Innovative Web Design and Application Development Glossary of Terms

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Random Access Memory
RAM is a type of computer storage whose contents can be accessed in any order. This is in contrast to sequential memory devices such as magnetic tapes, discs and drums, in which the mechanical movement of the storage medium forces the computer to access data in a fixed order. It is usually implied that RAM can be both written to and read from, in contrast to read-only memory or ROM.

Computers use RAM to hold the program code and data during execution. In the first electronic computers, RAM was built from vacuum tubes, and later magnetic cores. The term "core" is still used by some programmers to describe the RAM at the heart of a computer.

Many types of RAM are volatile, which means that unlike some other forms of computer storage such as disk storage and tape storage, they lose their data when the computer is powered down.

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