Computer jargon

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Computer jargon means words to do with computers and surrounding topics. Knowing what these words mean can help people know more about computers. Most people use these words to discuss computer ideas, but some people use these words to impress others (also known as buzzwords).

Some examples of jargon are:

  • Disk - a place to store data.
  • Data - information stored on a computer. The amount of data that is stored on a disk is measured with the following terms:
    • Bit - the smallest data unit, can either be a "0" or a "1."
    • Nybble - there are 4 bits in a Nybble.
    • Byte - there are 8 bits in a byte. One byte is enough to hold one single letter or number of text.
    • Kilobyte - there are 1024 Bytes in a Kilobyte.
    • Megabyte - there are 1024 Kilobytes in a Megabyte.
    • Gigabyte - there are 1024 Megabytes in a Gigabyte.
    • Terabyte - there are 1024 Gigabytes in a Terabyte.
    • Petabyte - there are 1024 Terabytes in a Petabyte.
    • Note that some people and some companies use a different version of these numbers, replacing 1024 with 1000 in each of the above numbers.
  • Upload - to put data on somewhere. For example, on the internet or a website, "I uploaded my pictures to Facebook."
  • Download - to copy data from somewhere. For example, "I downloaded a song from iTunes."
  • Load - to get data from, or put it on, a disk.
  • Save - to put data on a disk.
  • RAM - random access memory.
  • ROM - read only memory. This is memory that does not get changed.
  • Hardware - the solid parts of a computer, like monitors, fans, CPU, etc.
  • CPU - central processing unit, another name for processor.
  • GHz - gigahertz. Used to describe the speed of a processor. Some processors are capable of doing more than one thing at once, as they have multiple "cores", so a bigger number is not necessarily better. The bigger the GHz number, the faster it runs and the more energy it uses.
  • USB - universal serial bus, a method used to plug computer tools into a machine.
  • Email - electronic mail.
  • WWW - World Wide Web, part of the Internet.
  • Broadband - a fast internet connection.
  • WiFi - wireless fidelity. A way to connect to a network wirelessly.
  • Plug & Play - a function from the OS that auto-recognizes any change to the hardware of the computer.
  • OS - operating system. The main program that controls all the computer functions, it calls other programs.
  • Program - set of data that tells the processor what to do and call for in the rest of PC.
  • Software - another name for program.
  • Installation - the way a software sets the place for itself in a computer.
  • Virus - bad software made to mess up a computer or destroy data; nothing good comes from it.
  • Hacker - people who search flaws in the way computers work. They can use their knowledge for evil, too.