The term branching is used wherever hierarchies divide. Branching can occur in networks or their topology, in programs and subprograms, in transmission channels and bit streams, in text and image links, in hardware components such as end split ters or cable splitters, couplers or demultiplexers.
- In broadband networks according to IEEE 802.4, a branch is the cable branch to the node that connects the receiving station to the backbone via passive elements ( tap).
- In document links of hypertext and hypermedia, branches occur between the different documents: from the text to the graphic, from the graphic to another multimedia object, and so on.
- In programs, there are the branches to subroutines, after a conditional statement, for example, an if or else statement, or a case distinction. Besides program branching, there is also splitting. This is when several branches can be followed in parallel from one point in the program flow. These are completely different workflows that are not related to each other in terms of content.