If you were to open up a computer, you'd see a few printed circuit boards
with lots of microchips and electrical paths or busses. These boards, or
cards, along with things like the power supply box, make up a computer.
Some of the cards are RAM, or Random Acess
Memory, cards. This is the memory that the computer uses while it is
executing programs. The information stored on the
ROM, or Read-Only Memory, chips is permanent
and is stored when it's manufactured. The printed curcuit board that
connects all of the parts of the computer together is called the
motherboard. The motherboard contains
the Central Processing Unit, or CPU, as well
as a separate chip for the system clock. The
CPU could be considered the 'brain' of the computer. It sends electrical
signals to the various parts of the computer, controlling what goes on. Other
types of cards include video cards and sound cards, which deal with displaying
things on a monitor and playing sounds or music.