Good analogy for what memory modules do?

ever asked what memory does by a novice and find it difficult to explain?

Hard drive - ware house of the PC
Processor - number cruncher

Memory ..... mmm
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Memory is like the temporary high-speed "scratchpad" work area where stuff gets done.  Programs, data access, etc. are all way faster when they live in RAM, rather than having to be read from a relatively slow hard drive all the time.
☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
It's your workspace.  You go to the hard drive warehouse to get stuff and you lay it out here to work with it.  If you've got a lot of stuff you need to get from the warehouse you might run out of room so you either get another desk or put stuff back into the warehouse to make room for more important things.

(you may have to buy your desks in pairs though ;))
Using the warehouse analogy is similar to what an old professor used. I would go with memory being logistics, say a mail room for example.

Packages come and go and are temporarily held until someone (program) comes by and stores them (warehouse) or alters the product in the office (cpu) where at which point it is sent back to the mail room (RAM) to await further processing.
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Anthony RussoCommented:
The easiest analogy for most of the non-techy types to understand I've found is the kitchen analogy.

The hard drive is storage like your cabinets. you store stuff there and just access what you need when you need it. Lots of stuff, but don't use all of it all the time.

The processor or CPU is you and your ability to cook. You are the brain in control. The better a cook you are, the faster you can prepare food and the more complex recipes you can handle.

Memory or RAM is your counter space. The more counter space you have the more stuff you can be working on at one time, or the more big complex dishes you can make!

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The best one I heard is "memory is like an 'Etch A Sketch '. "   : )  
I would say memory is your work area for assembling and building things - the more you have, the more work you can get done.  It gets reused for each project.
fcekAuthor Commented:
I think this is the best one ........

Memory or RAM is your counter space. The more counter space you have the more stuff you can be working on at one time, or the more big complex dishes you can make!
Anthony RussoCommented:
Glad it helped. Thanks for the points.
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