Part of the Personal computing glossary:

A software agent is a persistent, goal-oriented computer program that reacts to its environment and runs without continuous direct supervision to perform some function for an end user or another program. Some, but not all, software agents have UIs (user interfaces). A software agent is the computer analog of an autonomous robot.

Software agents represent an evolutionary step beyond conventional computer programs. Software agents can activate and run themselves, not requiring input from or interaction with a human user. Software agents can also initiate, oversee, and terminate other programs or agents including applications and online intelligent agents.

Among a great many other applications, software agents:

 

This was last updated in January 2013
Contributor(s): Stan Gibilisco
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

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