RAMs, ROMs, and Robots Critical Context - Essay

Jane Fitz-Randolph

Critical Context

(Survey of Young Adult Fiction)

RAMs, ROMs, and Robots, although somewhat dated in its information on the future of computers, is an important book for young readers. Too often, books about computers deal with one specific aspect, launch into details about applications, or use language that the young reader has difficulty understanding. In addition, many computer books omit information concerning the history of computer development.

Young people will have an interest in this book for three main reasons. First, while many of them are familiar with or even expert in using computers to help them calculate difficult problems or write papers and reports, most lack an appreciation for the history behind the development of modern computers, a basic understanding of how a computer processes information or carries out commands, and knowledge about solving simple command errors; James Jespersen and Jane Fitz-Randolph provide overviews of these areas. Second, after reading the book, young readers will be more familiar with why a computer does what it does and how better to utilize it as a tool.

A third reason that young people will want to read RAMs, ROMs, and Robots is that it will encourage them to discover future ways to use computers and robots. The authors give examples of ways in which technology is changing and how that change could affect computers in the future. Some of their examples from the mid-1980’s were already being applied a decade later.