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CPU vs. RAM: Understanding the Differences

Understanding the difference between CPU and RAM can help you build or buy a computer that is futureproofed and perfectly suited to your needs. In this post, we pop the hood on your computer to examine what the CPU and RAM are, their roles, and how they can influence your computer’s performance.

CPU

What it is: A semiconductor processor Primary Use: Execution of the calculations and operations dictated by a computer program Initial Release: September 12, 1958 Influential Developers: Robert Noyce, Jack Kilby, Gordon Moore, Intel

RAM

What it is: Memory chip Primary Use: Storage of temporary system files Initial Release: 1970 Influential Developers: Freddie Williams and Tom Kilburn, Frederick Viehe, Fairchild Semiconductor, Intel

Similarities and Differences

Similarities: Both CPU and RAM use semiconductor technology, RAM and CPU consist of integrated circuits Differences: The CPU and RAM occupy distinct positions on the motherboard, RAM is a memory chip, and the CPU is a microprocessor.

CPU vs. RAM: Must-Know Facts

– CPU stands for the central processing unit. – RAM stands for random access memory. – CPU and RAM are semiconductors that use integrated circuits to store and move data.

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