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Author Topic: What is the difference between a program & an application?  (Read 4506 times)

SKesselman

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What is the difference between a program & an application?
« on: March 28, 2009, 12:57:16 AM »
Please don't tell me to Google this; I did, & am more confused now than ever.
Besides, I'd rather have it explained to me by DCers.

Thanks!
-Sarah

mouser

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Re: What is the difference between a program & an application?
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2009, 01:14:30 AM »
nothing, the terms are used interchangeably.

SKesselman

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Re: What is the difference between a program & an application?
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2009, 01:41:05 AM »
Thanks, Mouser. Straight from the horse's mouth.  :Thmbsup:
Here's where I started to pull my hair out, in case you're interested.
-Sarah

mouser

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Re: What is the difference between a program & an application?
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2009, 01:49:10 AM »
I suppose when someone uses the term "application", you can probably assume they are talking about something "non-trivial."

Wheras a tiny little utility or snippet of code would be more likely to be called a "program".

i.e. all applications are programs, but the tiniest of programs probably wouldnt be called "applications".

SKesselman

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Re: What is the difference between a program & an application?
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2009, 02:03:56 AM »

i.e. all applications are programs, but the tiniest of programs probably wouldnt be called "applications".


But, what are mobile apps compared to say, Excel or Access? Small & tiny, no?
-Sarah

nosh

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Re: What is the difference between a program & an application?
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2009, 02:18:37 AM »
A program = a set of instructions, an application = the end result

which fits in somewhat with mouser's explanation, which is more realistic/practical.


In general, x determines whether a software is an application or a program

if (lines of code * programmer's ego) > x
software = application
else
software = program.

cranioscopical

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Re: What is the difference between a program & an application?
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2009, 08:01:44 AM »
My my, the state of education today  :(

A program is something that comes on the television and an application is what you make when asking for a loan.


Eóin

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Re: What is the difference between a program & an application?
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2009, 08:34:43 AM »
Of course a program not considered big enough to qualify as an application could be just called an app :harhar:

40hz

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Re: What is the difference between a program & an application?
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2009, 10:54:42 AM »
None. It's just marketing.

Maybe I'm mistaken, but if I recall correctly, it was primarily Apple that first started referring to what Macintosh computers ran as "Applications."

Mainframes, minicomputers, and PC's ran programs. Macintoshes ran applications.

Up until then, people just used the term "program" for everything. But that was before they knew any better. ;) ;D





« Last Edit: March 28, 2009, 10:57:08 AM by 40hz »

ewemoa

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Re: What is the difference between a program & an application?
« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2009, 04:48:56 PM »
FWIW, there's a Wikipedia article that contains a couple of off-line references:

  https://secure.wikim...Application_software

May be those have some information regarding the history of the term (I didn't notice anything within the article during a quick scan of it)...