Input devices such as scanners and cameras allow you to capture and copy images into a
A scanner is a peripheral that reads images and converts them into electronic codes which
can be understood by a computer. There are different types.
A flatbed is built like a photocopier and is for
use on a desktop; it can capture text, colour
images and even small 3 D objects.
A film scanner is used to film negatives or
35 mm slides – pictures on photographic
film, mounted on a frame.
A hand-held scanner is small T-shaped,
ideal to capture small pictures and logos.
A pen scanner looks like a pen; you can
scan text, figures, barcodes and handwritten
Barcode scanners read barcodes on the products sold in shops and send the price to the
computer in the cash register. Barcodes consist of a series of black and white stripes used
to give products a unique identification number.
The resolution of a scanner is measured in dpi or dots per inch. For example, a 1.200 dpi
scanner gives clearer, more detailed images than a 300 dpi scanner.
Most scanners come with Optical Character Recognition software. OCR allows you to scan
pages of text and save them into your word processor; they can be edited.
Digital cameras
A digital camera doesn't use a film. Photos are stored as digital data (bits made up of 1s
and 0s), usually on a tiny storage device known as flash memory card. You can connect the
camera or memory card to a PC and then alter the images using a program like Adobe
Photoshop, or you can view the images on a TV set. Many printers have a special socket so
that you can print images directly from a memory card or camera.
Digital video cameras and webcams
Complete the picture by: transfer, input, , output, processing.
A digital video
camera /DV)
records moving
images and
converts them into
digital data that
can be processed
by a PC.
You can manipulate
video images with
video editing
software. You can
cut, paste, add
effects, etc.
You can store or
export the result.,
dlay it on a screen
or create a DVD,
email or put your
movie on the Web.
Webcams (short for web cameras) let you send and receive live video pictures through the
Internet. They are primarily used for video conferences – video calls – but they can be used
to record photos and video onto your hard disk.
The resolution of webcams is expressed in megapixels (million pixels). Webcams connect to
the PC via a USB or FireWire port; they display video at 24 to 30 frames (pictures) per
second. Some include a headset with a microphone and earpiece.
A. Solve the clues and complete with the words from the reading.
1. Scanners and cameras are _______________ devices used to transfer images into a
format that can be understood by computers.
2. A _____________ lets you copy photos and printed documents into your PC.
3. It has become one of life's most familiar sounds – the beep of the supermarket till
whenever a __________________ is scanned.
4. If you need to scan 35 mm _________________ you should go for a dedicated 35 mm film
scanner which concentrates all its dots into a tiny area.
5. This scanner has a resolution of 300 x 600 ______________ .
6. A _______________ scanner is small enough to hold in your hand.
7. A ______________ scanner is used to capture lines of text, barcodes, numbers.
8. Most digital cameras use flash ______________ cards to store photos.
9. _______________ scanners have a flat surface and take at least A4-sized documents.
10. To scan photographic negatives or slides you will need a ______________ scanner.
B. Decide whether the sentences are true or false.
1. The details detected by a scanner are not determined by its resolution. ______________
2. A barcode scanner is a computer peripheral for reading barcode labels printed on
products. ______________
3. Scanners can not handle optical character recognition. _____________
4. A digital camera uses a light sensitive film instead of a memory card for storing the
images. ________________
5. A digital video (DV) camera is used to take still photographs. _____________
6. Video editing software allows you to manipulate video clips on the computer.
______________ .
C. Complete the advertisement with words from the webcam section.
WebCam Live Ultra
Having _________________ 1) with friends and family has never been easier or more
enjoyable. You get the highest-quality audio and video, no matter which chatting solution you
use. With the WebCam Live! Ultra, its CCD image sensor with 640 x 480 /VGA) resolution
produces rich, vibrant colours. Combined with its _______________ 2) 2.0 HiSpeed
connection, the result is top-quality, full-motion video at 30 _______________ 3) per second
for all your web conversations, even in dimly lit rooms.
The WebCam Live! Ultra lets you do more. Let your voice be heard clearer than ever before
with the included ________________ 4) unlike the built-in microphones in most other
_________________ 5). Take still pictures at up to 1.3 _________________ 6) resolution
(interpolated), and enjoy the many great features that accompany the bundled award-winning
WebCam Center software, such as motion detection, remote security monitoring, timelapse
video capture and much more.
What are the reasons for using a scanner at home or at work?
What basic features and the things you do with it?
D. A digital pen – Advertisement
Read the text and fill in the blanks with the words: sends, cables, computer, chip, digital,
data, Internet.
Anoto is a ________________ 1) pen that allows you to store and transmit anything you
write or draw on paper to any ________________ 2). The components of it are: 1) a digital
camera which scans the patterned paper, 2) an image processor, 3) a memory
______________ 3) which can store several written pages, and 4) a Bluetooth radio
transciever which ______________ 4) the information to your PC, mobile phone or handheld
computer. It also contains an ink cartridge so that you can actually see the characters and
pictures that you are making. As you write or draw on the Anoto patterned paper, the digital
pen converts your notes and diagrams into digital ________________ 5) which is stored and
then transmitted to your computer or, by using a Bluetooth device such as a mobile phone, to
another PC, database or the _______________ 6). Bluetooth is a wireless technology which
doesn't need _________________ 7) in order to send and receive information.
Complete the following picture below after reading the text above.
Another PC
What is common to all input devices?
Technical details
A printer is a device that prints your texts or graphics on paper.
The output on paper or acetate sheets is called printout or hard copy.
A program in your computer, called the printer driver, converts data into a form that
your printer can understand.
A print spooler stores files to be printed when the printer is ready. It lets you change
the order of documents in the queue and cancel specific print jobs.
The output quality or resolution is measured in dpi or dots per inch.
The speed of your printer is measured in pages per minute (ppm).
In a network, users can share a printer connected to a print server, a computer that
stores the files waiting to be printed.
Types of printers
A dot-matrix printer uses a group, or matrix, of pins to create precise dots. A print heading
containing tiny pins strikes an inked ribbon to make letters and graphics. This impact printing
technology allows shops, for example, to print multi-part forms such as receipts and invoices,
so it's useful when self-copying paper is needed. It has two important disadvantages: noise
and a relatively low resolution (from 72 to 180 dpi).
An ink-jet printer (also called bubble-jet) generates an image by spraying tiny, precise drops
of ink onto the paper. The resolution ranges from 300 to 1200 dpi, suitable for small
quantities or home use.
A standard ink-jet has a three-colour cartridge, plus a black cartridge. Professional ink-jets
have five-colour cartridges, plus black; some can print in wide format, ranging from 60 cm up
to 5 m, ( for printing advertising graphics).
Some ink-jets based printers can perform more than one task. They are called multifunction printers because they can work as a scanner, a fax as well as a printer. Some units
accept memory cards and print photos directly from a camera.
A laser printer uses a laser beam to fix the ink to the paper. A laser works like a
photocopier; a powder called a toner is attracted to paper by an electrostatic charge and
then fused on by a hot roller.
Laser printers are fast and produce a high resolution of 1200 to 2400 dpi, so they are ideal
for businesses and for proofing professional graphics work.
Lasers use a page description language or PDL, which describes how to print the text and
draw the images on the page. The best-known languages are Adobe PostScript an HP
Printer Control Language.
A professional imagesetter is a typesetting printer that generates very high resolution output
(over 3540 dpi) on paper or microfilm. It's used for high-quality publications.
A plotter is a special type of printer which uses ink and fine pens held in a cartridge to draw
detailed designs on paper. It's used in computer-aided design, maps, 3 D technical
illustrations, etc.
A. Complete these sentences with the words in 'Technical details'.
1. The differences in ________________ are noticeable; the more dots per inch, the clearer
the image.
2. A print resolution of between 600 _____________ and 2400 _____________ ensured that
even text as small 2 pti was legible.
3. Passengers with and electronic ticket will need a _______________ of ticket confirmation
or boarding pass to be admitted to secured gate areas.
4. The key advance of recent years is printing speed: the latest generation of ink-jets prints
black-and-white text at 15 ______________________________ (_________________).
5. With appropriate software, you can view the images on a computer, manipulate them, or
send them to a _________________ and produce excellent quality colour copies.
6. A __________________ is a dedicated computer that connects a printer to a network. It
enables users to share printing resources.
7. A __________________ is a utility that organizes and arranges any documents waiting to
be printed.
8. In computers, a __________________ is a program installed to control a particular type of
B. Choose the most suitable type of printer for these situations from the descriptions
in 'Types of printers'.
1. a home user who wants to print text documents and family photographs
2. business people who need to print in large quantities at high quality in an office
3. engineers who want to make detailed line drawings
4. professional typesetters in desktop publishing (to publish catalogues and magazines)
5. a company that wants to print carbon copies of bills and receipts
C. Find the terms which correspond to these definitions.
1 the container that holds the ink in an ink-jet printer
2 powdered ink used in laser printers
3 small needles that press on the inked ribbon to make the characters on paper
4 printer technology that produces text and pictures by hammering pins against a ribbon and
the paper
5 a language that tells a printer how to print a document
6 a peripheral which combines a printer, a fax machine and photocopying and scanning
capability into one device
Describe the characteristics of the printer that you have at home.
What is in the picture?
Tell to the class the features of each printer.
CRTs and LCDs
The screen on a computer is often known as the monitor, or VDU (Visual Display Unit).
Inside the computer, there is a video card which produces images and sends signals to the
When choosing a monitor, you have to take into account a few basics.
- Type of display – the choice is between a CRT or an LCD screen.
The Cathode Ray Tube of a monitor is similar to a traditional TV set. It has three electron
guns (one for each primary colour; red, green and blue) that strike the inside of the screen
which is coated with substances called phosphors, which glow and create colours. CRTs
are cheap, but they are heavy, can flicker and emit radiation.
A Liquid Crystal Display is made of flat plates with a liquid crystal solution between them.
The crystals block the light in different quantities to create the image. Active-matrix LCDs
use TFT (Thin Film Transistor) technology in which each pixel has its own transistor switch.
They offer better quality and take up less space, so they are replacing CRTs.
- Screen size – the viewing area is measured diagonally; in other words, a 17'' screen
measures 17 inches from top left corner to the bottom right.
- Resolution – the clarity of the image depends on the number of pixels (short picture
elements) contained on a display, horizontally and vertically. A typical resolution is 1024 x
768. The sharpness of images is affected by dot pitch, the distance between the pixels on
the screen, so a dot pitch of 0.28 mm or less will produce a sharp image.
- Brightness – the luminance of images is measured in cd/m² (candela per square meter).
- Colour depth – the number of colours a monitor can display. For example, a VGA monitor
produces 256 colours, enough for home users; a SuperVGA can produce up to 16.7 million
colours, so is ideal for photographic work and video games.
- Refresh rate – the number of times that the image is drawn each second. If a monitor has
a refresh rate of 75 Hz, it means that the screen is scanned 75 times per second. If the rate
is low, you will notice a flicker, which can cause eye fatigue.
A. Read the text on 'CRTs and LCDs' and then correct these false statements.
1. The images shown on a monitor are not generated by the video card.
2. All visible colours can be made from mixing the three primary colours of red, yellow and
3. Typical CRT-based displays occupy less space than LCD displays.
4. Active matrix LCDs do not use a technology called TFT.
5. The size of the screen is measured horizontally.
B. Match each term with the correct definition.
1 phosphors
2 LCD screen
3 pixel
4 dot pitch
5 refresh rate
a) the frequency at which a monitor renews its image, measured in Hz
b) a flat-panel display which works by emitting light through a special liquid
c) the space between a display's pixels
d) the smallest element in a displayed image
e) materials that emit light and produce colours when they are activated by an
electron beam
C. Complete the specifications of this monitor and read again 'CRTs and LCD's if
The new Paintview Xt­85 combines television and a computer _______________ 1) in one display.
Type of display
2) ................................
3) Display ................................
Dot pitch
4) ..................................
Cotrast ratio
5) .................................
Built­in TV tuner
Flat panel LCD
19 inches
1280 x 1024 pixels
0.294 mm
16.7 million colours
450 cd/m²
Two 3­watt speakers and a 5­watt subwoofer, headphone jack
The picture­in­picture function allows you to watch more than one program at the same time and lets you adjust the size of each window.
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