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# Difference between Analog Computer and Digital Computer

Pre-requisite – Classification of Computers

1. Analog Computer : Analog computer system is the very old computer system which operates on the mathematical variables in the form of continuously changeable physical quantities/entities like mechanical, electrical, hydraulic, etc. They use continuous values rather than discrete values so they work on analog signal. At the time of at the time of the 1950sâ€“1960s these analog computers were first used. Analog computers are limited in accepting the problems and also they can never be extremely accurate.

Features of Analog Computers:

• Uses continuous signals: Analog computers use continuous physical quantities, such as voltage or current, to represent data and perform calculations.
• Real-time processing: Analog computers are capable of performing calculations in real-time, which makes them useful in applications such as scientific simulations and control systems.
• Accuracy: Analog computers are capable of performing calculations with high accuracy, but this accuracy is limited by the precision of the components used in the system.
• Non-programmable: Analog computers are typically designed to perform specific types of calculations and cannot be programmed to perform other functions.

2. Digital Computer : Digital computers are the computer systems/machines which uses the binary number system, which has two digits: 0 and 1 and performs many computational tasks. It processes the data represented in discrete and the main three components of digital computers are input, processing and output. The first digital computer was designed for numerical computations in the late 1940s. Digital computers give results with more accuracy as it is not dependent upon physical quantities for processing a task.

Features of Digital Computers:

• Uses binary code: Digital computers use binary code, which is a combination of zeros and ones, to represent data and perform calculations.
• Programmable: Digital computers are capable of being programmed to perform a wide variety of calculations and functions, making them highly versatile.
• Storage: Digital computers can store large amounts of data and retrieve it quickly.
• Accuracy: Digital computers are capable of performing calculations with high accuracy, which is limited by the precision of the digital components used in the system.

Similarities between Analog and Digital Computers:

• Both can perform mathematical calculations and process data.
• Both require hardware components such as processors, memory, and input/output devices to function.
• Both have been used in a variety of applications, including scientific simulations, control systems, and data processing.
• Both have limitations in terms of accuracy and precision.

Difference between Analog Computer and Digital Computer :

Conclusion :

analog and digital computers differ in their data representation, operations, precision, programming, and applications. Analog computers represent data using physical quantities, perform operations using continuous functions, and are less precise than digital computers. Digital computers represent data using binary digits, perform operations using discrete steps, and are more precise and versatile than analog computers.

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