Types of Software Packages

Word Processors

Word processing is usually what leads people to using a computer for their work. Word processors will normally have the following capabilities built into them: 
  • Spell checking
  • Standard layouts for normal documents
  • Have some characters appear in bold print, italics, or underlined
  • Center lines, make text line up on the left side of the paper, or the right side of the paper
  • Save the document so it can be used again
  • print the document.

Two of the most common word processing programs are WordPerfect and Microsoft Word.


The spreadsheet packages are designed to use numbers and formulas to do calculations with ease.  Examples of spreadsheets include:
  • Budgets
  • Payrolls
  • Grade Calculations
  • Address Lists

The most commonly used spreadsheet programs are Microsoft Excel and Lotus 123.

Data Bases

Database programs are designed for these types of applications:
  • Membership lists
  • Student lists
  • Grade reports
  • Instructor schedules

All of these have to be maintained so you can find what you need quickly and accurately. 

Some of the most commonly used database programs are Microsoft Access and dBASE.

Graphic Presentations

The presentation programs can make giving presentations and using overheads easier.  Other uses include: 
  • Slide Shows
  • Repeating Computer Presentations on a computer monitor
  • Using Sound and animation in slide shows 

The most recognized graphic presentation programs are Microsoft PowerPoint and Harvard Graphics.

Web Browsers

Web Browsers provide an easy to surf the Internet.
  • Use search engines to find people, places, and things world-wide.
  • Create your own web page to tell the world about you and your job.
  • Advertise your company and special activities.

To date, no other planet has placed web pages on the web – but nothing should surprise you!

The two most popular web browsers are Netscape and Microsoft Internet Explorer.