Definition - What does Thread mean?

A thread, in the context of Java, is the path followed when executing a program. All Java programs have at least one thread, known as the main thread, which is created by the JVM at the program’s start, when the main() method is invoked with the main thread. In Java, creating a thread is accomplished by implementing an interface and extending a class. Every Java thread is created and controlled by the java.lang.Thread class.

When a thread is created, it is assigned a priority. The thread with higher priority is executed first, followed by lower-priority threads. The JVM stops executing threads under either of the following conditions:

  • If the exit method has been invoked and authorized by the security manager

  • All the daemon threads of the program have died

Techopedia explains Thread

Java is a multi-threaded application that allows multiple thread execution at any particular time. In a single-threaded application, only one thread is executed at a time because the application or program can handle only one task at a time.

For example, a single-threaded application may allow for the typing of words. However, this single thread requires an additional single thread allowing for the recording of keystrokes in order to type the words. Thus, a single-threaded application records the keystrokes, allowing the next single-threaded application (the typing of words) to follow.

However, a multi-threaded application allows for the handling of both tasks (recording and typing the keystrokes) within one application.

This definition was written in the context of Java.

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