What is Random Access Memory?

Computers use RAM to hold the program code and data during computation. A defining characteristic of RAM is that all memory locations can be accessed at almost the same speed. Most other technologies have inherent delays for reading a particular bit or byte.
Many types of RAM are volatile, which means that unlike some other forms of computer storage such as disk storage and tape storage; they lose all data when the computer is powered down. Modern RAM generally stores a bit of data as either a charge in a capacitor, as in dynamic RAM, or the state of a flip-flop, as in static RAM.