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• (ALU Arithmetic/logic unit): Part of the CPU where all calculations and comparisons take place.
• Bit: In binary, a bit represents a zero or one.
• Byte: Another word for character; generally represented by 8 bits.
• Cache memory: High-speed random access memory that is used to increase the speed of the data-processing cycle.
• Central processing unit (CPU): Also known as the microprocessor; the brains of the computer.
• Computer system: Input, output, and processing devices grouped together.
• Control unit: That part of the CPU that coordinates all CPU activities
• Controller: Device that controls the transfer of data from the computer to a peripheral device and vice versa.
• Execution cycle (E-cycle): Amount of time it takes the central processing unit to execute an instruction and store the results in RAM.
• Expansion slot: Openings on the motherboard where an expansion board, also called an adapter card, can be inserted.
• FireWire: Type of external bus that supports data transfer rates up to 400 Mbps and can connect up to 63 external devices.
• Instruction cycle (I-cycle): Amount of time it takes the central processing unit to retrieve an instruction and complete the command.
• Machine cycle: Made up of the instruction cycle and the execution cycle.
• Memory: Also called random access memory or RAM, it is like short-term memory. It stores data while the computer is running. When the computer is turned off or if there is a loss of power, any data in the main memory disappears. The computer can read from and wri