The foundation of calculator and computer is the same, and these devices were developed to solve the complicated problems. However, the calculator and computer can be differentiated by the fact that we can program a computer to make decisions while this can’t be done with the calculator.

The term computer is derived from the word compute, which means to calculate. A computer can be considered as a super-fast calculator, but in present the computers handle various tasks such as logical operations, inserting, sorting, selecting, comparing different types of information rather than just handling the arithmetic operations.

## Content: Calculator Vs Computer

### Comparison Chart

Basis for comparison | Calculator | Computer |
---|---|---|

Complexity of calculation | Moderate | High |

Memory | Less | More |

Other tasks | Cannot be performed | Can be easily performed |

Programming language | No concept of programming language | It has lots of programming language. |

### Definition of Calculator

A Calculator is basically used for executing the mathematical expressions founded on the inbuilt permanent instructions. It is not suitable for deriving the conclusion based on some logical decisions.

For example, to find the average of some marks obtained by students in a college, but other things like a range of marks such as in between 60-100 secured by the students would not be possible.

In the old days, the ancient humans used bones, pebbles, tally sticks, knots in cords and counting boards as the calculating and recording methods. Although, the first calculator got recognized was the abacus. This emerged the evolution of calculating devices like an anemometer, mechanical calculators, arithmometer, Basile Bouchon, difference engine, etc.

### Definition of Computer

A Computer is an extremely enhanced version of a calculator. It can be programmed to solve the specific problems and provide the desired result after the mathematical and logical conclusion.

By taking the reference of the previous example, it is very easy to compute the average marks of the students. Similarly, in the second case where we want to find the marks of the students which scored between 60-100. A computer program can easily accomplish the given task by making a logical decision, as here we just want to compare the marks obtained by the students and arrange them in the range specified.

A computer is capable of performing a huge variety of tasks.

Generations of the Computer

- First Generation – The first computer was made using vacuum tube technology, which was huge in size. Punched cards and magnetic tapes were used to give input and take output.
- Second Generation – Similarly, in the second generation of the computer, the transistor were mainly used, and its size was also reduced as compared to the first generation computer.
- Third Generation – The third generated computer employed IC’s (Integrated Circuits), which significantly reduced the overall size of a computer.
- Fourth Generation – In the present, we are using fourth-generation technology that involves VLSI (Very Large Scale Integration) and this lead to the invention of microcomputers.
- Fifth Generation – This is the upcoming generation for computers, which is known as artificial intelligence. With this type of tech, the expert systems will be made that resembles to the human brain.

## Key Differences Between Calculator and Computer

- A calculator can conduct just arithmetic operations. On the contrary, a computer can successfully perform arithmetic as well as logical operations.
- The memory installed in computer very much larger than the memory that a calculator is equipped with.
- A computer can also be used for entertainment and for other tasks too, but this is not possible with a calculator.
- We can program a computer in several different languages. As against, a calculator has no such facility.

#### Similarities

Despite differences, there are many similarities between the terms calculator and computer. Now let’s discuss them too.

- The electrical power is required for using both devices.
- To give input, the devices have an input device like a keypad or keyboard.
- Both display the results with the help of a screen.
- Both contain memory to store the data and the results.
- A calculator and a computer both are capable of performing numerical calculations.

### Conclusion

A computer can perform any operation that a calculator is capable of performing, but a calculator cannot carry out the logical and highly complex problems. The reason behind this is that a computer can be programmed to make decisions, but a calculator is not equipped with that technology.

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