Glossary 177
components are fabricated for use in computer, audio, and
video equipment.
IDE — integrated device electronics — An interface for
mass storage devices in which the controller is integrated
into the hard drive or CD drive.
IEEE 1394 — Institute of Electrical and Electronics
Engineers, Inc. — A high-performance serial bus used to
connect IEEE 1394-compatible devices, such as digital
cameras and DVD players, to the computer.
infrared sensor — A port that allows you to transfer data
between the computer and infrared-compatible devices
without using a cable connection.
integrated — Usually refers to components that are
physically located on the computer’s system board. Also
referred to as built-in.
I/O — input/output — An operation or device that enters
and extracts data from your computer. Keyboards and
printers are I/O devices.
I/O address — An address in RAM that is associated with
a specific device (such as a serial connector, parallel
connector, or expansion slot) and allows the processor to
communicate with that device.
IrDA — Infrared Data Association — The organization
that creates international standards for infrared
IRQ — interrupt request — An electronic pathway
assigned to a specific device so that the device can
communicate with the processor. Each device connection
must be assigned an IRQ. Although two devices can share
the same IRQ assignment, you cannot operate both
devices simultaneously.
ISP — Internet service provider — A company that allows
you to access its host server to connect directly to the
Internet, send and receive e-mail, and access websites.
The ISP typically provides you with a software package,
user name, and access phone numbers for a fee.
Kb — kilobit — A unit of data that equals 1024 bits. A
measurement of the capacity of memory integrated
KB — kilobyte — A unit of data that equals 1024 bytes
but is often referred to as 1000 bytes.
key combination — A command requiring you to press
multiple keys at the same time.
kHz — kilohertz — A measurement of frequency that
equals 1000 Hz.
LAN — local area network — A computer network
covering a small area. A LAN usually is confined to a
building or a few nearby buildings. A LAN can be
connected to another LAN over any distance through
telephone lines and radio waves to form a wide area
network (WAN).
LCD — liquid crystal display — The technology used by
portable computer and flat-panel displays.
LED — light-emitting diode — An electronic component
that emits light to indicate the status of the computer.
local bus — A data bus that provides a fast throughput for
devices to the processor.
LPT — line print terminal — The designation for a
parallel connection to a printer or other parallel device.
Mb — megabit — A measurement of memory chip
capacity that equals 1024 Kb.
Mbps — megabits per second — One million bits per
second. This measurement is typically used for
transmission speeds for networks and modems.
MB — megabyte — A measurement of data storage that
equals 1,048,576 bytes. 1MB equals 1024 KB. When used
to refer to hard drive storage, the term is often rounded to
1,000,000 bytes.
MB/sec — megabytes per second — One million bytes
per second. This measurement is typically used for data
transfer ratings.
media bay — A bay that supports devices such as optical
drives, a second battery, or a Dell TravelLite™ module. Page 177 Monday, February 6, 2006 2:24 PM