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Computer Science Trivia Questions and Answers

Top 10 Computer Science Trivia Questions

From the first computers to the latest jaw-dropping technological advancements, computer science is a fascinating subject. Test your knowledge with these fun and challenging trivia questions.

What was the name of the first computer? And what did movie maker George Lucas file a lawsuit against President Reagan to get him to stop calling an outer space computer controlled defense system?

1. What is a computer?

Computers are electronic devices that accept data, process it, produce output and store it. Data is anything that can be turned into information, such as student grades or baseball batting averages.

The hardware of a computer consists of the external physical parts, such as the case and monitor. The software consists of the programs that tell the hardware what to do.

2. What is a CPU?

A CPU is a central processing unit that interprets and processes instructions sent from computer programs. It includes the control unit, arithmetic logic unit (ALU) and registers.

The control unit interprets instructions sent from software apps and the arithmetic logic unit performs arithmetic operations. The registers are high-speed internal memory that saves data and instructions. The entire CPU is contained on a single integrated circuit chip.

3. What is a memory?

The memory is a complex system that processes information over time. It consists of three stages: encoding, storage, and retrieval.

The first stage is sensory register, where the brain passively obtains information from the environment. The second stage is short-term memory, where the information stays for a few seconds or minutes. The third stage is long-term memory, where the information remains for days or even years.

4. What is a network?

A network is a group of computers that are connected in order to share resources. A computer network can be as simple as two laptops connected by an Ethernet cable, or as large as the Internet.

A network can be modeled using a graph, where the nodes represent computers and the edges are hyperlinks between pages. A well-known example is the World Wide Web.

5. What is a programming language?

A programming language is a way for programmers to create computer software. There are hundreds of different programming languages in existence, but most of them fall into one of five general categories.

PHP is an easy-to-learn scripting language that is embedded in HTML and utilized for interactive website features. Developed by Dennis Ritchie at AT&T in 1972, C is a high-level and general-purpose computer programming language.

6. What is a user interface?

A user interface is the point of interaction and communication between a human user and a computer program or digital device. It includes elements like menus, buttons and windows that represent commands or options.

Every time you click a navigational button on a direct-to-consumer website or navigate a product page using photos and descriptions, you’re engaging with UI design. Accordions, cards and other navigational tools bundle information into unified groups that can be accessed at any time.

7. What is a computer virus?

A computer virus is a malicious program that can spread from one computer to another. It typically attaches itself to a file or program and can cause damage, such as destroying data or logging keystrokes. Computer viruses are also known as malware.

Viruses can self-replicate by creating clones of themselves and stashing them in files or programs on your computer. These clones can then trigger on a specific event.

8. What is a computer program?

Computer programs are logical sequences of instructions that can help solve problems. These instructions can be as simple as adding two numbers or as complex as reading data from temperature sensors to adjust a thermostat.

Programs are compiled into machine code using an interpreter. They can also be authored in high-level programming languages that are human-readable. See our software page for more information on this.

9. What is a portable computer?

A portable computer is a computer that can be easily moved from one location to another. A common example is a laptop computer, which folds like a clamshell and is easy to carry.

Technically, though, the term can also be used for computers that are larger than laptops but smaller than desktop personal computers. These are often called lunchbox computers, luggables, or mobile computers.

10. What is a disk drive?

A disk drive is the main, and usually most substantial, data storage hardware device in a computer. It stores programs, software titles and files that we save to our computers.

Hard disk drives are electro-mechanical and use rigid rapidly rotating platters coated with magnetic material to store digital data. They are non-volatile, meaning that they retain their data even when the computer is turned off.

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