Memory Array Organizations

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A memory array is defined as a linear data structure that hosts a collection of similar data types stored at contiguous locations in a computer’s memory. By storing multiple elements of the same type in the same place, it becomes easy to calculate each item's position by adding an offset to the memory location of the first item in the array. This is known as the base value, which is denoted by index 0.

Each memory array is designed as a collection of bit cells. Each cell stores 1 bit of data. An array index denotes the location of a particular element within the array. An array element refers to the item stored in the array and can be accessed using its index. The length of the array is the total number of elements that can be stored in it. For instance, and if the length of a particular memory array is six, it means that it can store up to six elements.

When declaring the type and size of an array, the program instructs the compiler to allocate enough memory to hold all the data items required. For instance, an array age [18] will have 18 elements with indexes starting from 0 to 17, and the appropriate amount of memory required will be allocated.

There are generally two types of memory arrays:

  1. One-dimensional arrays – Elements are accessed from memory in a sequential order using either a row or column index subscript
  2. Multi-dimensional arrays – Elements are accessed using both the row and column index subscripts

The most common application of arrays is in computer programming. Whenever you have an ordered list of items you need to keep track of, you’ll have to use an array to do it. The list could be a song playlist, a list of books, a shopping list, or any other list you can think of.


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