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CAPI
Last modified: Tuesday, October 29, 2002 

(1) Short for computer assisted personal interviewing, a surveying technique that uses a computer-based questionnaire. As an alternative to paper questionnaires, CAPI allows the interviewer to customize the survey, so that respondents answer questions only about subjects they're familiar with and receive questions in a random order to avoid biases. CAPI also seeks to improve accessibility to data and to make the interviewing process more entertaining. Although traditionally used on individual PCs, CAPI is now also being administered on the Web.

(2) Short for common ISDN application programming interface, an API standard used to access ISDN equipment (equipment that use the integrated services digital network [ISDN] standard for the transfer of data over telephone lines). When an application wants to communicate with an ISDN card it sends a standard series of commands to the card. These commands form the CAPI standard and give developers and users a chance to use a well-defined mechanism for communications over ISDN lines without being forced to adjust to hardware idiosyncrasies.

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