program


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program

(sometimes), programme
a sequence of coded instructions fed into a computer, enabling it to perform specified logical and arithmetical operations on data

Program

A written document that defines the intended functions and uses of a building, or site, and is used to initiate and control an architectural design or preservation project.

Program

 

(1) A plan of activity or work.

(2) A statement of the basic concepts and goals of a political party (for example the Program of the CPSU), organization, or individual.

(3) A concise statement, or syllabus, describing the content of an academic course.

(4) An ordered sequence of actions for a computer that realizes an algorithm for the solution of a certain problem (see).

program

[′prō·grəm or ′prō‚gram]
(aerospace engineering)
In missile guidance, the planned flight path events to be followed by a missile in flight, including all the critical functions, preset in a program device, which control the behavior of the missile.
(communications)
A sequence of audio signals alone, or audio and video signals, transmitted for entertainment or information.
(computer science)
A detailed and explicit set of directions for accomplishing some purpose, the set being expressed in some language suitable for input to a computer, or in machine language.
(industrial engineering)
An undertaking of significant scope that is enduring rather than occurring within a limited time span.

program

A statement prepared by or for an owner, with or without an architect’s assistance, setting forth the conditions and objectives for a building project including its general purpose and detailed requirements, such as a complete listing of the rooms required, their sizes, special facilities, etc.

program

program

(1) (verb) To write the lines of code in a program.

(2) (noun) A collection of instructions that tell the computer what to do. All programs are "software," while the programs users work with (word processor, spreadsheet, Web browser, etc.) are called "applications," "application programs" or simply "apps." The programs that control the computer (operating system, driver, etc.) are "system software." See application software and system software.

All programs are written in a programming language, such as C, C++ or Java, and the statements and commands written by the programmer are converted into the computer's machine language by software called "assemblers," "compilers" and "interpreters." See assembly language, compiler and interpreter.

Instructions, Buffers, Constants and Counters
A program contains machine instructions, buffers, constants and counters. The instructions are the directions that the computer follows, and they embody the program's logic. Buffers are reserved input/output areas that accept and hold the data while being processed.

Constants are fixed values used for comparison, such as minimums, maximums and dates. Menu titles and error messages are another type of constant. Counters, also called "variables," are reserved space for summing money amounts, quantities, virtually any calculations, including those necessary to keep track of internal operations, such as how many times a function is repeated.

Input-Process-Output
The program calls for data in an input-process-output sequence. After the data have been input into one of the program's buffers from a peripheral device (keyboard, disk, etc.), they are processed. The results are output to a peripheral device (screen, printer, etc.). Permanent changes are written back to the disk.

The Application Talks to the OS
The application program, which does the actual data processing, does not instruct the computer to do everything. When it is ready for input or needs to output data, it sends a request to the operating system (OS), which performs those services and then turns control back to the application program.

The Illustration Below
Following is a highly conceptual illustration of a program residing in memory being executed. In the physical reality of memory (RAM chips), everything is binary 0s and 1s.

Although represented as uniform, black blocks in the diagram, machine instructions can be variable in length. They reside in the program in some logical order with some instructions pointing back to the beginning of routines or to other parts of the program. When they erroneously point to the wrong places, the program crashes (see abend).

For an understanding of what the computer does to process data, read about The 3 C's: calculate, compare and copy (see computer).


Anatomy of a Program
A program is made up of "data" and "processing." Buffers hold incoming and outgoing data, counters accumulate totals, and constants are values used for comparison. The instructions are executed to process the data.
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