Systems - Examples: Expert Astronomer, House Purchase and Mortgage
Calculator, and many, many more. These programs allow you to type in some data
and see its effect either typed or simulated on the screen.
Learning (CAL) - Examples: Success Maker, GCSE Revision Courses, Flight
Simulator. Concerned with teaching you how to do something - marks your work,
keeps a score and uses this to offer more work appropriate to your ability,
before moving you forward. Can provide simulations of real and hazardous
situations for training purposes and for the more advanced games.
Infobases - Examples: Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia, DK The Human Body.
Outputs information in the form of text, image, video and music. Not necessarily
any tools provided for input, except to provide a search facility or choices
which may be selected to guide you through the content.
Examples: Solitare, Chess, Lemmings, Doom, Star Wars. These programs often
simulate or model real or imaginary situations.
Control Software - used to program (control) external devices, eg.
traffic lights and car manufacturing where simple and repetitive tasks are
required. Often used in situations that may be hazardous, eg. bomb disposal,
paint spraying, handling radioactive substances, moon buggies, space probes,
satellites. Feedback from sensors is usually involved to finely tune the level
of control, eg. the magnetic loop on the road at traffic lights in remote rural
areas to detect the presence of a vehicle and cause the lights to change to