com ‧ put ‧ er S1 W1 AC /kəmˈpjuːtə $ -ər/ BrE AmE noun [countable]
[ Word Family: noun : ↑ computer , ↑ computing , ↑ computerization ; verb : ↑ computerize ]
an electronic machine that stores information and uses programs to help you find, organize, or change the information:
a huge global computer network
the latest computer software
The information is stored on computer.
Shoppers can send in their orders by computer and pick up their goods later.
• • •
▪ use a computer
Most people do jobs in which they have to use a computer.
▪ log onto a computer (=start using it by typing a password)
Next time you log onto your computer, you will have to use a new password.
▪ log off a computer (=stop using a computer system that requires a password)
▪ switch a computer on/off
Always switch off your computer at the end of the day.
▪ start up/boot up a computer (=make it start working)
▪ shut down a computer (=close the programs and stop it working)
▪ restart/reboot a computer (=make it start working again)
The problem sometimes disappears if I restart my computer.
▪ program a computer (=give it instructions so that it will do a particular job)
▪ hold/store something on a computer
This data is all held on a central computer.
▪ a computer starts up/boots up
My computer takes ages to start up in the morning.
▪ a computer crashes (=suddenly stops working)
▪ a computer is down (=is not working)
▪ a computer is up (=is working again after stopping working)
▪ software/a program runs on a computer
You’ll need the appropriate software running on your computer.
■ computer + NOUN
▪ a computer system
Our office is installing a new computer system.
▪ a computer screen/monitor
Make sure your computer screen is at the right height.
▪ a computer keyboard
The computer keyboard is shaped to put less strain on your wrists.
▪ a computer network (=a set of computers connected to each other)
A virus had infected the entire computer network.
▪ a computer program (=a set of instructions stored inside a computer)
At school, we’re learning how to write simple computer programs.
▪ computer software (=computer programs)
Microsoft Corp is the world’s largest maker of personal computer software.
▪ computer hardware/equipment (=machines and equipment, not programs)
a shop that sells computer equipment
▪ a computer game
Kids love playing computer games.
▪ computer graphics (=images created by computers)
There’s a massive market for high-speed computer graphics.
▪ computer technology
the rapid progress in computer technology
▪ computer science (=the study of computers and what they can do)
▪ the computer industry
You can make a lot of money in the computer industry.
▪ a computer company
He runs his own computer company.
▪ a computer user
Technology now allows computer users to talk to each other over the Internet.
▪ a computer programmer (=someone who writes the instructions a computer uses to do a particular job)
▪ a computer expert
You don’t need to be a computer expert to use the programme.
▪ a computer hacker (=someone who tries to break into a computer system)
▪ a computer language (=a system of instructions used to program a computer)
▪ computer data
CD ROMs store computer data.
▪ a computer virus (=a program that secretly destroys information stored on computers)
Computer viruses do a lot of damage every single day.
▪ a computer error
The mistake was caused by a computer error.
• • •
■ Actions when using a computer
▪ start up/boot up to make a computer start working:
I’m having problems starting up my computer.
▪ log on/in to start using a computer system by typing your name and password:
He logged on and read his emails.
▪ click on something to press a button on a computer mouse to choose a program, file etc from the screen:
When you click on the link, it sends you to the company’s website.
▪ install to add new software to a computer so that the software is ready to be used:
All users should install anti-virus software.
▪ download to move information, pictures, or music from the Internet onto your computer:
You can download MP3 files.
▪ upload to move information, pictures, or music from your computer to a different computer across the Internet:
Sites such as YouTube allow you to upload your own videos.
▪ open to make a file or program ready to use:
Open a new file and type in the information.
▪ scroll up/down to move information on a computer screen up or down so that you can read it:
Scroll down to read the questions and answers.
▪ enter to type information into a computer:
The program requires you to enter a password.
▪ delete to remove information from a computer:
I’ve deleted his email.
When you delete a file, it first gets moved to the recycle bin.
▪ cut and paste to remove information from one place and put it in another place:
Tutors are looking out for students who cut and paste their essays from the Internet.
▪ save to make a computer keep the work that you have done on it:
Make sure you save any work you do before you shut the computer down.
▪ close to stop having a file or program ready to use:
To close the window, click on the ‘X’ in the top right-hand corner of the screen.
▪ log off/out to stop using a computer system by giving it particular instructions:
I get an error message when I log off.
▪ shut down to make a computer stop working:
Employees should shut their computers down at the end of each day.
▪ restart/reboot to make a computer start working again:
Wait a few minutes before rebooting your computer.