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English

Etymology

From soft +‎ -ware, by contrast with hardware (the computer itself). Coined 1953 by Paul Niquette;[1] first used in print by John Tukey 1958.

Pronunciation

(file)

Noun

 
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Wikipedia

software (uncountable)

  1. (computing) Encoded computer instructions, usually modifiable (unless stored in some form of unalterable memory such as ROM).
    • 1958, John W. Tukey, "The Teaching of Concrete Mathematics" in The American Mathematical Monthly, vol. 65, no. 1 (Jan. 1958), pp 1-9:
      The "software" comprising the carefully planned interpretive routines, compilers, and other aspects of automative programming are at least as important to the modern electronic calculator as its "hardware" of tubes, transistors, wires, tapes and the like.
    • 1995, Paul Niquette, Softword: Provenance for the Word ‘Software’:
      As originally conceived, the word "software" was merely an obvious way to distinguish a program from the computer itself. A program comprised sequences of changeable instructions each having the power to command the behavior of the permanently crafted machinery, the "hardware."

Usage notes

Software is a mass noun (some software, a piece of software). By non-native speakers it is sometimes erroneously treated as a countable noun (a software, some softwares).

Hyponyms

  • See also Thesaurus:software
  • Derived terms

    Related terms

    Descendants

    • Amharic: ሶፍትዌር (softwer)

    Translations

    See also

    References

    1. ^ "Part 0. Introduction: The Software Age", Softword: Provenance for the Word 'Software', 2006 by Paul Niquette, →ISBN, adapted from article first published in 1995 in author’s magazine, Sophisticated: The Magazine, →ISBN (archival links)

    Anagrams


    Czech

    Etymology

    Borrowed from English software.

    Noun

    software m

    1. (computing) software

    Declension

    Synonyms

    Derived terms

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    Further reading


    Dutch

    Etymology

    From English software.

    Pronunciation

    Noun

    software m (uncountable)

    1. software (encoded computer instructions)
      Synonym: programmatuur

    Derived terms

    Related terms


    Italian

    Etymology

    Borrowed from English software.

    Noun

    software m (invariable)

    1. (computing) software (encoded computer instructions)

    Related terms


    Norman

    Etymology

    Borrowed from English software.

    Noun

    software m (uncountable)

    1. (Jersey, computing) software (encoded computer instructions)

    Portuguese

    Etymology

    Borrowed from English software.

    Noun

    software m (plural softwares)

    1. (computing) software (encoded computer instructions)

    Related terms


    Romanian

    Etymology

    Borrowed from English software.

    Noun

    software n (plural (rare) software-uri)

    1. (computing) software (encoded computer instructions)

    Declension

    Synonyms

    Related terms


    Spanish

    Etymology

    Borrowed from English software.

    Pronunciation

    Noun

    software m (plural softwares)

    1. (computing) software (encoded computer instructions)

    Synonyms

    Derived terms

    Expressions

    See also