READING pages 18 and 19
Tony plans to write an article about computers.
This is some of the information he has collected.
Not so many years ago.
You hardly ever saw computers.
Now they are everywhere.
There may also be tiny hidden computers in your home that you are unaware of.
There may be one inside your TV set, telephone or washing machine.
So maybe you depend on computers more than you realize.
What kind of jobs can a computer do?
It is common knowledge that computers are super calculators.
They can calculate very fast and rarely give wrong answers.
They can also type, print and draw things like diagrams and graphs.
They can teach you and play games with you.
More importantly, they can operate railways (like the Underground) and fly aero planes and spaceships.
For these reasons, we often call them electronic brains.
Is a computer cleverer than I am?
The answer to this question is, for the time being, "No".
Your brain can understand the meaning of things better and create new ideas.
However, one day computers may be able to do most things that a human brain can do and do them better.
They may be better than doctors, judges and teachers at doing their jobs.
If this is true, it raises interesting questions.
What will happen to us if computers can do our jobs?
How will we spend our lives? Will we have nothing to do?
Computers may change our lives.
But will they make them better?
How do we give a computer instructions?
We give a computer instructions by putting a program into it.
The program is written by a human being, and it is essential that the human does make a mistake.
If we want a computer to do different jobs, we have to give it different programs.
Many of today"s computers have CD-ROM drives. A CD-ROM can hold over 300,000 pages of writing, and can also contain pictures and sound. Thus, for example, you can use your computer to read about a famous person in history such as John F Kennedy and you can see a photograph or video of him, and even listen to him speaking. Some people think that CD-ROMs will soon be more popular than books.
LISTENING Page 21
Filling in an order form
Listen to the recording, and complete the details of Mabel"s order on the form below.
The first one is done for you.
Use the words and pictures to help you.
After you have finished, work out the grand total.
A: Top office supplies, how may I help you?
B: I"d like to play the order please?
A: Right, may I have your company"s name, please?
B: Yes, it"s Hi-Lo Enterprises.
A: And may I have your name?
B: Yes, I"m Mabel Wang.
A: Mabel Wang. And do you have your customer number?
B: Yes, KY-73620
A: KY-73620,thank you. Now, what did you want to order?
B: I"ll give you the order reference number, shall I? The first is J-1505.That"s a box of ball-point pens.
A: What colour?
B: Black, we would like 3 boxes please?
A: 3 boxes. There, 38 yuan per box. So that the total of, 114 yuan.
B: Right, next some paper. The reference number is P-1961.
A: P-1961.That"s A4 paper, what colour, white?
B: Yes, white. We"d like 10 boxes please?
A: 10 boxes at 30 yuan each. That"s 3 hundred yuan. Right, anything else?
B: Yes, I"d like screen filter. It"s No.C-4091
A: C-4091, a screen filter. What size?
B: Er. Medium.
A: Medium. Just one?
B: Yes, that"s 480 yuan, right?
A: Let me check. Yes, 490 yuan, anything else?
B: Yes, some floppy disks. Reference No. D-2791.
A: D-2791,floppy disks. That"s a box of 10 floppies.
B: Yes, we"d like 5 boxes please. That"s 75 yuan each, I think
A: Yes, 75 yuan for each box,5 boxes, so the total is 375 yuan.
B: Right, I just want one more thing, I want a good office chair. The No. is C-4083.That"s the high-back chair.
A: A high-back chair, one. Do you want a black or white?
B: Black, please.
A: Black, right. And the price for that is 1,800 yuan.
B: Yes, that"s all.
A: Thank you very much. We"ll deliver those tomorrow morning.
B: Good, thank you, good-bye.
SPEAKING Page 27
A Talk time
Giving opinions, agreeing and disagreeing
A: I think beef tastes better than pork.
B: I agree.
A: In my opinion, Amy is a better cook than you are.
B:I don"t agree.
TONY: I think Shanghainese food is better than Sichuan food.
JOYCE: I don"t agree.
In my opinion, Sichuan food is better.
TONY: But Sichuan food is hotter.
JOYCE: I agree. That"s why I like it.
MORE PRACTICE Page 31
The History of the Internet
A research team at the United States Pentagon first developed the concept of linking computers together in the 1960s. They wanted to have a system that would enable universities, research departments and the military to share resources with each other. Computers at this time were as large as refrigerators and could not be transported easily. Another problem was that they were often complicated and not compatible with each other. The research team had to overcome these difficulties to create a network that could share computing power. Gradually, more and more scholars came online. Years later, businessmen began using the Internet, too. The number of people using it is increasing all the time and it is becoming more widely available across the world. In fact, somewhere in every continent in the world, it is possible to use the Internet. There is a wide range of services available on the Internet. This means that there are many different ways to communicate. The most popular way is undoubtedly electronic mail more commonly called e-mail. The second most popular is browsing on the World Wide Web (WWW). Briefly, the WWW is a very big series of connected pages containing various forms of multimedia. The third most popular way is real time text based communication between users such as IRC-Internet Relay Chat.