Computer Software Category

What is a computer software category? There are three types, or categories, of computer software:

  • Application software
  • System software
  • Programming software / Middleware

Application software is what most people think of when they think of software. It is a program or set of programs that fulfills a business requirement, such as Word processors, Excel, payroll software, computer games, graphics and music.

System software is any computer software which manages and controls computer hardware so that application software can perform a task that enable the end-user to perform specific, productive tasks, such as operating systems.

Programming software, or middleware, usually provides tools to assist a developer in writing computer programs in a more convenient way. The tools include text editors, compilers, interpreters, linkers, debuggers, etc.

Application software is a subclass of computer software that employs the capabilities of a computer directly and thoroughly to a task that the user wishes to perform. This should be contrasted with system software which is involved in integrating a computer’s various capabilities.

Typically the software does not directly apply them in the performance of tasks that benefit the user. In this context the term application refers to both the application software and its implementation. Multiple applications bundled together as a package are sometimes referred to as an application suite.

Microsoft Office,, and iWork 08, which bundle together a word processor, a spreadsheet, and several other discrete applications, are typical examples. The separate applications in a suite usually have a user interface that has some commonality making it easier for the user to learn and use each application.

Often they may have some capability to interact with each other in ways beneficial to the user. For example, a spreadsheet might be able to be embedded in a word processor document even though it had been created in the separate spreadsheet application.

User-written software tailors systems to meet the user’s specific needs. User-written software include spreadsheet templates, word processor macros, scientific simulations, graphics and animation scripts. Even email filters are a kind of user software. Users create this software themselves and often overlook how important it is.

In some types of embedded systems, the application software and the operating system software may be indistinguishable to the user, as in the case of software used to control a VCR, DVD player or microwave oven. It is important to note that this definition may exclude some applications that may exist on some computers in large organizations.

Types of Computer Software

Software can simply be defined as the coded instructions that are sent to the computer, which when received by the computer, carries out the tasks the user desires. The commands govern the operation of the computer and all the programs that run on the computer at a given time. Every program installed on your computer is made up of some coded material. This is what the computer reads and carries out the commands required of it during the utilization of the program. The types of computer software can be categorized into three:

1. System software

Also referred to as operating system, it is the software used by the computer to convert and translate inputs from different sources into a machine language. It is the task of an OS to organize the hardware components of a computer. It is also the System software offers a shield of protection to all the other software applications. With the OS, support is also provided to the physical components of computers. Many Os exist in the market. The windows operating system is one that has made a lot of wave in the system software industry. Other operating systems also abound. Among these is UNIX, which is used for large office setups with powerful networks. We also have HP -UX and AIX, used by HP computers. Apache OS is also popular especially with web servers.

2. Application software:

Application software are the most commonly known and used types of computer software. Application software covers almost all the day-to -day activities done with the computer. Some examples of application software are the Microsoft office suite which includes Word, Excel, publisher and PowerPoint. Many people extensively use these applications. With Internet explorer, Netscape and Mozilla Firefox, people gain access to access the internet. Outlook express is software used for email management. One characteristic of the application software is the user interfaces.

3. Programming language software:

These types of computer software are exclusively used by computer programmers. A programming language is a set instructions used for creating application software and operating system. Basic tools used by the programming software are Compilers, interpreters, linkers and text editors. Examples of this kind of software are C++, Simlab and Java. Java is a programming language for internet applications. Most professional program developers use the C++ language. The program can also be used in developing operating systems. PHP is another language used for internet applications. A new class of languages now exists for the mobile devices. These are light weight languages used for designing mobile applications.

All Computer software works with a programming language. The process runs like a chain reaction. The chain is initiated by transferring the command. The computer software now generates the Machine code which ends the whole process.

Advances in Computer Software

The computer software world has come a long way since the first simple personal computers rolled off assembly lines in the late 70’s. Thanks to dedicated software developers, there have been vast improvements to the performance, function and usability of computers today. Every year, there are major developments that lead to faster software and hardware applications that improve the performance of computers for personal and business users. Just in the last decade, more people than ever are using computers to perform basic functions of their jobs and lives. The future holds many more new advances. So what are the top five advances in computer software just in the last few years that stand out in the history of computers?

Data storage and processing

Over just the last ten years, there has been a huge improvement in the amount of data that personal computers can store and process at once. When a 256 MB system used to be state of the art in computer memory, now we are lucky to have computers managing over 30 GB routinely. Thanks to the development of Microsoft Windows, computers can easily handle multiple applications running all at once. And there are many options in the storage of data, whether it is backup software, external drives or web-based storage ability – we can manage much more data than ever before thanks to these developments.

Internet applications

With the birth of the World Wide Web in the 90’s, human beings became more connected to the rest of the world than ever before. And we couldn’t have done this without software applications like Internet Explorer or Netscape to provide browsers that we use to “surf” the Net. Then came instant messaging and telephony applications that allowed us to talk with people in real time. As we move into the future, we will be even more connected via use of mobile devices like cell phones, texting units and GPS systems.


When personal computers came out, they were very clunky, albeit they included some entertainment value in the form of simple programs and games. Some could even be programmed to chime little tunes. But now, thanks to the plethora of entertainment applications, we can set up our home computers to link to our home television and music systems to enjoy a total entertainment experience. And if we want to take our entertainment with us, we have Mp3 devices to carry music and videos with us thanks to software development in that area.

Gaming industry

Just in the last ten years, the advances in the gaming industry have been tremendous. Now there are realistic virtual reality video and computer game software that creates a fully interactive experience for players. Thanks to software advances, gamers are taking their playing to the next level, competing against other players around the world in real time.

Basics of Computer Software?

Computer software is something created by programmers using a language called html. It is vital to the operation of your computer and to the things that you want to do with it everyday. In comparison to computer hardware; the software is what runs on the computer hardware. It runs to protect computer networks and systems. It also is created to tell the binary of the computer what is should do. The software is basically a program which is made up of forms and roles that are in essence digitally stored data, it might be used as code for a CPU or sometimes it represents other types of information. What makes your computer useful, is the computer software category.


It is created with programming language and utilities; they come in several different forms. Depending upon your needs software can help your small business correspond with your customers. It can keep track of inventory and even answer the phone and process orders as needed. Defining software is not easy because it is “virtual” if you like, not physical as is the case with computer hardware. There are different types of software that we would use, one may allow a main task to be carried out, for example; a program designed to edit photos, would be application software. In comparison software that is referred to as complex, will multi-task many things at the same time which help run the computer system an example would be an operating system. Maintenance is a significant part of any software system. To sum it up, software is a term used for digitally stored data or computer programs.


One of the easiest ways to get the software you need is to download it. You can download in two ways, from a disc or from a site where the software is offered. These downloads will allow you to click the button where instructed to “Download”, click on run, and then you will need to go through the prompts, sometimes called an installation wizard, and you can get your software all without a disc. If important information is given to you during this process and you are instructed to keep it for future reference, it is well advised that you do so. You may not be able to access your new software without a user name and password. So be very careful to keep this information when prompted. Some applications will also simply run when clicked on. You must also be careful what you download and that it is from a safe site and a trusted vendor. Malicious software like viruses can be downloaded into your computer and steal personal information and freeze up your computer and make it inoperable. Many downloads come in what is called a zip file and need to be extracted. Most Windows programs have extractors but if you do not there are free ones the one I use is 7zip and it is free.

Copyright protection will extend only to expressions, not to the ideas, procedures, method of operation or mathematical concepts as such as they are. There is a patent that is an exclusive right granted for an invention, which is a product or a process that provides a new way of doing something, or offers a new technical solution to a problem. That sounds very technical, so I feel it is best not to copy or distribute any software that is not your own. It should just be a rule that you should follow completely.