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module

1. <programming> An independent piece of software which forms part of one or more larger programs. Different languages have different concepts of a module but there are several common ideas.

Modules are usually compiled seperately (in compiled languages) and provide an abstraction or information hiding mechanism so that a module's implementation can be changed without requiring any change to other modules. In this respect they are similar to objects in an object-oriented language, though a module may contain many procedures and/or functions which would correspond to many objects.

A module often has its own name space for identifiers so the same identifier may be used to mean different things in different modules.

[Difference from package?].

2. <hardware> An independent assembly of electronic components with some distinct function, e.g. a RAM module consisting of several RAM chips mounted on a small circuit board.

(1997-10-27)


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