Information Systems for Strategic Advantage - Study Guide
Information Systems for Strategic Advantage - Study Guide

Information Systems for Strategic Advantage - Study Guide

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A study guide on business information systems for strategic advantage.

This content is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

Information Systems Hardware - Study Guide

​Learning Objectives

  • Describe information systems hardware
  • Identify the primary components of a computer and the functions they perform
  • Explain the effect of the commoditization of the personal computer

Write your own description of what the term information systems hardware means.


What is the impact of Moore’s Law on various hardware components?


Explain why the personal computer is now considered a commodity.


What is the bus of a computer?


Name two differences between RAM and a hard disk.


What are the advantages of solid-state drives over hard disks?


How heavy was the first commercially successful portable computer?


List the following in increasing order (slowest to fastest): megahertz, kilohertz, gigahertz.


How would you represent the number 16 in binary? How about the number 100? Besides decimal and binary, other number bases are used in computing and programming. One of the most used bases is hexadecimal, which is base-16. In base-16, the numerals 0 through 9 are supplemented with the letters A (10) through F (15). How would you represent the decimal number 100 in hexadecimal?


Review the timeline of computers at the Old Computers website. Pick one computer from the listing and write a brief summary. Include the specifications for CPU, memory, and screen size. Now find the specifications of a computer being offered for sale today and compare. Did Moore’s Law hold true?


If you could build your own personal computer, what components would you purchase? Put together a list of the components you would use to create it, including a computer case, motherboard, CPU, hard disk, RAM, and DVD drive. How can you be sure they are all compatible with each other? How much would it cost? How does this compare to a similar computer purchased from a vendor such as Dell or HP?


What is the current state of solid-state drives vs. hard disks? Do original research online where you can compare price on solid-state drives and hard disks. Be sure you note the differences in price, capacity, and speed.

​Information Systems for Business and Beyond © 2014 David T. Bourgeois, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license made possible by funding from The Saylor Foundation’s Open Textbook Challenge.

​​Creative Commons License