Chapter 4: Application Software: Programs That Let you Work and Play
The Nuts and Bolts of Software
**A computer system does nothing without software
What is Software?
Software: refers to a set of instructions that tells the computer what to so
Program: an instruction set that provides a means for us to interact with and use
the computer
Two types
1. Application software: software used to do tasks at home, school and work
a. Productivity: word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, database,
personal finance, note taking
b. Media: image, audio, and video editing, media management
c. Home/Entertainment: gaming, education, drawing
d. Business: home, large, and specialized business
2. System software: software such as Windows and Mac OS X, which help run
the computer and coordinate instructions between application software and
the computer’s hardware devices
a. Includes: operating system and utility programs
Productivity Software for Home and Office
Productivity software: includes programs that enable you to perform various tasks
required at home, school, and business.
Word Processing Software
What is the best software to use to create general documents?
Word processing software: used to create and edit documents
Are there free of more affordable alternatives?
Open source software: is a program code that is publically available and has few
- OpenOffice and AbiWord becoming popular because they are free
Proprietary software: neither free nor open source
Web-based applications: can be accessed from any computer that has an Internet
connection, are great for collaborating and coordinating input from a variety of
users on a single document
How do I control the way my documents look?
By using the formatting options
- Font sizes and styles, add color to text, adjust margins, add borders, insert
bulleted and numbered lists, organize text into columns, insert pictures, add
graphics, etc
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What special tools do word processing programs have?
Most applications come with spelling and grammar checks and a thesaurus
Search-and-replace tool allows you to search for text in document and
automatically replace it with other text
Can translate words or phrases into another language
Spreadsheet Software
Why would I need to use spreadsheet software?
Spreadsheet software: (Microsoft Excel) enables you to do calculations and
numerical analysis easily
How do I use spreadsheet software?
Basic element is the worksheet consisting of columns and rows
- Form individual boxes called cells
- Can enter several types of data into a cell
o Text: any combinations of letters, numbers, symbols, and spaces
o Values: numerical data, often used for calculations
o Formulas: equations that you build yourself using addition,
subtraction, multiplication and division
o Functions: formulas that are preprogrammed into the spreadsheet
Primary benefit of spreadsheet software is its ability to recalculate all functions and
formulas in the spreadsheet automatically when vales for some of the inputs change
What-if-analysis: can quickly test different assumptions in the same analysis
What kinds of graphs and charts can I create with spreadsheet software?
Easier to see meaning of numerical information when shown in graphical format
such as a chart
Types of charts (can have 3D effects)
1. Basic column charts
2. Pie charts
3. Line charts
4. Stock charts
5. Scatter charts
6. Custom charts
7. Sparklines
Are spreadsheets used for anything besides financial analysis?
Programs can often solve problems that formerly required custom programming
Many spreadsheet applications also have database capabilities and can sort, filter,
and group data
Presentation Software
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What software do I use to create presentations?
Presentation software: used to create dynamic slide shows
- Can produce high-quality presentations without a lot of training
- Can embed online videos, change colors, add effects, trim video clips without
the need for a separate video editing program
How do I create a presentation?
Slide layouts: give the option of using a single or double column of bulleted text,
various combinations of bulleted text, clip aft, graphs, photos, video clips
Can have a theme to presentation by choosing a design template
Can use animation effects
Can add slide transitions and effects
Database Software
How can I use database software?
Database software: powerful applications that allow you to store and organize data
Spreadsheet applications include database features
- Can be used for sorting, filtering, and organizing data
Are organized into data catagories
- Fields: “First Name” “Last Name”
- Records: collection of related fields
- Tables: group related records
How do you benefit when businesses use database software?
Online databases allow customers to track status of a package
Businesses use databases to keep track of clients, invoices, personal information
Note Taking Software
Is there software to help students with note taking?
There are many programs that help students organize and maintain lecture notes
Microsoft OneNote allows students with Tablet PCs to write their notes directly
onto the tablet using an electronic notebook
Are there free or portable note taking applications?
Evernote allows you to take notes via the Web, your phone, or your computer and
then sync your notes between the Web, your phone and any computer
- Can save text, audio and images
Stickynotes are digital equivalents to paper sticky notes
Personal Information Manager (PIM) Software
Which applications should I use to manage my time, contact lists, and tasks?
Ex. Microsoft Office, Lotus Organizer, Chandler
- Strive to replace management tools found on the traditional desk
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