Connecting the camera to your computer.
Firewire / IEEE1394 / iLink (name used varies with manufacturer but all are identical)
This connection allows the high speed and realtime transfer of digital video to your computer and on some camcorders back to the camera. This cabling system is hot swappable, this means that the computer doesn't have to be switched off before changing any device on the interface.
Firewire uses two different connector types. The larger one illustrated is a six pin type while the smaller connector only has four pins. The extra two pins carry the power for some firewire peripherals such as hard disks. Digital cameras only have the four pin connector as the camera runs off its own power source.
USB

Universal serial bus is common on both PC's and Apple Mac's of recent manufacture. This standard is hot swappable but the data transfer rate is slow when compared with firewire as its max rate is only 1.2Mb per second.

Card Readers

Several manufacturers produce devices which can be connected to your computer via a USB connection. These devices have slots which accept the memory cards.

PCMCIA slots

Laptop computers have PC card slots which can accept a compactflash card in an adaptor. The card once inserted can be accessed as if it were another hard disk.

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Floppy Disk Adapter

Adaptors are available which accept the memory card, the whole unit is then inserted into the floppy disk drive of the computer for reading.

Serial Ports

These are found on older computers and have very slow data transfer rates. It is not advised to change connections on these computers unless they are switched off first as damgae may occur.