Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010 | technology
The word digit is derived from the Latin word digitus meaning a finger. We use our fingers for many things. As a teacher, you have seen how children use their fingers as a calculating aid. It should therefore not be too difficult to see the connection between fingers – digits – and numbers and understand why we use the word digit to refer to numbers; for example, we talk about the digits on the dialling pad of a telephone.
In electronic technology, only two digits are used: a zero (0) and a one (1). All data is coded in strings of these two digits. So the word digital takes on an even more specific meaning in this information age: it describes all electronic media that stores and processes data coded as zeros and ones.
A digital tool is an electronic device that manipulates digital data. It has the ability to code information into digital format, stores is, works with it, and then decodes the result in understandable format.
Digital systems are highly effective, in spite of the fact that data is represented in the most elementary form (zeros and ones). This simplified representation allows for two things:
- data can be processed at great speed
- great volumes of data can be stored in a small space.
Examples of digital tools are:
- DVD players
- digital cameras.
The term digital tool is also applied to software products such as a word processor, spreadsheet, and educational programs.
Digitization forms the basis of most of the technologies available to a teacher in the classroom. Don’t be intimidated by the seeming complex nature of these tools. Remember, at the very heart of them they can only read zeros and ones.
You don’t have to understand the underlying technology and how these machines manage to manipulates data – all you need to do is learn about the miracles that digital tools can do in your classroom.
|Doctors use digits to do digital anal examinations; learners use their’s to count; computers use digits to manipulate data.|
4 Comments to What does “digital” mean?
- Education has been in a downward spiral for some time ... has it now gone into free fall? Tweeted 2 days ago
- Whose responsibility is it to train teachers to use classroom technology? wp.me/p23NXx-6H Tweeted 2 days ago
- @markcarolissen Latitude allows for expanding the mind and to develop workable solutions ... I applaud you for using the opportunity. Tweeted 3 days ago
- @neiltyson @RichardDawkins Fortunately ample data is available in the physical world around us to support belief in creation and a creator. Tweeted 3 days ago
- Moving from a no-technology classroom to one that is rich in technology is not an easy journey ... but it's possible. Tweeted 3 days ago
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