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What is a program?

A computer program is a set of instructions and as a term it can be used as a verb as well as a noun. In terms of a verb, it is used as a process of creating a software program by using programming language. In terms of a noun, an application, program, or application software is used to perform a specific task on the computer. For example, Microsoft PowerPoint is an application, which provides a way to create documents related to the presentation. Furthermore, a browser is also an application, which allows us to browse any website.

Difference between Applications and programs

All applications can be called a program, but a program cannot be an application. An application is a collection of programs that are designed to help the end-users to achieve a purpose. These programs communicate with each other to perform tasks or activities. It cannot exist without a program and functions to carry out end-user commands. Whereas, a program is a collection of instructions that describes the computer what task to perform.

What is the purpose of a program?

The program enables the computer to perform a particular operation. As without application software (programs), a computer is able to operate with the operating system, but it cannot perform any specific task. For example, if you want to create a Word document, you have to install Microsoft Word on your computer. It is a program or application software that instructs the computer how to create, edit, and save a document or a file.

Basic functions of a program

The function of a program depends upon the type of program. For example, the function of the Microsoft Excel program is to create, edit, and view documents related to calculation and data analysis, etc.The function of an internet browser is to find information on the World Wide Web and display it on the screen. Basically, a program is designed to execute a particular task or function. For example, an Excel program is able to create a document, but it cannot find the information on the World Wide Web like a browser.

What was the first program?

Tom Kilburn wrote the first software program to hold in electronic memory. It was successfully executed at the University of Manchester, England, on 21 June1948. This program was computed as the greatest factor of the integer 218 = 262,144. The computer was called the mall Scale Experimental Machine (SSEM), which was known as the Manchester Baby.  This occurrence is considered as the birth of the first software.

Examples of computer programs

Today, there are various types of programs available for mobile phones, computers, and other devices. The below table contains some examples of programs with their category and brief description.

Program Category Description
Google Chrome Internet Browser It is an internet browser that was introduced by Google on 11 December 2008. It is used to retrieve the information available on the World Wide Web and display it on the device screen. It provides various types of features to help the users, such as tabbed browsing, synchronization with Google services and accounts, and spell check and automatic translation of web pages. Additionally, it has a search bar or Omnibox, which allows users to search for any query.
C Programming Language It is a general-purpose programming language, which is used to develop the software. It was released in 1972 after it was developed at Bell Labs by Dennis Ritchie. It is widely used for writing complex programs such as Python, Git, Oracle database, etc.
Furthermore, it includes more features such as simple and efficient, portability, rich library, extensible, high-speed, and more.
Skype Chat and VoIP Skype is a program that allows users to chat and make VOIP (voice over internet protocol) calls anywhere in the World. A Skype user can call for free to another Skype user anywhere in the world.
Adobe Photoshop Photo Editor It is an image editing program, runs on MacOS or Windows computers.Itsupports all types of file formats as well as JPEG, Targa, GIF, BMP, HEIF, etc.It provides users many tools to create, edit, and enhance the quality of an image, including a real-life painting, create an animated GIF from an image or short video files.
Microsoft Word Word processor It is a word processor program. It was developed by Charles Simonyi and Richard Brodie, and published by Microsoft. It was introduced on 25 October 1983.You can use the Word program on Microsoft Windows, Android, Apple iOS, and Apple macOS. Furthermore, it can also be run on the Linux OS with the help of WINE.
FileZilla FTP The FileZilla is an open-source software program that allows users to transfer files from a local computer to a remote computer. It is usable as a client version as well as a server version. It includes more features, including the important features such as Transfer Queue, Site Manager, File, and Folder View, Directory Comparison.
Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet It is a software program, which provides a spreadsheet to create documents related to calculation, data analysis, and more. It is developed by Microsoft on 30 September 1985. When it was in the developing phase, its code name was Odyssey. If you want to create a monthly budget report, salary sheet, Bill order, and more, you can use the Microsoft Excel program.
Microsoft PowerPoint Presentation It is a part of Microsoft Office that is bundled with Microsoft Word and Excel. It is used to create a presentation by creating different types of slides. It is widely used in school and business presentations. For example, if you want to create a presentation of your document to show at your college or at any organization, you can use the Microsoft PowerPoint program.
Mozilla Thunderbird E-mail client It is an open-source e-mail client that allows users to send, receive, and manage their e-mail on Microsoft Windows, Linux, MacOS, and other supported systems. It provides users the option to retrieve e-mail from their e-mail provider with the help of IMAP or POP3, and users can send an e-mail by using Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP).
Norton Anti-Virus Antivirus It is an anti-virus software product that is developed for computer security by Symantec Corporation in 1991. It uses heuristics and signatures to detect viruses. Furthermore, it is distributed by Symantec as a download, copy, a box, and OEM software.
Audacity Audio software It is an open-source software program, which enables users to record sound, including edit sound clips. It can run on the MacOS, Linux, and Windows operating systems. It is available for free to use as per the General Public License (GPL).
Adobe Acrobat PDF reader It is an application software introduced by Adobe, which is used to create, view, manage, print, and manipulates files in PDF (Portable Document Format).
Comm Central Fax/Voice/Phone It is a program, which enables users to receive faxes, including receiving voicemail on their personal computers.
Adobe Dreamweaver HTML editor It is a software program that is used to design web pages and released by Macromedia in 1997. It is a full-fledged HTML and programming editor, which offers users WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) user-interface to create and edit web pages. It supports HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and XML as well as human languages such as English, French, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, etc.

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