Don't miss an insight. Subscribe to Techopedia for free.


Key-Value Pair

What Does Key-Value Pair Mean?

A key-value pair (KVP) is an abstract data type that includes a group of key identifiers and a set of associated values. Key-value pairs are frequently used in lookup tables, hash tables and configuration files.


Techopedia Explains Key-Value Pair

Mapping, on the other side of array processing, is the process of binding the key to its associated value. In mapping, if a key of index 23 is associated with a value tree, it means that the array maps the tree to key number 23. The notion of key-value pairing is a subset of the mathematical concept of a finite set or domain. Providing an indexed data storing process is the purpose of key-value pairs.

A key-value pair can be considered a general form of an array, which maps a key index to a certain data value. However, the key-value pair can be used in a more general and arbitrary way as well.

To decrease the lookup process time for a value, a specialized implementation of computer memory is often used in the lookup process and other high performance applications. Computer systems that apply this specialized memory technique are called content-addressable memory (CAM) systems.


Related Terms