that are to be operated on by the programme.

The input unit consists of all the devices used to take information and data that are                                            

external to the computer and put it into the memory unit.

The output unit consists of the devices used to transfer data and information from the

computer to the outside world.

The control unit directs the operation of all the other units by providing timing and

control signals. This unit contains logic and timing circuits that generate the signal necessary to

execute each instruction in a programme.



  1.  versatile – універсальний;
  2.  integrated circuit chip – кристал інтегральної схеми;
  3.  input/output interface chip – кристал інтерфейсу вводу/виводу;
  4.  large-scale integration – велика інтегральна схема;
  5.  maintaining and updating large quantities of data and information – збереження та коректування великої кількості даних і інформації;
  6.  timing circuit – схема синхронізації.


Answer the questions:

     1.  Have there been any changes as far as basic computer operation is concerned?

     2.  What can  human beings do? What can a computer do?

     3.  What is a programme? How is it prepared?

     4.  What are computer applications?

     5.  How do computers range in size?

     6.  Can computers think? Prove it.



I. Translate the words paying attention to negative prefixes:

Indirect; unimportant; unequal; irresponsive; irrelative; indifferent; improper; impracticable; unusual.

II. Give verbs of the same root and translate them:

Application; integration; operation; instruction; variation; production; manipulation; calculation.


III. Form words after the model and translate them (v + ment, v + ion (-tion, -ation)):

  1.  to improve – improvement;
  2.  to require –
  3.  to develop –
  4.  to measure –
  5.  to apply –
  6.  to calculate –
  7.  to prepare –
  8.  to specify –
  9.  to solve –
  10.  to decide –


IV. Form adjectives (nouns, adverbs) adding the suffixes -er, -al, -ly, -ment, -ion, -able to the following words:

To consider; to improve; industry; usual; to program; to operate; to instruct.

V. Translate the following word-combinations:

Basic concepts; to perform calculations; one step at time; a complete set of instructions; digital computer; up-to-date minicomputer; logical operation; basic concept; scientific institution; research laboratory; binary digit; binary coded form; real-time applications; tremendous advances in large-scale integration.

VI. Translate the following international words:

Computer; electronic; minicomputer; programme; system; category; machine.

VII. Choose the correct English equivalent:

                                  to take place        

Відбуватися    to take a seat

                                  to take part

VIII. Make up pairs of the following words and translate them into Ukrainian:

  1.  vast                                                                       a.  computer        
  2.  logical                                                                   b.  code
  3.  digital                                                                    c.  institution
  4.  unique                                                                   d.  operation
  5.  chemical                                                                e.  improvement
  6.  scientific                                                                f.  plant
  7.  research                                                                 g.  chip
  8.  memory                                                                 h.  laboratory

IX. Fill in the blanks with the words given below:

Logical, range, mistake, calculation, integrated.

  1.  Today digital computers still use the same ……… operations as their predecessors.
  2.  Computers are often used in application where the results of their ……… are required immediately to be used in controlling a process.
  3.  Computers in present use ……… considerably: from tiny things to big fellows.
  4.  The microcomputer usually consists of several ……… circuit chips.
  5.  If the programmer makes a ……… in the programme or puts in the wrong data, his computer will produce wrong results.  


Electronic computer evolution.

Give a summary of the text.

One of the most progressive and dynamic branches of science and technology is computer technology. The word computer is of Latin origin and means “counting”. A computer is a special kind of a counting machine. It can do arithmetic problems at a tremendous speed. By means of electrical circuits it can find the answer to a very difficult and complicated problem with lightning speed. A computer can “remember” information you give it and store it in its “memory” until it is needed.

The first electronic computer appeared in 1946 on the basis of electronic vacuum tube with response number of five thousand operations per second. As early as 1960s the second generation appeared in which transistors were used to increase the number of operations to 200 thousand per second.

The appearance of integrated circuits and microprocessors gave birth to the third generation of computers (1964) capable of performing two million operations per second. It found wide application in all fields of economy solving the most complex economic problems.

The computers of the fourth generation (1979) are based on very high-capacity integrated circuits and microprocessors able to perform 100 million operations per second.

Now the fifth generation of computers is widely used in production. The PS-200 (PS stands for “parallel system”) supercomputer is able to perform 200 million operations per second and is based on super high-capacity integrated circuits. Here for the first time in the world engineering practice a new parallel system concept is used.

Any computer performs many functions: in addition to dealing with numbers the computer supervises the whole computing process, and determines the sequence in which information is to arrive at its processors. In fact, the computer takes only one-tenth of its total operating tine to do the computing, the function it is designed for.

What is needed, therefore, is a computer with computing elements free from all other functions. This becomes possible if supervision is assigned to special processors acting as managers. Operating in conjunction with computing circuits these processors give instructions and run the queue of information to enter the processor from storage, etc.

The fastest computer in the USA works like an assembly line, with individual processors performing individual operations. Data have to pass through the entire length of the conveyer, no matter how many processors there are to process them. Our approach differs radically. We suggest a principle whereby all processors respond to a single control command which leaves them a certain margin of freedom, with the possibility to sort out their data independently. Receiving a common ”command” they all start off doing similar operations, later switching over to successive operations until the whole problem is solved. The efficiency of this parallel system is obvious.

First, similar operations can be handled at any speed as it depends on the number of processors involved.

Second, a single-control system for all processors is simple and, consequently, low-cost.


  1.  as early as 1960s – ще в 1960-ті роки
  2.  response number – кількість редагувань (спрацьовувань)
  3.  integrated circuit – інтегральна схема
  4.  with lightning speed – блискавично, із швидкістю блискавки
  5.  to give birth to smth. – дати початок чому-н., викликати
  6.  computer network – система, мережа компютерів
  7.  operating time – час роботи
  8.  if supervision is assigned to processors – якщо контроль доручений (призначений) процесорам
  9.  in conjunction with – у сполученні (поєднанні) з
  10.  to run the queue of information – пропускати чергу (серію) інформації
  11.  assembly line – складальна (автоматична) лінія
  12.  no matter how many… - незалежно від того, скільки...
  13.  margin of freedom – поле свободи
  14.  successive operations – послідовні операції
  15.  the number of processors involved – кількість підключених процесорів
  16.  single-control system система однокнопкового управління   



Digital computers

Translate the text using a dictionary.

Computer equipment may be divided into two major classifications: analog and digital.

A digital device operates directly upon numbers. Its basic operation is counting, whether the counting of beads, of gear teeth, or of electrical pulses. All of the mathematical operations are performed by counting or addition. In digital computation a problem is broken down into a series of arithmetic steps which are completed in sequence to arrive at the solution. This method is known as a sequential operation and is in effect the same as if a pencil and paper were used to carry out arithmetic operations. The difference, of course, is that the tremendous speed and memory capacity of the digital computer permit complex calculations to be made in a fraction of a second. A point to emphasize is that mathematical operations and the method by which the computer derives a final result have little, if any, resemblance to the actions of the physical problem under study.

The accuracy of digital computer solutions is theoretically unlimited. The precision of a digital computer is readily increased by providing additional decimal places in the numbers throughout the equipment. However this both increases the cost of the equipment and decreases the speed of computation.

Because of its numerical nature, the digital computer is well suited to problems involving the processing of large masses of data where single calculations are repeated over and over again. Consequently, digital machines find their widest use in scientific problems involving statistical analysis and in business applications such as accounting and record keeping.

Digital computers are also being applied to the control of industrial processes. The computer generally performs supervisory function by evaluating process conditions against desired performance criteria and determining changes to provide optimum operation. More recently, digital computers have been used to provide direct digital control (DDC) of individual process variables.     



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