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Encyclopedia > Buffer (computer science)

In computing, a buffer is a region of memory used to temporarily hold output or input data, comparable to buffers in telecommunication. The data can be output to or input from devices outside the computer or processes within a computer. Buffers can be implemented in either hardware or software, but the vast majority of buffers are implemented in software. Buffers are used when there is a difference between the rate at which data is received and the rate at which it can be processed, or in the case that these rates are variable, for example in a printer spooler. Originally, the word computing was synonymous with counting and calculating, and a science and technology that deals with the original sense of computing mathematical calculations. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... In telecommunication, a buffer is a routine or storage medium used in telecommunications to compensate for a difference in rate of flow of data, or time of occurrence of events, when transferring data from one device to another. ... A Lego RCX Computer is an example of an embedded computer used to control mechanical devices. ... In computing, a process is a running instance of a program, including all variables and other states. ... In computer science, spooling is an acronym for simultaneous peripheral operations on-line (although this is thought by some to be a backronym). ...

Since computers operate in binary, at the lowest level, a single byte in memory could be considered a buffer for (usually) 8 bits, and even a Processor register can be considered a buffer for 16 or 32 bits. In practice however, a buffer is thought of as being a contiguous area of memory of a certain length, but normally greater than one. A byte is commonly used as a unit of storage measurement in computers, regardless of the type of data being stored. ... A bit (binary digit) refers to a digit in the binary numeral system, which consists of base 2 digits (ie. ... In computer architecture, a processor register is a small amount of very fast computer memory used to speed the execution of computer programs by providing quick access to commonly used values—typically, the values being in the midst of a calculation at a given point in time. ...

Logical records are often grouped into fixed length blocks (the "physical record"), to improve the efficiency of hard drives. The memory allocated for these were often known as "file buffers" and provided a measure of asynchronous processing between cpu and hardware channel by using two or more in a "flip-flop" fashion. Typical hard drives of the mid-1990s. ... Asynchrony is the state of not being synchronized. ... CPU can stand for: in computing: Central processing unit in journalism: Commonwealth Press Union in law enforcement: Crime prevention unit in software: Critical patch update, a type of software patch distributed by Oracle Corporation in Macleans College is often known as Ash Lim. ...

As the first buffer fills with output records, the operating system initiates an I/O operation on the first buffer and immediately switches to an empty buffer to receive the next set of (logical) records before the first buffer has completed its physical write. A similar method applies to input processing and the combined effect of large physical record sizes and buffering improved overall performance dramatically by compensating for the faster CPU speed relative to I/O hardware devices. This article is about the computer interface. ...

The difference between buffers and cache: Look up cache in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

Buffers are allocated by various processes to use as input queues, etc. Most of the time, buffers are some processes' output, and they are file buffers. A simplistic explanation of buffers is that they allow processes to temporarily store input in memory until the process can deal with it.

Cache is typically frequently requested disk I/O. If multiple processes are accessing the same files, much of those files will be cached to improve performance (RAM being so much faster than hard drives), it's disk cache. Look up cache in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

See also

[[Category:Computer memory]] In telecommunication, a buffer is a routine or storage medium used in telecommunications to compensate for a difference in rate of flow of data, or time of occurrence of events, when transferring data from one device to another. ... In computer security and programming, a buffer overflow, or buffer overrun, is a programming error which may result in a memory access exception and program termination, or in the event of the user being malicious, a breach of system security. ... In computing, buffer underrun is a state occurring when a buffer used to communicate between two devices or processes is fed with data at a lower speed than the data is being read from it. ... A circular buffer is a method of using memory within a computer program. ... Look up cache in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Streaming media is media that is consumed (heard or viewed) (mostly in the form of clips) while it is being delivered. ... The framebuffer is a part of RAM in a computer allocated to hold the graphics information for one frame or picture. ... In computer graphics, double buffering (sometimes called ping-pong buffering) is a technique used to reduce or remove visible artifacts from the drawing process. ... In computer graphics, triple buffering is a variant on double buffering, a technique for drawing graphics that show no (or less) flicker, shearing, and tearing artifacts. ... Z-buffering is a term in computer graphics which refers to management of image depth coordinates in 3-d graphics, mainly used in hardware, more seldom in software. ... Stencil buffer is an extra buffer in addition to the color buffer and depth buffer found in OpenGL and Direct3D. The buffer is per pixel, and works on integer values. ...

  Results from FactBites:
Encyclopedia4U - Computer bug - Encyclopedia Article (1035 words)
A computer bug is a fault in a computer program which prevents it from working correctly.
She traced an error in the Mark II to a moth trapped in a relay, coining the term bug.
Maurice Wilkes, an early computing pioneer, describes his realization in the late 1940s that much of the rest of his life would be spent finding mistakes in his own programs.
Computer mouse - definition of Computer mouse in Encyclopedia (3121 words)
A mouse is a handheld pointing device for computers, involving a small object fitted with one or more buttons and shaped to sit naturally under the hand.
This variant of the mouse resembled an inverted trackball, and was the predominant form used with personal computers throughout the 1980s and 1990s.
Modern computer mice took form at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) under the inspiration of Professor Jean-Daniel Nicoud and the hands of engineer and watchmaker André Guignard.
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