terminal emulator

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terminal emulator

A program that allows a computer to act like a (particular brand of) terminal, e.g. a vt-100. The computer thus appears as a terminal to the host computer and accepts the same escape sequences for functions such as cursor positioning and clearing the screen.

xterm is a terminal emulator for the X Window System.
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terminal emulation

Using hardware or software in a desktop computer to make it perform like a terminal to a minicomputer or mainframe. Popular in the 1980s when a central computer such as an IBM or DEC mainframe was the common type of server. VT100-500 terminals and 3270 terminals were commonly emulated for DEC and IBM respectively. See 3270 emulator, twinax card, virtual terminal and xterm.

The IBM 3270 Terminal Emulator
This "IRMA" plug-in card from Digital Communications Associates was used to connect PCs and Mac computers to an IBM 3274 terminal controller for mainframe connectivity.
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