Fundamentals of Computers

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Terms in this set (...)

Dual In-line Package Switch (DIP)
Physical on/off switch on a computer component.
Read-Only Memory (ROM)
A chip on the motherboard that holds instructions for start up.
Central Processing Unit (CPU)
The chip that runs the basic operations of the computer.
Chip
An integrated circuit etched onto semi-conductive material.
Motherboard
The primary circuit board on a computer that houses the power supply and CPU.
Random-Access Memory (RAM)
The chip that stores data that can be accessed from anywhere in the same time interval.
Binary Numbers
A base two numerical system
Form Factor
The shape and layout of a computer component
Processor
A chip whose purpose is to handle inputs and outputs
Bus
A network of circuitry on a chip that carries all the elements needed to function properly, such as power, data and control signals
North Bridge
The faster side of the chipset which houses the controllers for the basic functions of the computer, such as graphics and memory
South Bridge
The slower side of the chipset which houses nonessential functions such as I/O devices
CMOS RAM
Complementary metal-oxide semiconductor RAM chip that stores information when the computer is turned off
Chipset
Controls the flow of data, signals and instructions over buses on the motherboard as well as managing data transfers
Power Supply
An ACDC transfer from the wall socket to computer power supply
Slots
Built in upgrades to the motherboard which allows you to insert cards to improve the functionality of your computer
Ports
A mechanism that allows equipment to be connected to the motherboard
Sockets
Built in spaces which allow components to be installed directly onto the motherboard
Bit
Short for binary digit and has a value of either 1 or 0
Byte
A series of 8 bits
Cache
A small amount of memory stored on the CPU for easy access
Data
The binary digits that represent individual pieces of information
Memory
Format for storage of digital data
Dynamic Random-Access Memory (DRAM)
is a slow, common type of RAM and is used in PCs
Video Random-Access Memory (VRAM)
is a form of DRAM that is designed to work with graphics-heavy systems
Rambus In-Line Memory Modules (RIMM)
is the newest standard card that can be installed onto the motherboard
Static Random-Access Memory (SRAM)
is used to extend the capabilities of cached memory of the CPU
Volatile Storage
is lost when power is off
Nonvolatile Storage
remains even when power is off
Memory Controller
is a part of the CPU or a separate chip that manages data as it flows in and out of the CPU, RAM, cache, virtual storage, hard drive etc
Cache
A type of memory stored on the CPU for easy access
Bluetooth
A wireless technology that uses radio waves to transmit data across short distances
Extended Integrated Drive Electronics (EIDE)
Interface for computer devices that has its own control function, abbrv. IDE
Electrostatic Discharge (ESD)
The instantaneous flow of electricity between two objects upon contact caused by a build up of static electricity
Input
Devices that take information from the computer user and deliver it to the processor
Output
Devices that take information from the processor and deliver it to the computer user
Peripheral
A device that is not central to the operations of the computer
Pixel
the smallest element of a picture on a computer display
Small Computer System Interface (SCSI)
Standard that addresses the physical connection and transfer speed between a computer and a peripheral device
Storage
Devices such as hard drives that house data
Master Drive
is the primary disk drive that boots the system. IDE/ATA devices can be designated as either master or slave, which at least one of each.
Ports
A mechanism that allows equipment to be connected to the motherboard
Buses
Carries the
Graphical User Interface
Images displayed on the screen that enables the user to interact with the computer
Interrupts
Breaks in the action of a program using the operating system
Kernel
The core program of a computer operating system and is responsible for handling the execution of programs, interrupts, modes, memory, multitasking, access and device drivers
Memory
Format for storage of digital data
Operating System (OS)
A program that manages which program gets to use the CPU and for how long
Hardware
The physical part of the computer that does the work
Software
The part of the computer that provides the hardware with instructions as to how to do its work