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A Chicken And Egg Situation

Apr 10, 2008
What came first - the computer or the software development? This is a good question. A computer is basically a plastic box full of electronics and is of absolutely no use unless you have the software that implements all the things you need it to do.

Remember the good old days of software development when we were all agog at the electronic game of tennis you could play on the TV or computer screen? This then gave birth to the type of software development that lead to the likes of Pac Man and Defender (signs of a mis-spent youth).

Nowadays, virtually nothing functions without the use of software development. Vast amounts of money have been made from basic packages that you can buy from any good computer store that will carry most business affairs relatively easy. Most claim to be easy to use and indeed, having worked with a salary programme, I believe they are.

Often, software development involves the devising of a programme that has all the basics according to the law of that country governing tax etc and this leaves the user free to add his own figures in relation to say, salary, and the computer programme then makes all the necessary calculations, thus removing a great deal of work for accountants too.

Of course, software developments cover a multitude of things, not just finances. There have been advancements in the field of medicine that would not have been possible if it weren't for software development. It is possible for a computer programme to work out the end result of certain situations long before things have been practically tried.

Software solutions have brought transport crashing into the twenty first century with gusto. From a virtual pedal car that we started out with, all vehicles are now electronically equipped with devices that were brought about by computer programmes.

It is standard practice for schools to work with specifically designed software that has the national curriculum already installed and children learn how to use this software from the moment they start nursery school.

Long gone are the days of computer programming or usage seen as geeky - it seems most of us could not do without them now. You would be hard pushed to find an office in the country without a fully functioning computer taking pride of place and even private homes in teh developed world have a designated place for the computer.

How we use them though varies drastically. You get the elderly woman who has been shown the basics of a computer by her grandchildren who will use it to search and save recipes or the children who collect and return homework on their own laptop.

Social lives were disappearing with our increasingly rapid lives but a complete turnaround has occurred thanks to one particular young man and his software solution that allows everyone to socialise in a virtual world.

Even sex can now be had in 'cyber space'. Cyber sex has caused many a problem for couples who see it as betrayal and deceit when their partner is conversing or watching this type of material. However, there is a market for everything.

So, along with the increasing demand for more complex computer software comes the need for computers with bigger storage capacities as we store all of our lives in this fashion, thus encouraging the business of internet crime. Software solutions are being developed constantly to try to keep our web lives secret and this will be an on-going job.
About the Author
IT expert Catherine Harvey looks at the way software development is used in the modern world.
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