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Software Application

Software application or app is a program developed for direct interaction with the user and that performs certain specific tasks.

The application cannot run on itself: to execute it, it needs the preinstalled operating system. Apps include such things as word processors, database programs, spreadsheets, and Web browsers.
The main differences between an Application Software, System Software, and a Program:

  • Application software is designed to help users perform tasks.
  • System software is a set of programs that manage components of a computer, such as a processor, RAM, I/O devices, network equipment, acting as an "interlayer interface,"with hardware on the one hand, and user applications on the other.
  • Program - A set of rules to tell the computer what to do.

All apps are programs, but a program may not be an app. For example, there are many programs, which are not developed for the end user, but are running on the background of an operating system to perform some technical tasks, like security or the backup of data.

Applications are written in programming languages, specially for each operating system.

Types

  • Software applications for enterprises and organizations. These can be used for financial management or supply chains. This also includes departmental software for small businesses, as well as software for individual units within a large enterprise. Such as transport cost management, IT support services.
  • Enterprise infrastructure software. Provides general opportunities for enterprise software support. These are database management systems, e-mail servers, network management and security.
  • Knowledge worker software. Serves the needs of individual users in information creation and management. For example, text editors, spreadsheets, client programs for e-mail and blogs, personal information systems and media editors.
  • Software for accessing content. It is used to access certain programs or resources without editing them (but it can also include the editing function). Designed for groups or individual users of digital content. For example, media players, web browsers, auxiliary browsers, etc.
  • Educational content software. This is close to media and entertainment software. But unlike it, there are clear requirements for testing user knowledge and tracking progress in learning about a particular material. Many educational programs include functions of joint use and multilateral cooperation.
  • Simulation software. Used to simulate physical or abstract systems for research, training or entertainment purposes.
  • Software tools in the media field. Provide the needs of users who produce printed or electronic media resources for other consumers, on a commercial or educational basis. These are programs for printing, layout, multimedia processing, HTML editors, digital animation editors, digital audio, and so on.
  • Applications for design and development. Used in the development of hardware and software. Cover computer-aided design (CAD), computer aided engineering (CAE), editing and compilation of programming languages, Integrated Development Environments (IDE) programs.

To summarise, by creating the application, programmers provide the user with a convenient tool to realize some tasks, which can be difficult or inconvenient to implement with the standard functionality of existing software.

Additional Terms
AppStore
is an application store accessed via iTunes containing various apps for iPhone smartphones, iPod Touch, iPad tablets, and also for Mac personal computers and allowing to buy them or download for free. Similar to Google Play for Android applications. The App Store offers more than 1.5 million apps for iPhone and iPod Touch and about 1 million for the iPad; The number of downloads exceeded 100 billion; The user base is about 575 million. Applications are divided into many categories, including games and social networking apps. Costs for an App range from $ 0.99 to $ 9.99, and significantly more for professional software. However, most apps are distributed through the App Store for free. The store is supervised by Apple experts. Each application is equipped with a special electronic certificate. If somebody starts to commit illegal actions with the purchased program, they will remove it from the database, and developers will be "severely reprimanded". Revenues from sales of apps are distributed as follows - the authors receive 70%, Apple collects 30% of the share in order to maintain the store. Officially, Apple claims that they don’t intend to make money on sales. Developers also have an opportunity to release free apps. It is also interesting that all purchased programs can be registered in iTunes to download all the new updates. In the iPod Touch, the App Store service works when you connect to the Internet via Wi-Fi. So users can buy and download apps through the wireless network from anywhere. Applications are available either for free or have a certain cost which is charged from the user's account in the iTunes Store. The App Store will promptly notify the user about the latest updates, which happens regularly. The App Store service is available in iTunes for both Macs and personal computers, wherein apps are synchronized with the iPhone or iPod Touch via a USB interface.
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BYOA (Build your own application)
BYOA (Build your own application) is a fast-growing trend for people who have no programming skills to create software applications via platforms. It works as a constructor, consisting of easy to build features, which can be integrated into semi-customised app. Factors driving the BYOA trend include the consumerization of IT, the growing mobile application market, and the increasing availability of easy-to-use development platforms. Non-technical users can create apps for personal or business use or sell them through application stores. Application development platforms are such websites as BuildAnApp, Podio, and Force.com. In its simplest form, a user-designed program can be an application that replaces a worksheet with a better interface and improved functionality. However, most platforms offer several options to accommodate users of varying skill levels. BYOA also means Bring Your Own Application (sometimes called BYOD = bring your own device), which is the tendency for employees to use third-party apps and cloud services in the workplace. Today it is not so important whether employees use a corporate laptop and smartphone, or they bring their own devices. The working environment is at the discretion of the end user. Starting with instant messengers and ending with office suites, people themselves choose tools that help them cope with work a lot quicker and easier. This changes both business processes within companies and the corporate software market How BYOA Affect the Mobile App Development? While BYOA contributes to the efficient organization of the work environment, both in the office and beyond, developers have to consider every aspect related to the issue of security, as business leaders are becoming increasingly interested in the quality of applications used by their employees. The main feature of BYOA is that a significant amount of data is stored in the cloud. And the corporate data is located next to the personal data of employees on the same device. To a certain extent, this is an inconvenience for companies, since information is no longer contained within the local physical system. And there is an additional requirement for developers - to create sufficiently reliable security protocols that can protect enterprise data against various mobile threats.
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Framework
is the skeleton of the software system (or subsystem). It includes code libraries, auxiliary programs, programming language and other software that facilitates the programming and integration of various components of a large project. Usually, the union is due to the use of a single API. Examples: web frameworks like PHP frameworks Zend Framework and Symfony, or Django, written in Python. "Framework" differs from the “library” in that the latter can be used in a software product simply as a set of subprograms of similar functionality, without affecting the architecture of the software product and without imposing any restrictions on it. While the "framework" dictates the rules for building the architecture of an app, setting the default behavior at the initial stage of development - the "framework," which will need to be expanded and changed, according to the specified requirements. The Application Framework One of the main advantages of using "frameworks" in applications is that such items speed up the development of the software. Some examples of frameworks are the "standard" solution for printing documents, email processing, which can be integrated in the structure of the app. "Frameworks" became popular with the advent of graphical user interfaces (GUI). One of the first commercial app frameworks was MacApp, written by Apple for Macintosh. Originally created with the help of an extended (object-oriented) version of the language Object Pascal, it was subsequently rewritten to C ++. The examples of application frameworks are: Cocoa for Mac OS X, as well as free frameworks that exist as part of Mozilla, GNOME, OpenOffice.org, and KDE projects. Microsoft had a similar product for Windows, called Microsoft Foundation Classes (MFC). At the moment, the main Microsoft product for software development is the .NET Framework. Cross-platform app frameworks (for Macintosh, Linux, and Windows operating systems) are, for example, widget toolkit, wxWidgets, Qt, MyCoRe or FOX toolkit help the developers to create the applications, providing convenient facilities for coding and testing. Together with the updates in the operational system editions, new versions of popular frameworks are developed to support the advanced features of OS. Modern frameworks must be used as a complementary sets for the development. Control of version matching is a part of testers work in quality assurance.  
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Additional Terms of App development
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Artificial neural network (ANN)
Artificial neural network (ANN) is a group of neuron nodes, interconnected with each other. Every circular node works as an artificial neuron that exchanges information with each other, similar to the functional principles of biological neural networks. The whole system is termed ANN. The main advantage of artificial neural network implementation lies in the ability to perform complex mathematical modelling for emulation. This helps scientists to predict different processes and trends based on the visualisation of these models. ANN is a simple system of processors (artificial neuron), in which neurons connect and interact reciprocally with each other. Each neuron periodically receives signals and sends them to others. By connecting to a reasonably large network of similar neurons, these single processors can perform quite complex actions. From the point of view of machine learning, neural networks are special cases of discriminant analysis, pattern recognition and grouping methods. From the mathematical point of view, the learning of neural networks is a multiparameter problem of nonlinear optimization. From the development of computation and programming, neural networks are a way to solve efficient parallel problems. From a cybernetic perspective, neural networks are used for problems of adaptive control and robotic algorithms. From the point of view of artificial intelligence, neural networks are the basis of the philosophy of connectionism and the main direction of the structural methods of using computer algorithms to establish the possibility of natural intelligence. Neural networks are not just programmed, but are also well trained. The possibility of ‘learning’ is one of the main advantages of ANN over traditional algorithms. Stages of problem solving Data collection for training; Selection of network topology; Preparation and normalization of data; Experimental selection of training parameters; Experimental selection of network characteristics; Actually learning; Checking the adequacy of training; Adjustment of parameters, final training; Verbalization of the network for further use. Technically, ‘learning’ is to find the coefficient connection  between neurons. During this process, the neural network is able to detect complex dependencies between data input and output and perform generalization. This means that if training succeeds, the network can return the correct results based on data not provided in training samples and incomplete and / or "noisy" and partially distorted data. So, with the help of the ANN we can predict the most probable event. For the business environment, such operations are vital in the financial, medical, construction and any decision-making field.
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SSL Certificate
(identity certificate, digital certificate) is a set of data, that adds a cryptographic key to the domain’s details and allows secure connections from a server to a browser. When installed on a web server, it activates the https protocol and the padlock to protect the user’s data from public access. Such a certificate is needed, first of all, to protect your personal information, while communicating with banks, payment systems and other organizations working with personal data - to protect transactions and prevent unauthorized access to your banking card details, passwords and other confidential data. When a certificate is installed on your server, HTTP (application protocol) is changed to HTTPs, where the ‘S’ stands for ‘secure’. Depending on the type and the browser you are using, you will see a padlock or green bar when you visit a website with SSL Certificate installed. Usually this contains the following information: the domain name for which the SSL certificate is issued; legal entity that owns it; the physical location of the holder (city, country); validity period; details of the company providing it; This confirms that the domain belongs to a real company and that its owner has the right to use the private key legally. Types of SSL Certificates Domain Validation - these are entry-level certificates, and are the most common in the world. The issuing speed varies from 2 to 10 minutes, depending on the brand. To obtain such a certificate no special documents are required. These are suitable for small sites and projects, when there is no need for a lot of trust from customers and site visitors. You need to confirm ownership of the domain: Verification via e-mail (DCV Email) - the certificate authority sends a verification letter, with a link to confirm domain ownership. Such a letter can be sent either to the email address specified in the Whois of your domain, or to one of the golden five: admin@, administrator@, hostmaster@, postmaster@, webmaster@ of your site; DNS record checking (DNS NAME) is a way for those who have a mail server set up, and Whois mail is closed by private registration. You need to create a special entry in your DNS, and the certification authority will verify it. The method is fully automatic; Verification using a hash file (HTTP CSR Hash) - the user will be provided with a special .txt file that must be uploaded to his server, the certificate authority will confirm it and the certificate will be issued. The method is fully automatic. Business Validation - these certificates are relevant for those who are thinking about trusting their products, companies and services, as the certificate authority performs a more thorough check. It is necessary to send the company documents, go through the process of "calling back" to the corporate phone. SSL certificates with Extended Validation - only EV certificates will provide the site with a green address bar in the browser. Most often, such certificates can be found at banks, online systems with a large number of visitors. SSL certificates with subdomain support (Wildcard) is a very convenient certificate when it comes to protecting a large number of subdomains within one domain. It can protect any number of subdomains on an unlimited number of servers. SAN SSL certificates are single communication certificates that can protect multiple domains, subdomains, local domains and servers. These certificates work with both external and internal domain names. Why does your company need a SSL Certificate Without SSL certificate all the information, including your name, login, password, and even banking card details, is transferred from your computer to a remote source is publically available. SSL certificate is protecting your private data with the help of cryptography, helping you to: Keep secure data exchange between servers Create/enhance the customers’ loyalty Increase the buyers’ trust and conversion rate
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IFTTT (If This Then That)
IFTTT (If This Then That) is an online service ifttt.com for creating automatic actions or “recipes”. Each “recipe” consists of two parts: the event at which the recipe is triggered, and the action that occurs in the case of this event. To implement the automation users do not need to have technical or programming knowledge. There are pre settings for almost everything, which can be realised via user interface. Examples: IF @user on Instagram posted a photo, THEN save the image to Dropbox; IF tomorrow is expected 0 ° C in London, THEN notify me; IF a child is out of school, THEN send me a letter. Over the years of its existence, more than a hundred services and applications have been integrated with IFTTT in which events can be monitored and actions created: Instagram, Feed, Dropbox, Slack, Ebay, Pocket, Blogger, Box, Evernote, Gumroad, Fitbit, Soundcloud and others. When using IFTTT, it is important not to waste energy on “reinventing the wheel”, because there are thousands of ready-made “recipes” in the site collection: Mail IF Gmail receives a new email with an attachment, THEN save this attachment to Dropbox. IF Gmail receives a new email, THEN save it as a note in Evernote. If Gmail received a letter with order confirmation from Amazon, THEN save the letter as a note in Evernote. IF there is a new letter in the Gmail inbox marked as important, then add this letter to the to-do list in Todoist. IF a new photo appeared in my Instagram account, THEN send it to a certain email address. Social Networks IF I like the photo on Instagram, THEN save this photo on Google Drive. IF a new photo is published on my Instagram, THEN post this photo on Twitter. IF profile photo has changed on Facebook, THEN set the same profile photo to Twitter. IF a new photo appeared on my Instagram, THEN add it to my Pinterest board. IF I posted a new link on Facebook, THEN post the same link on Twitter. Other Services IF it’s a certain time, THEN send messages to a certain Slack channel. IF a certain article in Wikipedia is updated, THEN send me a notification about it. IF the parcel has changed its location, THEN mark this event in Google Calendar. IF frost is expected, THEN send me an email stating that I need to cover the plants. All the above mentioned actions can be changed and customised to fit your needs. To do this, add a “recipe” to your profile and click on the pencil icon to open the edit page. For example, in the finished “rule” you can replace Dropbox with Box, Google Calendar with Outlook Calendar, or Evernote with Onenote.
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