Interoperability

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What Does Interoperability Mean?

Interoperability is the property that allows for the unrestricted sharing of resources between different systems. This can refer to the ability to share data between different components or machines, both via software and hardware, or it can be defined as the exchange of information and resources between different computers through local area networks (LANs) or wide area networks (WANs). Broadly speaking, interoperability is the ability of two or more components or systems to exchange information and to use the information that has been exchanged.

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Techopedia Explains Interoperability

There are two main types of interoperability:

  1. Syntactic Interoperability: Where two or more systems are able to communicate and exchange data. It allows different software components to cooperate, even if the interface and the programming language are different.
  2. Semantic Interoperability: Where the data exchanged between two or more systems is understandable to each system. The information exchanged should be meaningful, since semantic interoperability requires useful results defined by the users of the systems involved in the exchange.
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Margaret Rouse
Senior Editor
Margaret Rouse
Senior Editor

Margaret 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 IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.