What Does Engine Mean?

An engine is a type of software that generates source code or markup and produces elements that begin another process, allowing real-time maintenance of software requirements. In other words, an engine is the self-actualizing element of a complete process and is, therefore, the driving motive behind the original process.


An engine also may be defined as software that facilitates automated processes, in which different software elements work interactively to minimize human intervention.

Techopedia Explains Engine

A software engine produces code that is concurrently executed by its originally invoked process. The process is entirely automatic and, unlike some computer programs, is not managed by daemons or dynamic database triggers.

An Internet form component is a perfect example of a software engine. In this case, a user opens a Web browser and completes a form, and user-provided input is displayed several pages later. The software engine generates HTML code, ordering the Web browser to schedule the display of these details on a new page.

A game engine, or set of programming modules engineered to generate and develop video games, is another example of a software engine. Game engines offer packages of visual development and reusable software elements that are typically offered in a built-in platform, enabling efficient, data-driven game development.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…