As facile as this question might be in this day and age, it’s good to know the main differences even if many might think they’re too obvious to mention. Computer hardware is any physical device used in or with your machine, whereas software is a collection of codes installed onto your computer’s hard drive. For instance, the computer monitor you’re currently using to read this text and the mouse you’re using to navigate this web page is computer hardware. The Internet browser that allowed you to visit this page and the operating system that the browser is running on is considered software.
All software uses at least one hardware device to run. Take for example, a video game, which is software; it uses the computer processor (CPU), memory (RAM), hard drive, and video card to work. Word processing software uses the computer processor, memory, and hard drive to generate and save documents.
In a computer, hardware is what makes a computer work. A CPU processes data and that information can be stored in RAM or on a hard drive. A sound card can offer sound to speakers and a video card can provide an image to a monitor. All of this is hardware.
Can a computer run without hardware?
This all depends on the hardware in question. Most computers require at least a display, hard drive, keyboard, memory, motherboard, processor, power supply, and video card to properly function.
If any of these devices are absent or faulty, an error is encountered, or the computer will not start. Adding hardware such as a disc drive (e.g. CD-ROM or DVD), modem, mouse, network card, printer, sound card, or speakers are not required, but give the computer additional functionality.
On that same computer, software can be installed and let a person interact with the hardware. Operating Systems, like Windows or macOS, are software and they provide a graphical interface for people to use the computer and other software on the computer. A person can create documents and pictures using the right software.
Can a computer run without software?
In most situations, yes, a computer can operate without software being installed. Nevertheless, if an operating system or interpreter is not found on the computer, it either generates an error or doesn’t output any information.
Installing programs onto the computer along with an operating system gives the computer supplementary capacities. For example, a word processor is not required, but it allows you to create documents as well as letters.
Indubitably, we live in an age of information technology. Software is a program or set of programs that perform some specific operations. It’s good to know that there are two types of software:
1. System Software
2. Application Software
System software is a part of operating System which interface with the hardware for specific operation. Drivers, IDE, firmware and so on, are the example of System Software. On the other hand, Application Software is for augmentation of computing, and it is based on need of users.
What’s the importance of software?
Imagine trying to survive without a phone and internet for an entire day. The mere thought of it possibly suggests what’s virtually impossible in this day and age. From the moment we wake up, we start our day with an alarm clock application, and soon after checking social networking sites and emails after whilst sipping on our morning dose of caffeine.
Software is developed as a means to enhance our lives. For example, by using an e-commerce website, we are able to save money and time. Then there are many simulators which are also the kind of software which is used to test before any physical implementation. Therefore, the importance of software is in our everyday life is one that cannot be overlooked. With an ever-evolving world of technology, and services like the cloud computing, users don’t even need to download software to their computers. They can simply run programs directly from the cloud with minimal installation.
If you would like to find out more about software development in Malta, contact AIS Software today.