Input Devices vs. Output Devices: What's the Difference?

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Primary Difference

Using computer may seem an easy task because of the tools that are attacked with the device and helps in managing the system properly. But when it comes to knowing about them and how they work, such devices are categorized as input and output devices. Both of them have functions different yet similar to each other and hence, distinguished. Devices that are used to get input signals from the user are known as input ones whereas the devices that are used to display the output signals to the user are the output ones.

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Comparison Chart

Input Devices Output Devices
Definition Devices that are used to get input signals from the user.Devices that are used to display the output signals to the user.
Working Helps the computer get the data from the user and enters it in the computing system.Helps the computer to display the data and results after the process completes.
Carrier Takes the data from the user and then sends it to the processor for further steps.Takes the data from the processor after the actions complete and then sends it back to the user.
ExamplesKeyboard, Image Scanner, Microphone, Pointing device, Graphics tablet, Joystick.Monitor, Printers of all kinds, Plotters, Projector, LCD Projection Panels, Computer Output Microfilm, Speakers.

Definition of Input Devices

An input device in simple words is one that helps the computer get the data from the user and enters it in the computing system. It is hardware that takes the data from the fingers of the user and then processes the information through the keys into the system. Several ways to classify these input devices exist but they are done so in the following manner. The first thing to keep in mind with such devices is that they have modality in input, that means a mechanical motion or an audio input goes in them. Another thing to keep in mind is that does the data flow in a discrete manner or not. This action gets known with the help of pressing the keys. Also, whether the input is floating in a continuous manner or not. This work gets known through the position of a mouse. The last factor to know is if the number of degree of freedom for a system involved are known. This action becomes either a two-dimensional mouse or a three-dimensional one. The most appropriate tools that become regarded as input devices are a mouse, a keyboard, a microphone, software, mic among others. A keyboard has all the keys with numbers, symbols, and alphabets that help in entering the data, according to the language that the person using this computer understands. A mouse is a device to point at various systems and then click them to open and access the files. Hence, the purpose of these devices becomes known.

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Definition of Output devices

An output device is entirely opposite to an input device, and it does not take rocket science to understand the purpose of such devices. These play a significant role in the information and other data becoming visible to the user. If there is a calculation going on within the system through the keyboard, then the results after all the processes get displayed on the monitor. Similarly, whenever we play a song from the computer by clicking on the file, the sound comes out through the speakers. These devices have all variable purposes and include display projection, reproduction, among others. The best example, in this case, is that of a printer. Whenever we read a file on the computer and need to get in the physical form, a printer makes life easier by providing appropriate tools that make that soft copy into a hard copy. Another purpose for these output devices become that they get used for sending data from one computer to the other device or the user. Some of the primary examples of output devices will include monitors, projectors, speakers, headphones and printers. As explained earlier, the output takes the form of the requirement. It is in the shape of the image whenever we want to see a picture; it is text-based when the user intends to read a document. It is sound when the interaction between two people is required. With the development taking place, now many devices have the functions of acting as an input and output device at the same time.

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Differences in a Nutshell

  1. An input device in simple words is one that helps the computer get the data from the user and enters it in the computing system. An output device in simple words is the one that helps the computer to display the data and results after the process completes.
  2. The main type of input devices includes Keyboard, Image Scanner, Microphone. Pointing device. Graphics tablet. Joystick. Light pen. Mouse. Optical. Pointing stick. Touchpad. Touchscreen. Trackball. Webcam. Softcam and Refreshable braille display.
  3. The main type of output devices includes Monitor. (LED, LCD, CRT, etc.), Printers of all kinds, Plotters, Projector, LCD Projection Panels, Computer Output Microfilm (COM), Speaker and Head Phone.
  4. An input device takes the data from the user and then sends it to the processor for further steps, whereas an output device takes the data from the processor after the actions complete and then sends it back to the user.
  5. Input devices are more complicated as they have complex coding the ensures that the user can interact with the computer correctly whereas the output devices are simpler for the user since they only see the results and do not have to learn the processes.

Comparison Video

Conclusion

All in all, the article has explained the terms and the differences and made it easier for them to be understood. That is done so with the help of proper information provided to the input and output devices that are significantly important to know about if someone wants to get the best use.

    1. Usman Magaji Kankia October 28, 2018

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