Basically what I'm trying to determine is if the new RAM chips I received in the mail were potentially damaged from static electricity.
Late last night, tired and foggy, I built up a considerable amount of static electricity while fetching a mail envelope in a pair of flannel-type pajama bottoms. The envelope contained some RAM chips. After sitting down and opening the envelope, I set the unopened chips on my leg so that I could put away my trusty mail opener. While leaning forward to do so I could hear and feel some static crackling as the pant fabric stretched and rubbed against my leg in the vicinity of where I had placed the RAM chips.
The packaging isn't air tight by any means so I'm not sure if there is a possibility that the chips were exposed directly to the static field, and worse if any discharge into the chips could've resulted?
This leads back to my original question: does a static field continuously discharge into a metal conductor. That is, will a static field discharge into a (non-insulated) metal conductor if such a conductor simply resides within it, or must a certain threshold of distance (depending on charge/field strength and humidity) be crossed in order for the specific event/phenomena of ESD (electrostatic discharge) to occur (perceivable or not)?