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Computers and Program Types

There are really only two types / technologies of programs ...... those that run in their own shell (window), and those that run in a Browser shell (Window). But there is more to this ......

Computers originally consisted of a Main (frame) computer where all the programs resided and where all the processing was done, and (dumb) terminals that merely provided input to the computer (keyboard), and output from the computer (screen) to the user.
In the early 1980's, the concept of a Personal Computer (PC) was brought onto the market by IBM, quickly followed by a host of other manufacturers as the concept popularized computers for the masses. Apart from the convenience of having your own (desktop) computer and managing what was on it, the approach shifted to where it was no longer a (dumb) terminal.

It was not long before people wanted to inter-connect all these desktop computers, and in the late 1980's the concept of Networking was born where information on one computer could be accessed from another (networked) computer. It also allowed programs and information to be stored on a central computer, and accessed from other computers ..... notice the tendancy to return to the notion of a central MainFrame computer. All programs at this stage ran on the user's computer, using it's CPU, Hard Disk, etc. (so it was hardly just a dumb terminal).

Then came 'Windows', which really only provided a more colourful presentation, but also gave user the ability of running and viewing more than one program simultaneously (hence the name Windows).

Then came the Internet which was nothing more than linking computers over long distances / across the world using telephone lines, but required a different technology.
A further development called the World Wide Web using HTML as it's basis, made communications even easier, with one important difference ...... it ran inside a Browser, rather than in it's own Shell ..... hence the 2nd type of program. It is however important to note that the processing happens on the Web Server, and the information that appears on the user's computer screen is sent. The most common program by far can be identified by the extension .htm or .html.
- These programs could be enhanced using JavaScript or JScript (Microsoft), commonly referred to as JS.

The above Browser Type program was however limited, and soon major programming software companies developed programs that could execute more complicated instructions, but still only render the necessary code to display on the screen of the client. These are referred to as Server-Side (processing) programs, and have file extensions like aspx, php, etc.....

And that in simple terms is the present state of Program Types.