Data Dictionary - I

I

  • I-CASE
  • IDE
  • Idle
  • Index Search
  • Information
  • Information Management
  • Information Science
  • Inherent Error
  • In-line Code
  • Input
  • Input/Output Buffer
  • Input/Output Port
  • Input Stream
  • Integral Modem
  • Interactive Processing
  • Interlacing
  • Interrupt-driven
  • Invoke

I-CASE
Acronym for Integrated Computer-Aided Software Engineering, which is software that performs a wide variety of software engineering functions such as program design, coding (writing the actual program lines), and testing parts or all of the completed program.

IDE
Acronym for integrated device electronics. A type of disk-drive interface in which the controller electronics reside on the drive itself, eliminating the need for a separate adapter card. The IDE interface is compatible with the Western Digital ST-506 controller used by IBM in their PC/AT computer but offers advantages such as look ahead catching to increase overall performance.

Idle
A reference to the time (idle time) during which a device is operational but not in use; also, the state (idle state) of such a device while it is awaiting a command to begin working.

Index Search
A search for data in memory or on a storage device that used an index (a lit of the data items and their locations) to decrease the amount of time it takes to find a particular data item.

Information
The meaning of data, as it is intended to be interpreted by people. Data consists of facts, which become information when they are seen in context and convey meaning to people. Computers process data without any understanding of what data represents.

Information Management
The process of defining, evaluating, safeguarding, and distributing data within an organization or a system.

Information Science
The study of how information is collected, organized, handles, and communicated.

Inherent Error
An error in assumptions, design, logic, and/or algorithms that causes a program to work improperly, regardless of how well written it is. For example, a serial communications program that is written to use a parallel port contains an inherent error.

In-Line Code
In programs, embedded assembly language or machine language instructions within high-level source code. In-line code is a compiler-dependent feature, and the form it takes (if it is supported at all) varies considerable from compiler to compiler.

Input
Information entered into a computer for processing, as from a keyboard or from a file stored on a disk drive. Normally sued as a noun or an adjective, the word is often also used as a verb meaning to enter information.

Input/Output Buffer
A portion of computer memory reserved for temporary storage of incoming and outgoing information. Because input/output devices can often write to a buffer without intervention from the CPU, a program can continue execution while the buffer fills, thus speeding program execution.

Input/Output Port
A channel through which data is transferred between an input or output device and the microprocessor. The port appears to the CPU as one or more memory addresses that it can use to send or receive data. Specialized hardware such as an add-on circuit board places data from the device in the memory addresses and sends data from the memory addresses to the device. Note that some ports are dedicated solely to input or to output.

Input Stream
A flow of information used in a program as a sequence of bytes that are associated with a particular task or destination. In programming, an input stream can be a series of characters read from the keyboard to memory, or it can be a block of data read from or written to a particular disk file.

Integral Modem
A modem that is built into a computer, as opposed to an internal modem, which is a modem on an expansion card that can be removed.

Interactive Processing
Processing that involves the more or less continuous participation of the user; the command/response mode characteristic of microcomputers.

Interlacing
A technique used in some raster-scan displays in which the electron beam refreshes (updates) all odd-numbered scan lines in one sweep of the screen and all even-numbered scan lines in the next. Interlacing takes advantage of both screen phosphor’s ability to maintain an image for a short time before fading and the tendency of the human eye to average, or blend, subtle differences in light intensity. By refreshing alternate sets of lines on the display, interlacing halves the number of lines that must be carried in a single sweep of the screen and also halves the amount of information that must be carried by the display signal at any one time. Thus, interlacing updates any single line on the screen only 30 times per second, yet it provides the equivalent of a 60-cycles-per-second refresh rate.

Interrupt-Driven
A term used to describe a system program whose operations are governed by interrupts.

Invoke
To call or activate; used in reference to commands and subroutines.

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