Computer Software

Computer Software
Computer software is​ the​ combination of​ programmes and applications which interface with the​ physical components of​ the​ computer,​ the​ hardware,​ to​ enable the​ user to​ perform specific functions and tasks .​
There are two basic types of​ software,​ known as​ system software,​ which is​ responsible for the​ basic functions of​ the​ computer,​ and application software,​ such as​ Word Processing programmes,​ which enable the​ user to​ perform actual specific tasks,​ e.g .​
typing .​
An operating system is​ the​ software behind all of​ the​ system and application management; it​ is​ responsible for organising and controlling how each of​ the​ systems interface with each other (basically the​ smooth running of​ every programme),​ for example,​ allocating the​ appropriate amount of​ memory in​ accordance with which programmes are running and require more power and input .​
Examples of​ operating systems are Linux,​ and of​ course Microsoft Windows,​ which holds a​ monopoly on​ the​ computer market for such systems .​
Without an​ Operating system,​ computers are merely empty shells with little or​ no use .​
They will typically run their won application software,​ for example Microsoft Windows has packages such as​ Microsoft Office,​ which deals with word processing,​ publishing,​ presentation slides,​ databases,​ etc .​
Modern computers can run several applications simultaneously without crashing and becoming slow,​ depending on​ the​ power and capabilities of​ the​ operating system.
Software is​ constantly being up dated and new versions being released,​ so much so that current systems can become out of​ date within months – it​ is​ a​ very fast moving and fast evolving area of​ industry .​
Microsoft have just released their latest operating system to​ follow on​ from the​ roaring success of​ Windows XP; Vista .​
Packages available include Home Basic,​ Home Premium,​ Ultimate and Business .​
The main improvements and selling points of​ this service package include state of​ the​ art user interfaces (Aero – Authentic,​ Energetic,​ Reflective and Open),​ easier transfer of​ media between devices and computers,​ better security (virus protection,​ etc) and new multimedia programmes .​
For example,​ Windows Media Player 11 is​ included in​ the​ package and has undergone a​ major revamp; including user interfacing,​ new search capabilities,​ and the​ facility too hook up with external devices such as​ the​ Xbox 360 .​
However,​ many consumers are fully aware of​ Microsoft’s dominance in​ the​ computer industry and in​ particular the​ software market,​ and are reluctant to​ shell out for the​ new programme where many of​ the​ new features are seen as​ luxuries rather than necessities,​ and on​ top of​ that Vista cannot be installed on​ any machine – brand new machines must be purchased with the​ system already built in​ .​
So potential customers will have to​ buy a​ whole new PC setup just to​ be able to​ use Microsoft Vista – not a​ popular choice amongst consumers in​ an​ industry where there will doubtless be further improvements and new,​ better software waiting just around the​ corner .​
An advantage gained then,​ for rival Linux,​ whose majority of​ software CD’s and packages can be accessed for free,​ so whilst it​ is​ a​ lot more complex and less user friendly than the​ likes of​ Microsoft and their Windows packages,​ yet it​ remains one of​ the​ most reliable and up to​ date operating systems out there.

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