What Does Computing Mean?

Computing is the process of using computer technology to complete a given goal-oriented task. Computing may encompass the design and development of software and hardware systems for a broad range of purposes – often structuring, processing and managing any kind of information – to aid in the pursuit of scientific studies, making intelligent systems, and creating and using different media for entertainment and communication.


Techopedia Explains Computing

Computing has also been defined as a branch of engineering science that deals with the systematic study of algorithmic processes, which are used to describe and transform information.

It also has specific meanings depending on the context and field in which it is used. For example, cloud computing, social computing, ubiquitous computing, parallel computing and grid computing all fall under the umbrella of the general meaning of computing while still having a specific purpose and definition separate from each other. Essentially, these are different applications of computing.

No matter how you define it, though, computing all boils down to one big fundamental question: What can be successfully automated?


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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

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.