In computer technology, a platform forms a uniform basis to which components can be connected and programs set up and operated. A distinction is therefore made between hardware and software platforms. In addition, there are online platforms on which online trade is conducted on the Internet.
The hardware platform is formed by the computer architecture, which in turn is based primarily on the processor architecture and the work and command structures. Well-known computer architectures are Complex Instruction Set Computer( CISC), Multiple Instruction Multiple Data( MIMD) and Reduced Instruction Set Computer( RISC). Software platforms are concerned with the basis for the operating systems and, more importantly, the application programs that must run on the software platform.
A typical computer platform is characterized by the computer architecture, the operating system, the programming languages and the user-specific interfaces, such as runtime environments, libraries and graphical interfaces. An important aspect of platforms is their compatibility, which must be guaranteed with all providers and with new versions and program changes.
The aspects mentioned apply equally to other hardware and software platforms, such as those found in network components, in routers, switching nodes, set-top boxes and many other components.