Is middleware a separate software

  • #1
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An excellent example of middleware would be a suite of software that helps serve an online gaming environment. More and more frequently, online games feature high-definition, high-resolution, graphic-intense presentations. Traditional server solutions are no longer enough to facilitate such online gaming experiences, especially if they are multi-player. Middleware helps bridge the gap, both in reality and in virtual reality.

Source: http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-middleware.htm


Hi

I'm a computer layman so I request you to be specific. Thanks.

Is middleware a separate software which needs to be installed in order to play games online? I have seen my cousins playing online multi-player games without the use of any additional software except the game software? Where does this middleware software reside? Does it require a central server? Is it like torrent software (which I think is a middleware) because it allows different users to interact via some server(s). Please help me with it. Thank you.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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I recommend you read your own link. It explains it rather well.

What your article discusses and what you have questioned aren't really on the same track.

Middleware is describing a hardware/software type, not a specific piece of software (e.g. word processor is a software type, MS Word is a specific piece of software).

Think of it like a "man in the middle". You, the consumer want to buy a TV and Samsung sell them. Normally you wouldn't be able to get a TV from them, but you go to a shop which is the "man in the middle", allowing you to buy a TV from Samsung. This is what middleware basically does.

For example, as per the article, if you have two pieces of hardware you want to connect that you wouldn't normally be able to, middleware allows you to do so.

It may be software, it may be hardware. It isn't something specific and the general user isn't even aware of its presence.
 
  • #3
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"Middle Ware" is a marketing phenom... You could probably apply the name to any chunk of software that was 'in the middle' between one application and another. It's usually applied to communication, messaging, and temporary storage functions. Those are most often on a remote server someplace so you probably don't have to install anything extra on your own machine. In some sense server-side torrent software could be middle-ware, as could be the un-ending layers of OS "media support" software that one seems to need on a Windows PC...
 

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