Thursday, May 23, 2019

A Quick View of Plug-ins for Customizing Software

You may not know it, but if you have visited more than a handful of websites recently, you have probably experienced a plug-in. In simple terms, a plug-in is merely an add-on to an existing program that provides a specific feature. One of the most well-known plug-ins is the Adobe Flash Player. If you have played an online game, visited a site that loads ads in the sidebar or received an animated e-card, Flash was likely the plug-in that enabled the desired functionality. 

Plug-ins can be used for many purposes. For example, there are plug-ins for audio editors to enable the generation, analysis or processing of sound. Plug-ins can be used by email clients for encrypting and decrypting email. Graphics software may use a plug-in to process images or add support for a new file format. Developers can use plug-ins to add new features, extend the functionality of an application, apply filters or reduce an application's size, making plug-ins a cost-effective way to customize software.

Typically, plug-ins do not operate on their own. The normal configuration is that the hosting site provides a service or program that supports a plug-in and the protocol that is to be followed by the plug-in. Thus, the plug-in and the host service can be operated or updated independently, and the end user never needs to alter the host service to add, update or delete a plug-in. Usually, the plug-in relies on a shared library that is installed in a location specified by the host service. This is normally installed on the end user's computer or browser.

Plug-ins can provide you with powerful functionality that can help you gain wider acceptance in an economical manner. If you would like to learn more about what plug-ins can do, contact the experts at PhaseAlpha. You can email us at info@phasealpha.com or call 913.648.9200 to speak with one of our experienced, highly skilled team members.


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