Software is commonly known as electronic instructions. Originally called operating software, the term now encompasses the work of mathematicians, scientists, engineers, and anyone who writes programs to provide customers with services. Writers use phones, laptops, tablets, and desktop computers to make things happen within a computer system. Today I will define what is computer software? The software also refers to a complete set of related programs that instruct in whatever way our computer or phone performs any given task; like telling it how to store information, open files and even display movies for entertainment purposes. When we buy devices we may search for useful software that makes it easier to do the things we want. It can range from how simple tasks are accomplished to very complex work designed by experts.
The software comprises the instructions set for running a computer system. A set of instructions that directs a computer’s hardware to perform a task is called software
Software is often classified as either system software or application computer software. System software controls the computer’s internal functioning and also controls external peripheral devices like printers or certain types of hardware. Application software lets a user direct the computer to execute commands and generally serves any program that processes data for a user, such as word processors, spreadsheets, and even some applications like inventory management or payroll processing software. The third class of software is network software – this type helps computers communicate if they are connected over a network (which often happens these days with cloud computing).
There are two primary kinds of computer programs: operating systems and applications. An operating system runs the hardware it’s installed on top of, overseeing the computer’s internal functions and controlling any peripherals such as printers, monitors, or storage media. Applications, by contrast, give instructions to the processor about how to execute commands inputted by the user. Some examples of this are word processors, spreadsheets, database management systems, inventory management, payroll programs, etc. from which we can infer that an example of network software is a program that provides access to computers via a computer network like the internet or private local area networks (LANs).
Software is typically stored on a computer’s external long-term memory device, such as a hard drive or magnetic diskette. The process of storing and then performing the instructions is called “running,” or “executing,” a program.
Think of software as a cake. Think of hardware as the ingredients used to make the cake. When you bake a cake, you typically store it in an external temporary memory device like a hard drive. Then you activate the software which is stored within your computer’s internal long-term memory (RAM) and proceed to combine the ingredients that are present in your kitchen cabinets with those that are stored out on the hard drive until your final product is successfully prepared. Now imagine if you had no cake ingredients in your kitchen, and instead only had software – this would be like having access only to the “firmware” or most basic building blocks of material without any tools used to make it happen! That’s what it would feel like if there were no tools specifically designated for building up operating systems or chip architecture like storage drives, keyboards, and mice for example.
In 1958, John Tukey at Bell Laboratories published a paper entitled “The Teaching of Concrete Mathematics,” wherein he introduced the term “software.” In 1990, researchers digitized every issue of JSTOR (a database that archives academic journals), and even though they found the word “software” appears 223 times earlier in 1957 than the OED cites to Wilder’s publication, the speculations over who coined the term continued. Indeed, Charles Bray and Ronald E. Martin had used the term in correspondence nearly five years before it appeared in print. Still, others claim that “software” actually occurred several years prior to software coining itself as a term in computer science (the former used for an entirely different purpose), but these speculative claims were never materialized into any sort of documentation or other records, therefore, leaving little to no understanding on where exactly this term may have come from originally
In 1958, the term ‘software‘ was first used by John Tukey in a paper about “Concrete Mathematics”, but it wasn’t until 2000 that Fred Shapiro found the earliest known usage of ‘software’ in a search of JSTOR’s electronic archives. This pushed back the history of this English language word by two years. In 1995, Paul Niquette claimed he had created the word in 1953 for IBM but could not find any documents to support his claim.