Michael Henson's

Glossary of Computer Science Terms

Index | A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


scalability: a quality such that the scale on which a system is used can increase without modification to the system itself
scaling transparency: a type of transparency that allows the system and applications to expand in scale without change to the system structure or the application algorithms
scenario: a sequence of events that occur during one particular execution of a system
sequencer: a process to which all messages are sent before being multicast so that the sequencer can assign and identifier to each message before sending
sequential consistency: a property where memory operations appear to occur one at at time in the order in which they're expected to happen
serial equivalence: a property of some transactions such that concurrent execution has the same effect as serial execution
server: hardware or software that provides some kind of service to other hardware or software
service: a group of related functions that work together to provide a functional capability.
shared-memory multiprocessor: an architecture that contains several independent processors, each being able to execute a separate program
sheet: the mechanism for breaking large objects models into a series of pages
significant digits: the digits required to represent the accuracy of an approximate number, beginning with the leftmost non-zero digit and ending with the rightmost digit
simplex: a term applied to data transmission in which data can only sent, and not received
slotted ring: a LAN in which the computers are linked in a ring structure and data is transmitted in small, fixed-sized packets from node to node around the ring
socket address: a communication identifier that consists of a local port number and an Internet address
specialization: the creation of subclasses from a superclass by refining the superclass
state: the values of the attributes and links of an object at a particular time
state diagram: a directed graph in which nodes represent system states and arcs represent transitions between states
stateless server: a server that can tolerate crashes by not holding information on behalf of particular clients
stream: a source or destination of data that may be associated with a piece of hardware
strict two-phase locking: two-phase locking in which all locks are held until the current transaction commits or aborts
stub procedure: a procedure that converts a local procedure call to a remote procedure call
subsystem: a major component of a system organized around some coherent theme. A system may be divided into subsystems using either partitions or layers.
synchronous communication: a form of communication in which the sending and receiving processes synchronize at every message
system: an organized collection of components that interact
system design: the first stage of design, during which high-level decisions are made about the overall structure of the system, its architecture, and the strategies used to implement the system
system development life cycle: the process of creating a hardware/software system from its conception, through analysis, design, implementation, testing, and maintenance.