This is the first of 2 review papers on genetics and genomics appearing as part of the series on "omics." Genomics pertains to all components of an organism's genes, whereas genetics involves analysis of a specific gene or genes in the context of heredity. The paper provides introductory comments, describes the basis of human genetic diversity, and addresses the phenotypic consequences of genetic variants. Rare variants with large effect sizes are responsible for single-gene disorders, whereas complex polygenic diseases are typically due to multiple genetic variants, each exerting a modest effect size. To illustrate the clinical implications of genetic variants with large effect sizes, 3 common forms of hereditary cardiomyopathies are discussed as prototypic examples of single-gene disorders, including their genetics, clinical manifestations, pathogenesis, and treatment. The genetic basis of complex traits is discussed in a separate paper.