Indian Journal of Radiology Indian Journal of Radiology  

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COMPUTERS Table of Contents   
Year : 2010  |  Volume : 20  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 162-167
Computer hardware for radiologists: Part I


Department of Radiodiagnosis and Imaging, Command Hospital (Air Force), Bangalore - 560 007, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
I K Indrajit
Department of Radiodiagnosis and Imaging, Command Hospital (Air Force), Bangalore - 560 007, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0971-3026.69346

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Computers are an integral part of modern radiology practice. They are used in different radiology modalities to acquire, process, and postprocess imaging data. They have had a dramatic influence on contemporary radiology practice. Their impact has extended further with the emergence of Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM), Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS), Radiology information system (RIS) technology, and Teleradiology. A basic overview of computer hardware relevant to radiology practice is presented here. The key hardware components in a computer are the motherboard, central processor unit (CPU), the chipset, the random access memory (RAM), the memory modules, bus, storage drives, and ports. The personnel computer (PC) has a rectangular case that contains important components called hardware, many of which are integrated circuits (ICs). The fiberglass motherboard is the main printed circuit board and has a variety of important hardware mounted on it, which are connected by electrical pathways called "buses". The CPU is the largest IC on the motherboard and contains millions of transistors. Its principal function is to execute "programs". A Pentium® 4 CPU has transistors that execute a billion instructions per second. The chipset is completely different from the CPU in design and function; it controls data and interaction of buses between the motherboard and the CPU. Memory (RAM) is fundamentally semiconductor chips storing data and instructions for access by a CPU. RAM is classified by storage capacity, access speed, data rate, and configuration.


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