Software - Examples
Examples and types of software
Below is a list of the different kinds of software a computer may have installed with examples of related programs.
It should be noted that although software is thought of as a program, it can be anything that runs on a computer. The table below also includes a program column to clarify any software that is not a program.
||AVG, McAfee, Norton
|Audio / Music program,
||iTunes, WinAmp, Windows media Player
||Access, MySQL, SQL
||Outlook, Thunderbird, Mail
||Madden NFL Football, Quake, World of Warcraft
||Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Safari
||VLC, Windows Media Player
||Android, iOS, Linux, macOS, Windows
|Photo / Graphics program
||Adobe PhotoShop, CorelDRAW, Blender
||C++, HTML, Java, Perl, Visual Basic (VB), Python
||Flight simulator, SimCity
||Compression, Disk Cleanup, Encryption, Registry cleaner, Screen saver
What are the merits of different sources of software?
Custom written (bespoke) software:
Bespoke software is software that has been custom-developed for a particular organisation by software developers.
- Specifically designed to fit in exactly with the way the organisation wishes to operate so should give higher performance benefits than packaged software.
Can be customised to interface with other software that you operate with the potential to provide you with a fully integrated IT infrastructure across your whole organisation
- Users will usually find it easier and more intuitive to use as it should not contain unnecessary features and can be developed to operate in the way that they are used to working
- Can incorporate business processes that are specific to an organisation and which do not exist in a packaged solution
- Much more flexible than packaged software and can be modified and changed over time as your requirements and business practices change.
- Offers better support from the software developers than from packaged software developers
- Developers are able to suggest alternatives and improvements as the software is developed
- Customised nature means there is more chance of gaining an advantage over competitors
- The organisation may not have access to the source code in which case it is totally dependent upon the developer staying in business
- There is a higher risk of the software being unreliable
- The investment required will usually be much higher than with packaged software
Off the shelf (packaged) software:
Most software that is in use today is packaged, 'off the shelf' software that is designed to cover a wide range of possible uses and users. The same applications will typically be run by many thousands of users.
- Tends to be relatively cheap as the cost of development can be spread over a large number of users (compared to bespoke solutions).
- Can be very sophisticated (e.g. MS Office applications) as the sales to such a large numbers of users means that a lot of resources can be applied to it's development
- Highly complex because it is designed for a wide range of uses. This means that large sections may never be used by an organisation or a particular user
- Tends to be complex software so may take a long time for users to learn properly
- Organisations may end up changing the way they work to fit in with the way that the software has been designed
- Highly likely that some operations required by an organisation cannot be carried out because the software is not designed to do so
- Individual requests to the software developers for changes are unlikely to be met
- The same system can be bought by competitors making it is difficult to gain any competitive advantage from using it
Open source software:
- Computer software that is available in source code form for which the source code and certain other rights (normally reserved for copyright holders) are provided under a software license that permits users to study, change, and improve the software. Open source software is very often developed in a public, collaborative manner.
- Computer software that is licensed under the exclusive legal right of the copyright holder. The licensee is given the right to use the software under certain conditions, but restricted from other uses, such as modification, further (re)distribution, or reverse engineering.