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  • RAID
    Redundant array of independent disks. A method of storing the same data in different places (redundantly) on multiple hard disks. By placing data on multiple disks, input/output operations can overlap in a balanced way, improving performance. Because multiple disks increases the mean time between failure (MTBF), storing data redundantly increases fault-tolerance.
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  • RAM (Random Access Memory)
    Both programs and data are called up from permanent storage and operate in RAM. In theory, the more RAM you have, the more able you are to handle large amounts of data and big programs. In practice, a lot of data in RAM is passed off into slower virtual memory to free up working space.
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  • Red Book
    Another name for the CD-DA audio CD format introduced by Sony and Philips, the Red Book standards defines the number of tracks on the disc that contain digital audio data and the error correction routines that save sound from minor data loss.
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  • Refresh rate
    The image on your computer monitor doesn't appear fully formed on the screen's phosphors: it's drawn line by line with beams fired from three electron guns at the back of the CRT. The frequency at which they redraw the image is called the refresh rate, and it's an important measure of how steady the image appears.
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  • Registration
    The process of entering user credentials into a database for subsequent authentication.
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  • Relative URL
    URL whose location is specified relative to the address of the base document in which the URL resides. It provides a shorthand way to refer to files or resources that use the same protocol, domain name, or directory path as the current document. Contrast with absolute URL.
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  • Reserve
    The process of setting aside or "freezing" an amount equal to the purchase price charged on a credit card during the authorization step of the credit card payment process. The reserved amount is then either freed after a period of time, or actually charged to the card during settlement.
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  • Resolution
    A measure of graphics that's used to describe what a printer can print, a scanner can scan, and a monitor can display.
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  • Resource
    A document, database, discussion group, or URL that can be access controlled.
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  • RFC
    Request for Comments, there are the agreed upon standards with which all methods of communicating over the Internet are defined.
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  • ROM (Read-only memory)
    ROM is a storage chip that typically contains hardwired instructions for use when a computer starts (boots up).
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  • RSA (Rivest Shamir Adelman)
    A popular public key algorithm, named for its MIT inventors. It is used for encryption and for digital signatures.
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