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Agents
Software programs that can ask questions
Algorithm
A set of step-by-step instructions that
Autosave
A feature of many software applications that automatically saves your work every few minutes
Booting
Loading the non-ROM part of the operating system into memory.
Bug
An error in programming
Character Based Interface
A user interface based on text characters rather than graphics.
Clean Install
A completely new installation of an operating system or application.
Command Line Interface
User interface that requires the user to type text commands to communicate with the operating system.
Compatibility
The ability of a software program to run on a specific computer system. Also
Compiling
A translator program that translates an entire program from a high-level computer language before the program is run for the first time.
Context-Sensitive Menus
Menus offering choices that depend on the context
Contract
A type of law that covers trade secrets
Copyright
A type of law that traditionally protects forms of literary expression.
Copyrighted Software
Software that prevents a disk from being copied.
Custom Application
An application programmed for a specific purpose
Debugging
Finding and correcting errors bugs in computer software.
Defragmentation Utility
A program that eliminates fragmented files by changing the assignment of clusters to files.
Device Drivers
Small programs that allow input/output devices to communicate with the computer.
Documentation
Instructions for installing the software on a computer\'s hard disc
End-User License Agreement
An agreement typically including specifications for how a program may be used
Force Quit
A way to shut down your computer if it freezes.
File-management Utility
A program that allows you to view
Formatting
The function of software
Fragmented File
A file distributed to non-connected clusters on a disk
Graphical User Interface
A user interface based on graphical displays. With a mouse
Hierarchical Menus
Menus that organize commands into compact
Higher Level Language
A programming language that falls somewhere between natural human languages and precise machine languages
Intellectual Property
The results of intellectual activities in the arts
Java
A platform-neutral
Linux
An operating system based on UNIX
Machine Language
The language that computers use to process instructions. It uses numeric codes to represent basic computer operations
Mac OS
The operating system for the Apple Macintosh computer.
Menu
An onscreen list of command choices
Menu Driven Interface
User interface that enables users to choose commands from onscreen lists called menus.
Microsoft Windows
The most popular and powerful PC operating system; uses a graphical user interface.
Microsoft Disk Operating System (MS-DOS)
An operating system with character-based user interface; it was widely used in the 1980s and early 1990s but has been superceded by Windows.
Multitasking
Concurrent processing for personal computers. The user can issue a command that initiates a process and continue working with other applications while the computer follows through on the command.
Natural Language
Language that people speak and write every day
Open Source Software
Software that can be distributed and modified freely by users; Linux is the best-known example.
Operating System
A system of programs that performs a variety of technical operations
Patent
A type of law that protects mechanical inventions.
Pathname
The unique location specification for every computer file and folder
Platform
The combination of hardware and operating system software upon which application software is built.
Pop-up Menu
Menus that can appear anywhere on the screen.
Public Domain Software
Free software that is not copyrighted
Root Director
The main folder on a computer\'s primary hard disk
Safe Mode
A way to start your machine when it\'s not working properly because files have been corrupted or applications are clashing with each other. It will disable most startup applications temporarily.
Shareware
Software that is free for the trying
Shell
A program layer that stands between the user and the operating system.
Software Lisense
An agreement allowing the use of a software program on a single machine.
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