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Software (as countable noun)

English translation: software component(s)

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:Software (as countable noun)
English translation:software component(s)
Entered by: Rowan Morrell
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02:29 May 20, 2003
German to English translations [PRO]
/ IT; Use of Software as Countable Noun in German
German term or phrase: Software (as countable noun)
This is a general question about the text I'm doing. Frequently in my text, Software is used as a countable noun. The abbreviations PVS (for patientenverwaltende Software) and BFS (for befundverarbeitende Software) are used throughout. But very often, the text will refer to e.g. "eine PVS" (i.e. eine patientenverwaltende Software) or "BFSe" (i.e. befundverarbeitende Softwares).

The problem is, "software" is not a countable noun in English. We don't say "a software". We might say "a piece of software", but not "a software". "Softwares" also sounds very odd to me.

My way of working around this at the moment when I encounter this problem is to say something like "a PMS program" (i.e. a patient management software program). Is that the right approach, do you think? Or are there other workarounds that would be more appropriate? TIA for your help.
Rowan Morrell
New Zealand
Local time: 23:10
software component
Explanation:
"Application" is misleading because it suggests that the programme is stand-alone executable. This, however, is usually not the case in large, network-based distributed systems.
"Module" goes in the right direction but is more often used for pre-compiled code (i.e. SW developer develops modules).
Therefore "SW components" for the countables.
434,000 hits in google!
Selected response from:

Robert Schlarb
Local time: 13:10
Grading comment
I was leaning to "application" for a very long time, especially with all the "agrees" it got. However, Chris's comment about "software applications" being "technically un-informed" threw doubt into my head. Robert has further convinced me that "application" is not the way to go here after all. So, I'm going to go with Robert's suggestion of "software components". Thank you all very much for your help.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +7application(s)
4lingos
5 +3system etc.Chris Rowson
5software component
Robert Schlarb
4software
Narasimhan Raghavan
3"a PVS application"
Yuri Grachev


  

Answers


3 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +7
application(s)


Explanation:
as in, patient management software application or applications

4lingos
United States
Local time: 07:10
Native speaker of: Native in GermanGerman, Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Translations4IT
1 hr

agree  Harald Moelzer (medical-translator)
1 hr

agree  writeaway: /6 years later... I just had "eine ergänzende Software" and wondered what to do about the 'eine'. application is perfect. thanks!! sometimes (nowadays, often), the best answers are ignored.
3 hrs

agree  J Fox: software application, application, or software solution
3 hrs

agree  Sven Petersson
4 hrs

agree  Mario Marcolin
4 hrs

agree  Elvira Stoianov
5 hrs
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58 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
software


Explanation:
Just as we don't say informations but just information, one has to say software only and not software. We also say information are available or information is available as per the context. Same should hold good for software too. Or go for strategems such as software programs or applications.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-05-20 03:31:41 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Rowan likes references especially Google ones. See:
Softwares - Developer of Business Management Software Solutions
Softwares is the developer of business management software specifically tailored
for the Commercial Photo Lab, Large Format Printing, Digital Printing, and Pre ...
www.softwares.com/ - 3k - Cached - Similar pages

It can be seen that softwares refers to the name of a service provider. There are more than 300000 hits and you should be content Rowan!
A sort of negative proof, but proof all the same in a certain fashion.

Narasimhan Raghavan
Local time: 16:40
Native speaker of: Tamil
PRO pts in pair: 721
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +3
system etc.


Explanation:
I entirely agree with your approach. I use a variety of solutions, as appropriate. "Application" from the first answer is good, but without "software" - e.g. "a PVS application", but also "a PVS system" and "PVS software are possible.

Better to avoid "program" - this has a specific meaning at the technical level. Applications etc. often contain a number of programs, although the user will often not be aware of this. And the corresponding German technical term is "Programm".

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-05-20 05:02:34 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

A few notes on impressions that some of the phrases make on me (Brit ex-IT consultant):

\"Softwares\" - non-native
\"Software system\" - usually tautologous but sometimes necessary as opposed to hardware system
\"Software application\" - occasionally appropriate, but usually technically un-informed
\"Software program\" - technically un-informed

Chris Rowson
Local time: 13:10
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 768

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  FRENDTrans
1 hr

agree  Martin Hesse
3 hrs

agree  Yuri Grachev
3 hrs
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5 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
"a PVS application"


Explanation:
let's discuss about Software (as countable noun) as a problem. We often use a lot of different terms like "a module", "an XYZ program" in other similar situations. But i think, "a PVS application" is the best here. Luck!


Yuri Grachev
Russian Federation
Local time: 14:10
PRO pts in pair: 4
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7 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
software component


Explanation:
"Application" is misleading because it suggests that the programme is stand-alone executable. This, however, is usually not the case in large, network-based distributed systems.
"Module" goes in the right direction but is more often used for pre-compiled code (i.e. SW developer develops modules).
Therefore "SW components" for the countables.
434,000 hits in google!


    Reference: http://www.componentsource.com/
Robert Schlarb
Local time: 13:10
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in pair: 1034
Grading comment
I was leaning to "application" for a very long time, especially with all the "agrees" it got. However, Chris's comment about "software applications" being "technically un-informed" threw doubt into my head. Robert has further convinced me that "application" is not the way to go here after all. So, I'm going to go with Robert's suggestion of "software components". Thank you all very much for your help.
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