Software is the set of commands fed into your computer that tell it what to do. Everything that we use our computers for runs on software. If we need a new function on our computer like for example, video editing, we need to load a video editing software onto our system. In other words, we are feeding our computers with the instructions it needs to carry out the new task we need to get done.
Computer programmers or software developers write software or code. There is software for everything these days and there is a process that goes into writing the software regardless of the program it is intended for. Here’s what goes into writing software:
1. Find the purpose: The first thing that is required is to know what the purpose of the software is. Is it intended for a web browser or a picture editor, is it an anti-virus or a customer relationship management software, you need to be clear about the purpose.
2. Programming language: There are different types of programming languages including C, C++, Java, Pascal, Python, Groovy and Ruby to name just a few. Once you know what program you are writing the code for you can choose the language that best suits the requirements.
3. Note down your plan: When you start writing software it is easy to get carried away and go off track. Make sure that you note down the purpose of the final product and keep checking back to keep yourself on track.
4. The prototype: The best way to check if your software is working is to develop a prototype of your product and test it. Use the product like it was intended to be used and see how well it works. You might even decide to add or delete a feature or two depending on how it works.
5. Bug fixes: After the first set of tests you are bound to find some bugs in the code. You will have to rewrite the code in some places and then test the product again. You might have to do this a few times over before the program is running as smoothly as you intended.
7. Refine you design: On the back end the product is working perfectly but it needs to meet a certain standard before being released. Make sure the design of the product is not just pretty to look at but also functional and user friendly. The product needs to be easy to navigate and the instructions very clear.
8. Beta testing: After everything else is completed it is time for the public verdict. This is still not your final product but a test version you release to the public to see how the software performs on a large scale. You also give your users an opportunity to keep you informed of any bugs or other difficulties they might encounter.
9. The finished product: It is only when the beta testing has been completed to your satisfaction and you are sure that your product is doing well on public domains that you release the final version of your software. However writing software does not end with the release of your final product. There are always upgrades that will have to be coded to meet the changing times and every now and then a new bug might creep up which needs fixing.