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software
Last modified: February 20, 1997

 
   Software
 
 
 
   application
 data
 firmware
 hardware
 program
 systems software
 vaporware
 
Computer instructions or data. Anything that can be stored electronically is software. The storage devices and display devices are hardware.

The terms software and hardware are used as both nouns and adjectives. For example, you can say: "The problem lies in the software," meaning that there is a problem with the program or data, not with the computer itself. You can also say: "It's a software problem."

The distinction between software and hardware is sometimes confusing because they are so integrally linked. Clearly, when you purchase a program, you are buying software. But to buy the software, you need to buy the disk (hardware) on which the software is recorded.

Software is often divided into two categories:

  • systems software : Includes the operating system and all the utilities that enable the computer to function.
  • applications software : Includes programs that do real work for users. For example, word processors, spreadsheets, and database management systems fall under the category of applications software.
  • inquiry.com
    This site hosts a collection of information on current software products, technologies, and vendors. Here, you can search IT journals for product information, browse vendor literature, find answers to technical questions, take part in a forum, and view a complete list of VARs. Updated on Oct 4, 1997

    The Software Sharing Resource Library
    This site hosts a worldwide catalog of software Web sites.

    ZD Net
    The ZD Net site provides the latest computing news, product reviews, Internet resources, downloadable software/shareware and an active community of users. Updated on Feb 3, 1998

    Business Software Alliance (BSA) home page
    The BSA is an organization promoting the continued growth of the software industry through its international public policy, enforcement, and education programs. Their site offers links to news, resources, policies, anti-virus information, and worldwide hotlines. Updated on Feb 7, 1998

    CNET's download.com site
    A site for locating downloadable software by keyword or by subject category, from CNET. Updated on Feb 16, 1998

    Computer ESP - computer prices search engine
    This is a resource for locating hardware and software prices from major computer cyberstores in the U.S. and Canada. There are several methods for locating prices including a search engine, product and company categories and Computer ESP's list of the 1000 most popular products. Updated on Feb 15, 1998

    DEK Software International
    Offers downloadable demos for several award-winning software products. Updated on Feb 4, 1998

    PCR Online
    Provides reviews of commercial PC software, shareware and games and includes sections for Web design tips, shareware and Java downloads, Shockwave and Internet events, book reviews, and articles from PC News. Updated on Jun 22, 1997

    RST software reliability hotlist
    Provides links to various sources offering information on software reliability.

    Superkids - Educational software reviews
    SuperKids provides reviews of children's software, by parents, teachers, and children. Following a 'Consumer Reports' format, each month an acadmic subject and age range is selected for product comparisons. Updated on Dec 13, 1997

    WebShopper
    Computer hardware and software buyer's guide with helpful product-related articles and recommendations.

    WinSite software archive
    Home page for WinSite, a comprehensive Windows software archive. This site offers a search or browse utility to locate software, which you can then download. Updated on Jan 21, 1998

    Yahoo!'s software companies page
    Yahoo!'s directory of links to software companies. Updated on Feb 13, 1998

    Yahoo!'s software page
    Yahoo!'s directory of software links. Updated on Feb 9, 1998

    ZD Net Internet articles
    This page hosts a collection of news articles related to client and server software for the World Wide Web. Updated on Jan 19, 1998


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