Random Access Memory Edit

by Sebastian

The Random Access Memory (RAM) is a hardware device located on the Motherboard that works as the “short-term memory” of the computer. It allows information to be accessed in any order as opposed to the sequential retrieval of the Hard Disk Drive (HDD) or the Optical Drive . This makes retrieving formation much easier and quicker.


1/2 RAM pun

This type of memory (short term) is volatile meaning it requires the power of the computer to be accessed. As soon as the computer is turned off all the information stored on the RAM is lost. Since this is the case, content on the RAM must be saved on a non-volatile storage unit. This is how the RAM and HDD interact; information on the RAM can be stored on the HDD, and in cases where the RAM fills up, the first accessed program, file, or piece of information, is transferred to the HDD.

As soon as the computer boots or reboots the RAM takes in information from programs and files. As it fills, the RAM takes in new information slower but allows the CPU to process information and instructions faster.

The RAM chip that goes on the motherboard (link) comes in two different forms: Dynamic Random Access Memory (DRAM) and Static Random Access Memory (SRAM). The static is more complex in structure and therefore more expensive to make and buy. It also is faster than the DRAM because it

2/2 RAM pun

doesn't have to refresh after each thing it accesses. The reason refreshing slows down the process is because the DRAM had to stop after each thing it accesses, to refresh. It does this more than 100 times per second which is why the SRAM has an access time of around 10 nanoseconds while the DRAM’s is about 60.

  A brief history of the RAM begins in 1947 with the Williams tube. It used the face of the Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) to display data. Next up is what is called magnetic-core memory which was credited to a man named Frederick Viehe. Magnetic-core memory also could be accessed individually but still wasn't the same technology as what we are familiar today. The RAM as we know it today was invented in 1968 by Robert Dennard.

The RAM can be attached to the motherboard several ways: it can either be put on individually or, more commonly, in rows of chips via a circuit board called "stick(s)". From there they are attached to a connector on the motherboard. The more sticks, the more memory.


RAM "Sticks"


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