Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PC

pcHead   Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PCHave you decided to get rid of that old paperweight and buy yourself a new computer? Good for you but before you go running out to buy the latest and greatest machine, there are some basic computer terms you should know. We will run through each of these terms for you and what they mean.

The terminology used below is the same for PCs and Macs and for desktops and laptops. If you have any doubts about the machine you are buying ““ don’t buy it! Go and do some research online to see if you can do better. We actually have a couple of desktop and laptop recommendations, check then out if you’re in doubt.

When you are looking to buy a computer you will hear basic computer terms like the following:

The Processor

pc1   Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PCThis is the brain of your computer. It can also be referred to as the CPU. Processors come in many different varieties. Processor speed is measured in gigahertz or GHZ. The larger the number of GHZ the faster the computer.

I am now using a 3.2 GHZ Pentium Dual Core. Processors can also have dual or quad cores. This is essentially two or four processors in one respectively. The more cores the better but they will also be more expensive. We will also see terms like Core Duo, Core 2 Duo, i3, i5, and i7. It is important to know the differences between these options.

The Core Duo consists of two cores on one die but the Core 2 Duo is a more modern processor that is found in a lot of new PCs. the Core 2 Duo has two dies. Then the i3 processor is a recent release by Intel for new low end machines. Then the i5 and i7 are used with quad core processors and higher end machines. The i7 is the top of this line and obviously the most expensive.

There are different brands of processors like Intel or AMD and different levels of processors like the Pentium 4 or the Atom. The Atom processor is a much slower processor used in netbooks. Also when looking for a system you will see terms like front side bus . This is not a big yellow bus but it is the speed that data can flow from the processor to the motherboard. The higher the FSB the faster the processor can communicate with your machine. Something in the area of 266 MHz-333 MHz is fine and some faster processors sport up to 400 MHz FSB.

The RAM

pc2   Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PCThe RAM or memory is what your computer uses to store information while you are using the computer. This can also be referred to as Random Access Memory. I personally would not buy a computer with less than 2 GB of RAM. Your RAM Bus speed will need to be identical to your FSB speed as to not create bottlenecks. In a pre-built system this is not something you need to worry about but if you are building your own system then you will want to get memory that matches the FSB speed divided by the number of cores that you have. For example if your system has a total FSB of 1600 and you have 4 cores (quad) then your RAM Bus speed should be 400 MHz.

Optical Drive

pc3   Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PCThe optical drive in your computer should be able to read and write CDs and DVDs. If you have not purchased a computer in a while some of the newer options might seem strange to you. You can have any one of these or a combination of these formats: DVD-R, DVD+R, DVD-+R, DVD-/+RW, DVD-RAM, Blu-ray, HD-DVD. A CD holds 700 MB. A CD-R can read and write to a CD. A CDRW can read write and rewrite to a CD.

If you are getting a DVD burner you should try and get a drive that writes in all formats such as +R or -R. They will all play in your computer but some other hardware might require one of these formats. A DVD can hold About 4 GB of data. A DVD burner that allows you to burn a DL or dual layer will allow for double the capacity and can fit about 8 GB of data on it. A dual layer drive is required as well as dual layered media.

Then we see the newer formats like Blu-Ray and HD-DVD that allow you to burn and watch high definition videos or store even more data. A Blu-Ray disk can hold a whopping 25 GB in a single layer and 50 GB if the disk is dual layered. HD-DVD disks can hold up to 15 GB of data but I really do not see many systems or people using this format.

Wireless Network Card

pc4   Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PCIf your computer has a wireless card you will be able to access the Internet without a wire connecting you to a router/modem. Wireless cards are rated by their speed.

The lowest speed starts from A and goes up through N. You will want to buy a computer with a 802.11G or 802.11N wireless connection. 802.11g can see speeds of up to 54 Mbit/s. And with 802.11n the newest iteration of wireless we can achieve 600 Mbit/s. I am using a 802.11n router personally but most of my equipment and peripherals use 802.11g. I find this to be fine for streaming video or audio and transferring files over my home network. But if you are constantly transferring huge files or folders you might want to jump right into the 802.11n game.

Network Card

pc5   Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PCYour computer should have an Ethernet port on it. This port will allow you to physically connect to the internet or your internal network by plugging it into your router / modem.

Normally any machine you will buy now has a Gigabit connection. Gigabit is represented as 100/1000 and there are also 10/100 connections. That number is how many megabits you can transfer per second.

Operating System

pc6   Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PCThis is the software that makes your computer go. You can buy a computer with the Mac OS X operating system or Windows 7 or any flavor of Ubuntu Linux as well.

You can also buy a computer without an operating system to install it yourself. This is the key part of your system as well as normally the most expensive. But, if you choose Ubuntu or another flavor of Linux then your operating system is free.

Hard Drive

pc7   Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PCThis is where you will store all your files whether it be music, movies or word documents. You will need a hard drive to store them on.

Hard drives are rated by size and speed. A typical new computer will come with a 7200 RPM SATA 100GB drive. This will hold approximately 28,560 digital photos or up to 25,000 songs (MP3).

If you need more space you should get a bigger drive or you can buy a portable USB hard drive to attach to your computer.

Video Card

pc8   Basic Computer Terms You Should Know Before Buying A PCThis is the part of your computer that allows you to show what you are doing. Without a video card you would not be able to see what you are doing on your monitor.

Different video cards have different abilities like the option to use multiple monitors, have a HDMI output or even the ability to watch HD movies on your computer. This has never been important to me and I always take whatever is available. Some examples of good video card brands are MSI, XFX, Asus, Gigabyte (thanks JLT!).

Your video card does have to connect to your monitor so make sure they have a VGA, DVI or HDMI port in common.

There are also computer components like the monitor, keyboard and mouse but we’re pretty sure that you’re familiar with those basic computer terms.

Now, you have a basic knowledge of what you are looking for start shopping around. The best deals are found online and it is a fact that a PC is much cheaper than a Mac unless you are building a Hackintosh! You could also build your own PC if you are feeling confident enough.

** UPDATE 01 July 2010 ** Based on reader comments, we have updated and reworded some of the article.

The comments were closed because the article is more than 180 days old.

If you have any questions related to what's mentioned in the article or need help with any computer issue, ask it on MakeUseOf Answers—We and our community will be more than happy to help.

33 Comments -

JLT

What’s up with the writers on this site always spewing misinformation mixed in with some decent tips?

802.11a is not 1 Mbit/s it’s 54 Mbit/s the same as 802.11g although an average throughput is in the 20’s because of the infancy of wireless at that time. It was too expensive when it came out and is basically dead today, so why even mention it? But if you’re going to, get it right!

People who don’t know any better expect that the information they’re reading is accurate and it’s not a lot of the time.

Karl L. Gechlik

I should have said when I used 802.11a the best speeds I saw were around 1 mbit/s. Thanks for pointing it out.

JLT

What’s up with the writers on this site always spewing misinformation mixed in with some decent tips?

802.11a is not 1 Mbit/s it’s 54 Mbit/s the same as 802.11g although an average throughput is in the 20’s because of the infancy of wireless at that time. It was too expensive when it came out and is basically dead today, so why even mention it? But if you’re going to, get it right!

People who don’t know any better expect that the information they’re reading is accurate and it’s not a lot of the time.

JLT

Oh and I forgot. “A good brand is NVidia”? nVidia doesn’t make video cards. They make chipsets for other manufacturers to put on their video cards. An actual brand would be MSI, XFX, Asus, Gigabyte, etc.

ATI cards are also good and are available in the brands I just mentioned… ROOKIE!

Karl L. Gechlik

Now you are nitpitckicking! Yes the make graphic chipsets for graphic cards.

JLT

Oh and I forgot. “A good brand is NVidia”? nVidia doesn’t make video cards. They make chipsets for other manufacturers to put on their video cards. An actual brand would be MSI, XFX, Asus, Gigabyte, etc.

ATI cards are also good and are available in the brands I just mentioned… ROOKIE!

Anonymous

Very useful post-I have to buy a PC in the next few months. Hope I remember this all, it’s been a while since I’ve purchased a computer.

Karl L. Gechlik

Good luck! And check out Amazon/eBay they have awesome deals.

Mathman47

Don’t forget Newegg.

Mithun

Thanks for the post. Althogh i know something. It is better to double check with u. Thanks for the information.

BrutalSpoon

A good idea, but I think this guide is a little TOO basic.

You barely mention AMD as well, even though they make many processors which are just as good (if not superior) as Intel’s offerings for the same price in terms of performance and power consumption. Also, the Core Duo was not the first dual core processor – the first widely available dual-core CPU for consumers was the AMD Opteron. It wasn’t even the first on Intel’s side: Before the Core series was released there was the Pentium D series.

As far as hard drives go, very few computers with conventional hard drives now ship with smaller than a 160GB hard drive in laptops or 250GB hard drive in desktops. You also miss the most crucial advantage of a Solid State Drive – they are much, MUCH faster than magnetic storage.

Also, without the intention of being rude, your section on graphics cards doesn’t provide any truly valuable information. To many the graphics card is one of the most important aspects of the machine, particularly if they’re planning on playing any games. You don’t even mention the two most common connectors (VGA and DVI) or the differences between the two, which may be important for compatibility reasons.

Most people reading this guide wouldn’t know “how much memory they need” for their graphics card, and VRAM is not the most important part about the graphics card. This is why no matter how much memory you give an IGP it will NEVER perform anywhere near to the same standard as a low end discrete graphics card.

Finally, as JLT mentions above, you will very, very rarely buy a graphics card directly from nVidia (or indeed ATI). When purchasing a graphics card you will most likely be buying from a company such as MSI, Asus, eVGA, XFX or Sapphire. You also fail to mention ATI at all. ATI have always been serious contenders with nVidia and currently produce the best GPUs at the moment in terms of power consumption and (apart from nVidia’s GTX 480) performance.

I’ll stop ranting now, but I felt that there were some over simplified areas which could do with a bit more of an explanation.

JLT

Thanks for the follow up Brutal…. I read this site a lot and it seems like some of the writers are like people who just repeat what they heard from some kid working at an electronics store instead of actually knowing “facts” about the things they’re writing about.

I mean the dude even says the Core 2 Duo was the “first dual core processor” when in fact it was the Pentium D before the Core 2.

It’s absurd because people take what they read as being a “professional” opinion and this is clearly anything but “professional”.

BrutalSpoon

Now now, I wouldn’t go too far. Kudos to the writer for putting this together in the first place – like I said, it’s a good concept for an article.

Seeing the comments here and on Facebook, though, it certainly does look like a lot of people do depend on articles like these. If that’s the case, I feel it’s important to do a bit of research instead of just basing it all on personal knowledge as this article seems to.

I realise the point of this article is to make it seem simple and friendly, but comments like “This has never been important to me and I always take whatever is available” in the graphics card section doesn’t seem professional at all and doesn’t help the people for whom it IS important.

If it were up to me I think this would be a great topic for making another MakeUseOf guide. They already have one for building your own computer, so why not make one for those who aren’t looking necessarily to build a computer but rather to understand what’s inside the computer they already have? It’d also be a good precursor to the other guide, too. That way, you can put much more detail into each section and lay it out in such a way that people can read as little or as much as they want. If it’s a case of manpower, hey, I’d be happy to do it myself.

Aibek

Hey Guys

Thanks for the feedback. You mention some valid points and we’ll take them into account in the future.

As for turning that into a MakeUseOf Guide, that’s a great idea. If you’re interested in doing that for us (and earn some money from it :-) ) please get in touch with Jack cola who is in charge of everything related to MakeUseOf PDF Guides (jicola@makeuseof.com).

BrutalSpoon

A good idea, but I think this guide is a little TOO basic.

You barely mention AMD as well, even though they make many processors which are just as good (if not superior) as Intel’s offerings for the same price in terms of performance and power consumption. Also, the Core Duo was not the first dual core processor – the first widely available dual-core CPU for consumers was the AMD Opteron. It wasn’t even the first on Intel’s side: Before the Core series was released there was the Pentium D series.

As far as hard drives go, very few computers with conventional hard drives now ship with smaller than a 160GB hard drive in laptops or 250GB hard drive in desktops. You also miss the most crucial advantage of a Solid State Drive – they are much, MUCH faster than magnetic storage.

Also, without the intention of being rude, your section on graphics cards doesn’t provide any truly valuable information. To many the graphics card is one of the most important aspects of the machine, particularly if they’re planning on playing any games. You don’t even mention the two most common connectors (VGA and DVI) or the differences between the two, which may be important for compatibility reasons.

Most people reading this guide wouldn’t know “how much memory they need” for their graphics card, and VRAM is not the most important part about the graphics card. This is why no matter how much memory you give an IGP it will NEVER perform anywhere near to the same standard as a low end discrete graphics card.

Finally, as JLT mentions above, you will very, very rarely buy a graphics card directly from nVidia (or indeed ATI). When purchasing a graphics card you will most likely be buying from a company such as MSI, Asus, eVGA, XFX or Sapphire. You also fail to mention ATI at all. ATI have always been serious contenders with nVidia and currently produce the best GPUs at the moment in terms of power consumption and (apart from nVidia’s GTX 480) performance.

I’ll stop ranting now, but I felt that there were some over simplified areas which could do with a bit more of an explanation.

JLT

Thanks for the follow up Brutal…. I read this site a lot and it seems like some of the writers are like people who just repeat what they heard from some kid working at an electronics store instead of actually knowing “facts” about the things they’re writing about.

I mean the dude even says the Core 2 Duo was the “first dual core processor” when in fact it was the Pentium D before the Core 2.

It’s absurd because people take what they read as being a “professional” opinion and this is clearly anything but “professional”.

BrutalSpoon

Now now, I wouldn’t go too far. Kudos to the writer for putting this together in the first place – like I said, it’s a good concept for an article.

Seeing the comments here and on Facebook, though, it certainly does look like a lot of people do depend on articles like these. If that’s the case, I feel it’s important to do a bit of research instead of just basing it all on personal knowledge as this article seems to.

I realise the point of this article is to make it seem simple and friendly, but comments like “This has never been important to me and I always take whatever is available” in the graphics card section doesn’t seem professional at all and doesn’t help the people for whom it IS important.

If it were up to me I think this would be a great topic for making another MakeUseOf guide. They already have one for building your own computer, so why not make one for those who aren’t looking necessarily to build a computer but rather to understand what’s inside the computer they already have? It’d also be a good precursor to the other guide, too. That way, you can put much more detail into each section and lay it out in such a way that people can read as little or as much as they want. If it’s a case of manpower, hey, I’d be happy to do it myself.

Aibek

Hey Guys

Thanks for the feedback. You mention some valid points and we’ll take them into account in the future.

As for turning that into a MakeUseOf Guide, that’s a great idea. If you’re interested in doing that for us (and earn some money from it :-) ) please get in touch with Jack cola who is in charge of everything related to MakeUseOf PDF Guides (jicola@makeuseof.com).

Mathman47

Speaking of things left out, what about cooling, types of ram (DDR2, etc.), sound cards, monitors. Hear no evil, speak no evil, see no evil?

Draano

The article makes mention of Ubuntu as an operating system option. I’ve been looking for laptops from a major supplier that come preloaded with Ubuntu , but aside from net-book-looking stuff from Dell, I’ve had no luck. 1) Can you point to a well-known computer supplier that sells Ubuntu-based machines, and 2) Could you occasionally slip one of these into the Hot Tech Deals section?

Anonymous

Honestly, one of the poorest articles I have seen on the make use of site. Part of my job, is helping customers understand computers, what they do, there various components, and how they all work. Basically, taking a customer that knows nothing, and giving them the tools and information needed to buy a new computer. I can see this article causing more confusion. When talking about processors, although you roughly explained what a die is, but never linked the word die to the description. You explained what a dual core is, basically, but not really what it meant. You did say “This is essentially two or four processors in one respectively.” but a customer that knows nothing, doesn’t really know what that means! You mention a netbook, but give no one any idea what one is.
In speaking of ram, you state, “Your RAM Bus speed will need to be identical to your FSB speed as to not create bottlenecks.” when in reality it would be more accurate to say that “your RAM Bus speed ideally should be identical.”
You would not believe the number of times I have heard, “Why would I ever want to burn a DVD anyway?” Customers need this information to make informed decisions about purchasing.
In talking about network cards, and wireless cards, you explain the speed of said cards, but not really what the speed means. 100Mbit/s may mean something to you and me, but not to your average customer looking to buy a new computer.
In speaking about operating systems, the fact you even mentioned Linux in an article that is written, I assume for people that know nothing about buying a new computer, you fail to mention what Linux is all about, in addition to the fact that Windows programs won’t run, without a bit of tech knowledge on how to set them up. And then you mention, and actually use the term flavor, without explaining it. Finally you completely forget that 95%+ of new computers come from large retail chains, and when is the last time you saw a computer at best buy that comes with Linux? Plus the fact you cannot buy a computer any any of those locations without an operating system.
Then the hard drives, “A typical new computer will come with a 7200 rpm SATA 100GB drive.” At the risk of sounding sarcastic, perhaps a more accurate term would be, “A typical new computer in 2005 would come with a 7200 rpm SATA 100GB drive.” It is becoming harder and harder to find even a laptop with a hard drive as small as 250GB. Most of them start at 320GB now. And I think most of us know by now the average desktop computer comes with a bigger hard drive then an average laptop computer. If you can even find a 100GB HD in this day and age, it would be used.
You also talk of video cards, but fail to explain the ONLY reason to go with a non-integrated video card, games. And not facebook games, but newer 3d games, essentially store bought ones.
The bottom line of what I am reading in this article is this. I defiantly would not enjoy the explaining necessary should a customer that just read this article come into my shop. I can only see this article, in most cases, creating more confusion then answers.

shadowwizard

Honestly, one of the poorest articles I have seen on the make use of site. Part of my job, is helping customers understand computers, what they do, there various components, and how they all work. Basically, taking a customer that knows nothing, and giving them the tools and information needed to buy a new computer. I can see this article causing more confusion. When talking about processors, although you roughly explained what a die is, but never linked the word die to the description. You explained what a dual core is, basically, but not really what it meant. You did say “This is essentially two or four processors in one respectively.” but a customer that knows nothing, doesn’t really know what that means! You mention a netbook, but give no one any idea what one is.
In speaking of ram, you state, “Your RAM Bus speed will need to be identical to your FSB speed as to not create bottlenecks.” when in reality it would be more accurate to say that “your RAM Bus speed ideally should be identical.”
You would not believe the number of times I have heard, “Why would I ever want to burn a DVD anyway?” Customers need this information to make informed decisions about purchasing.
In talking about network cards, and wireless cards, you explain the speed of said cards, but not really what the speed means. 100Mbit/s may mean something to you and me, but not to your average customer looking to buy a new computer.
In speaking about operating systems, the fact you even mentioned Linux in an article that is written, I assume for people that know nothing about buying a new computer, you fail to mention what Linux is all about, in addition to the fact that Windows programs won’t run, without a bit of tech knowledge on how to set them up. And then you mention, and actually use the term flavor, without explaining it. Finally you completely forget that 95%+ of new computers come from large retail chains, and when is the last time you saw a computer at best buy that comes with Linux? Plus the fact you cannot buy a computer any any of those locations without an operating system.
Then the hard drives, “A typical new computer will come with a 7200 rpm SATA 100GB drive.” At the risk of sounding sarcastic, perhaps a more accurate term would be, “A typical new computer in 2005 would come with a 7200 rpm SATA 100GB drive.” It is becoming harder and harder to find even a laptop with a hard drive as small as 250GB. Most of them start at 320GB now. And I think most of us know by now the average desktop computer comes with a bigger hard drive then an average laptop computer. If you can even find a 100GB HD in this day and age, it would be used.
You also talk of video cards, but fail to explain the ONLY reason to go with a non-integrated video card, games. And not facebook games, but newer 3d games, essentially store bought ones.
The bottom line of what I am reading in this article is this. I defiantly would not enjoy the explaining necessary should a customer that just read this article come into my shop. I can only see this article, in most cases, creating more confusion then answers.

Draano

Based from the deservedly brutal comments above, perhaps a 2010-suitable rewrite is in order. The vast majority of the comments are spot-on. I’d suggest you take the article off until it’s been cleaned up, lest you damage MUO’s credibility.

The funniest thing is that I was steered to the article by the “5 Best MakeUseOf Articles this week”, which was distributed after the majority of valid criticism was issued.

Draano

Based from the deservedly brutal comments above, perhaps a 2010-suitable rewrite is in order. The vast majority of the comments are spot-on. I’d suggest you take the article off until it’s been cleaned up, lest you damage MUO’s credibility.

The funniest thing is that I was steered to the article by the “5 Best MakeUseOf Articles this week”, which was distributed after the majority of valid criticism was issued.

Anonymous

Yes! 5 best articles?! That boggles my mind. This has REALLY makes me think about MUO’s quality of articles.

Aibek

Calm down guys. While there are a few places in the post that could be
improved it still makes a handy reference for many beginners.

Plus we are already working on a MakeUseOf Guide that will discuss all
hardware parts in detail.

Aibek

Oron Joffe

Good idea for an article, but I have to agree with the comments above, particularly shadowwizard’s. The article of full of inaccuracies, opaque explanations (e.g. the ‘four dies in one’) and plain wrong info.
HD-DVD is obsolete (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HD_DVD).
The statement about WiFi speeds is plain wrong. In the b-f range, the higher the letter the slower the speed (as the 802.11 started with F and progressed downwards), but this does not work with A, G and N.
Gigabit is NOT represented as 100/1000. An explanation of network speeds, which are measured in megabits (10/100/1000, the latter also called Gigabit) would have been more accurate and more helpful.
The reference to “any flavor of Ubuntu Linux” is also puzzling. It would have been much better to explain that Linux is an OS, and mention that Ubunto is a common version of it.
Ommission of ATI in the context of explaining to novices what a graphics card is, well, I’m not sure what to call it, but it’s not good!
Finally, if this is aimed at novices, which I think it is, then you need to simplilfy. No need to discuss memory speeds or FSB, SATA etc. (they are of as much interest or use to the average user as the cylinder configuration in an engine) so they can be mentioned, but no more than that.
It IS important to give readers a way of judging how fast a CPU needs to be to be “fast enough”. How much RAM is enough, whether they need anything beyond integrated graphics (on the whole, only gamers and image/video editors need that) and so on.
There definitely is a need for a guide, so perhaps, armed with this unpleasant experience, back to the drawing board?

Oron Joffe

Good idea for an article, but I have to agree with the comments above, particularly shadowwizard’s. The article of full of inaccuracies, opaque explanations (e.g. the ‘four dies in one’) and plain wrong info.
HD-DVD is obsolete (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H
The statement about WiFi speeds is plain wrong. In the b-f range, the higher the letter the slower the speed (as the 802.11 started with F and progressed downwards), but this does not work with A, G and N.
Gigabit is NOT represented as 100/1000. An explanation of network speeds, which are measured in megabits (10/100/1000, the latter also called Gigabit) would have been more accurate and more helpful.
The reference to “any flavor of Ubuntu Linux” is also puzzling. It would have been much better to explain that Linux is an OS, and mention that Ubunto is a common version of it.
Ommission of ATI in the context of explaining to novices what a graphics card is, well, I’m not sure what to call it, but it’s not good!
Finally, if this is aimed at novices, which I think it is, then you need to simplilfy. No need to discuss memory speeds or FSB, SATA etc. (they are of as much interest or use to the average user as the cylinder configuration in an engine) so they can be mentioned, but no more than that.
It IS important to give readers a way of judging how fast a CPU needs to be to be “fast enough”. How much RAM is enough, whether they need anything beyond integrated graphics (on the whole, only gamers and image/video editors need that) and so on.
There definitely is a need for a guide, so perhaps, armed with this unpleasant experience, back to the drawing board?

Aibek

Calm down guys. While there are a few places in the post that could be
improved it still makes a handy reference for many beginners.

Plus we are already working on a MakeUseOf Guide that will discuss all
hardware parts in detail.

Aibek

qckslvrguyinkc

This article is severely outdated. Can we get an update?

Kat31

Come on, guys!!!! Seriously – I am buying a new computer and this is exactly and all the data that I need to make an informed decision. The author has done a wonderful job of simplifying and explaining the “jargon” of computer-land to those of us who want to buy a decent computer.
You are beating up on the only person in the playground who is being nice to the new kid.
Thanks – Karl!

Kat31

Come on, guys!!!! Seriously – I am buying a new computer and this is exactly and all the data that I need to make an informed decision. The author has done a wonderful job of simplifying and explaining the “jargon” of computer-land to those of us who want to buy a decent computer.
You are beating up on the only person in the playground who is being nice to the new kid.
Thanks – Karl!

Mark O’Neill

Based on reader comments, we have updated and reworded some of the article.