Competitive Exams: Glossary of Computer Science

  • Address: Number given to a memory location for identification
  • ALU: Arithmetic logical unit
  • Application: A procedure to be run on a computer
  • Applications Package: A standard set of programs to run a procedure
  • Arithmetic Unit: Part of the GPU where arithmetic is carried out (also called ALU)
  • Assembler: Program to translate a low-level language into machine language
  • Batch: A set of transactions awaiting processing, hence
  • Batch Processing: Processing a batch of transactions
  • BCD: Binary coded decimal, a method of representing numeric data
  • Bit: Binary digit, 0 or 1 on the binary scale
  • Bureau: Organization hiring out computer time
  • Byte: Group of eight bits
  • Central Processing Unit: The memory, ALU and control unit
  • Check Digit: Additional digit added to a code to check its accuracy
  • Code: Unique identifier of an item, also a program instruction
  • Coding: Writing program instructions
  • Collating: Gathering together transactions relating to the same record
  • Compiler: Program to translate a high-level language into machine language
  • Control Unit: Part of CPU, used to control the activities of the computer
  • CPU: Central Processing Unit
  • Data Control: Task of ensuring that all data is properly processed
  • Data Preparation: Converting data to machine-readable form
  • Desk Check: Method of testing program logic
  • Direct Access: Capability of accessing and record in a file without accessing the complete file
  • Disc: Direct Access Storage Device
  • Diskette: Direct Access Storage Device
  • Documentation: Flowcharts, diagrams and narrative explaining a program
  • Dry Run: Similar to desk check
  • File: A series of records
  • File Storage Device: A means of storing files
  • Floppy: Diskette
  • Flowchart: A method of expressing logic
  • GIGO: Garbage in, garbage out are the result of errors input data
  • Hardware: The machinery of the computer, CPU and peripherals
  • High-Level Language: Language in which thebprocedures to be carried out are expressed in terms familiar to the user, e. g. English, or mathematical formulae
  • Hit Rate: The ratio of transactions to records
  • Information Retrieval: Obtaining information from files
  • Input: Data to be used for processing, hence
  • Input Device: Device to transfer such data to the CPU
  • Instruction: Program coding which causes the computer to take some action
  • Interpreter: Program to translate a high-level language into machine language used when the program is translated each time it is run
  • IAS: Instant access store, alternative name for memory
  • Job Assembly: Task of putting together all items required by the operators to run a job
  • Job Control Language: Programming language used to instruct the operating system
  • Jump: Capability of altering the sequence of processing depending on the result of a test
  • Key: Part of a record used to identify the record e. g. For sorting
  • Language: Set of instructions available to the programmer for writing a program
  • Logic Unit: Part of the CPU where logical operations are carried out
  • Low-Level Language: Programming language using computer functions to specify the logic of a procedure (e. g. High-level language)
  • Machine Language: Program instructions in binary form as required by the computer
  • Mainframe: Largest type of computer configuration
  • Master File: A set of records permanently maintained for processing e. g. Employee file
  • Memory: Pail of the CPU used for storing data and programs
  • Microcomputer: Very small computer with limited facilities
  • Microsecond: One millionth of a second
  • Millisecond: One thousandth of a second
  • Minicomputer: Computer of intermediate size between a microcomputer and a mainframe
  • Nanosecond: One thousand millionth of a second
  • Operating System: Program, usually provided by the manufacturer, for making the computer work
  • Output: Results obtained from processing, hence
  • Output Device: Peripheral unit capable of writing or displaying output
  • Package: See applications package
  • Parity: Odd parity or even parity, methods of checking the accuracy of transfer of data between locations in the computer configuration
  • Peripheral: Device attached to the CPU but not part of it
  • Processing Cycle: The cycle of input, process, output, common to most procedures
  • Program: Set of instructions to the computer
  • Punching: Turning data into a machine-readable form
  • Record: Collections of an item e. g. An item of stock
  • Software: The complete range of programs available for a computer
  • Sorting: Using a key to place records in ascending or descending order
  • Storage Medium: Means of storing data e. g. Magnetic tapes and discs
  • Structured Programming: Method of expressing the logical relationship of program modules
  • Syntax: Permitted words, symbols and constructions in a programming language
  • Systems Analysis: A study of the way in which a procedure is carried out:
  • Systems Specification: Written report of the analysis of system or procedure
  • Telecommunications: Passing data to a computer over telephone (or similar) lines
  • Terminal: For communicating/with a computer
  • Test Data: A set of data provided to test the correct working of a system or program
  • Transaction: Data relating to an occurrence which causes the master file to be merited e. g. Hours worked this week, hence
  • Transaction Processing: Altering the master file as the occurrence happens of each processing
  • Updating: Process of amending data in the master file by a transaction
  • Utility: Program to perform processing functions common to most programs
  • Validation: Process of ensuring that all feasible steps are taken to check the accuracy of input data
  • VDU: Visual Display Unit, peripheral for displaying output and other data
  • Verifying: Processing of checking data when it has been punched