- Integrated software
Integrated software is software for
personal computers that combines the most commonly used functions of many productivity software programs into one application.
The integrated software genre has been largely overshadowed by fully functional
office suites, most notably Microsoft Office, but at one time was considered the "killer application" type responsible for the rise and dominance of the IBM PCin the desktop business computing world. [cite web
url = http://www.crn.com/crn/special/supplement/816/816p71_hof.jhtml
title = Lotus 1-2-3
accessdate = 2007-12-21
author = Lee Pender
date = November 1998
work = Ten Revolutionaries of Computing
publisher = Computer Reseller News]
In the early days of the PC before
GUIs became common, user interfaces were text-only and were operated mostly by function keyand modifier keysequences. Every program used a different set of keystrokes, making it difficult for a user to master more than one or two programs. Programs were loaded from floppy disk, making it very slow and inconvenient to switch between programs and difficult or impossible to exchange data between them (to transfer the results from a spreadsheet to a word processor document for example). In response to these limitations, vendors created multifunction "integrated" packages, eliminating the need to switch between programs and presenting the user with a more consistent interface.
The potential for greater ease-of-use made integrated software attractive to home markets as well as business, and packages such as the original AppleWorks for the
Apple IIand Jane for the Commodore 128were developed in the 1980s to run on most popular home computers of the day. Context MBAwas an early example of the genre, and featured spreadsheet, database, chart-making, word processingand terminal emulationfunctions. However, because it was written in Pascal for portability, it ran slowly on the relatively underpowered systems of the day. Lotus 1-2-3, which followed it, had fewer functions but was written in assembler, providing it with a speed advantage that allowed it to become the predominant business application for personal computers. [cite web
url = http://www.dvorak.org/blog/?page_id=8250
title = Whatever Happened to Context MBA?
accessdate = 2007-12-21
authorlink = John C Dvorak
publisher = Dvorak Uncensored]
The integrated software market of today is exemplified by entry-level programs such as
Microsoft Workswhich are often bundled with personal computers as "starter" productivity suites.
Comparison of office suites
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