An input device of a computer-based information system is used to capture raw and convert them into computer-usable form as quickly and efficiently as possible.
The approaches devised to accomplish this can be categorized according to the type of material on which the data are recorded. These materials are called media.
Although in a few sophisticated systems data can be captured in very special forms, the following input media of microcomputer are used most often:
Input media of microcomputer
- Paper medium
- Magnetic Medium
For many years, the most widely used media to record input data paper-based products such as punched cards and punched paper tape. The operator of a keypunch machine transcribes data from a source document by punching holes in the cards via a keyboard according to a special code.
Paper-based input media are also used with scanners, connected to computers that can “read” typed or handwritten data. The banking industry has long relied on paper-based input media.
Cheques are printer using special magnetic ink that can be scanned for magnetic retrieval of data. Optically oriented input devices are available for use with microcomputer systems.
For example, even a small independently owned store may have a microcomputer at the check stand and a hand-held optical scanning device to read the product numbers on purchased items.
The most widely used input media toady are magnetic media in tape or disk form. The major advantages of magnetic media are their re-usability, low cost, great flexibility for accessing the data during the input process, and high speed compared to punched cards and manual keyboard entry.
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