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Record

Record is (as a noun) any set of data kept, and (as a verb) to set down data to be kept. Such data may be writing, audio, digital, or other media.

For the sound recording type of record that spins on a turntable, known as a phonograph record in American English and a gramophone record in British English, see analogue disc record.


In computer science, a record can be any of at least two different things.

The most common meaning is simply "an item in a database". There is a wide variety of such "records", but the most common type (the one relational databases support) is an instance of the other kind of record.

The other meaning of "record" is "an aggregation of several items of possibly different types", with the implication that there are many records containing the same types of items. C calls these "structs"; object-oriented languages often keep their records hidden inside "objects", or "class instances"; languages in the ML family have their tuples. COBOL was the first programming language to support records directly; Algol got it from COBOL, and Pascal got it, more or less indirectly, from Algol.


A record is also an extreme value, e.g. in sports, weather, economics, etc.



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