Software is simply a series of data and instructions which tell a particular computer how to perform a specific task. The word “software” came into being because this kind of instruction and data was initially used by machines to tell people how to operate certain kinds of machinery or to give advice on how to do something. Since then, software has been used to help with all kinds of different tasks, from controlling the operation of an assembly line to delivering cars to specific parts of a building. All software is actually just a program written to run on a particular type of computer. This means that any machine that can be computers can also be filled with software.
Some software types are rather self-explanatory. These are the typical types of software applications that most people have come to know and love. Examples of typical operating system software include Windows, DOS, and Linux. Hardware-based software applications include your typical personal computers and their associated hardware. These include things like your printer, keyboard, mouse, monitor, video card, and audio interface.
As you can see, both system software and hardware-based applications fall under a larger umbrella than just the two major types we have already mentioned above. However, they are two major categories that all types fall into. In order to understand what each does, it helps to understand how they work together. At the simplest level, an application software program or programmable device controls the functionality of an operating system software device. The two basically work together to allow a particular computer to perform certain tasks or to output results.
There are also classes of computer software that fall under these broad categories. For example, there are graphic programming languages and object-oriented programming languages. One class of computer software program is device driver software. The term device driver refers to any piece of hardware that is used by a computer software application so that the application can control the use of a specific device such as a printer, mouse, or digital camera. This type of software is very important because without it a computer cannot function.
Another class of software is standard programming languages which are usually included with operating systems. A programming language is typically created to provide functionality that is necessary in the creation of computer software. For example, Visual Basic programming language creates applications that can be used to assist in data base management and business procedures. A server management language is used to create computer software that is needed to access hardware on a server and to communicate between multiple devices on the server.
Finally, there are classes of utility software that provide different functions to a computer system. Utility software generally serves a single purpose and can often be customized to accomplish more complex tasks. Utility software is typically installed as a part of an operating system. As an example, you would install a software utility program such as Microsoft’s Disk Cleanup before installing the operating system. Utility software programs can be categorized further by types such as hardware, networking, database, system software, and other types of programs.