If one wanted to define what a computer is, then the following would probably fill the bill:
a high-speed, automatic, electronic, digital, general purpose, stored program data processing machine.
It is not the purpose of this book to cover every aspect of this definition. In fact, the only part which really concerns us is the
concept. However, it is because a computer is electronic and high-speed that it is able to use a stored program in order to process data very quickly. In other words, there are pieces of electronics which constitute the memory inside the computer which are able to store a sequence of instructions, permanently if need be. These instructions can be brought into operation automatically in order to process the data which is presented to them. The concept of a computer being a device which produces the answers to a series of questions is very over-simplified and a rather romantic idea of what a computer really is, thanks to television and the popular press!