Data Dictionary - C


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  • CMI
  • Command Language
  • Composite Video Display
  • Compressor
  • Computer Typesetting
  • Concurrent
  • Configuration
  • CPU Cycle
  • CRC
  • Cylinder

Acronym for computer-managed instruction, an umbrella term referring to any type of teaching that uses computers as educational tools.

Command Language
The set of keywords and expressions that are accepted as valid by the command interpreter.

Composite Video Display
A display that receives all encoded video information (including color, horizontal synchronization, and vertical synchronization) in one signal. A composite video signal under NTSC (National Television System Committee) standards is generally required for television sets and video tape recorders.

A device that limits some aspect, such as volume, of a transmitted signal in order to increase efficiency.

Computer Typesetting
A general term used to describe typesetting operations that are partially or totally controlled by computers. Partial control could involve the transmittal of text directly from the source to the typesetter, without a pasteup stage. Full computerization would include the digitization of all graphics, which would then also be transmitted directly to the typesetter and regenerated without pasteup.

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A term applied to a computer operation in which two or more processes (programs) have access to the microprocessor’s time and are therefore carried out more or less at the same time. Because a microprocessor can work with much smaller units of time than people can perceive, concurrent processes appear to be occurring simultaneously but in reality are not.

In reference to a single microcomputer, the sum of a system’s internal and external components, including memory, disk drives, keyboard, video, and (generally) less critical add-on hardware such as a mouse, modem, or printer. The configuration of a computer system affects the way it works and the way it is used. Software (the operating system and various device drivers), the user’s choices established through configuration files such as the AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS files on IBM PCs and compatibles, and sometimes hardware (switches and jumpers) are needed to “configure the configuration” to work correctly. Although system configuration can be changed, as by adding more memory or disk capacity, the basic structure of the system- its architecture- remains the same. In relation to networks, the entire interconnected set of hardware, or the way in which a network is laid out – the manner in which elements are connected.

CPU Cycle
Also called a clock tick. The smallest unit of time recognized by the central processing unit (CPU) – typically a few hundred-millionths of a second. The term is also used for the time required for the CPU to perform the simplest instruction, such as fetching the contents of a register or performing a NOP (no-op, an instruction that does nothing).

Stands for cyclic redundancy check. Similar to ECC, however does not provide self-correction. Simply used to verify whether the data transmitted is good or corrupted.

A group of tracks within the same radius in a disk is called a cylinder.

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