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25 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back

Application Software

Software used by the user to carry out a particular task (e.g. write an essay, email etc)

System Software

Performs tasks needed to operate the hardware

Utility Programs

Programs that perform a specific task related to running the computer. (such as a hard-disk de-fragmenter or unzipper)

Library programs

A collection of code, data and resources that can be called by other programs.


Software that converts programming language instructions into machine code.

(compilers, assemblers and interpreters.)


Takes the source code and translates it into object code.


Takes each mnemonic assembly instruction and translates it to its binary equivalent.


Analyses and executes each line of high-level language program by calling the relevant pre-compiled routines to carry out each instruction.

Advantages of Compilers

The resulting object code from a compiler will run faster than interpreted code as no translation needs to take place during run-time

it is difficult for someone with the object code to work out the original source code.

Advantages of Interpreters

You don't have to wait for the code to compile before running it, allowing for developers to test their code as they make it.

The program can be run on different processors with different instruction sets as it is translated each time it is executed.

Byte Code

Java is compiled into byte-code which is interpreted at run time using a JVM. This allows it to run on any platform with java installed without having to make changes to the code for different platforms.

Operating System Software

Software designed to act as an interface between the user and the computer while hiding the complexities of the hardware from the user and other software.

Virtual Machine

The concept that all complexities of using a computer are hidden from the user and other software by the operating system.


Each task is allocated a time slice so that they're each given an equal amount of processing time. This allows different programs to run on the computer at the same time.

Memory Management

A function of the operating system that moves processes back and forth between the disk and the main memory

Operating System Tasks

The operating system is responsible for resource management. This includes memory management, file management and managing I/O devices.

Virtual Memory

When there is not enough main memory to allocate a process to, the program is kept in secondary storage. The operating system treats that part of the hard disk as though it were RAM.

Imperative Languages

A language based on giving the computer commands or procedures to follow.

Declarative Languages

Languages that specify what properties a result should have.

Object-Orientated Languages

Data and instructions are encapsulated together into objects.

High-Level language

A language that allows programs to be written using English keywords and that is platform independent.

Low-Level language

Machine code and assembly language.

Advantages of high-level languages

Easier for a programmer to identify what a command does as the keywords are more like a natural language.

They are portable, and can be compiled to run on many different platforms.

Programs made in them are quicker to write and can be made more complex in a shorter amount of time a one high level language statement may be represented by a whole series of machine code instructions.

Disadvantages of Compilers

Each time you want to test your source code, all of the code must be compiled making it longer to debug.

Object code will only run on a computer that has the same platform as the one it was compiled in.

Disadvantages of Interpreters

The code can only be translated and executed on a machine that has the interpreter installed.

The time to execute a program is far longer as each statement must be translated as the program is executed.