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Learning about computer hardware

This was the way I learned about computer hardware. In Sydney, Australia where I live we have a council cleanup. During this time, everyone puts out rubbish and their junk onto the side of the road for the council to pick up on a certain date. Included in this rubbish were computers, lots of computers. So when this council cleanup was in my area, I would jump on my bike (often with some of my brothers) and ride around looking at the junk piles.

I started to collect computers and have a look inside them. I was really interested in how these complicated machines worked. Then I started to fiddle with some of the components and learn what each one did. I wanted to upgrade my computer so I tried adding a hard drive. I didn’t know how so I searched Google or got a book from the library.

After successfully doing this, I thought that my CPU (central processing unit) was a bit slow, so I tried to change that. Now this was my embarrassing moment and one that I look back on and laugh. Now in my family we have many computers. Mum had just bought a new computer so I received her last one. She hadn’t taken any information of it yet, so she didn’t want it to break. Well her computer that she gave me had an AMD, 700MHz chip and I found in my searching through junk, an Intel 1GHz Pentium III.

I didn’t really understand computer hardware so I thought that you could just swap any CPU. So I took Mum’s AMD chip out and then tried to squeeze my Pentium III chip in its place. Of course it didn’t fit, since an Intel chip can’t go in an AMD motherboard. However, this didn’t stop me. I started to bend the pins on the Intel chip so that it would fit in the AMD motherboard and eventually it did. I turned it on and then smelt something burning and then I saw something burning.

I had completely blown up everything in the computer. My mum wasn’t happy as she lost her information and my computer (my first computer) didn’t work anymore. What a learning experience!