What is Software Development?
The Nucleus: Software, Software Development, and Its Kinds
If you clicked on this article, you probably wanted to know what exactly people mean when they say software and software development. We’re going to try and explain these concepts so that by the end of this blog, even if you had no idea what software means, you’ll be a lot more informed. Without further ado, let’s dive into what software development is and its broad classifications.
What is Software Development?
Software development is the creation of technological products. Specifically, it is the creation and development of computer programs. If you understand that, skip this paragraph. If you didn’t, keep reading. We’re going to break down the basics for you.
Now, what is software and how does it work?
Software can be defined as a set of instructions that tell a computer what to do when it receives a command from the end-user.
Picture this. You were gifted a battery-operated train set. The first thing you’ll do (apart from ripping open the wrapper and admiring the packaging) is assemble the tracks and insert the batteries inside the train. After placing it on the tracks, you’ll flip the “on” button. The train spins around the tracks till you decide you’ve had enough entertainment and switch it off.
Using this analogy, the tracks and train are your computer’s hardware. The battery is the software and the “on” flip is the command. When your train receives a command i.e. when it is powered on, the train runs over the tracks with the help of the battery.
Similarly, when you (the end-user) give your computer a task or a command, the software translates it into a language that the hardware can easily read to effectively perform said task. Hardware requires software to perform tasks for your computer. Without the software, hardware is meaningless and vice-versa.
Phew! That was a lot. Now that you’ve understood what software is, how it works and why it is important, let’s move on to what software development means.
How does software development work?
Software development is the process of creating software for a particular use. It is created for computers, smartphones, and other devices depending on a client’s needs. IBM defines software development as “creating, designing, deploying and supporting [existing] software.”
Using our train analogy, software development is the process of creating the battery and making sure it is fit to help the train run.
Therefore, someone who creates software is called a software engineer or a software developer. Put simply, the role of a software engineer is to write a bunch of code using a programming language. The resulting code is used by the host device to perform tasks. Many components make good software. Hitch-free performance, aesthetic design, user-friendly experience, and security are a few features of premium quality software.
The process of creating software is called the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). It is a phase-by-phase procedural framework of international standards that companies typically use to develop world-class software. For a more in-depth explanation of the software development life cycle, read our blog on it here.
We’ve nailed down what software and software development mean. Let’s wrap things up with one more important nugget of information:
The Different Kinds of Software
Software has multiple divisions and branches. It can, however, be broadly split into three categories.
- System software: This type of software is developed for computers and smartphones to efficiently run the device. It is commonly known as an operating system or OS. The most popular operating systems in the world are Windows, iOS, and Android.
This type of software is used by your computer to understand the command or task you have given. The OS acts as a liaison between the computer’s hardware and the end-user. System software also includes storage systems, networks, and databases.
2. Application software: As the name suggests, application software is built specifically for apps to effectively run on your computers, smartphones or the web. The quality of application software is reflected in its design, user experience, and overall functioning. Application software is commonly developed for music player apps (Spotify, Apple Music), web browsers (Chrome, Safari, Firefox), photo-editing tools (Photoshop, Canva), software-as-a-service (SAAS) products like booking engines, office productivity suites among others.
3. Programming Language: This type of software is used by coders to create brand-new software. It is created using a programming language of choice. Programming software helps software developers develop new software. Simplified, it is software that helps developers create other software. Tools such as text editors, compilers, linkers, and debuggers are a few examples of programming software.
Arcitech – Trusted Software Development Company in Mumbai
Among the many feathers in our cap, we consider software development to be one. With a collaborative experience of over 20 years, our competitive team can develop any kind of software for your business. Customisations, sophisticated technology, a data-driven development model, and the singular aim of providing the best quality are a few of our specialities. With our world-class software, your business can discover previously untapped areas. To know what kinds of software we develop, visit our Development page here.