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Electronic component

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An electronic component is a basic electronic element. These components can be connected together to make circuits. Components can be single items (resistor, transistor) or in more or less complex groups as integrated circuits (logic gate, resistor array).

List of electronic components


A thin metal conductor


A flexible conducting electrical or optical link.

  • cable connector: connector at either end of a cable.
  • cable matcher: an impedance matching device that allows non-standard cable to be used with a particular device.
  • cable plant = all the cables, connectors and patch panels within a building or office.
  • cabling = cable as a material.
  • co-axial cable = Such cables are usually made of a conducting wire. Then there is some insulation, then there is another layer of conducting material. Finally there is the (insulating) mantle. Such cables are used as a high-frequency transmission line to carry a high-frequency or broadband signal. Because the electromagnetic field carrying the signal exists (ideally) only in the space between the inner and outer conductors, it cannot interfere with or suffer interference from external electromagnetic fields.
  • ribbon cable = A flat, thin cable containing many parallel wires. Because of their shape, ribbon cables are ideal for situations where space needs to be conserved. They're used, for example, within a computer chassis to connect disk drives to the disk drive controllers.
  • type cable = a specification for cable defined by IBM.


A device usually made up of a display unit and a keyboard which allows entry and display of information when on-line to central computer system.

  • intelligent terminal, smart terminal = a computer terminal which contain a CPU and memory, allowing basic data processing to be carried out, usually with the facility to allow the user to program it independently of the host computer.
  • terminal adapter = a device that connects a computer to a digital communications line; e.g., to link a PC to an ISDN line. A terminal adapter transfers digital signals from the computer to the line, whereas a modem is used to connect a computer to an analog communications line, such as a telephone line, and needs to convert digital signals to and from an anologue form.
  • terminal area = part of a printed circuit board at which edge connectors can be connected.
  • terminal controller = a hardware device or IC which controls a terminal including data communications and display.
  • terminal identity = a unique code transmitted by a view data terminal to provide identification and authorisation of a user.
  • terminal interface = a hardware and software combination demand to control the function of a terminal from the computer.


A physical device with a number of metal contacts that allow devices to be easily linked together.

  • connector plug = a device at the end of a fibre-optic or copper cable that receives and contains something.


A mechanical or hard state device that can electrically connect or isolate two or more lines.

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