Your computer cannot function without an operating system. The operating system is the brain that makes the various hardware work together. Computers have operating systems, but other electronics have them as well. Cell phones, video game systems, and even TiVo have operating systems although they aren't as obvious as they are on a computer.
Many years ago, two enterprising young men realized that an operating system would make a computer more user friendly and run more smoothly. Bill Gates and his team of programmers at Microsoft developed the first real operating system with MS-DOS. But they weren't completely satisfied that this was the ultimate operating system. MS-DOS relied on commands that a user had to input, and many people weren't able to adapt easily to the system.
Microsoft worked to improve on the MS-DOS system to make it more user-friendly. They envisioned a point and click system that nearly anyone could use. As they worked tirelessly, they were eventually rewarded with an operating system they dubbed Windows. It was an immediate hit.
Over the years, Windows was improved upon adding more features that made using a computer possible for anyone. Their operating system was designed for IBM personal computers and remains one of the most popular operating systems in the world.
But IBM didn't have a corner on the personal computer market. Steve Jobs founded his company - Apple - and developed his own computer system called Macintosh. Along with the Mac system came its own operating system called Mac OS. In the early days, Mac computers couldn't run the Windows operating system which is why the development of a Mac operating system was necessary.
Just like Windows, the Mac operating system evolved over the years with various updates that made using it easier and easier. The most recent operating system for Mac is Mac OS X. It has made using a Mac computer easy for everyone.
You have many choices when picking an operating system for your computer. While it's true that most computers sold today come pre-loaded with the Windows operating system, that doesn't prevent you from choosing a different one that will meet your needs. Besides Windows, you also have the option of Linux as well as other Unix based programs.
The operating system makes using a personal computer an easy task. With point and click technology, even children find it easy to use the computer. Your operating system is an integral part of the computer, and without it, you would have trouble even getting online. While you may never have to consciously think about your operating system, know that it is there to help you use your computer and help it run more efficiently.