The Info List - Computing Platform

--- Advertisement ---

A computing platform or digital platform[1] is the environment in which a piece of software is executed. It may be the hardware or the operating system (OS), even a web browser and associated application programming interfaces, or other underlying software, as long as the program code is executed with it. Computing platforms have different abstraction levels, including a computer architecture, an OS, or runtime libraries.[2] A computing platform is the stage on which computer programs can run. A platform can be seen both as a constraint on the software development process, in that different platforms provide different functionality and restrictions; and as an assistance to the development process, in that they provide low-level functionality ready-made. For example, an OS may be a platform that abstracts the underlying differences in hardware and provides a generic command for saving files or accessing the network.


1 Components 2 Operating system
Operating system

2.1 Desktop, laptop, server 2.2 Mobile

3 Software
frameworks 4 Hardware examples 5 See also 6 References 7 External links

Components[edit] Platforms may also include:

Hardware alone, in the case of small embedded systems. Embedded systems can access hardware directly, without an OS; this is referred to as running on "bare metal". A browser in the case of web-based software. The browser itself runs on a hardware+OS platform, but this is not relevant to software running within the browser.[3] An application, such as a spreadsheet or word processor, which hosts software written in an application-specific scripting language, such as an Excel macro. This can be extended to writing fully-fledged applications with the Microsoft Office
Microsoft Office
suite as a platform.[4] Software
frameworks that provide ready-made functionality. Cloud computing
Cloud computing
and Platform as a Service. Extending the idea of a software framework, these allow application developers to build software out of components that are hosted not by the developer, but by the provider, with internet communication linking them together.[5] The social networking sites Twitter
and Facebook
are also considered development platforms.[6][7] A virtual machine (VM) such as the Java virtual machine
Java virtual machine
or .NET CLR. Applications are compiled into a format similar to machine code, known as bytecode, which is then executed by the VM. A virtualized version of a complete system, including virtualized hardware, OS, software, and storage. These allow, for instance, a typical Windows program to run on what is physically a Mac.

Some architectures have multiple layers, with each layer acting as a platform to the one above it. In general, a component only has to be adapted to the layer immediately beneath it. For instance, a Java program has to be written to use the Java virtual machine
Java virtual machine
(JVM) and associated libraries as a platform but does not have to be adapted to run for the Windows, Linux
or Macintosh
OS platforms. However, the JVM, the layer beneath the application, does have to be built separately for each OS.[8] Operating system
Operating system
examples[edit] Further information: List of operating systems Desktop, laptop, server[edit]

AmigaOS, AmigaOS
4 FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD Linux Microsoft Windows OpenVMS Classic Mac OS macOS OS/2 Solaris Tru64 UNIX VM QNX


Android, a popular mobile operating system

Android Bada BlackBerry OS Firefox OS iOS Embedded Linux Palm OS Symbian Tizen WebOS Windows Mobile Windows Phone

frameworks[edit] Further information: Software

Binary Runtime Environment for Wireless (BREW) Cocoa Cocoa Touch Common Language Infrastructure
Common Language Infrastructure

Mono .NET Framework Silverlight



GNU Java platform

Java ME Java SE Java EE JavaFX JavaFX

LiveCode Microsoft XNA Mozilla Prism, XUL and XULRunner Open Web Platform Oracle Database Qt SAP NetWeaver Shockwave Smartface Universal Windows Platform

Windows Runtime


Hardware examples[edit] Further information: Lists of computers Ordered roughly, from more common types to less common types:

Commodity computing platforms

Wintel, that is, Intel x86 or compatible personal computer hardware with Windows operating system Macintosh, custom Apple Inc.
Apple Inc.
hardware and Classic Mac OS and macOS operating systems, originally 68k-based, then PowerPC-based, now migrated to x86 ARM architecture
ARM architecture
based mobile devices

iPhone smartphones and iPad tablet computers devices running iOS, also from Apple Gumstix
or Raspberry Pi
Raspberry Pi
full function miniature computers with Linux Newton devices running the Newton OS, also from Apple

x86 with Unix-like
systems such as Linux
or BSD variants CP/M
computers based on the S-100 bus, maybe the earliest microcomputer platform

Video game consoles, any variety (PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo)

3DO Interactive Multiplayer, that was licensed to manufacturers Apple Pippin, a multimedia player platform for video game console development

processor based machines running Unix variants

architecture computers running Solaris or illumos operating systems DEC Alpha
DEC Alpha
cluster running OpenVMS
or Tru64 UNIX

Midrange computers with their custom operating systems, such as IBM OS/400 Mainframe computers with their custom operating systems, such as IBM z/OS Supercomputer

See also[edit]

Cross-platform Platform virtualization Third platform


^ "What I Talk
About When I Talk
About Platforms". martinfowler.com. Retrieved 2018-03-18.  ^ "platform". Free On-line Dictionary of Computing ^ Andrew Binstock (July 2, 2012). "Google's Redefinition of the Browser As Platform". Dr. Dobbs.  ^ Chip Wilson; Alan Josephson. " Microsoft Office
Microsoft Office
as a Platform for Software
+ Services". Microsoft Developer Network.  ^ "What Is PAAS?". Interoute.  ^ " Twitter
Development Platform - Twitter
Developers".  ^ " Facebook
Development Platform Launches..." August 15, 2006.  ^ "Platform independence in Java's Byte Code". Stack Overflow. 

External links[edit]

has the property: platform (P400) (see talk; uses)

Ryan Sarver: W