1. A synonym for program. Computer software is the collection of programs that control the computer and perform a specific collection of tasks. Software has version numbers and is licensed (not sold) to the end user. Software can be altered to change the functionality of the computer. The Election Management System (EMS) used to create election databases is software.

Source: Information Technology Terminology, U.S. Election Assistance Commission,; The State and Local Election Cybersecurity Playbook Defending Digital Democracy Project Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

2. A computer program written in a computing language.

Source: U.S. Cyberspace Solarium Commission, March 2020,

3. A term for the non-physical components (such as applications and programs) that run on physical devices. Software includes things like operating systems (Windows or Mac OS), but does not describe the physical device that a user would use to interact with them.

Source: Open Source Voting in San Francisco City and County of San Francisco,