Lecture 34 - Under the Hood

Lecture Date: Wednesday, April 13

Did you ever wonder exactly where all this stuff we’ve been talking was being stored on your computer?

There are different types of “memory” in a computer

  • Cache - small, really fast memory that’s attached to the processor - used as “working memory”
  • RAM (Random Access Memory) - holds info about programs currently running - used as “short term memory”
  • Hard disk / SSD - holds data that will persist if the power is cut off - used as “long term memory”

Your programs are .py files, stored on the disk itself. But when they run, the Python interpreter requests from the operating system that some space be set aside for your program to run in. This is typically in RAM (although it can vary a little).

Today we’ll look at the hardware of a computer itself.