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Computer Vocabulary

Here are twenty terms often used when talking about computers.

1 application n. a program dedicated to a specific task [eg: word processing, graphics etc]
2 bit n. binary digit, the basic binary unit for storing data, either 0 or 1 - see byte
3 buffer n. an area in memory used for temporary storage [eg: rapid input from keyboard]
4 byte n. 8 bits - kilobyte (approx. 1,000 bytes), megabyte (1 million), gigabyte (1 billion)
5 Email n. electronic mail; system of sending messages through the internet; e-mail
6 floppy disk n. small, removable magnetic disc for (permanent) storing of data; diskette
7 hard disk n. fixed, magnetic disc inside a PC for (permanent) storing of data
8 hardware n. the mechanical and electronic parts of a computer, not the software
9 input n. data entered into a computer (by keyboard, floppy disk etc) - also v.
10 keyboard n. the alphanumeric keys or buttons used to input data [QWERTY = 1st 6 keys]
11 memory n. part of a computer for (temporary) storing of data - see ram
12 modem n. device that converts data to a form that can be transmitted by telephone etc
13 operating system n. software that communicates with hardware, enabling applications to run
14 output n. data delivered by a computer (by printer, screen etc) - also v.
15 peripheral n. equipment linked to a computer [eg: printer, scanner, modem, mouse etc]
16 program n. software that contains coded instructions to control a computer - also v.
17 RAM abbr. random access memory [it goes away when one switches off]
18 screen n. the surface area of the visual display unit on which the image is formed
19 software n. the programs, routines etc for a computer, not the hardware
20 WYSIWYG abbr. What You See Is What You Get [data prints out exactly as on the screen]