What is Rosetta? - Definition from WhatIs.com
Part of the Personal computing glossary:

Rosetta is a translation program that makes it possible to run most PowerPC application programs on Intel-based Macintosh computers as non-native binary code. When an application is run using Rosetta, the translation is not apparent to the application user.

When using an application through Rosetta, the user may notice that the application runs more slowly than it would on a PowerPC-based computer with similar clock speed and memory. The difference is smallest with applications that demand the least processing power, such as word processors and spreadsheets, and greater with applications that have complex user interaction, such as high-end graphics programs.

Applications that involve processor-intensive functions, such as ray tracing, high-end gaming, and 3-D modeling, are incompatible with Rosetta, as are applications built for Mac OS 8 or 9, the Classic environment, code written specifically for AltiVec, applications that require G4 or G5 processors, and kernelRosettaNet is an organization set up by leading information technology companies to define and implement a common set of standards for e-business.

This was last updated in July 2005
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms


  • wearables security

    - Wearables security is the area of system and data protection concerned with the particular risks related to computing devices worn on the user's body such as smartwatches, headsets and fitness trac... (WhatIs.com)

  • spatial sensing

    - Spatial sensing is the detection, measuring and analysis of an environment's space and objects in real-time for the purposes of mapping them. (WhatIs.com)

  • 360-degree VR (360-degree virtual reality)

    - 360-degree VR (360-degree virtual reality) is an audiovisual simulation of an altered, augmented or substituted environment that surrounds the user, allowing them to look around them in all directi... (WhatIs.com)


  • Personal computing

    - Terms related to personal computers, including definitions about computers sold as consumer products and words and phrases about laptops, tablets and smartphones.

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question. Find an Answer.Powered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Ask An IT Question

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Ask Question

Tech TalkComment



    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.