CNET GLOSSARY: Terms for the techie
von Neumann architecture
Most computers use the stored-program concept designed by Hungarian mathematician John von Neumann in 1945. In it programs and data are stored in a slow-to-access storage medium (such as a hard disk) and worked with in a fast-access, volatile storage medium (RAM). This concept, however, has an attendant bottleneck: it's designed to process instructions one after the other instead of using faster parallel processing.
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