process

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process,

in law: see procedureprocedure,
in law, the rules that govern the obtaining of legal redress. This article deals only with civil procedure in Anglo-American law (for criminal procedure, see criminal law).
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process

[′prä‚ses]
(anatomy)
A projection from the central mass of an organism.
(computer science)
To assemble, compile, generate, interpret, compute, and otherwise act on information in a computer.
A program that is running on a computer.
(engineering)
A system or series of continuous or regularly occurring actions taking place in a predetermined or planned manner to produce a desired result.

process

1. Law
a. a summons, writ, etc., commanding a person to appear in court
b. the whole proceedings in an action at law
2. Biology a natural outgrowth or projection of a part, organ, or organism
3. Computing a distinct subtask of a computer system which can be regarded as proceeding in parallel with other subtasks of the system
4. Film, TV denoting a film, film scene, shot, etc., made by techniques that produce unusual optical effects

process

1. <operating system, software> The sequence of states of an executing program. A process consists of the program code (which may be shared with other processes which are executing the same program), private data, and the state of the processor, particularly the values in its registers. It may have other associated resources such as a process identifier, open files, CPU time limits, shared memory, child processes, and signal handlers.

One process may, on some platforms, consist of many threads. A multitasking operating system can run multiple processes concurrently or in parallel, and allows a process to spawn "child" processes.

process

(1) To manipulate data in the computer. The computer is said to be processing no matter what action it is taking upon the data; whether the data are actually being updated in a database or just being displayed on screen.

In order to evaluate a computer system's performance, the time it takes to process data internally is often analyzed separately from the time it takes to get it in and out of the computer. The I/O (input/output) is usually more time consuming than the processing. For an explanation of how the computer processes data, see "Processing" under the term computer. See also process technology.

(2) Software running in the computer. When a computer is booted, numerous processes are started. Some are parts of the operating system, while others are applications that have been designated to run at startup. In a Windows computer, pressing Ctrl-Alt-Del launches the Task Manager, which displays all running processes. In the Mac, the Activity Monitor in the Applications/Utilities folder shows the processes. See Windows processes.