of these articles treats the EDP-technical term software, for the group of music sees software (volume).

Software [ˈsɒftweə (ɹ)] designates all not-physical function components of a computer. This covers above all computer programs as well as the data intended for the use with computer programs.

Software is set frequently in contrast to hardware, which can fulfill the physical carrier designation, on to software existed and functioned and alone with the help of its it their function. In this sense the term became first 1958 of John W.Tukey uses. Colloquially “software” is used executable computer programs often also exclusively for “active” data, thus, “passive” data is omitted thereby.

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kinds of software

software can according to different criteria be differentiated. A possible orients itself at an office-oriented user view, which a concrete view on the functionalizationgives.

Software, which is firmly in equipment accommodated to its control (z. B. in a ROM), one calls also firmware.

production of software

the development from software is incomplex procedure. This is systematized by the software technology, a subsection of computer science. Here the production of the software is described gradually during a process of the analysis up to testing than repeatable process.

natures andCharacteristics of software

software is article-light, in advance performed mental work:

  • Article light is called: the results of the mental human activity are present in form of an article; here in form on the data medium (CD-ROM, magnetic tape,…) stored program.
  • Means in advance performed: the program authors e.g. compile. a solution procedure for the correct separation of all German words in a text processing program. Thus is in advance, thus before this activity at all results, already for all writers, that work with this text processing program,the mental work “correct separation of German words” performed. A software developer can fall back every now and then to “in advance” from third developed algorithms.

Further characteristics from software are:

  • Standard software (contrary to individual software) is only uniquely produced and can then alsoto be copied and distributed and effect spreads relatively small costs to unfold; Costs result from the data medium, advertisement, manufacturing training course documents and from any licenses.
  • Software does not wear by use. Software also improved (new versions) leaves the past versionsnecessarily do not become outdated, as long as they serve their purpose.
  • Software is exchangeably, actualizationable, correctable and expandable, in particular if standard kept and the source code is available.
  • Software can be before-configured to accelerate all the a new installation and around errors with thatTo minimize configuration.
  • Software tended all to contain more error, the newer and the more complex it is. Except at software with trivial function range is not to be proceeded therefore from accuracy. Errors become frequently only after publication of a new orfunction-extended software admits. This then often by publication of one around admits of become errors settled software-Version or a Patches repaired. One calls software faults also nose.
  • The proof of the accuracy is not to be furnished usually. Onlywith formal specification of the software the mathematical proof of its correctness (software) is theoretically at all possible.

legal definition

in the iurisdiction is differentiated between individual software and standard software: With the acquisition from individual software a work contract becomes and/or. Contract for work and materials finally,the acquisition of standard software is considered as thing purchase.

See also: Software agent, Serial, crowd commodity, Spyware, Adware, digital forgetting

license models

the spreading and use of software is subject to copyright. It gives in thisConnection several typical hiring models:

  • Sales: The complete sales of software, including the hiring of further spread rights, seems practically only between companies, usually in the framework of order programming or with the sales to a software development company.
  • Right to use: At most software, thosefor example for PCs „bought “will can, in reality only one right to use leave. This model is usual also in the case of the order programming, with which a company develops a program for the self-use of another company particularly. With Freeware is thisQuite in vain, which may not be confounded with suitor software.
  • Free software/open SOURCE software: Free software may be used by everyone, changed and spread further at will. Often this right is subject to certain restrictions, like for example the denomination of the author orto place the obligation changed versions under the same license.

Software, which does not rank among the last group, is called prop. guessing acre. Between the main forms of the software spreading specified above there are numerous intermediate and mixers.

See also: Freie_Software#Lizenzen, Freeware, crowd commodity, GPL .

one speaks software in

the marketing and management in the marketing and management of standard software, if for the completion of the business processes, a flexible software bought at a foreign manufacturer is used. Advantages of the use of standard software are thosesubstantially smaller costs (no own project engineering, no own data processing department necessarily) and the function warranty. Disadvantages are the smaller flexibility of the software, those to adjustment difficulties to lead can and dependence on the foreign manufacturer (with its insolvency usually the warranty claim purges). Frequently in largeEnterprise assigned standard software is R/3 of SAP. If companies develop their software, this happens usually with tools such as ARIS, an architecture model, which can illustrate the complex procedures in an enterprise. Software even developed must carefully planned, in addition, brisklyare realized. Each standard software or developed software has a certain software life cycle, within whose it has profitable effect.

See also: PPS system, ERP system

see also

Wikiquote: Software - quotations


  • Tukey, J. W. (1958): The Teaching OF Concrete Mathematics. The American MathematicalMonthly, volume. 65, No. 1 (January. 1958), pp 1-9. (First use of the term software in the today's sense)
  • Shapiro, F.R. (2000): Origin OF the term software: Evidence from the JSTOR electronics journal of archives. IEEE Annals OF the History OF Computing 22 (April June 2000), 69.
  • Sebastian of Engelhardt: The economic characteristics of software. In: Jenaer writings to the economic science. 14/2006, Friedrich Schiller university Jena, economiceconomics faculty, ISSN 1611-1311

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Wiktionary: Software - word origin, synonyms and translations

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